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What is a Parable? EXTENDED COURSEWORK

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Introduction

Contents Statement of Intent. Page 2 Section A Describe from Luke's Gospel, how Page 3-7 Jesus presented his teachings through Parables. Section B Discuss the meaning and relevance of Page 8-14 Parables to the belief and life of Christians today. Section C Are these Parables still relevant today? Page 15-16 Statement of Intent What is a Parable? In my coursework, I will establish the definition of a Parable, Biblical quotes and references, and the reasons for their use. I will establish these facts: * The use of Parables in Luke's Good News Gospel * Examples of Parables that Jesus used * My personal opinions on the subject of Parables I will use several different sources of information to complete the essay questions stated below. These sources include various Internet websites; books and my teacher. The following questions (below) on the subject of Parables will be answered in this coursework: A Describe from Luke's Gospel, how Jesus presented his teachings through Parables. B Discuss the meaning and relevance of Parables to the belief and life of Christians today. C Are these Parables still relevant today? (A) Describe from Luke's Gospel, how Jesus presented his teachings through Parables The term 'Parable' was taken from the Greek word 'Parabole' meaning an analogy or a comparison. However Jesus was not Greek, he was Jewish. The word 'Parable' in Hebrew is translated as 'Marshal', which means sayings, proverbs, similes, or close to an allegory. Both of these definitions can also be referred to as 'earthly stories with heavenly meanings.' It is made simple so the reader can have a greater understanding of the story. A good example of an allegory is the Parable of the Good Samaritan. Most Parables link into the Sermon on the Mount, due to it's morals including forgiveness. Jesus used Parables to act as pictures to tell these Parables. He was the main teacher of Parables. ...read more.

Middle

The Parable of the Great Banquet (14:12-24), with its emphasis on the universalism of the Gospel, is seen as being totally relevant to a modern understanding of Christianity. Christians see, in the Parable of the Good Samaritan (10:25-37), the command to treat every individual human being as a neighbour. There can be no more room for prejudice in dealing with people. It is true that history records frequent occasions when this has been forgotten and prejudice has shown itself in religious, racial and class distinctions. Christians would claim this is totally foreign to true Christianity. The claims of the Kingdom of God dictate that all people must be treated the same and held in the same esteem. The meaning of the Parable of the Rich Fool (12:13-21) is important to Christians today. Many would claim that the teaching of Jesus is still relevant and that it is virtually impossible to be totally committed to amassing wealth and serve God at the same time. Many Christians also see life as an important preparation for death. They see eternity in terms of the response made to God while on earth. In addition to this, no one can forecast the moment of death. It can come at the least expected time, as indeed, can the end of the world and the Second Coming of Jesus. The Parable of the Sower (8:4-8; 11-15) is one of the most well known of all Parables supporting the category of 'The Kingdom of God has arrived'. The seed falls on four different types of soil; the footpath, rocky ground, among thistles and on good soil. At first sight this may be seen as careless farming with so much seed being wasted. The Parable, however, only makes sense when seen against the method of farming followed in Palestine at the time. Certainly some seed was wasted but this is exactly what used to happen. ...read more.

Conclusion

People who have connected with God's ways can study the Parables and gain the knowledge they require to become a true Christian. Some Christians may want to explore a deeper understanding of their faith. People can enjoy the Parable; they are not just being forced to recite and followed hundred of laws, which they don't even understand. My opinion is that the importance of the Parables Jesus told completely overshadows the miracles which he performed during his ministry. Miracles contain no meanings or teachings. Miracles were just the compassionate feelings of Jesus. The utter virtuosity of the Parables told by Jesus often gains peoples interest in the Christian faith. The meanings are applicable and so helpful. Faith should be acquired through understanding and not demanded by supernatural occurrences. To the present day, the majority of people enjoy listening to a story, and many stories whether they have a religious origin or not often contain a moral or teaching of some kind. Often these stories like Parables are very memorable, which people enjoy and remember, then one day the penny drops and they grasp the meaning behind the story. These Parables often come up in everyday conversation and in this way the Good News is spread. The phrase, "the Lost Son has returned", has been mentioned, not knowing what it really means. Many Parables are so simple that if given thought, even a child could understand them. The meanings from the Parables Jesus told could be converted into a modern day story, and they would still contain the hidden messages which Jesus intended to spread round Israel. This shows that they are still relevant. Parables were the words spoken through Jesus Christ, the Son of Man. I therefore believe that no matter what century or decade that one is in, Parables will always be relevant to not just Christians, but all people , and the teachings and morals provided in the hidden meanings will be valued forevermore. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ramin Rouhani 1 ...read more.

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