Word Study: Parable

The word “parable” in the NT is an Anglicized Greek word and no translation at all. The Greek word (Strongs 3850) parabole is found 50 times in the NT: 46 times it is not translated and found as parable; figure 2, comparison 1, proverb 1.  “Parabole” is the noun form of the Greek word, paraballo (Strongs 3846). Paraballo is found 2 times in the NT, Mat 4:30 (compare) and Acts 20:15 (arrive). Paraballo is derived from two Greek words, para, (Strongs 3833) meaning “at, by, besides or near” and ,”ballo” (Strongs 906) meaning “to throw, scatter, cast” over a wide sense from casting cares to the pouring out of rivers and fluids.

As stated before, parabole is found 50 times in the NT as follows:

Mat 13:3, 10, 13, 18, 24, 31, 34 (2X), 35, 36, 53: 15:15; 21:33, 45; 22:1; 24:32 (17 times in Matthew and 11 times alone in chapter 13)

Mark 4:2, 10, 11, 13 (2X), 30, 33, 34; 7:17; 12:1, 12; 13:28 (11 times in Mark)

Luke 4:23; 5:36; 6:39; 8:4, 9, 10, 11; 12:16, 41; 13:6; 14:7; 15:3; 18:1, 9; 19:11; 20:9, 19; 21:29 (18 times in Luke)

Heb 9:9; Heb 11:19 (translated “figure” in both verses)

As an observation of the 50 times parabole is found in the NT it is only found outside of Matthew, Mark and Luke two times. Both these two times it is translated as “figure” relating to a type or prophesy of the Mashiach, who is Yeshua of Nazareth. Why would this be so? Because Yeshua preached the gospel almost exclusively in “parabole” prior to His death for our sins, His burial and His resurrection the third day according to all the Old Testament, so they would not believe. “For had they known the Lord of glory, they would not have crucified Him.” This is according to the eternal purpose of God in the Mashiach. Paul’s understanding in 2 Cor which is my understanding is, “Wherefore henceforth know we know person after the flesh, yes, though we HAVE known the Mashiach after the flesh, henceforth know we him no more (after the flesh).” To take the parables at face value and not in light of the Mashiach’s death for our sins, His burial and His resurrection the third day at it is prophesied in all the Old Testament, is to know the Mashiach after the flesh. To know the Mashiach after the flesh is to know Him after the letter (which killeth), condemnation, death and judgment. The Mashiach was condemned in the flesh and justified in the Spirit. He who knew no sin became sin (in the flesh) that we might be the righteousness of God in Him. He was born of the woman under the law, and law declared,” cursed is the man that hangeth on a tree” (with no regard of whether the man was guilty or innocent) and in another place, “thou shalt not covet (or lust, or desire)”, again with no regard for whether the person was of the flesh, and filled with the desire of things that are not theirs, or whether the person is God, who desires all things because all things are His. The law makes none of these distinctions. By the lack of these distinctions of whether a person is God or a created person, the law was able to condemn the Mashiach in the flesh, and yet He was without sin. Great is the wisdom of our God. If a law had been able to be given to produce righteousness in people, one would have surely been given and the Mashiah would not have been crucified.

Now to start in the OT with understanding the spiritual word “parabole” is derived Psalms 49 and 78 are good places to start as the purpose of God is declared. The testimony of two confirms the fact. It is written in Psalms 49, “I will incline mine ear to a MASHAL (parabole). I will open my dark saying upon the harp.” And Psalms 78, I will open my mouth in a MASHAL. I will utter dark sayings of old, which we have heard and known, which our fathers have told us.” To understand the Hebrew word MaSHaL, represented by the Greek word, parabole, let us first look at the Hebrew word MaSHel. MaSHel (Strongs H4910) is found 81 total times in the OT: rule 40 times; ruler 19; reign 8; dominion 7, power 2, indeed 1. It can most clearly be understood as “to reign” or “to rule”. Other Hebrew words with the same spelling:

H4911 to represent, liken: 16 total in OT: like 15, proverb 4; speak 2: use 2: become 1; compare; utter.

H4913 place in Palestine

H4914 byword Job 17:6

To compile and condense all these uses of mashal/mashel, in the verb or action form (mashel) we have the meaning “to rule, reign.” The noun form (mashal) there is the meaning of the primary characteristic of the “one who rules” – utterance or speak, a proverb. Thus in the Hebrew thought of the OT which is spiritual thought that the someone or something who is ruling or reigning, whether an admonishment that sin should not rule man (Gen 4:7), or Avraham’s servant who ruled over all he had (Gen 24:2), or Jospeh’s brethren thinking that he should rule over them (Gen 37:8), or Joseph rule over Egypt (Gen 45:8,26) has a voice and utterance that represents the one with the authority. It should be a voice of wisdom and knowledge for the good of the people. As Proverbs or Mashal is the voice of King Solomon, the prophet, and his wise utterances. This is the sense of the spiritual word mashal which is translated into the Greek, parabole), which we fail to translate into English and Anglicize it, parable.

Thus, mashal or a parable, is the wisdom, the representation and image of he who is set in charge, who rules by his voice. He utters wise words called proverbs, and wherever his voice is heard he has dominion. Look at Yeshua ha Mashiach!

I mark this writing by the one true gospel, and the one true gospel, is the Mashiach, Yeshua of Nazareth, died for our sins according to the Old Testament, He was buried and He rose again the third day according to the Old Testament. (Luke 24, 1 Cor 15:1-6). The testimony of two confirms the fact, the Father and the only-begotten Son of God. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Yeshua ha Mashiach who has blessed us with all blessing of the Spirit in Yeshua ha Mashiach!

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