Matthew 13:13
Parallel Verses
New International Version
This is why I speak to them in parables: "Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.

New Living Translation
That is why I use these parables, For they look, but they don't really see. They hear, but they don't really listen or understand.

English Standard Version
This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.

New American Standard Bible
"Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.

King James Bible
Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For this reason I speak to them in parables, because looking they do not see, and hearing they do not listen or understand.

International Standard Version
That's why I speak to them in parables, because 'they look but don't see, and they listen but don't hear or understand.'

NET Bible
For this reason I speak to them in parables: Although they see they do not see, and although they hear they do not hear nor do they understand.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And from him who has it not, will be taken even that which he has, therefore I am speaking to them in parables because they who see do not see, and those who hear neither hear nor understand.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
This is why I speak to them this way. They see, but they're blind. They hear, but they don't listen. They don't even try to understand.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Therefore, I speak to them in parables because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

King James 2000 Bible
Therefore speak I to them in parables: because seeing they see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

American King James Version
Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

American Standard Version
Therefore speak I to them in parables; because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Therefore do I speak to them in parables: because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Darby Bible Translation
For this cause I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear nor understand;

English Revised Version
Therefore speak I to them in parables; because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Webster's Bible Translation
Therefore I speak to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Weymouth New Testament
I speak to them in figurative language for this reason, that while looking they do not see, and while hearing they neither hear nor understand.

World English Bible
Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they don't see, and hearing, they don't hear, neither do they understand.

Young's Literal Translation
'Because of this, in similes do I speak to them, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor understand,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

13:1-23 Jesus entered into a boat that he might be the less pressed, and be the better heard by the people. By this he teaches us in the outward circumstances of worship not to covet that which is stately, but to make the best of the conveniences God in his providence allots to us. Christ taught in parables. Thereby the things of God were made more plain and easy to those willing to be taught, and at the same time more difficult and obscure to those who were willingly ignorant. The parable of the sower is plain. The seed sown is the word of God. The sower is our Lord Jesus Christ, by himself, or by his ministers. Preaching to a multitude is sowing the corn; we know not where it will light. Some sort of ground, though we take ever so much pains with it, brings forth no fruit to purpose, while the good soil brings forth plentifully. So it is with the hearts of men, whose different characters are here described by four sorts of ground. Careless, trifling hearers, are an easy prey to Satan; who, as he is the great murderer of souls, so he is the great thief of sermons, and will be sure to rob us of the word, if we take not care to keep it. Hypocrites, like the stony ground, often get the start of true Christians in the shows of profession. Many are glad to hear a good sermon, who do not profit by it. They are told of free salvation, of the believer's privileges, and the happiness of heaven; and, without any change of heart, without any abiding conviction of their own depravity, their need of a Saviour, or the excellence of holiness, they soon profess an unwarranted assurance. But when some heavy trial threatens them, or some sinful advantage may be had, they give up or disguise their profession, or turn to some easier system. Worldly cares are fitly compared to thorns, for they came in with sin, and are a fruit of the curse; they are good in their place to stop a gap, but a man must be well armed that has much to do with them; they are entangling, vexing, scratching, and their end is to be burned, Heb 6:8. Worldly cares are great hinderances to our profiting by the word of God. The deceitfulness of riches does the mischief; they cannot be said to deceive us unless we put our trust in them, then they choke the good seed. What distinguished the good ground was fruitfulness. By this true Christians are distinguished from hypocrites. Christ does not say that this good ground has no stones in it, or no thorns; but none that could hinder its fruitfulness. All are not alike; we should aim at the highest, to bring forth most fruit. The sense of hearing cannot be better employed than in hearing God's word; and let us look to ourselves that we may know what sort of hearers we are.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 13. - Therefore (διὰ τοῦτο). To carry out the principle of the whole preceding verse, but with special reference to the second half of it. Because, in this case, they "have not," therefore I speak to them thus. Speak I to them in parables because. In the parallel passages Christ says that he speaks in parables "in order that seeing," etc.; but here, "because seeing," etc. The difference of the thought, which is more formal than real, is that

(1) in the parallel passages their moral blindness and deafness are represented as the effect of what he says, parables being used to bring about the punishment for what was presumably earlier sloth (thus laying stress on the idea of "shall be taken away "in our ver. 12; cf. "that they which see not may be made blind," John 9:39; and Bishop Westcott's note).

(2) In Matthew their present moral blindness and deafness are represented as the reason for the use of parables. Parables are themselves the punishment; the people are fit for nothing else (thus laying stress on the "has not" of ver. 12); therefore Christ speaks to them in parables. They seeing see not (seeing they see not, Revised Version, keeping the order of the Greek, as even the Authorized Version in the next clause); and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. The participles "seeing," "hearing," in Matthew and Luke, probably do not represent the Hebrew infinitive in its common usage of giving intensity or continuance to the idea of the finite verb to which it is joined (so in the original passage of Isaiah, and perhaps in Mark; compare also "seeing" in the next verse), but are to be taken separately, i.e." Though they have powers of seeing and of hearing, they nevertheless do not so use these powers as to see and hear" (for the thought, cf. Jeremiah 5:21; Ezekiel 12:2). Thus in meaning, though not in form, as compared with the next verse, seeing is equivalent to "seeing ye shall see;" they see not, to "and shall in no wise perceive;" hearing, to "hearing ye shall hear;" they hear not, to "and shall in no wise understand."

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Therefore speak I to them in parables,.... Because it was the will and pleasure of his Father to give the knowledge of divine mysteries to some, and not to others; and because even the outward good things they had, being wrongly used or abused by them, would be taken away from them:

and because they seeing, see not: they saw Christ with their bodily eyes, but not with an eye of faith; they saw the miracles he did, but did not discern, at least did not acknowledge the evidence of them, proving him to be the true Messiah.

And hearing, they hear not, neither do they understand: they heard externally, but not internally; they heard the sound of Christ's voice, but did not understand his words, even when he spake in the plainest and most intelligible manner; nor were they concerned to know the meaning of them: wherefore he spoke to them in this abstruse and parabolical way, that they might be what they really were, seers and not seers, hearers and not hearers, at least not understanding ones; and that what he said might remain sealed and hidden to them, as the things contained in the sealed book were to the Jews of old; the reason of which was, as a writer of their's (k) says, and which agrees with our Lord's reason and conduct here, , "because they were in parable and riddle".

(k) Abarbinel in Isaiah 29. 11.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

13. Therefore speak I to them in parables—which our Lord, be it observed, did not begin to do till His miracles were malignantly ascribed to Satan.

because they seeing, see not—They "saw," for the light shone on them as never light shone before; but they "saw not," for they closed their eyes.

and hearing, they hear not; neither do they understand—They "heard," for He taught them who "spake as never man spake"; but they "heard not," for they took nothing in, apprehending not the soul-penetrating, life-giving words addressed to them. In Mark and Luke (Mr 4:12; Lu 8:10), what is here expressed as a human fact is represented as the fulfilment of a divine purpose—"that seeing they may see, and not perceive," &c. The explanation of this lies in the statement of the foregoing verse—that, by a fixed law of the divine administration, the duty men voluntarily refuse to do, and in point of fact do not do, they at length become morally incapable of doing.

Matthew 13:13 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Purpose of Jesus' Parables
12"For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. 13"Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 14"In their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says, 'YOU WILL KEEP ON HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND; YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT WILL NOT PERCEIVE;…
Cross References
Deuteronomy 29:4
But to this day the LORD has not given you a mind that understands or eyes that see or ears that hear.

Isaiah 42:19
Who is blind but my servant, and deaf like the messenger I send? Who is blind like the one in covenant with me, blind like the servant of the LORD?

Isaiah 42:20
You have seen many things, but you pay no attention; your ears are open, but you do not listen."

Jeremiah 5:21
Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear:

Ezekiel 12:2
"Son of man, you are living among a rebellious people. They have eyes to see but do not see and ears to hear but do not hear, for they are a rebellious people.

Ezekiel 20:49
Then I said, "Sovereign LORD, they are saying of me, 'Isn't he just telling parables?'"

John 9:39
Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind."

Romans 11:8
as it is written: "God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that could not see and ears that could not hear, to this very day."
Treasury of Scripture

Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Matthew 13:16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.

Deuteronomy 29:3,4 The great temptations which your eyes have seen, the signs, and those …

Isaiah 42:18-20 Hear, you deaf; and look, you blind, that you may see…

Isaiah 44:18 They have not known nor understood: for he has shut their eyes, that …

Jeremiah 5:21 Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which …

Ezekiel 12:2 Son of man, you dwell in the middle of a rebellious house, which …

Mark 8:17,18 And when Jesus knew it, he said to them, Why reason you, because …

John 3:19,20 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, …

John 9:39-41 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they …

2 Corinthians 4:3,4 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost…

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