Sow—And Have Faith!
Merciful Lord, I praise You for Your boundless blessing and mercy. Today, deepen and expand my devotion to You.
Read Mark 4:10–20
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation” (Isa. 52:7).
Jesus clearly says that there is no expectation that the crowds will understand his parables: in fact, he quotes Isaiah’s description of the wayward people of God (Isa. 6:9,10), so dulled by sin, stubbornness and godlessness that they cannot hear the clear word of the Lord. Jesus’ disciples often did not understand his teaching, either! They are being given the secret of the kingdom of God, not because of their aptitude for learning (clearly!) but because they are intimate with Jesus, on the “inside” of the circle of trust (11). Their acceptance of the word of Jesus is the necessary good soil for an abundant harvest to come. George Whitefield was a sower of the good news about Jesus, seeing the kind of harvest Jesus portrays in the parable of the sower. Whitefield preached regularly to thousands in the open air; the seed sprouted in the good soil and regularly hundreds came to faith. Notice the statistics: thousands heard, hundreds believed, but not all. Satan steals the Gospel away from some; for others the Good News sounds wonderful but does not sink deep and so shrivels up when troubles come. The faith of others is choked by anxiety or ambition or worldliness. Yet the fruit from the good soil is wonderfully abundant, a fantastic return from the extravagant grace of the Sower. When John Wesley first heard of his friend George Whitefield’s open-air ministry, he was offended by the idea of preaching outside a church. Whitefield’s way seemed uncouth and unchristian! Wesley could not argue, however, with the fruit of Whitefield’s work. As Wesley submitted to God’s will and extravagant grace in reaching the lost, he, too, became part of spreading the Gospel seed openly and widely and reaping a harvest from the good soil.
What do you need to do so that your spiritual life is producing an abundant crop?
Lord, I pray that You will use me to sow good seed in good soil and trust You to produce the harvest.