A GOOD HEART HEARS
Thank you, God, for the body of Christ, where every part has invaluable things to offer.
Read LUKE 8:1-15
The Parable of the Sower
8 After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, 2 and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; 3 Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.
4 While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: 5 “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. 6 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”
9 His disciples asked him what this parable meant. 10 He said, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that,
“‘though seeing, they may not see;
though hearing, they may not understand.’[a]
11 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
- Luke 8:10 Isaiah 6:9
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectLook at—or imagine—a plant that is thriving. What makes plants grow well? What makes Christians flourish?
Luke begins by telling us about some women who were playing a vital role in the ministry of Jesus (vs 1-3). He goes on to relate one of Jesus’ most famous parables. One farmer with one type of seed scattered it on four types of soil, with varying results. The story seemed simple, yet the meaning felt unclear. So the disciples asked him to explain (v 9).
Jesus pointed out how different soils gave different results. This is how it is with God’s Word. Some people don’t receive it because the enemy snatches it away (v 12). Others seem to receive it, but it does not take root (v 13). For others it is choked by the cares of this world (v 14).
Only one of the four soils produced a crop, ‘the good soil.’ Jesus said it represents those with ‘a noble and good heart,’ those who hear, retain and persevere (v 15). It is challenging to realize that the state of our hearts is very important in how we receive God’s Word. But notice the encouragement too: when we have hearts ready to receive from God, he can bring a hundred-fold crop!
Praise God that we don’t have to supply the seed, water, or warmth. He can work wonders in our rocky hearts! Are we ready to hear?
As I read your Word, Lord God, open my heart to its truths, increase my faith, and build my vision for serving you.
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