Our Daily Bread 16th May 2020 Devotional – Tell Me a Story
TODAY’S TOPIC: TELL ME A STORY
Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 24–25; John 5:1–24
Key Verse: He did not say anything to them without using a parable. – Mark 4:34
Today’s Scripture: Mark 4:26–34 (NIV)
The Parable of the Growing Seed
26 He also said, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground.
27 Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how.
28 All by itself the soil produces grain—first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head.
29 As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come.”
The Parable of the Mustard Seed (Our Daily Bread 16th May 2020 Devotional)
30 Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it?
31 It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth.
32 Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.”
33 With many similar parables Jesus spoke the word to them, as much as they could understand.
34 He did not say anything to them without using a parable. But when he was alone with his own disciples, he explained everything.
Insight: Our Daily Bread 16th May 2020 Devotional
The word parable comes from the Greek words para and bolḗ, which mean “placing side by side.” Parables are illustrations taken from common things, or day-to-day life situations, which compare a known truth with an unknown truth. The four gospels contain more than forty parables.
Jesus often used the sower-seed metaphor to illustrate the kingdom of God. In Mark 4, Jesus taught three parables—the parables of the sower (vv. 3–20), the growing seed (vv. 26–29), and the mustard seed (vv. 30–33). The seed is the Word of God (v. 14; Luke 8:11). When planted on “good soil,” or the receptive heart (Mark 4:20; Matthew 13:23), the life-bearing seed grows steadily and produces grain without any human effort (Mark 4:28–29). This is the unseen work of God—a work of grace. Only God makes the seed grow (1 Corinthians 3:6–7).
Today’s Message: Our Daily Bread 16th May 2020 Devotional
Once upon a time. Those four words just might be among the most powerful in the entire world. Some of my earliest memories as a boy contain a variation on that potent phrase. My mother came home one day with a large, hardcover illustrated edition of biblical stories—My Good Shepherd Bible Story Book.
Every evening before lights-out, my brother and I would sit expectantly as she read to us of a time long ago filled with interesting people and the God who loved them. Those stories became a lens for how we looked at the great big world. Our Daily Bread 16th May 2020 Devotional
The undisputed greatest storyteller ever? Jesus of Nazareth. He knew we all carry inside us an innate love for stories, so that was the medium He consistently used to communicate His good news: Once upon a time there was a man who scattered “seed on the ground” (Mark 4:26).
Once upon a time there was “a mustard seed” (v. 31), and on and on. Mark’s gospel clearly indicates that Jesus used stories in His interactions with everyday people (v. 34) as a way to help them see the world more clearly and understand more thoroughly the God who loved them.
That’s wise to remember as we desire to share with others God’s good news of mercy and grace. The use of story is almost impossible to resist. By: John Blase
Reflect: How could you weave a story or parable into your conversations this week? Maybe something like, “Once upon a time, God answered my prayer in a surprising way . . . .”
Today’s Prayer: Jesus, You’re the Wonderful Counselor and the Great and Mighty God. Give us creativity in the ways in which we share Your love with a world that still slows down to hear a story.
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