TODAY'S WORD FOR Wednesday, August 28, 2019:
Spreading seed over the soil for the purpose of growth; planting seed to produce a crop.
Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Jesus was talking to the crowd of people who had gathered to see Him and He shared with them a parable about the sower going out to sow. Jesus often taught in parables when speaking about the things of God. A parable uses something familiar to the listeners to teach them a principle about something which was unfamiliar to them.
In this parable Jesus uses, as an illustration, the planting of crops. There were in that day many farmers so everyone understood this illustration that Jesus used to teach them. Jesus wanted all those that had chosen to follow Him to understand that planting seed (crops) to meet our physical needs (food) are compared to the need to plant the proper seed (the Bible) in our lives to meet our spiritual needs.
In Matthew 13:3-4 Jesus begins the parable as written in verses 3-4 above. He says to the disciples that, when anyone hears the Word (the seed) and does not understand it, the evil one comes (birds) and snatches away what has been sown in his heart.
Jesus goes on in this parable (Matthew 13:5-9) to explain that the seed which fell on rocky places sprung up quickly but soon withered away because it had no roots. Some seed fell among thorns and soon the thorns choked the good seed out. And then other seed fell on good soil and yielded a crop.
Jesus then in verses 20-23 explains that the seed falling on rocky places is like the man who hears the Word but it never endeavors to make sure it takes root in his life so ultimately when affliction and/or persecution comes his shallow faith withers and dies. The failure of his faith was not the seed but the soil. He heard the Word and agreed that it was good but he had no intention of obeying it. Due to the hardness of his heart the Word could not take root.
Jesus explains that the seed planted among the thorns relates to the man who hears the Word and quickly lets it begin to take root in his life but the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke out the Word from his life and he becomes unfruitful.
Finally, Jesus explains that the seed that was sown on good soil is like the man who hears the Word and not only understands it but allows it to take root in his life so that it bears fruit and produces a crop of new believers. This is the kind of life that our Lord wants from us.
If you have allowed the sinful influences of the world to come flooding into your life and the Word of God has no affect on you then your heart needs to be reconditioned. Your heart and mind have become hardened and the seed of God’s Word cannot take root. It is time to make an about face and turn to the Lord and acknowledge your sins and ask for His forgiveness.
Do not be discouraged. You can change by just praying and asking God to open your spiritual eyes as you read the Bible and be willing to let God’s Holy Spirit speak to you.
This parable is a reminder to all believers to faithfully read God’s Word daily so that we are continually planting the seeds of God’s instruction into our hearts that will cause us to grow spiritually and enable us to bear more fruit.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Isaiah 1:18.
Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they will be as wool.
Help my family realize the importance of the seed we sow. Help us to work each day to sow the good seed of the gospel that You can nurture and grow into a crop of new believers that will bring honor to Your name.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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