"The Lord's Teachings, Parable
of the Sower [3-9]."
Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and it's
Mark was a very young fellow at the time of Christ's teaching, and he has a profile view of this parable of the sower. We will bring in verses from other gospels that relates to it, as we go along. Remember in the last chapter, Jesus asked, "Who is my mother, brother and sister?" We are one body in Christ, and that is why He said this in the way that He did.
Mark 4:1 "And He began to teach by the sea side: and there was gathered unto Him a great multitude, so that He entered into a ship, and sat in the sea; and the whole multitude was by the sea on the land."
The spot that this took place has been located, and when you are in a boat and pull away from the shore, it creates an natural amphitheater. Jesus voice could be heard for a great distance off the water.
Mark 4:2 "And He taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in His doctrine,"
When Jesus taught the public at large, He didn't teach in any other method than by the use of parables. What Jesus taught them were only the things that pertained to the truths that come right out of His Word. Every parable was given to shed another deeper light of understanding to the teachings and doctrines of Christ's way and path. There is no other way to Salvation and the truth, than Christ's way.
Mark 4:3 "Harken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow:"
The method of sowing seed at this time was by broadcasting, and it is even common today. When you drill to plant a seed, you use a tool to work the seed into the soil, and plant the seed, but when you broadcast seed in your sowing, you have a small bag harnessed around the kneck, and the bag is filled with seed. As the sower walked along, the sower would cast the seed by hand from side to side and cover an area about thirty feet wide. However the sower has no control specifically over where the seed will fall, nor how it will be taken into the earth. Some of the seed will be lost. This is what Jesus wanted us to be aware of here.
Now picture this sower walking along through the field, and as he is walking he is throwing this seed [broadcasting] from side to side. He is planting his field for a corn crop.
Mark 4:4 "And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up."
The seed is corn that is being planted. The birds don't know the difference between seed corn, or corn that is the crop, and they will devour any corn that can be eaten.
Mark 4:5 "And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth:"
Where the ground is stony, there is no depth of fertile earth soil that an root system can be developed. There also is no possible water reservoir on a stony ground where by water can be stored up in the earth to be used by the root system as it grows.
Mark 4:6 "But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away."
When the heat of the day warmed up as the sun rose, the sun scorched the earth and dried up the root system. It wouldn't take much time at all for the entire plant to dry up and wither away and die. Each part of this parable is a separate analogy. You are the sower that plants the seeds, which are the truths from the Word of God. Field is the mind of the one listening to you and trying to understand those truths you are teaching, to see where they can be applied to what you are saying for their lives.
Mark 4:7 "And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit."
Many times you will plant a seed of thought from God's Word into someone's mind, and it is like talking to a wall. They have absolutely no idea what you are talking about, and whatever you say is misinterpreted by the listener. The only thing that they have to relate to for what you say is some false doctrine or traditions that leads them off on some tangent. They listen to what you have to say, and they put no more value to what you say, than some child's fairy-tale. They just don't believe you, sure they heard you, but it just didn't sink into their mind. The Word blasted in the field [of their mind].
Mark 4:8 "And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred."
Once again, the seed that is being sowed is the Word of God. You are the sower and the mind of the one listening to you is the field that you are sowing this seed of God's Word in. Some times when you say something to someone, what you will say to them will sink in and they will remember what you say, and think on it. The seed is the truth concerning the "kingdom of God". The seed includes all the mysteries of the kingdom of God, and it is for this reason that Jesus would speak in parables.
Many times you will plant a seed of truth, and the person you are talking to seems turned off to what you are trying to tell them. Don't let it bother you, for many it is not intended that they understand. However when you find just one that will listen, and desires to seek more truths, that is the "good ground", the fertile soil that the truth will grow in, and in time your planting of the see will yield fruit. The growing process, and the development of the fruit is not your work, for that is the work of the Holy Spirit. You are to plant the seed; you prepare the soil so that the seed can be planted in it; and in some ground there just is not enough good soil, or basis of understanding for any seed to take hold and become rooted.
However, just one little spot of fertile ground will produce many times over, some thirty, some sixty and some hundred fold, as that person that has received your seeds of truth from the Word, and matured and gone out to plant their seeds of truth of the kingdom of God. Some times one little seed can make two different stems that will produce several head of corn or grain. On each ear of corn there can be as few as thirty kernels of corn, or it can number over a hundred.
The thing that we should take from this, is that rather than being discouraged and loose our patience when someone refuses to listen to you. Anytime you sow seed of the truths of God's Word, if you have tried to prepare the ground for the seed that you are going to plant, there are many that just will not accept what you are trying to say. Even with the loss of much of your seed, God promises that you will still have an increase to the seed that you have planted. You may never know the result to your planting until the eternity. It is there and the rewards for your efforts are being stored up where it counts, in heaven, on God's books. It doesn't matter who you are, anytime you sow the Word of God, you are going to have an increase.
Mark 4:9 "And He said unto them, "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear."
This is the reason that Jesus spoke in parables, The ones that have the ears to hear, will hear and understand what you are saying, and the other won't understand anything that you are saying.
Mark 4:10 "And when He was alone, they that were about Him with the twelve asked of Him the parable."
After the multitude of people had departed, and the only ones that remained with Christ was His disciples, and others like this teenager Mark, they asked Jesus to explain this parable. They heard the parable right along with the others, and it was just as much of a mystery to them as it was to the multitude. They didn't understand this parable, and in Matthew 13:10 this same question was of Jesus by His disciples.
Mark 4:11 "And He said unto them, "Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but of them that are without, all these things are done in parable:
Mysteries and parables are truths given in one form telling a truth that is simply unknown to the hearer. The answers in most cases are right there in plain sight, only if you cannot put all the details together, and take all the clues and arrange them in order, there will be no understanding. Many of the things dealing with the kingdom of heaven seems foolish to mankind, and will always remain hidden, unless the Spirit of the Living God reveals them to you.
Mark 4:12 "That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them."
This then is fulfilling the prophesy of Isaiah 6:9.
Isaiah 6:9 "And He said, "Go, and tell this People, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.' "
Remember that Isaiah is writing this to those people living in the last days of this earth age. There is a false messiah coming to earth and all those that are awakened to the actuality of this fact will not have that opportunity to be taught in the Millennium age. If they know the truth and are unable to withstand Satan when he arrives in this flesh age, there is no forgiveness for them. If they had the knowledge of what they are doing, and could see Satan for the false christ that he is, and then worshipped him and took on his name and number there would be no hope for them at the coming of Christ. When there is no knowledge; in ignorance there is no sin unto the death of the soul and spirit. God is showing His love for us in this verse. We see that Jesus Christ taught the same thing in Matthew 13:11.
Matthew 13:11 "He answered and said unto them, "Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given."
It isn't meant that all people are suppose to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. It is important for us to know that just because God sends the "spirit of slumber" on a person, it is not for hate, but for God's love and protection of that person. It is all part of God's compassion and mercy that God gives, and at the right time and place God will reveal Himself and His mysteries to that person. To many that time is in the Millennium age, when all flesh will no longer exist, and all souls will be in their incorruptible bodies with full knowledge and understanding. Then faith is not required of them for eternal life, but their salvation will be by their works alone. They will be judged then by what they do with what they know absolutely to be the truth.
Isaiah 6:10 "Make the heart of this People fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed."
Isaiah is asking God, "How long will it be until all this comes to pass?" If you are a student of God's Word, you understand that this time and place is what Jesus Christ was referring to in Mark 13:14, that we shall read later, and it also deals with the final generation. Mark 13:14; "But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it [he] ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains." When the proper time comes, God will open their eyes and they will see and they will hear with understanding. However it will be a time when they will be able to act on their understanding.
Isaiah 6:11 "Then said, I, "Lord, how long?" And He answered, "Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate,"
The "desolation" as written of in the text in Daniel 9:27, speaks of a "desolator", and not "desolation", and the man of the destruction is Satan in his role of Antichrist. Satan is coming to earth very shortly to set up his world wide religious system by deceiving the peoples of the earth. Jesus was quoting from Daniel, whereby the subject of the verse is "Satan's coming as the desolator, on the wings of deception to deceive the people of the earth". This event will happen in our generation, and it marks the end of this earth age.
This coming of Satan is prior to the coming of Jesus Christ, and at that time of this desolation there will be a famine for the hearing of the Word of God. So the clue to understanding Isaiah 6:11, is in the word "desolate".
Today many people struggle with this entire thought, for they can't see why it wouldn't be well that everyone would be converted. If you are not one of God's elect, or one of the kings of queens of the ethnos, and you were given the entire mystery of the kingdom of God. Then at that appearance of the false messiah, when you know who Satan is and you bowed to him at that time, it is unforgivable and there is no salvation for you. God knows what He is doing, and He does not intend to cut any seed [soul] off. But He intends that every seed will sprout in its own time and place, and have the opportunity for the seed planted in their mind to germinate. God in all His fairness will never judge someone to death or life eternally in their ignorance.
In this age of the flesh, eternal life comes by your faith in what you do and believe, and your repentance for your sins in Jesus name. You are saved by God's grace for believing in His son and accepting the shed blood of Christ as the price for the forgiveness for your sins. Your faith is demonstrated when you say "In Jesus name", for that is letting the Father know you accept sight unseen the sacrifice of Christ's death on the cross. You accept it because it is written in His Word.
In the Millennium age, there are no distraction that we have here in the flesh age, for the flesh will be gone, and all souls will exist in their spiritual body. Your spiritual body is what is referred to in I Corinthians 15:50-54 as the "incorruptible body", for that body will not age through the entire thousand year Millennium age of Jesus kingdom right here on earth. At the appointed time, when all the trumpets have sounded, and Satan has played out his role as the Antichrist, the supernatural person that presents himself to be the Christ and people believe it; all souls will instantly be changed for their corruptible flesh body to their new spiritual incorruptible bodies, that will have know absolutely all of God's word, and there will be no unknowns. They will know Jesus is the Christ, and their eternal salvation in the Millennium age will be what they do with what they know to be true. It will be by their works. Lets review it now.
I Corinthians 15:50 "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption."
There will be no flesh existing on earth when Jesus is here setting up His kingdom.
I Corinthians 15:51 "Behold, I shew you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,"
The mystery that Paul is revealing to us is that a time is coming when all the people living on the face of the earth will not die, but shall be changed instantly out of their flesh bodies into a new body. There will be no more death or aging as we know it in this flesh age.
I Corinthians 15:52 "In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed."
The time is set, and it will be at the seventh trumpet, it is the last for all the other trumpets will have already been sounded, even the sixth trumpet when Satan is cast out of heaven onto the earth to present himself as the false Christ, the Antichrist. This changed from "flesh and blood" corruptible body to the new incorruptible body will be instant, faster than you can wink your eye. This instant in time will end this world age of the flesh, as we know it today, and usher us into the new Millennium age of Jesus Christ's kingdom right here on earth. All things of the flesh will be gone, and eliminated. The evil rudiments that go to make up this earth age simply will not be here.
I Corinthians 15:53 "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality."
"Mortal" means "liable to die", and in the new incorruptible bodies there is no chance for any soul to die. It will be a time of discipline and learning to do the work that is instilled within you.
I Corinthians 15:54 "So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, "Death is swallowed up in victory."
There simply will be no more death because there will be no more physical bodies existing in their flesh and blood state. The death of the flesh and blood body is what is called "the first death". At the end of this thousand year period, comes the Great white throne judgment.
Revelation 20:11 "And I saw a great white throne, and Him That sat on it, from Whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them."
this great white throne judgment throne will be at the end of the Millennium age, whereby the spiritually dead will be judged by their works alone.
Revelation 20:12 "And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works."
Every soul will stand before the great white throne judgment seat, saint and sinner alike. Those that were saved by Grace, but their faith in Jesus Christ and their repentance of their sins in Jesus name, will have no works to be judged to hell with, for they were covered by the blood of Christ at the cross. Only their names will be recorded, and their rewards will be given them at the start of the Millennium age.
The other set of books that recorded the works, recorded only the works committed in the Millennium age when each soul had full knowledge of what they were doing, and they will be judged according to what they did with what they knew. Though all souls will be in their incorruptible bodies and their bodies will not be able to die a natural life, their souls will still not have obtained eternal life until after the great white throne judgment of the Father.
Revelation 20:13 "And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works."
The righteous souls are judged for their rewards, while those not saved in this earth age of the flesh are judged according to their works committed in the Millennium age.
Revelation 20:14 "And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death."
God does not desire that any should perish, however each soul will have the right to choose whom he or she will follow. God has His own time and place for you, and for each person to come into the full knowledge of the kingdom of God, and that time and place when it actually best for each individual. God knows each individual soul a lot better than you or I do, and this is not an unfair thing for all those could not hear, God has great love for His children, and for their protection. God will present Himself to each soul at a time when that person can handle the truths, without the danger of his committing the unforgivable sin.
Mark 4:13 "And He said unto them, "Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?"
Jesus is telling His disciples that they must understand this parable, because it is the very beginning of all the parable that He will give. This seed planting speaks of the planting of the children, even from the beginning. If you don't understand it, you will not understand any of the parables, or Christ's teachings. Jesus is telling us that you have to go back to the beginning when the seed was first planted. This is getting into the parable of the tares, that Jesus gave in Matthew 13:24-50.
In the parable of the tares of wheat, it demonstrates that in the beginning there were evil seeds sown, as well as the good. So with this parable having been given, Christ is now going to explain this parable to His disciples. It is true, if you do not understand this parable, you will never understand any of them on a deeper level, concerning the parables of the kingdom of heaven.
Mark 4:14 "The sower soweth the word."
The seed is the Word of God, and it is the Word of God written in the Scriptures that the sower is sowing.
Mark 4:15 "And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts."
These people that hear the Word of God, and what you are telling them about Jesus Christ and His kingdom, these are the ones that are by the way side. When they here the Word, they will either receive what is said to them, or they will reject the Word of God, or it will lie dormant in their minds for a later time. There were not hard surfaced roads such as we have today in Jesus day, but there were paths that people traveled on. Those paths that were traveled by foot and cart traffic were so compacted, by the years of going back and forth, that it was so hard that there was no way that any plant seed could form and germinate. Jesus is saying that for a seed to take hold on one of these compacted paths is as hard as a person receiving the Word when their minds have traveled over the paths of lies and traditions over many years and generations. It just won't happen. So don't be discouraged when you try to plant a seed in the mind of a person when their mind is callused and hardhearted in the worldly ways.
As the broadcaster or planter of the seed, it is not your responsibility as to whether the Word is taken or rejected. God is the one that will either cause it to germinate, or die in their mind, or just lie there until the time is right for them to receive the Word with understanding. Go ahead and plant the seed, and God promises that you will still have an increase.
Mark 4:16 "And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness;"
This then is another type of person, other than those of the hard surfaced path. The possibility exists that in time the person of the hard surface path may take hold, but a seed fallen on stony ground will never take hold and germinate in this earth age. Even though that person appears to accept what you say with interest, and has accepted it into their mind, the moment you leave and another wind of doctrine come along, then that is what they believe for the moment. This type puts on with excitement that they know that what you say is of God. What they do and say is for the moment, and it appears that they have become grounded in the Word quickly, yet nothing you say is retained.
Mark 4:17 "And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterword, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word's sake, immediately they are offended."
When any affliction or persecution comes against them, and challenges their faith and belief, they immediately are offended to the point of denying Christ and His Word. The first time they try to share the Word with somebody that is very negative or atheistic in their beliefs and they are called down on their beliefs, it shakes them to the point of denying what they know to be true. There is no root to their beliefs.
This type of person is the one that accepts Christ as their personal Savior, yet they refuse to study God's Word for understanding. That Word that was so beautiful that cause them to repent in Jesus name, when they felt the warmth of the Holy Spirit in their heart, was as far as they went. They lived from then on by their memory of a beautiful event in their life, and they never went beyond that point. Their roots are based on the memories of their experiences, and not on the meat of the Word of God. They lack the strength that only God's Word can give you, whereby the roots of their faith are deeply imbedded in the Word, and that is where their faith come from.
When your strength is imbedded in your experiences of past event memories and not the Word, then the very first time something comes along to disturb your memories, and it will cause you to question what you had. If someone asked you if you believed the stories of the flood of Noah, or Jonah and the whale, and when you reply, what is your reaction? If any story or matter written that is within God's Word offends you, it is a sign that you just don't understand the spiritual depth of what was discussed in that verse of the Word of God. Those stories were types of other things that were to happen in the future.
Jesus used the event of Jonah in the whale's belly to let us know that that is how long He would be in the earth from the cross to the resurrection. Matthew 12:40; "For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart fo the earth." When the Kenite scribes and Pharisees asked for signs that Jesus was the Son of God and what He said would come to pass, this is the only sign that He would give them. Is it any wonder that the world looks down on this event in history. After they plotted to kill Him, and crucified Jesus, His body was in the tomb for three days and three nights and they still did not understand the only sign that Jesus gave them.
So the person of this kind, the one with stony ground, will quit immediately when there is any trouble that comes their way. Even though you give them signs and they witness the signs coming to pass, they still don't relate it to the Word. They quit because they have no roots of understanding, and they are gone at the first sight of disagreement.
Mark 4:18 "And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word,"
Mark 4:19 "And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful."
This is the problem that anyone can slide into if you are not very careful. You get just to busy with the problems of this world to study the Word, and apply it to your life. The things of this world, the job, the home life, the problems at school and even at church get so deep that you just don't have the time to study. There is no sin in having the riches and things of this world, as long as they are not the center of your life and distract you from God's Word. God created the things of this earth for us to enjoy, and He expects those that love Him, to enjoy those things a lot more than anyone else. They are all part fo the blessings of God, and we should thank God for them.
The mystery of the Word of God is the "kingdom of God". The "kingdom of God" is made up of the King, Jesus Christ and His domain. The mystery is the detail of that kingdom that is written in the Word of God, all of it. Anyone that cares to uncover the mystery can uncover it, but you have to have eyes to see and ears to hear the Word. It is the Holy Spirit that opens your eyes when you prayerfully ask and seek the understanding.
Mark 4:20 "And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirty fold, some sixty, and some an hundred."
Those that are of the good ground are the ones that receive the Word right into their mind and they accept it and understand what is being said. If you truly sow your seed as it ought to be sown, you can not loose seed of the Word of God. A ministry can have a wide scope of broadcasting the Word of God, and many times the same Word will fall on many different ears, but only part of the seed will be received, and the rest lost. Those that have heard and received the Word, will always pass that Word on, and in turn their hearers will pass it on to where the increase will be many fold. Maybe not at the time that the ministry first put the Word out, but in God's time the increase will come. God promises that it will, and it is one of those thing that we can count on just like the sun coming up in the east, and setting in the west. If you plant a thousand seeds and one takes hold and a life is changed by it, that is the start of the thirty fold increase.
Mark 4:21 "And He said unto them, "Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick?"
Naturally some of the people will reject what you have to say, for it is not intended for them to understand. What do you use a candle for? You light a candle for the sake of giving light. Light is measured in candle power. If there is darkness anywhere and you light a candle, even a long distance away, the light can be seen. God's Word is the light, it is the light of this world age. Just because some can't hear it with understanding which we know because Jesus just told us that this is the case, there are some that will hear what you say from the Word of God, and accept it into their mind. This should not stop you from planting seed and making the light of His Word visible to those around you.
So Jesus is telling you and I, even though most of your seed planting is not accepted, we are still commanded to let the light shine, and sow the seed.
Mark 4:22 "For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad."
God is instructing us that we should never put ourselves on a gilt trip when the seed that you are planting is not received. There is no secrets in the Word of God and everything that happens, God has warned us of ahead of time. We are to put the Word out, regardless if it is received or not because many will not believe until after what you say has come to pass, and then the Holy Spirit will turn the light on in their minds. In time all of the prophesies and promises shall all be revealed, some will accept it before hand, while other are full of doubt and they have to see to believe. Faith is the accepting of God's Word because it is written. You believe it because God said it.
You are responsible for sowing seed only, and that is the only thing that you will be held accountable for. It is not up to you to determined what kind of soil the field is in, or what frame of mind the person receiving what you say is in. As long as you plant the Word of God, God promises you that you will be successful. The problem today is that most churches never prepare their soil for the seed to take place, they are to wrapped up in traditions and the things that just don't matter. They never get into the meat of the Word, but if they would, fruit would come from their planting.
Mark 4:23 "If any man have ears to hear, let him hear."
Jesus is telling you, if you have ears to hear the Word of God with understanding, then study it and follow what the Word is teaching you. This is directed to the elect of God in our generation, and if you understand what Jesus is saying, you are suppose to broadcast it to the those around you.
Mark 4:24 "And He said unto them, "Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given."
You are to take care of what you hear from the Word of God, all of the mysteries in the Word. If you pray for wisdom and knowledge and it is revealed to you, then don't let it remain hidden. God is promising you that the more you let out what He has revealed to you through His Spirit, the more He is going to open your mind to more truths of the mysteries of God. God will only give you what you demonstrate what you can handle. When you understand something from God's Word, and you measure out the full extent of what you can absorb, as soon as it germinates in your mind, and it becomes clear to you after your studying and prayer, then He will build on that and increase your knowledge. The more you understand the mysteries of the King, Jesus Christ, and His dominion which is to say the universe, the more He will increase your knowledge of Him. Any work that you do for the Work of God will produce souls for the kingdom of God.
Mark 4:25 "For he that hath, to him shall be given: and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath."
When you seek the truth and as it is revealed to you, the Holy Spirit will reveal all that your mind can absorb. However, for those that just don't care to study God's Word, what ever they do have in their mind, in time it will just die off. If you don't pursue the Word, you will lose even the basics of what you have learned. You can't sow the Word when your seed bag, or mind has no seed in it. You need to have the Words in your mind before you have something to sow. It can't be the traditions of men that you are sowing, nor the stories and fairy-tales that most churches like to hang on to. Traditions of men are contrary to the Word of God, and God will not bless you for peddling non-sense. Know exactly what you are sowing, and where the information comes from. Then you are not responsible whether it is accepted or not.
Mark 4:26 "And He said, "So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground;"
Mark 4:27 "And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how."
God is telling us that after you sow the seed of the Word of God, you are as the farmer that plants the seed for his crop, and goes home to eat, sleep and do what he has to do. The farmer has nothing to do with the germination of the seed, nor the growth of the plant into its stock and the bringing about of the ears of corn. God brings germination to the seed in the field, and in the normal course of time, with rain and sunshine, the seed develops into the plant and brings for the fruit.
This is as the man that sows the seed of the Word of God, for after the seed has been planted in the mind of the hearer, it is the Holy Spirit that brings for the former and latter rains on that seed, and brings that thought that you planted to an understanding. Many times others will add to the words you have spoken, and in time it will all form into understanding by work of the Holy Spirit. We also know that after you sow the seeds of truth, the devil will come along and plant some of his seed right along side of the seed that you plant. As the tares, or the devil's seed form, leave them alone, God will take care of them. What God is telling you, is that He is taking you off any gilt trip that you may have, for having not said enough or changed the mind of an individual. You don't know what germinates the seed and causes it to grow. You sow the seed, and later you reap the harvest, and this should give you patience in waiting on the Lord.
Mark 4:28 "For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear."
Once you plant the seed into the earth, or the mind of another person, that is it. You can't beat it out of that person, and you cannot force the crop to come up prior to its time. When the time is right, and God has brought the plant to maturity and understanding, then the harvest will come. The process of coming to salvation is just as the developing of the crop from the planting of the seed to the time of the picking of the full ear of corn. The seed germinates, and the first thing that is seen is the blade the appears, then the stem is formed and on the stem is the ear. That ear cannot be picked until the kernels have had time to form on the ear.
Mark 4:29 "But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come."
This is nature. You do what is your part of the growth cycle, and that is the planting and preparing the soil, and then comes the harvest in its due time. Some will sow, some will water and some will reap but all share in the harvest of the crop.
Mark 4:30 "And He said, "Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God: or with what comparison shall we compare it?"
Now Jesus is asking His disciples, what can we liken this kingdom of God unto? What can we use that we are aware of that we can compare the kingdom of God to?
Mark 4:31 "It is like a grain of mustard seed, which when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth:"
The mustard seed is the smallest seed that is planted by man that brings for a crop. Once again, you sow the mustard seed by broadcasting.
Mark 4:32 "But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it."
Though it comes from the smallest seed, the mustard herb plant can get over fifteen feet tall and become the largest of all the herb plants. Remember that Jesus is comparing this mustard plant with the kingdom of Christ. One little word about the kingdom of God planted in the mind of a person can be developed by the Holy Spirit and explode into a great work for the Lord and His kingdom. It is God that will take the seed and it is on His time schedule that the seed will develop to produce the work that it shall produce.
There will be some fowls of the air that will settle in the branches of the plant, and when it happens, most good Christians know how to shake them out of the tree. God's Word, no matter how small it may seem to some, can explode into a great work.
Mark 4:33 "And with many such parables spake He the word unto them, as they were able to hear it."
Mark 4:34 "But without a parable spake He not unto them: and when they were alone, He expounded all things to His disciples."
Where ever Jesus went he taught in parables, and when He was with His disciples Jesus explained the meanings of those miracles and how it applied to them. It is with these twelve disciples and the apostle Paul that Jesus took the Word and spread it all over the world with clarity.
When you are with others and the Word is taught, listen and absorb the teaching. However when you are alone, in your study time and in prayer, The Holy Spirit will reveal these things to you, and make their meanings clear. There is nothing hidden from you that God's Spirit will withhold from you. You must seek for the truth, and as you learn, He will fill your mind with all that your mind can retain. The blessings of God are the only true riches of this world. The Word of God always makes a difference a person's life.
Mark 4:35 "And the same day, when the even was come, He saith unto them, "Let us pass over unto the other side."
This is the Messiah speaking, and He is saying that "We are going over to the other side." Jesus is telling His followers something that they are going to do. This is the same as when Jesus tells us in the book of Revelation, these things are going to happen before I return. You can count on it happening. This is what is going to happen tomorrow and at the end of this earth age. We must discipline ourselves to take those things and accept them as fact, for it is though these things that God's blessings come. If Jesus tells us everything that is going to come right up to the end, then why should there be fear, when those things come to pass?
If you know you are going over at the end of this world age of the flesh, then don't get yourself all worked up by the things that are going on around us. Simply observe them, and know where you are on God's schedule of appointed times.
Mark 4:36 "And when they had sent away the multitude, they took Him even as He was in the ship. And there were also with Him other little ships."
After Jesus had sent most of the multitude away, the disciples took Jesus who was already in the boat or ship, and they left for the other side. As they went, there were other little boats that followed Jesus' boat to the other side. Jesus is pointing out that there is more than one group that is going to the other side with Him. God's doesn't expect everyone to understand every thing the same. Though there are different churches, there is but one body of Christ, one church, and one head of the church which is Christ.
Mark 4:37 "And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full."
This is somewhat a mistranslation, because it is saying that the waves were coming into the boat and the boat was full. The disciples were bucketing water over the sides of the boat to stay afloat.
Mark 4:38 "And He was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow:: and they awake Him, and say unto Him, "Master, carest Thou not that we perish?"
Jesus slept through the storm and all the commotion that was going on. They came back to Jesus and awoke Him and told Jesus, we are going down, don't you care that we are going to perish? The white cap waves were beating on the boat, and shaking it up.
Remember what Jesus said in the prior verse? "We are going over to the other side." If Jesus spoke it it will happen.
Mark 4:39 "And He arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, "Peace, be still." And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm."
Mark 4:40 "And He said unto them, "Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?"
Knowledge always strengthens faith; if you have the knowledge of the Word of God, and you know what is going to happen ahead of time, it strengthens your faith. It is the end product of the seed planting, for some will get thirty, some fifty and some hundred fold. According to your faith come the blessings of God. It is a matter of your work that ties you to the blessings that God brings to you. The blessings come after you have done the work. God knows what you have need of, and he will add those things on to your blessings.
Mark 4:41 "And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, "What manner of Man is This, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?"
They should have known, for they had seen the many miracles and He had told them who He was. He was Emmanuel, God with us. What does this symbolize for us.
Jesus was going to sacrifice Himself on the cross shortly, and after His resurrection these disciples were going to be alone. They were going to be in their little Christian boats, paddling across many rough and wild seas, and the wind of many different direction would toss them around quite a bit. The ride would be bumpy from time to time if they were without faith, and they had better learn to rely on the Lord when the seas get a little heavy.
There are a lot of Christian boats today that are filling with the water from the world's seas, and the winds of many doctrines that go against the Word of God. As far as God is concerned, if those little boats are allowing false doctrines and traditions to fill their boats, then the quicker they go down the better. If your boat sinks, then start over and do it right the next time. Get rid of those things that are nothing but traditions that have no part in the Word of God, and start focusing on what God has to say from His Word.
Plough .~ Seeds .~ Vine .~ Potter .~ Seasons .~ Sonshine .~ Rain .~ Field