Parable of the Lamp Under a Basket
Parable of the Lamp Under a Basket: Matthew 5:14-16; Mark 4:21-25; Luke 8:16-18; Luke 11:33-34
the parable of the lamp under a basket, Jesus notes that no one lights a
lamp in order to hide it. On the contrary, those who light a lamp set it on
a table to fill the whole room with light.
This short parable is used by Jesus to illustrate three different points in different contexts.
Context & Meaning in Matthew 5
In the context found in Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus says "In the
same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your
good works and give glory to your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)
Jesus' Point: Allow the goodness within you to produce good works, so that God is glorified.
Context & Meaning in Mark 4 and Luke 8
In the context found in Mark 4:21-25 and Luke 8:16-18, Jesus
makes the point that anything hidden or secret will be exposed.
While God already knows our inner thoughts, one day everything hidden from the world will be made known when we are judged for what we have done and said.
Also in this context, Jesus says "Then pay attention to how you listen; for
to those who have, more will be given; and from those who do not have,
even what they seem to have will be taken away." (Luke 8:18)
This comment is referring to revelation and knowledge. Those
who listen and therefore have understanding, will be given more knowledge. Those who
do not have understanding, because they do not listen well, even what they seem
to have (in terms of understanding) will be taken away.
This fact is illustrated regularly with almost any subject. The
only real difference between the wise and foolish is that a smart person listens and
learns, whereas a foolish person does not.
Jesus' Point: All things hidden and secret will be made known openly.
Context & Meaning in Luke 11
In the context found in Luke 11:33-34, Jesus says, "Your eye
is the lamp of your body. If your eye is healthy, your whole body is
full of light; but if it is not healthy your body is full of darkness."
In this situation, Jesus uses the parable of the lamp under a basket to explain that it matters what our eyes view.
Jesus' Point: What we allow our eyes to see affects the goodness (or evil) within us.
God's Truth Taught in Stories
Study the parables of Jesus in this easy-to-read 40 day devotional.
This devotional takes the unique approach of
understanding Jesus' parables by examining the genre, scriptural
context, and historical culture. Your life will be transformed by studying the parables of Jesus Christ.
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