Summary: Message based on the parable of the Sower.

Sowing the Word of God in Our Lives

Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23

August 20, 2006


We’re back to our walk-through of the gospel according to Matthew, and as we get into chapter 13, we find a very familiar parable, the parable of the sower.

And parable that we can take home with us to chew on and make real for us.

And in the middle of this chapter, the disciples come to Jesus and ask Him why he speaks in parables. Next week we’re going to look at his answer.

But today, we’re going to look at the parable that starts this chapter off. And not only the parable, but the explanation He gives for it, because that is where the meat of the passage lies.

And because it’s a longer passage than we usually look at, I’m going to ask you to go ahead and turn with me please to Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23 (pp. 690-691) –

That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. 2 Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore. 3 Then he told them many things in parables, saying: "A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop--a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. 9 He who has ears, let him hear."

18 "Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away. 22 The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful. 23 But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown."

Now I’m going to ask you to do something for me: don’t let the familiarity of this parable cause you to shut your mind to what Jesus has to say through this passage of Scripture.

And I want you to notice the crowd in this chapter – they were excited about hearing from Jesus. This wasn’t unique to this chapter; it happened all the time. People were scrambling to hear Jesus.

Are you as excited about hearing the words of Jesus, either here at church or in private? If not, I hope that you will allow the Holy Spirit to make you excited.

Today I want us to look at…

Three main ingredients for a successful “crop” for the Kingdom:

My hope for today is that you will walk out of here with a firm desire and intentional action to become the kind of person Jesus discusses at the end of the passage – the person of good soil.

Now before we get into this very far, I just need to acknowledge something here: about the only thing I am more ignorant about than tools is agriculture.

Man, if Mr. Greenjeans didn’t say something about it on Captain Kangaroo, I didn’t get it. It’s pretty much that simple.

And I know that many, if not most of you here don’t even know who that is. Just suffice to say that Captain Kangaroo was a kids’ show, and Mr. Greenjeans was the kindly farmer who was a regular.

And to be totally frank, I don’t know that he ever said anything of an agricultural nature on the show, so you know I’m in trouble!

Listening to the market reports on the radio is like tuning into a foreign language station to me…

But having said all that, I think that even I can give you what Jesus is trying to communicate in this parable, especially since He took the trouble to explain it.

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