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LUKE - Christ, the Savior of the World
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to Luke


17. The Two Parables of the Kingdom of God (Luke 13:18-21)

LUKE 13:18-21
18 Then He said, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? 19 It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches.” 
20 And again He said, “To what shall I liken the kingdom of God? 21 It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.”

The atom bomb has great power, but the spiritual power in any world belief is stronger than it, for every culture expands and becomes empowered with its own spirit. The greatest power in the world is the word of Jesus Christ, for it has changed the face of the world ultimately. Jesus is like a man who comes to his garden and sows grain of mustard seed, which grows in the course of time silently, and becomes a great tree. As such Jesus cast the gospel into the field of the world, which belongs to him, and not to Satan. And this simple word, which works without eloquence, became in two thousand years a huge tree whose branches reached many parts of the earth. The word of the Lord is still powerful, winning individuals even to the uttermost parts of the world. So do not despair if you were an isolated believer surrounded by unbelievers, or if only two or three met with you around the Holy Bible. The gospel as promised, even today, grows and becomes a large tree, for the power of God is working in it. It revives dead hearts, and gives light to ignorant minds. Believe in the power of the gospel that you may experience how it changes the hearts of many.

Be wary! A bird perching on a tree, or lodging in its branches is not a part of the tree. Similarly, not all those who hear the gospel and come to your meetings become changed in heart, and desire to be engrafted into the root of the tree. There are people who come and partake of the rays of peace, and the blessings of God’s protection, without committing themselves truly to the power of grace, or continuing in God. Many philosophers, poets, leaders, and economists learnt the Holy Bible, and were most impressed by it. They derived much benefit from it, without any change in their hearts; and then they flew away as birds having a leaf of the tree of God in their beaks. Dear brother, be as a branch, and not a flying bird in the tree of Christ so that his power may flow in you without interruption.

In another parable, our Lord Jesus shows us the power at work in the kingdom of God. He likens it to leaven, which leavens the dough and makes it fit to be made bread. The raising of dough signifies a chemical change. It tells us how the power of the kingdom of God changes the nature of man, making the selfish unselfish, and impure pure. We see as the mustard seed grows into a large tree an example of the spreading of the kingdom of God without any hindrance. The parable of the leaven also shows us the essential change in man through the word of Christ whose kingdom increases in number and in essence. He who loves Christ becomes sanctified, and he who follows him serves men. Christ himself is like the leaven, which leavens, ripens, and changes the whole world according to his pure Spirit.

Did the power of Christ impress you, change you to become humble, and make you a source of transformation? If you want to see the power of Christ at work in you, and to share it with others, you will not need human wisdom or deceit, all that you need is to open yourself to the gospel, and you will become a profitable man, bearing the word of God in your heart, and spreading it among your friends and surroundings. Trust in the power of Christ, which overturns situations. He is the author and finisher of our faith. Thanksgiving and praise be to him.

PRAYER: O Lord Jesus Christ, we worship you because you touched us with your word, included us in your kingdom, and change us into your image. We thank you that your kingdom grows like a flourishing tree in all conditions, and none can oppose it. We worship you for your kingdom grows unobtrusively in holiness, and without noisy propaganda, that your people may become the source for life for many.

QUESTION 93: What is the difference between the parable of the mustard seed, and that of the leaven?


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