When he was alone, the Twelve and the others around him asked him about the parables. He told them, “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables so that, “ ‘they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven!’” Mark 4:10-12 NIV
Does Jesus not wish that all would come to Him to be saved? If so, then why does He say that the message secret is revealed through parables to those on the outside?
For a relationship to develop and be fertile, it takes work from both parties to the relationship. Jesus offers much to everyone, but for there to be a true relationship, the message presented must be taken to heart by the receiver. Unless one totally understands their need for Christ and the salvation offered through Him, what kind of relationship will there be? Christ wants to see the effort that will be put forth by someone who hears the message about Him.
Notice in the scripture reading that those who remained after the parable were not just the twelve. There were others present. Could it be that these are the people who wanted to know more about Christ’s message? Hopefully we remain like those others who remained along with the disciples and had the parable explained. Once the meaning of Christ’s words are understood, then comes the opportunity to grow the relationship with Him. This requires work on our part, but oh my goodness, the reward so far exceeds the effort required. Effort turns to desire and then to passion. Let the Lord be everything to you!