Luke 13:16-20

Luke 13:16 (KJB)
And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?

If ye must attend to your animals on the Sabbath by feeding and watering them on the Sabbath day, then why would it be wrong for this woman who is also a daughter of Abraham that Satan bound for eighteen years be loosed. If you can loose an ox and a donkey on the Sabbath and not be accused of breaking the Sabbath, then why canít you loose this woman and not be in violation of the Sabbath? This is the main essence of the argument of Jesus. These leaders were big on being Abrahamís children and that is why Jesus uses the term in describing the woman. She too is a child of Abraham and should be treated as the others. This incident brought Jesus into conflict with the synagogue ruler and with Satan who bound the woman. Jesus would not allow the letter of the law to restrain Him from healing the woman and defeating Satan.

Luke 13:17 (KJB)
And when he had said these things, all his adversaries were ashamed: and all the people rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by him.

As Jesus explained all these things and challenged their legalism, those how opposed Him were brought to a point of shame for thinking like they did. There should have also been repentance on their part because shame alone could later turn into seething anger. The majority of the people in the synagogue were common people and they were rejoicing the things Jesus said and what He did. They responded honestly to Jesus and did not hide behind their education or their created laws.

Luke 13:18 (KJB)
Then said he, Unto what is the kingdom of God like? and whereunto shall I resemble it?

Jesus then asks what shall we liken the kingdom of God to? Then He asks a second question, to what shall we compare or resemble it to? Jesus uses these two questions for the purpose of introducing the next parable. These questions are designed for the people to think about what aspect of this earth will Jesus compare the kingdom of God to while teaching the heavenly meaning. The parables normally have one main point to them and within that truth reveals a characteristic about the kingdom God.

Luke 13:19 (KJB)
It is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and cast into his garden; and it grew, and waxed a great tree; and the fowls of the air lodged in the branches of it.

What Jesus was probably speaking of was the seed of the black mustard which is the size of a head of a pin and it was grown because it was used as a condiment. In fact, the seeds themselves were the actual condiment, so they ate some and they planted some. It is a very tiny seed and would not need much of a hole for it to take root. The people would have been familiar with this scenario since many were agricultural in their vocations.

The mustard plant (Sinapsis Nigra) yields many seeds when it is full grown. It grows to a height of 23.5 inches (60 cm). The head of a pin may be 1 mm which means this seed grows to 600 times the size of the seed itself. It is interesting to note that 600 is easily divided by 30, 60, and 100. Now when the Lord speaks of it becoming a tree, He is not speaking of a comparison to an Elm tree or a Maple tree but He states that it is greatest among the herbs. The majority of herbs grow only a few inches from the ground so the mustard plant would tower over it. Now when it comes to the birds, the seeds attract them because they enjoy the taste of them. In Psalm 104, we have two passages of Scripture which give us a little insight into who the birds can be identified with. (Psa 104:16-17 KJV) The trees of the LORD are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted; {17} Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house. The sap is what fills the branches and gives the plants life. It keeps them green all year long. The Holy Spirit fills the believer and keeps them in the power of God permanently. He is like the sap in the trees, He fills the believer and gives them strength to withstand the storms of life. The birds are like the believers whom God calls to be in His kingdom. If you notice, the birds nest in the branches but they do not leave. (Psa 121:8 KJV) The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore. Once the believer is in the branches, they never leave because the Kingdom of God is the place of permanent residence for the true believer.

This is a little tidbit on Mustard
The Romans are the first to be credited with making mustard in the way we know it today. They mixed the ground seeds with grape juice; the word "mustard" derives from mustum, "grape must," and ardens, "burning," mustum ardens- hence "must ard".

Luke 13:20 (KJB)
And again he said, Whereunto shall I liken the kingdom of God?

Having just spoken a parable about how great the Kingdom of God would become, Jesus now speaks another parable on how it will attain to such greatness or how it will it grow to be so great.