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WHAT IS A PARABLE?
Learn to Interpret Bible Parables
A Parable is a short story used to teach a lesson of truth through comparison or contrast. The hearer or reader can easily understand the short story and remember it. The reader or hearer can then easily understand the meaning of the doctrine or principle by illustration and understand how it works, and the point that the teacher wants to teach.
Bible Parables will almost always employ the use Bible symbols in the story to give a deeper meaning to the parable, Parables and Bible Symbols are connected and the reader must know how to use Bible Symbols in order to fully understand Parables. That is why this website’s first priority is teaching Bible Symbols.
A Parable is like a Symbol in that there is a surface or obvious meaning but also there is also a deeper meaning that conveys doctrine that is associated with the parable and requires some additional thought and study.
Jesus used parables to transmit doctrine, to teach the people. That is the central concept of parables. Matthew 13:34 says that Parables are the only way He spoke to the people. Therefore all His teachings were in Parables. As you learn to study parables you must continue to remember that parables are the teachings of Jesus, not the doctrine of any specific church. They are for the edification of the church.
Where can I find Parables?
The whole Bible is full of parables, Christ especially used parables, in the New Testament Gospels. Remember it is Christ, through the Holy Spirit, who is the actual author of the whole Bible and He inspired the use of parables in the New Testament as well as in the Old Testament. Also, remember that parables are a method of communicating the Words of Truth, and since Christ is the author of the Old Testament, we can expect to find parables there as well.
I have listed all the Parables that I could find there. I believe that it is a complete list, but undoubtedly there are others that will find parables that I did not. There are some verses in the Bible that some would include as a parable that I would not, and there may be some in my list that others would not include. All the Major parables are represented with their references. As you go through the list you may think of others that are not included. I have tried to use the standard titles for the Parables, but some may not be recognized immediately by their title.