Study to Grow
By Doug Bell
3 He told many stories in the form of parables, such as this one: ”Listen! A farmer went out to plant some seeds.
4 As he scattered them across his field, some seeds fell on a footpath, and the birds came and ate them.
5 Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow.
6 But the plants soon wilted under the hot sun, and since they didn’t have deep roots, they died.
7 Other seeds fell among thorns that grew up and choked out the tender plants.
8 Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!
9 Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.”
This chapter in Matthew 13 has eight parables of Jesus. [“A parable is a tale about a simple, common subject to illustrate a deeper, valuable moral lesson. The source definition of the word “parable” means a placement side by side for the purpose of comparison.” or as others have described it ’an earthly story with a heavenly meaning.’]
The Parable of the Sower is the first of the parables in this chapter. In it Jesus tells us certain things:
1.) We are told in our verses (and the verses that Jesus’ Explains this parable, verses 18-23) that the “Farmer” went out to spread seeds. While we are not told the identity of the Farmer, it is logical to understand that He is talking about the Father.
2.) As Hé was spreading them some seed fell upon the path (verse 4), and the birds came and ate that seed. (Vs. 18- If a person hears the Gospel and doesn’t understand it, the devil comes and takes it away).
3.) Next, the seed fell upon Rocky places, but it didn’t have much soil, so it sprung up fast. When the heat of the Sun came, they burnt up, because they had no depth. (Vs. 20, 21- this is the person who hears and immediately receives it, but because there is no foundation, it is only temporary. So, when affliction or persecution comes, they fall away!)
4.) Others fell among Thorns, and the Thorns came up and choked the seed. (Vs. 22- the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful).
5.) Finally, seed fell on “Good Soil”, and it brought a yield Crop of some 30X, Some 60X, and some 100X!
What are we to make of the message of this parable?
First, we may say with assurance that the first three ‘types’ were never really true Christians! How can we say this, you ask?
In the examples of: the path, rocky soil, and among thorns, they all left I.e., “fell away”.
In the book of 1 John 2, we are told:
19 “They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us”.
Secondly, Each and every Christian will produce “some” fruit: 30X, 60X, 100X. The amount will depend upon how each individual responds to the urging of the Holy Spirit, and how far (in what time he has) to conform to the ‘Image of Christ!” But again, Everyone WILL have some fruit.
1 ¶ “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.
2 “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.
3 “You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
4 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”
Are you bearing fruit? Are you living for his Praise, Honor, and Glory?
2 Corinthians 13:
5 ¶ “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test?”