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Tag Archives: parables of Jesus

The Place of the Unknown

Getting lost can take on many forms.  Your GPS device of choice may lead you astray.  The place where you are in life is puzzling with few who have experienced this or understand.  Meanwhile, the various stages of parenting can be challenging, often unsure of what to do next.  These are just some examples of entering the place of the unknown.

For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them, Matthew 13:15.

Jesus uses a parable based upon farming to describe the place of the unknown.  One of the reasons why people are in the dark spiritually is due to calloused hearts.  This condition is fueled by stubbornness, preventing individuals from picking up subtle clues from God.  This lack of clarity, discernment and insight hinders people from escaping darkness.

When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path, Matthew 13:19.

The conditions, environment and surroundings in which you live often dictate the direction you will go in life.  While there are always exceptions to this rule, soil types restrict the overall harvest of farmers.  Obstructions like rocks, sticker bushes and weeds entangle the healthy.  Careless acts can damage, harm or uproot spiritual foundations.  In view of this hazardous threat, may the power of the Holy Spirit inspire believers to seek fertile soil for the soul.  By doing this, you will discover the way out of the place of the unknown.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

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No Mas

When boxing was in its hay day in America, Sugar Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran were in their prime, slugging it out in 3 title bouts.  On November 25th, 1980, the Louisiana Super Dome hosted their first rematch as Leonard tried to regain the WBC Welterweight belt he lost in their first fight.  Nicknamed Manos de Piedra by his native Panama, Duran’s hands of stone  appeared mortal.  Near the end of the 8th round, Roberto gave up, waving his gloves in the air, signaling his surrender to the referee.  A stunned crowd and opponent, waited for an explanation.  In response, Duran replied, “no mas, no mas; no more boxing!”

Sometime around 1465 B.C. a similar duel took place in Egypt.  When Aaron and Moses threatened Egypt with a series of plagues if their king, Pharaoh did not allow the descendents of Israel to offer sacrifices to God in the desert, tensions flared, Exodus 7:8-13.  To counter God’s power, Pharaoh called on the magicians and sorcercer’s of his day, who relied on secrets arts passed down to them, Exodus 7:11.  These wise men went toe to toe with God for 3 rounds equaling each miracle performed by Aaron using the staff God gave Moses.  However, when the 4th plague began, Exodus 8:16-19, the magicians knew they were beaten.  Instead of saying No Mas like Duran, they broke the bad news to Pharaoh in Exodus 8:19, “this is the finger of God that can’t be duplicated.”

 

Within the pages of John 15:1-8, Jesus uses a parable to help people understand a secret to life.  On your own, you are limited, powerless to reach your full potential, John 15:6.  However, if you choose to stay connected to the vine, Jesus, by making time for prayer, study and worship, you will bear great amounts of spiritual fruit, John 15:5.  In order to obtain this spiritual state, you have to reach a breaking point like Roberto Duran and Pharaoh, proclaiming “no mas!”  Just as the apostle Paul learned the hard way, 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, when you are at your weakest, Christ is strongest, ready at a moment’s notice to come to your rescue.

by Jay Mankus

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