Of Pigs, Pearls, and Prodigals: A Fresh Look At the Parables of Jesus

by John Bytheway

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“This book would be a wonderful way to study the New Testament in conjunction with the Sunday School lessons. I can see families doing a different parable each week for Family Home Evening, for example.” — The Association for Mormon Letters

Enlighten your study of the New Testament!

Bestselling author John Bytheway's fascination with the parables of Jesus Christ grew deeper after his first visit to the Holy Land, where he “beheld in high definition the backdrop for the life and teachings of the Savior.” In this insightful volume, he discusses what he has learned about more than thirty parables, sharing cultural background and other information about them and offering ideas for how we can apply them today. Throughout, visual images clarify and enrich the discussion.

Beginners and seasoned students alike will enjoy this lively and practical treatment of the Savior's parables.


  1. The Parable of the House Built upon a Rock
    Matthew 7:24-27
  2. The Parable of the Sower (of Four Kinds of Soil)
    Matthew 13:3-9, 18-23
  3. The Parable of the Wheat and the Tares
    Matthew 12:24-30, 36-43
  4. The Parable of the Mustard Seed
    Matthew 13:31-32
  5. The Parable of the Leaven
    Matthew 13:33
  6. The Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Pearl of Great Price
    Matthew 13:44-46
  7. The Parable of the Gospel Net
    Matthew 13:47-40
  8. The Parable of the Householder
    Matthew 13:51-52
  9. The Parable of the Unmerciful Servant
    Matthew 18:23-35
  10. The Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard
    Matthew 20:1-16
  11. The Parable of the Two Sons
    Matthew 21:28-31
  12. The Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen
    Matthew 21:33-46
  13. The Parable of the Royal Marriage Feast
    Matthew 22:1-14
  14. The Parable of the Ten Virgins
    Matthew 25:1-13
  15. The Parable of the Talents
    Matthew 25:14-30
  16. The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats
    Matthew 25:31-46
  17. The Parable of the Seed Growing Secretly
    Mark 4:26-29
  18. The Parable of the Two Debtors
    Luke 7:36-50
  19. The Parable of the Good Samaritan
    Luke 10:25-37
  20. The Parable of the Foolish Rich Man
    Luke 12:16-21
  21. The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree
    Luke 13:6-9
  22. The Parable of the Chief Seats
    Luke 14:7-11
  23. The Parable of the Great Supper
    Luke 14:16-24
  24. The Parables of the uncompleted Tower and the King's Warfare
    Luke 14:28-33
  25. The Parable of the Lost Sheep
    Luke 15:3-7
  26. The Parable of the Lost Coin
    Luke 15:8-10
  27. The Parable of the Lost (Prodigal) Son
    Luke 15:11-32
  28. The Parable of the Unjust Steward
    Luke 16:1-8
  29. The Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus
    Luke 16:19-31
  30. The Parable of the Unjust Judge (or Importunate Widow)
    Luke 18:1-8
  31. The Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican
    Luke 18:9-14
  32. The Parable of the Pounds
    Luke 19:12-27
  33. Conclusion
    Sources Cited

About the Author

John Bytheway

John Bytheway served a mission to the Philippines and later graduated from Brigham Young University. He has a master's degree in religious education and is a part-time instructor at the BYU Salt Lake Center. John is the author of many bestselling books, audio talks, and DVDs, including How to Be an Extraordinary Teen; Life Rocks; and his first children's picture book, The Sacrament. He and his wife, Kimberly, have six children.

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Average rating:

(based upon 9 reviews)

Great supplement to your study of the New Testament
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I LOVE this book, and have learned so much. It has helped me gain new insights into the parables that I had never thought of before. I've especially appreciated sharing these insights in Gospel Doctrine class as we study the parables together. This is a great book, and Brother Bytheway's writing and organization of the book make it a great reference.

Expected More from Bro. Bytheway
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

This is a fairly simple look at a number of the parables contained in the New Testament. Nice work, but I was hoping for more. More in depth discussion, more detail, more examination. This is some good milk, not a lot of meat.

An excellent supplement to scripture study!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I found this book to be very helpful as a supplement to scripture study. Each chapter introduces a new parable, and begins with the parable's scriptural reference. What I found to be most interesting was the cultural background of each parable that explained the historical significance. For example, in The Parable of the Sower, Bytheway explains the different methods of sowing seeds that were used when the Savior preached the gospel, helping the reader to better understand the symbolism in the parable. Bytheway also offers helpful insight on how the parables can be applied today. I highly recommend this book to anyone who desires to have a more clear understanding and interpretation of the parables of Jesus Christ.

By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I love John Bytheway's approach to teaching the gospel. All of his books/talks seem to really resonate with me on a level where I can understand.

Fantastic & Insightful
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I received this book for my birthday and it highlights the parables in sound and profound way to ease the study of the parables of the Savior.

loved it
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

This book is great very informative and easy to read! I have a hard time staying focused and this book was really easy!!! learned a lot and loved it!!!!

A Must-Have Reference for Bible Study
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Doctrinally correct, insightful and well-organized. This book is a must-have as you ponder the Savior's teachings through parables. I sincerely appreciate the author's talent for simultaneously simplifying gospel topics while going deeper into them.

reading it now
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I started reading this book yesterday ... I'm loving it!

By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I just got this book and have read only a couple of chapters but it is very straight forward and easy to understand. Just like the front of the book says "A Fresh Look at the Parables of Jesus." It is a great book for new converts, like myself. Highly recommended!

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