“They may indeed see but not perceive and may indeed hear but not understand, lest they should turn and be forgiven.”
I’ve read this before and always dismissed it as, “oh it’s just some Jesus thing, I’m sure it means something but it doesn’t make sense now.” I really think this is brilliant. Over the past year, one thing I’ve recognized about telling people some new knowledge, they generally don’t really believe it until they see it/find out themselves. I’m the same way! It’s kinda human nature for adults. That’s why He says to come like a child. Children often just trust, they accept, they have faith, and they haven’t been burned by the world enough to set up the barriers we as adults set up to protect ourselves. Parables are stories that have Spiritual meaning(s). You don’t know that they have Spiritual truths immediately though. A listener would just think, “Ohhh it’s a story teller!” A story breaks barriers and makes you think about it and ponder it. My favorite parable is the story of “The Prodigal Son.” I love it because the Father is pretty awesome. He gives to His sons their inheritance early. He allows them to make real life choices. What’ll hit you is that’s our Father (God, Yahweh) does for us. Then what blows me away even more is in Luke 15:20, the Father sees Him from far off, throws down everything and “runs” to His son who is, by the way still far off. Our God, Father gives us the free choice to choose, after we go through life, screw up, and then by our own free will His way is better, He runs. Our God, the King, the maker of heaven and earth, humbles Himself to love His children!? Wow, we’re worth that much? I’m completely undone guys. God, my true Father became a human, to save us, and is making (made) a home for us to live forever in peace. How much of an epic story is this? It actually happened for us. For some it’s happening still. If we decide to stay in our own power, to be arrogant enough that we can do it alone. We will by default be saying, “I don’t need you.” This is what satan Himself did. He thought He was "all that," he thought he didn’t need God (Isaiah 14:12-15, Ezekiel 28:14-19). Once we make that default decision, we’re ultimately counted with the enemy. The home for us is with God our Lord, but we choose to be with ourselves, so He lets us go. That default choice is definitely a place where we are our own, it’s Hell. We would spend our eternity forever alone.
The point behind parables is to bypass our stubborn nature and see those Spiritual truths, to those who turn and see the meanings. Kind of like the prodigal son saw the pig slob he was eating, we realize the path "our" own choices took as. We see the pig slop we chose and we turn and see our Father who gave us so much (Mark 4:12). Stories make truth more palatable and less offensive to our stubborn thoughts of “self” and our own wants. Jesus is brilliant.