Summary: IN REACHING YOUR COMMUNITY FOR CHRIST IT REQUIRES SOWERS TO SPREAD THE SEED OF THE GOSPEL
“The Seed, The Soil, and the Sower?”
Introduction: In 1886, after the state of Georgia passed prohibition laws, a young man name John Pemberton invented a carbonated non-alcoholic beverage which he thought would appeal to Americans given the prohibition against alcohol. It was marketed as a “soft drink” as opposed to hard liquor and contained a mixture made from coca beans and cola beans, which inspired the name Coca-Cola. John first started selling the soft drink in pharmacies in his home town of Atlanta, Georgia, but he had a much grander vision for his invention. He had a dream that within 100 years every person on the face of the earth would have tasted the soda he created. He didn’t quite reach his goal, but I’d still say he was pretty successful, wouldn’t you? Today it is estimated that…
• 51% of the all the people living in the world today have actually tasted Coca-Cola
• 72 % have at least seen a can or bottle of Coke
• 97%, if they haven’t seen or tasted it, have at least heard of Coca-Cola (Statistics provided by Statista.com)
On the other hand, only an estimated 73% of the world today has heard of Jesus Christ (from IMB.org) and I guarantee you—a whole lot fewer have actually tasted what he has to offer. I wonder how different things might be if Christians were as passionate about sharing their faith as John Pemberton was about sharing his soft drink—if we tried as hard as he did to put Bibles instead of bottles in the hands of people all over the world?
It’s not easy to share your faith though, is it? Maybe you don’t know what you’re supposed to say or how to broach the subject. And, of course, there is always the fear of rejection. What if they’re offended? What if it turns into an argument? What if I ruin an otherwise perfectly good friendship? But my question to you is what if we don’t share, then they will lose their souls. And God told Ezekiel in Ezekiel 33:7-9, “Now as for you, son of man, I have appointed you a watchman for the house of Israel; so you will hear a message from My mouth and give them warning from Me. When I say to the wicked, 'O wicked man, you will surely die,' and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require from your hand. But if you on your part warn a wicked man to turn from his way and he does not turn from his way, he will die in his iniquity, but you have delivered your life.” You see, God had given us His message to share, and its His Holy Word. Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” This is a message that transcends all time and we must share it today. That there is a consequence of sin, a penalty, which is death, eternal separation from God. But there is also a reward for trusting in Jesus, and that is eternal life through faith in Christ Jesus. Believe me there are people out there who want to listen, and like it says in Romans 10:14-17, “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? (And that word preacher simply means a messenger) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel, for Isaiah saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” We are to tell others about Jesus, and leave the results up to God. He knows who will hear His message and be saved, so we must tell everyone.
I suppose the parable of Jesus that is widely known as the Parable of the Sower is familiar to most of us. And because it is so familiar to us, there is the danger that when we hear it again we think we already understand everything there is to learn from it.
Well, in today’s message based on Luke 8:1-15, I’d like to concentrate on three things that make up the parable: 1) The Seed; 2) The Soil; and 3) The Sower.
Scripture Reading: Luke 8:1-15 (All Standing)
I. THE SEED
A. Unrealistic Expectations – If you had been a follower of Jesus and you observed the things going on in the time Jesus presented this parable, you’d have had no trouble imagining the Kingdom of God taking over the world. People were flocking to Jesus, people were being healed, raised from the dead, evil spirits were being driven out of people’s lives, and the power of the Kingdom was obvious to all who chose to see. It would have been easy to think that the Kingdom of God would simply overwhelm all who opposed it.