On the road on which I live, I need to go 12 miles in either direction to not have farmland on one side or the other. In fact, most of that 24 miles has corn on both sides of the road.
The individual fields look different. One field may have taller corn; another area is greener, another may have a brown or yellow tint to the stalk. The thing is; all of the fields with corn had corn seed planted. The corn may be of different quality, but where corn seed was planted corn grew.
In Luke 8:4-15 Jesus tells us the parable of the sower and gives us an explanation of the meaning of the parable.
In short, a sower sows the seed; it falls on different types of soil causing different results.
As we look at the results, we will look at the parable and Jesus’ explanation of the parable.
Luke 8:5,12, “A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it … Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.”
The Word is removed before a person can have a chance to believe. This is done by the seed (the Word) being “trodden down.” Satan can come along and discredit the Word of God before someone has an opportunity to believe it.
Luke 8:6,13 “And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture … They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.”
Here, we have an individual who appears to be getting along nicely in their Christianity, yet when temptation comes along because of the lack of the things needed for growth, they fade away. Many new Christians are not discipled properly if at all. They lack the fundamentals of the Christian faith enabling them to fight off the temptation to sin. It is the farmer’s responsibility to bring the nutrients the plant need to the plant. It may be through fancy irrigation systems, it may be through the use of trucks, or it may be carrying a lot of buckets, but however you shape it, plants don’t water themselves. As spiritual babes, we can’t expect them to feed and water themselves any more than a real baby in the physical world. Without the aid of others, sin follows, and soon they wither away.
The third result is found in Luke 8:7,14, “And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it … And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.”
Because of the distractions of life, these Christians never produce any real fruit. The Word is there; it has taken root, but because they are more concerned with their problems, money, and the need for entertainment; the full potential of what they can be in Christ never comes forth.
Lastly, the seed that falls on good ground, “And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear … But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience” (Luke 8:8,15).
This description is the ultimate Christian experience. The hundredfold fruit here is the fruits of the Spirit — love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.
As Christians, we are to sow the Word of God into all the world (Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8). When the Word of God is sowed Jesus explains that one of four things will happen, and here is a thought — do you see these things happening around you? If not, could it be that you are not sowing the gospel as often as you should?
If you are a Christian, examine your heart and determine what type of soil are you, rocky, thorny, or good ground. How much impact the Word of God has on you is directly determined by what kind of soil you are.
Preacher Johnson is pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County, Ind. Visit his website, [email protected] All scripture KJV.