Sunday, June 4, 2017

Mark 4: The Parable of the Sower


Did you know that you can change what kind of ground you are?  In Mark 4, Jesus talks about the parable of the sower.  We know that the seed is the Word of God, and we know that the ground is people.  All four people receive the Word of God, but it affects them in four different ways.

And He said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? The sower sows the word. And these are the ones by the wayside where the word is sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts. These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness; and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble.  Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the ones who hear the word, and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”
-Mark 4:13-20

The first person is an Unbeliever.  The seed was sown by the wayside.  How do you change that?  You receive Jesus into your life and become a new creation by being born again.

The second person is a Believer, but not rooted.  How do you change that?  Ephesians 3:17 tells us to get ourselves established in the love of Christ.  Learn about how much God loves you.

The third person is a Believer also, but "stuff" is interfering with them being fruitful. How do you change that?  Let it go.  Remove those things from your life that will keep you from receiving and producing all the goodness God has for you.  For me, I feel like this is where minimalism comes in.  It is an ongoing thing.  You can also watch what you focus your attention on, what goes in your eyes and ears.  Jesus said, "the eye is the lamp of the body," in Luke 11:14.

The fourth person is a Believer also.  But this one is producing fruit.  And when He says bears "fruit", it would be fruit of life in the Kingdom of God, the fruit of the Spirit, not something we think is fruitful.  Faith is one of the fruits of the Spirit.  Faith is produced when the Word is sown in someone's life and it grows, when there is nothing hindering it.  Notice one more thing.  The fruit is at different amounts.  This can change too, as you grow, and hear the Word and believe.  

The fourth person is where we all want to be, and can be. None of the other types of ground are set in stone. Just like a garden can become more fruitful with effort, so can the life of a Believer change when we believe the right things about Jesus.

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