Summary: First message in the series on being Rooted. This message goes over the bad grounds.
Title: Being Rooted
Text: Mark 4:1 - 13
And again He began to teach by the sea. And a great multitude was gathered to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat in it on the sea; and the whole multitude was on the land facing the sea. (Mark 4:1) Then He taught them many things by parables, and said to them in His teaching: (Mark 4:2)
Jesus often taught in parables. There are over 46 parables that He taught in the gospels alone. This was a great way to help the people understand. They were not necessarily true, sometimes extreme and illogical at other times.
Now in this passage He gives us a strange reason why He teaches parables.
And He said to them, "To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to those who are outside, all things come in parables,(Mar 4:11) so that 'Seeing they may see and not perceive, And hearing they may hear and not understand; Lest they should turn, And their sins be forgiven them.' "  (Mar 4:12)
From this surface it sound almost inclusive. As if Jesus is purposely trying to leave people out from understanding the kingdom of God. But we must understand that this is a proverb and is a quote from Isaiah 6:9.
Here God is challenging Isaiah to go out and preach the Words God has given him. Here God is saying do it until they become dull in their ears. They get sick of hearing it and either follow through or reject the message.
In Jesus day He dealt with a lot of religious leaders. They were always challenging Him. On one hand they wanted Him to perform miracles. When He did they said it happened becomes of the demons. They challenged Him on the law, looking for ways to trap Him.
They had no interest in learning or truly listening to what Jesus had to say. They were trying to distract Him from His purpose. Better yet they were also become a distraction to the people He was trying to reach.
Jesus says here He speaks in parables for this very reason. So that those who don’t want to hear will be hardened of heart. They will also not distract from the message for others.
The Lord reminded me that there will always be people around who try to do this. They ask questions but have no interest in hearing the answer. They may be on you job and sometimes in church. So what we must learn to do is 1) don’t answer them, you don’t have to have an answer to every question. 2) be careful what we say because there are those around us who are listening and we don’t want to take away from them. The best thing is to chose our words carefully.
Second thing I want you to notice is this parable is the key to understanding all the parables.
And He said to them, "Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? (Mar 4:13)
So in other words if we can grasp what this parable is saying then we can understand all the parables. This is so true. We will see this as we go through it.
"Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. (Mark 4:3)
We begin to understand later that the sower is God. Also we understand that He is sowing His word.