Scripture: Matthew 13:1-23; Mark 4:1-25; Luke 8:4-18

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READ and STUDY the WORD

Jesus Tells The Parable Of The Four Soils

Matthew 13:1-23 (KJV) The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side.  And great multitudes were gathered together unto Him, so that He went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore.  And He spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow; And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:  Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.  And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.  Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.  10 And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? 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.  12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.  13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.  14 And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: 15 For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.  16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.  17 For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.  18 Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.  19 When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. 20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; 21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.  22 He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.  23 But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

Mark 4:1-25 (KJV) And He began again 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.  And he taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in his doctrine, Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: 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.  And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.  And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.  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.  And He said unto them, he that hath ears to hear, let him hear.  10 And when He was alone, they that were about Him with the twelve asked of him the parable.  11 And He said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: 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.  13 And He said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?  14 The sower soweth the word. 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.  16 And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; 17 And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended. 18 And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, 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.  20 And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.  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?  22 For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.  23 If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.  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.  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.

Luke 8:4-18 (KJV) And when much people were gathered together, and were come to Him out of every city, He spake by a parable: A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.  And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture.  And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.  And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when He had said these things, He cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.  And His disciples asked Him, saying, What might this parable be?  10 And He said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.  11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.  12 Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.  13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.  14 And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.  15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.  16 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light.  17 For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad.  18 Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have.

1. What happened to the sower’s seed that fell by the wayside (Matthew 13:4; Mark 4;4; Luke 8:5)? The fowls devoured it.

2. What happened to the sower’s seed that fell on stony/rocky places (Matthew 13:5-6; Mark 4:5-6: Luke 8:6)? There was not much earth so though the seed sprung up because there was no deepness of earth the plants were scorched and withered because they had no root.

3. What happened to the sower’s seed that fell among thorns (Matthew 13:7; Mark 4:7; Luke 8:7)? The thorns grew up and choked the plants.

4. What happened to the sower’s seed that fell on good ground (Matthew 13:8; Mark 4:8; Luke 8:8)? They came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.

5. In this parable what does the seed represent (Luke 8:11)? The Word of God.

6. What happens to those along the path, that is the wayside (Luke 8:12a; Matthew 13:19; Mark 4:15)? the devil comes and takes away the word from their heart

7. Why does the devil do this (Luke 8:12b)? He does this so that those along the path may not believe and be saved.

8. What happens to those on the rock (Luke 8:13; Matthew 13:20-21; Mark 4:16-17)? They receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root.  They believe for a while, but in time of testing they fall away.

9. What happens to those among the thorns (Luke 8:14; Matthew 13:22; Mark 4:18-19)? They hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.

10. What happens to those on good soil (Luke 8:15: Matthew 13:23; Mark 4:20)? They have a noble and good heart, and hear the word, retain it and by persevering produce a crop.

HEAR the WORD

Read through both versions of Jesus’ dialogue below.  Perhaps more than once.

Mark 4:21-23 (KJV) 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?  22 For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.  23 If any man has ears to hear, let him hear. 

Luke 8:16-17 (KJV) 16 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light.  17 For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad. 

MEDITATE on the WORD

Ponder the scripture above.  A lamp is useless if it doesn’t give light and help people see.  Does your life give light to those around you?  Does your life help others to find God? Is there something covering your light? Perhaps you’re focused on getting instead of giving.  Or are perhaps you are complacent, resentful, stubborn, or disobedient. Any of these and more can keep God’s light from shining through you to others.

MEMORIZE the WORD

Mark 4:24 (NIV) 24 “Consider carefully what you hear,” He (Jesus) continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more.” 

LOVE and LIVE the WORD

The more we love and live God’s Word the more we will understand what we read in God’s Word. To the extent that we study the Truth and apply its wisdom we will grow in our knowledge and understanding. If we don’t seek the Truth and don’t apply its wisdom we will not become all God wants us to become.

TEACH and SHARE the WORD

We can’t share with others God’s Truth if we don’t first attain the knowledge and wisdom found only in God’s Word.

PRAY the WORD

Lord, I pray we will be good soil for Your Word to take root in (Matthew 13:23).  Lord, I pray we will grow and produce a tremendous crop for You (Mark 4:8). Lord, I pray we will keep our lamp burning brightly for You and those around us (Luke 8:16). In Christ Jesus name I pray.  AMEN.

ENCOURAGEMENT

“May you and I be good soil in which God’s Word can grow.” <>< Dona