Matthew 13:24 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 13:24, NIV: Jesus told them another parable: 'The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field.

Matthew 13:24, ESV: He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field,

Matthew 13:24, KJV: Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:

Matthew 13:24, NASB: Jesus presented another parable to them, saying, 'The kingdom of heavenis like a man who sowed good seed in his field.

Matthew 13:24, NLT: Here is another story Jesus told: 'The Kingdom of Heaven is like a farmer who planted good seed in his field.

Matthew 13:24, CSB: He presented another parable to them: "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field.

What does Matthew 13:24 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Most of Jesus' parables take the form of short stories meant to create a picture of heaven's kingdom. Matthew seems to have shifted His focus back to Jesus' teaching. In this case, Christ is speaking to the large crowd gathered on the beach of the Sea of Galilee as He sits on a boat just offshore. Later, Jesus and the disciples will go into a house where Jesus will explain the specific meaning of this parable (Matthew 13:36–43).

To understand these parables, it's important to remember that Israel had been waiting hundreds of years for the arrival of the promised Messiah. There was an expectation that this Promised One would establish His kingdom. Israel's leaders and most of her people have not received Jesus as the Messiah, in part, because He is not bringing the kingdom immediately, as they assumed He would. At this point, Jesus has not seemed interested in judging the unfaithful, overthrowing the Romans, or establishing a new political kingdom of Israel. Jesus' parables are meant to explain God's actual intentions and give context to His preaching about the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus begins by once again picturing a farmer planting a field of grain. Jesus' listeners likely included many people who worked in agriculture and had participated in planting or tending or harvesting fields. His audience would have quickly understood the exact scenario Jesus describes.

The kingdom of heaven is being compared to the situation Jesus will describe, not the sower specifically. The important point for the story is that the man sowed good seed into the field. The following verses show that this parable, unlike the previous one (Mathew 13:1–9), is not about the quality of the soil or the people that soil represents. The elements are the same, but they are being used for a different lesson, with different symbolism. Now it is the seed that represents people. The sower used only good wheat seeds on this field and nothing else.