“He said nothing to them without a parable.”
The parables are funny things, aren’t they? Illustrative and informational, folksy and wise, all at the same time.
And yet, not always easy to understand. “Why do you speak in parables?” the disciples asked Him. And there’s almost a hint of “Why do you insist on teaching this way?” in their words. His answer? “To the one who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance.”
Well, I think that it’s about understanding. Those parables were given to everyone within earshot. Comprehension wasn’t part of the delivery, though. There was something to ponder in Jesus’ words, but not everyone cared enough to meditate on it, and seek the truth and the message. The Pharisees, for instance. They might come to Him and challenge Him as to the meaning of His parables, but they weren’t seeking truth. They wanted to trap Him into committing a crime against the Roman government.
But Jesus knew they didn’t really want answers. He knew they were cynical. And suspicious. And He refused to engage. Like I’ve always told my kids: never argue with 2-year-olds. Or someone who’s been drinking. Or anyone who can’t be reasonable. It’s a losing battle. And Titus 3:9 tells us to avoid foolish controversies and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and useless.
True story, as my kids would say.
I have a friend who’s a high school teacher, and fairly new at it. She was struggling last year with being able to grade all her students’ papers, because she wanted to do a good job. She wanted to make detailed comments on places where they were being marked down, so that her students would know what they were doing wrong, and how to do better. She didn’t just want to mark it with an X or a circle or something. But going into detail was taking too much time and she was getting bogged down in the work.
She asked a fellow teacher what to do, and he told her to write, “See me for more info,” next to problem areas on her students’ work. That leaves it in the student’s hands. If they care; if they want to do understand and do better next time, then they’ll come to her. But it’s up to them to seek out the knowledge they are missing.
“To the one who has, more will be given…” That’s Jesus saying, “See Me for more info.”
… and he will have an abundance.” There’s always more info.
So see Him.