Sunday, 11 January 2015

Parables of Salvation and Heaven

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https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2014-01-028-laborers-in-the-vineyard?category=bible-videos-the-life-of-jesus-christ&lang=eng

https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2011-10-053-jesus-declares-the-parable-of-the-wheat-and-the-tares?category=bible-videos-the-life-of-jesus-christ&&lang=eng

Here are dramatizations of four of Christ's parables about the nature of salvation and Heaven.

What I get from these, taken together, is the way in which such parables cannot exactly, satisfactorily, be 'explained' in terms of ideas - any more than a great novel or play can be explained in other words.

I also see that while all are profoundly true; taken in isolation any one of these could easily be misleading - while taken together they show multiple facts of a truth which lies behind them all.

This is a theme upon which I have often harped - the Christian message cannot be obtained from minute analysis of its components taken one at a time and then re-assembled - it is much, much clearer and simpler than that!

So; here the story of the labourers in the vinyard show the easiness and equality of being saved; (yet) Christ's prefatory remark to Peter shows that there is a special reward for the devout both in this world and the next; (yet) the wheat and tares parable show that worldly success and thriving is no guarantee of salvation; (yet) the mustard seed parable shows that the greatest things may come from (apparently) the most insignificant (in worldly terms); (yet) even an apparently small thing, like yeast - or the church - can make a visible difference, in this world, for the better.

Putting it together, salvation is easy because Christ has done it for us, but beyond salvation there are differential rewards for the best and worst of us; the benefits and fruits of Christ's work are seen in this world, but this world is not a picture of Christ's will.

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