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pageId="iii"The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

pageId="1359"Chapter 13

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Text Commentary

The Parable of the Sower. 1v Mk 4:1–12; Lk 8:4–10.*On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea. 2Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd stood along the shore. 3*And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up. 5Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep, 6and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots. 7Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it. 8But some seed fell on rich soil, and produced fruit, a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold. 9Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

The Purpose of Parables. 10The disciples approached him and said, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” 11*He said to them in reply, “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. 12w 25:29; Mk 4:25; Lk 8:18; 19:26.*To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 13x Jn 9:39.*This is why I speak to them in parables, because ‘they look but do not see and hear but do not listen or understand.’14y Is 6:9–10; Jn 12:40; Acts 28:26–27; Rom 11:8. Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says:

‘You shall indeed hear but not understand, you shall indeed look but never see. 15Gross is the heart of this people, they will hardly hear with their ears, they have closed their eyes, lest they see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and be converted, and I heal them.’

The Privilege of Discipleship. 16z Lk 10:23–24; 1 Pt 1:10–12.*“But blessed are your eyes, because they see, and your ears, because they hear. 17Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

The Explanation of the Parable of the Sower. 18a Mk 4:13–20; Lk 8:11–15.*“Hear then the parable of the sower. 19The seed sown on the path is the one who hears the word of the kingdom without understanding it, and the evil one comes and steals away what was sown in his heart. 20The seed sown on rocky ground is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy. 21But he has no root and lasts only for a time. When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, he immediately falls away. 22The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word, but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word and it bears no fruit. 23But the seed sown on rich soil is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold.”

The Parable of the Weeds among the Wheat. 24*He proposed another parable to them. “The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25*While everyone was asleep his enemy came and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off. 26When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well. 27The slaves of the householder came to him and said, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where have the weeds come from?’ 28He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’ His slaves said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ 29He replied, ‘No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them. 30b 3:12.*Let them grow together until harvest; then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters, “First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning; but gather the wheat into my barn.” ’ ”

The Parable of the Mustard Seed. 31c Mk 4:30–32; Lk 13:18–19.*He proposed another parable to them. “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field. 32d Ez 17:23; 31:6; Dn 4:7–9, 17–19.*It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the ‘birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches.’ ”

The Parable of the Yeast. 33e Lk 13:20–21.*He spoke to them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened.”

The Use of Parables. 34f Mk 4:33–34.*All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables. He spoke to them only in parables, 35g Ps 78:2.*to fulfill what had been said through the prophet:

“I will open my mouth in parables, I will announce what has lain hidden from the foundation [of the world].”

The Explanation of the Parable of the Weeds. 36*Then, dismissing the crowds, he went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” 37*He said in reply, “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man, 38*the field is the world, the good seed the children of the kingdom. The weeds are the children of the evil one, 39*and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. 40Just as weeds are collected and burned [up] with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. 41*The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. 42h 8:12; Rev 21:8.They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. 43i Dn 12:3.*Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.

More Parables. 44j Prv 2:4; 4:7.*“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. 45Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. 46When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it. 47Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. 48When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away. 49Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous 50and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.

Treasures New and Old. 51*“Do you understand all these things?” They answered, “Yes.” 52*And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” 53When Jesus finished these parables, he went away from there.

The Rejection at Nazareth. 54k Mk 6:1–6; Lk 4:16–30.l 2:23; Jn 1:46; 7:15.*He came to his native place and taught the people in their synagogue. They were astonished and said, “Where did this man get such wisdom and mighty deeds? 55m 12:46; 27:56; Jn 6:42.Is he not the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother named Mary and his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas? 56Are not his sisters all with us? Where did this man get all this?” 57n Jn 4:44.And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and in his own house.” 58And he did not work many mighty deeds there because of their lack of faith.

Notes:

v: Mk 4:1–12; Lk 8:4–10.

w: 25:29; Mk 4:25; Lk 8:18; 19:26.

x: Jn 9:39.

y: Is 6:9–10; Jn 12:40; Acts 28:26–27; Rom 11:8.

z: Lk 10:23–24; 1 Pt 1:10–12.

a: Mk 4:13–20; Lk 8:11–15.

b: 3:12.

c: Mk 4:30–32; Lk 13:18–19.

d: Ez 17:23; 31:6; Dn 4:7–9, 17–19.

e: Lk 13:20–21.

f: Mk 4:33–34.

g: Ps 78:2.

h: 8:12; Rev 21:8.

i: Dn 12:3.

j: Prv 2:4; 4:7.

k: Mk 6:1–6; Lk 4:16–30.

l: 2:23; Jn 1:46; 7:15.

m: 12:46; 27:56; Jn 6:42.

n: Jn 4:44.

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