The Practice of Parable Reading

March 22, 2022 | Written by Caitlin Garrett

How do you normally read parables?

Often when we read the Bible, it is by ourselves, and it is silent. But the stories Jesus told were spoken aloud – they were told to at least one other person.

Eugene Peterson said, “It is important to keep that original oral quality in mind, that living voice of Jesus, the spoken words that came from His mouth and entered the lives of men and women through listening ears and believing hearts.”

Experiencing the words of Jesus in the fashion that He spoke them and discussing with others can show us things we haven’t seen before. This type of reading is formative, shaping the way you think about things, and shaping your community!

Here are the components of Parable Reading…

Read aloud | Take the parable and read it out loud to at least one other person. Or listen to it read from a Bible app. Maybe read it in a few different versions. You can do this one parable at a time or read a large section of Luke all together.

*Did you know that we’ve included links on the Lent page that take you straight to the passages – where you’ll be able to read multiple translations, listen to the parable, and find other helpful tools? 

Respond | Talk about what you read together. Talk about who Jesus was telling the story to. How does it fit within the entire Gospel of Luke? Where does this parable overlap with things Jesus taught elsewhere? 

It is so beneficial to have a deeper understanding of the parables before we talk about them from the pulpit on Sunday mornings.

Each of us will have different pieces of the story that stand out to us, and we can learn so much from one another’s study. They may have noticed a detail that you didn’t. You may have a question they hadn’t thought of. This is one of the reasons that community is vital to our growth as believers!

Parable Reading is just one of the ways you can engage with the parables during this Lenten season. Check out some other practices here!

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