The Sower's Seed
The Sower's Seed
Last time we simply looked at the phrase, "A sower went out to sow." Being true to who he is, the sower sows seed as he goes. What happens to this seed that is sown? Let's see what we can gather about the seed, simply from the text. Matthew 13:3-9 says,
"And he told them many things in parables saying, 'A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear." ESV
If we just circle every mention of "seed" and then look around to see what specific truth we glean about it, here are the facts we glean:
- Some seeds fell along the path, eaten by birds.
- Seeds fell on rocky ground with not much soil; they sprang up but
without roots, withered away.
- Seeds fell among thorns; as they grew they were choked.
- Seeds fell on good soil; produced grain of varying amounts.
The seed was all the same. How it was received determined if it was fruitful.
Jesus uses the next few verses to explain that some people will hear but not
understand what He says, and others will hear and understand. In Matthew
13:16-17, He encourages them with
"blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears for they hear. For truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, did not hear it."
How does a story Jesus told 2000 years ago have any meaning for us
today? What is this seed that Jesus is talking about?
Jesus explains clearly about the sower, the seed, and the soils as we
continue to read:
Hear then the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path.
As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.
As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.
As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty."
The seed is the Gospel, the Good News that explains the Truth of who God is, who we are, and how we can be in a relationship with Him in His kingdom:
- God is holy.
- We are wicked. We've sinned against the holy God.
- It is only through the blood of an innocent Sacrifice that we can be restored to fellowship and relationship with God.
My Grandmother wrote the Gospel in a simple way for me to remember it:
For God so loved the world that He gave His
Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not
Perish, but have
Life. John 3:16
Those who believe that Jesus is the innocent Sacrifice - who died for our sins so that we may live - are now sons and daughters of God in His kingdom! We are the sowers of the Gospel seed.
As you look back to Jesus' explanation of the soils, what do you learn about the people's hearts? Will everyone who hears the Word of God become His children in His kingdom?
Many hear, but their hearts are not open to receive the Word, and it does not grow in them. Jesus says their seed is snatched away or doesn't develop roots or is choked out by riches and the cares of this world.
Only those who hear the Word and understand it will become His children, as His Word grows in them, transforming them into Christlikeness.
Many people today know what the Good News is, but they have not allowed it to take root in them to be their new life. They may go to church, talk about Jesus, have a bumper sticker, or wear a cross, but it is only a head knowledge; not a heart transformation. It is tragic, and it is why Jesus urges us to understand His Word; not just hear it.
This is why Families in the Word exists;
to equip parents and children with tools
to know and understand God's Word,
and live it out in a way that others may know Him, too.
O Father, May Your Holy Spirit move in the hearts of families around this planet, to be open to receive your Word and understand it.
May those who have let Your Word be snatched away from their heart by the lies of the enemy be have ears to truly hear and receive Your Word.
May those who know about You but have no anchor or root in Your Word realize that knowing about You is not the same as knowing You; may they hunger to truly know You.
May those who find themselves caught up in the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches recognize their spiritual poverty and seek You even more than material things.
O Father, may we feast from Your Word daily and allow it to transform us into Christlikeness.
May we encourage one another with the truths of Your Word.
May we be continual sowers of the Gospel, the Good News.
And may more and more people come to know You firsthand through Your Word. We praise You in the precious Name of Jesus, Amen.