A sower went out to sow some seed ...
A man fell into the hands of robbers ...
Suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one ...
There were ten virgins with ten lamps ...

Think of it. You are the Son of the living God. You have come to earth to rescue the human race. It is your job to communicate truths without which your precious ones will be lost ... forever. Would you do it like this? Why doesn’t he come right out and say it—get to the point? What’s with all the stories?

We children of the Internet and the cell phone and the Weather Channel, we think we are the enlightened ones. We aren’t fooled by anything—we just want the facts. The bottom line. So proposition has become our means of saying what is true and what is not. And proposition is helpful ... for certain things. Sacramento is the capital of California; water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. But proposition fails when it comes to the weightier things in life. While it is a fact that the Civil War was fought between the years of 1861 and 1865, and while it is also a fact that hundreds of thousands of men died in that war, those facts hardly describe what happened at Bull Run or Gettysburg. You don’t even begin to grasp the reality of the Civil War until you hear the stories, see pictures from the time, visit the battlefields yourself.

How much more so when it comes to the deep truths of the Christian faith. God loves you; you matter to him. That is a fact, stated as a proposition. I’ll bet most of you have heard it any number of times. Why, then, aren’t we the happiest people on earth? It hasn’t reached our hearts. Facts stay lodged in the mind. Proposition speaks to the mind, but when you tell a story, you speak to the heart.

And that’s why when Jesus comes to town, he speaks in a way that will get past all our intellectual defenses and disarm our hearts.


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