Christ mostly taught in parables. In this manner the good things of God were made more evident and simpler to those willing to be taught and at the same time more difficult and obscure to those who were willingly ignorant.
The parable of the sower is simplistic in its nature. The seed sown is the word of God. The sower is those who spread the seeds of the word to others (us). Speaking to a multitude or to an individual is sowing seed; it also can be as simple as a smile, or a kind word or deed, but we will never know where the seed will land.
Some sorts of ground, though we may take much care, time and effort with it will still produce no fruit, while the good soil always brings forth abundance. So it is with the hearts of mankind, whose different characters are here described by four sorts of ground.
The road is full of Careless, Small Thinking Hearers. They are an easy prey to satan who is the great thief and will be sure to rob us of the word when ever he can.
Hypocrites are of the stony ground; many are glad to hear good advice, but they do not profit by it. When some difficulty threatens them, or some morally wrong benefit may be taken advantage off, they either give up or turn to some easier scheme.
Worldly cares are easily compared to thorns, for they came in with transgression, therefore making their fruit of the spoiled; but we as disciples must be well armed if we have anything to do with them; they are entangling, troublesome, scratching, and their end is to be burned as with all things that are bristling with thorns. (see Hebrews 6:8)
Worldly cares are also a great hindrances to our profiting by the word. The deceitfulness of riches does the greatest mischief; riches cannot be said to deceive us unless we put our trust in them, then the greed that comes with the wanting of more can choke the good seed.
What distinguished the good ground is fruitfulness. By this true followers are distinguished from hypocrites. Jesus did not say that the good ground will have no birds, stones or thorns in it; but that there none that can hinder the fruitfulness this ground produces because of our diligence. Bear in mind that all good ground is not alike; as shown by the 30, 60, & 100 fold, but we should aim to become the most productive, to bring forth most fruit that we can.
Which would you rather be unproductive or fruitful?
© Gary Ivin
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