To listen to the Parables of Jesus, it seems to me, is to let one’s imagination be opened to the new possibilities disclosed by the extravagance of these short dramas. If we look at the Parables as at a word at rest first to our imagination rather than our will, we shall not be tempted to reduce them to mere didactic devices, to moralizing allegories. We will let their poetic power display its self within us., ‘Listening to the Parables of Jesus’ in The Philosophy of Paul Ricoeur: An Anthology of His Work (245).
Deacon Zach Roberts has a new post on the Parables of Jesus over at Baptimergent. It is definitely worth reading, so check it out.
The irony of parables is that most readers assume they vindicate their own cause, when actually they implicate us for our participation in injustice. If Jesus were addressing these parables to whiny emerging Baptists, he would have been at a Wal-Mart McCafe networking with white male denominational executives on a PC.
A parable can be loosely described as a short, fictional narrative that draws the reader ?into an insight concerning some aspect of faith and life. Parables often work best when ?they challenge commonly held attitudes and unmask the poverty of some widely held value. Parables are generally structured in a very simple and stark way, with a narrative that avoids any unnecessary detail that may detract from the central, evocative message.