Reflection from my reading in Matthew 13:1-30 in the One Year Bible New Testament.
Surrounded by such a huge crowd that he had to get into a boat, Jesus tells one of the most famous and powerful parables of his ministry.
Parable in Summary
A farmer scatters seed in four places. Here are the results.
- Path – Eaten By Birds
- Shallow Rocky Soil – Quickly sprouted then died
- Thorns – Choked out
- Good Soil – Grew strong and produced a lot of crop!
Fortunately for us, later behind the scenes Jesus gives his 12 apostles the meaning of the parable.
“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.” Matthew 13:19
Path people are people who hear the message but don’t understand it. Before it has a chance to take root, it is stolen from them by the devil.
“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.” Matthew 13:20–21
The rocky shallow people are those who hear the message and get really excited but don’t actually ground themselves in Christ. They don’t take the effort to be solidly rooted. Because of this, at the first sign of trouble they fall 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.” Matthew 13:22
Thorny people care too much about the worries of this world. They are too busy chasing riches and the cares of the world that they are distracted from really following Jesus and thus from bearing fruit.
Good Soil People
“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.” Matthew 13:23
Good soil people understand God’s word and obey it. They are used by God to help others know him and do much good in their lives. They not only add value to the world around them but multiply themselves by helping others know Christ and walk with Him.
Which soil are you currently?
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