PARABLES ABOUT EVANGELISM
Jesus told many parables which concern evangelism and explain how the Kingdom of God will
spread throughout the world. Study the following parables:
The Lost Sheep: Matthew 18:12-14; Luke 15:4-7
The Lost Coin: Luke 15:8-10
The Lost Son: Luke 15:11-32
These parables reveal God’s concern for the lost and the urgency with which you should seek them.
It does not matter why they are lost. The sheep wandered away. The coin was lost through
carelessness. The son was lost through his own rebellion. God is not concerned with how men are
lost, only that they be found. You are to make every effort to find those lost in sin. You are to go
where they are, not wait for them to come to you.
The Empty Banquet Table: Luke 14:15-23
Evangelism should not stop just because some refuse to respond to the invitation of the Gospel. You
are to seek the spiritually hungry and bring them into the spiritual banquet prepared by the Lord.
The Barren Fig Tree: Luke 13:6-9
The fig tree is a natural symbol of the nation of Israel. God raised up Israel as the nation through
which He could reveal the Kingdom to the world. God tried to get the “tree” of Israel to bring forth
fruit among heathen nations by sharing their knowledge of the true God. But Israel remained barren
and unfruitful. Now God has raised up the Church for this purpose. God nurtures believers in an
attempt to make them productive, just as He did the nation of Israel. His purpose is the same: We
are to bring forth “fruit” among the heathen by sharing our knowledge of the true God. God is not
pleased with trees that produce no fruit.
The Talents: Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:11-27
The Man On A Long Journey: Mark 13:34-37
The Servants: Matthew 24:43-51; Luke 12:39-46
The Watching Servants: Luke 12:36-38
The Faithful Manager: Matthew 25:14-30
These “servant” parables emphasize wise stewardship of the Gospel, which has been entrusted to
believers. Each believer is given talents or special abilities to use to spread the Gospel. Whether
your abilities are great or small, you must use what God has given you. When Jesus returns to earth,
those who have properly used their abilities will be rewarded (Luke 16:10-12).
The Sower: Matthew 13:3-8; Mark 4:3-8; Luke 8:5-8
The Gospel is spread by sowing the seed of the Word of God. There can be no multiplication
without the Word. The fruit depends on the life that is in the seed itself (the Word of God) and the
response of the soil (man’s response to the Word of God). There will be varied responses to the
sowing of the Word.
Your responsibility is to sow. As you sow the seed of the Word of God, some soil is ready and
yields a harvest. Other soil is not responsive and yields very little. Even Jesus encountered
unresponsive soils in His earthly ministry:
And He could do there (his own country) no mighty work, save that He laid His
hands upon a few sick folk and healed them.
And He marveled because of their unbelief. . . (Mark 6:5-6)
The Tares And The Wheat: Matthew 13:24-30
As you evangelize and new believers are added to the Church, Satan will try to defeat the process.
He will sow people described as “weeds” among the good seed of God’s Kingdom. Some of the
people who profess to be believers and come into the church through evangelism are not sincere.
They are “weeds” planted by Satan. Jesus does not want you to spend time and effort trying to
separate the weeds from the wheat. Keep sowing the seed and evangelizing. When Jesus returns, the
weeds will be separated during the harvest.
The Fishing Net: Matthew 13:47-50
Jesus compared evangelism to a great net thrown into the sea. All kinds of fish enter, but when the
net is drawn to shore the good fish are separated from the bad. The Kingdom of God will draw men
and women from all nations. Many will enter. Some will be sincere, others will not. In the final
judgment when God draws in the net, the good and bad will be separated. You are not called to
separate, you are called to fish.
The Mustard Seed: Matthew 13:31-32; Mark 4:31-32; Luke 13:19
The Kingdom of God will multiply like mustard seed. The mustard seed is very small in the
beginning, but in maturity it grows to great size. The Kingdom of God on earth had a small
beginning. When Jesus returned to Heaven after His earthly ministry, He left behind a small group
of followers to spread the Gospel. That small group of believers has multiplied to thousands of
followers in many nations.
The Leaven: Matthew 13:33; Luke 13:21
Like leaven in a lump of dough, the Gospel will spread throughout the whole “lump” of the world.
Like leaven, the power of the Kingdom is not external but it is internal.
The Vine And The Branches: John 15:1-16
This parable describes the relationship between Jesus, us, and the evangelism process. He is the
spiritual vine and we are the branches. We cannot bear fruit alone. We are reproductive only as we
are attached to the life flow of the branch, Jesus. Jesus wants to prune your life of everything that is
not reproductive so you will bring forth spiritual fruit that remains.
The Harvest: Matthew 9:37-38; Luke 10:2
In this parable, the field is the world. The harvest is the multitudes of men and women ready to
respond to the Gospel message. A great harvest waits to be reaped by the spiritual laborers of God.
We will discuss in more details some of the central message Jesus wanted to convey for our teaching.