One of the greatest things I’ve learned about Mark chapter four is how Jesus in his analogies talks about the same thing but from different angles. Many people have thought that after the parable of the sower Jesus might have become disoriented or lost train of thought so as to start talking about candles, candlesticks and hiding things under beds. But in reality he used a slick analogy for saying the same thing that he said in parable of the sower. There is a lot of misconception about the subject matter. Some say it’s the Word some say it’s the world and some say it’s evangelism. But consider if you will that he was talking about a reaction between a catalyst and an agent. The agent being the heart of a man, and the catalyst being the Word of God. Seizing upon this idea will help understand the “mysteries” that lie in the parables of the kingdom.
After saying that some bring forth fruit in measures, Jesus immediately says, “is a candle brought to be put under a bushel or under a bed and not to be set on a candlestick?” When the catalyst of Gods word is fed into our hearts, we are not putting it in a place where the light will be covered up or extinguished, like under a bushel or bed. To the contrary, we are placing it in a place where the light can be emitted the most, like on a candlestick. Have you ever seen the type of candlestick that has a shiny plate behind it? I believe that’s what he’s talking about. It is something that is designed to utilize the light to the utmost. Jesus is saying that this is what your heart is like. It is a refractor of the light of Gods word-put in. “Let your light so shine…….”.
He continues “for there is nothing hid which shall not be manifested and neither was anything kept secret but that it should come abroad. Hidden where? Kept secret where? How about in the ground of the human heart? Aren’t seeds covered? Aren’t seeds hidden in soil? So then the secret of manifesting things is to learn how to hide them.
Consider this parable. “The kingdom of God is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till the whole was leavened”. Might this be an example of the idea of “there is nothing hid that shall not be manifested”? The woman sowed, hid, covered up yeast in a ball of dough. And before long its was manifested to those who could se it; the fact that yeast had been secretely added.
If you keep this idea of the two working together, the Word and the heart of man, I think this will help you in other parables of the kingdom.