13 The reason I speak to them in parables is that ‘seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand.’ Matthew 13:13 NRSVIn Matthew 13:9-17 Jesus taught that it was because of men's willfulness not to believe that it was hard for them to understand His parables. Some people do not want to understand. In our religious and secular culture there is confusion and misunderstanding about the Bible. To be the man or woman of 2 Timothy 2:15 we must be a worker, needing not to be ashamed,"rightly" explaining the word of Truth.
In Matthew 22:29 Jesus clearly replies to the Sadducee with this answer: "You are wrong, because you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God." NRSV Not only does Jesus invite us to study the Scriptures but He even rebuked men for their lack of knowledge. After more than three years of Christ's teaching the disciples, themselves, were rebuked for their unbelief and hardness of heart. This was not done because they could not understand but because they did not believe what Christ said. Notice the words of Jesus here:
25 Then he said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! 26 Was it not necessary that the Messiahj should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?” 27 Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures. Luke 24:25-27 NRSVEven in the times of Peter "unlearned and unstable" were twisting and wresting the Scriptures to their own destruction (See 2 peter 3:16-18). Often times it is our pride, willfulness, or rebellion against what has been "written" that cause the Bible to be hard to understand. Trinitarians suggest that the Trinity was revealed over time. They try to rationalize this with progressive revelation. However, I fear that sort of God would not be Biblical. Rather, dishonest or perhaps deceptive. God will not hide from man the very things that He will judge him by in the end.
The words of Christ were not hard, nor complex. They were always simple enough to understand but believing them was another thing. Believing Christ was the problem, as it is today. Jesus was clear ""...unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins." (John 8:24 ESV) We must not try to make the Bible conform to our ideas but reconcile our ideas to the Bible. Even the Apostle Paul taught that the hearing of God's Word is sufficient to cause one to believe.
16 But not all have obeyed the good news;c for Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our message?” 17 So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the word of Christ. Romans 10:16-17 NRSV