The Parable of the Sower

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by awaken, Sep 7, 2012.

  1. awaken

    awaken
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    3,346
    Likes Received:
    0
    Salvation does not come through our obedience to God or through any righteousness of our own (we have no righteousness of our own). Salvation only comes through faith in Jesus as our Savior. However, our obedience is the evidence of our salvation.

    In the Parable of the Sower (Luke 8:11-15), Jesus described four groups of people. As I examine these four groups, I took note of which group has put their faith into obedient action:

    "This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved." (Luke 8:11-12)

    The people in this group are deceived by the devil and they never believe in Jesus for salvation. This group represents all unbelievers, meaning atheists, agnostics, and those who are in non-Christian religions. These people have no faith in Jesus, and they know it.

    "Those on the rock are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away." (Luke 8:13)

    The second group represents certain people who receive the Word of God with joy and believe it. These people probably call themselves Christians and attend church. But look at what happens to them: In "the time of testing" they fall away. This tells us that there will be "times of testing" in Christians' lives, and that we must persevere in our faith. Unfortunately, this second group does not persevere in their faith. They give up when things get uncomfortable or become too much trouble.

    Are these people truly Christians? Some scholars say that this group represents people who only believe in Jesus with their minds, not with their hearts, and therefore they're not truly Christians. How many people in our churches fall into this category of having head knowledge but not heart faith? Far too many (even one is too many), and the sad fact is that they probably believe they are saved when in fact they might be on their way to hell. Are you in this group? Are you in for a horrifying shock when you step into eternity? Now is the time to ask yourself these questions, while there's still time to do something about it!

    "The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life's worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature." (Luke 8:14)

    The third group represents people who also hear the Word and believe it, but they never mature in their faith. Jesus said that they go on their way rather than obeying His way. They are too busy with the things of this world, chasing after their own goals or ambitions and being overwhelmed with the worries and cares of this world.

    Are these people saved?
     
  2. mont974x4

    mont974x4
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2012
    Messages:
    2,565
    Likes Received:
    1
    The only ones saved are those who consist of good soil and receive the Word firmly implanted. The rest:
    Group 1. The Word (seed) just bounces off and makes no impact whatsoever
    Group 2. The Word registers a bit, but they make an intellectual decision. The seed does not get firmly planted and they move on to the next fad.
    Group 3. The word registers a bit, but makes is not firmly implanted. These make an emotional decision. They are quickly drawn to something else when reality does not match their romanticized expectations of what it means to be a disciple of Christ.

    Interestingly Group 2 and Group 3 are opposite sides of the same coin. One side is someone who makes an intellectual decision but never really involves the heart change. Group 3 gets excited and makes a heart decision, but never engages their brain. A true disciple has a change of heart AND an informed (as opposed to blind) faith.

    I have often heard this preached by Arminian-leaning pastors that ask the people to consider what kind of soil they are and how they can change to become the good soil. I have gardened. I have friends who farm. I have yet to see any ground prep itself to receive the seeds that are planted by the sower. The Great Farmer does it all.


    hmm, should I copyright "Great Farmer"? It just came to me. lol
     
  3. awaken

    awaken
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    3,346
    Likes Received:
    0
    Christians who are worldly and are not yet spiritually mature (even if they have been Christians for many years) are often indistinguishable from non-Christians. If people call themselves Christians but they are more focused on the things of this world than on the things of God then it raises the question of whether they ever really got saved in the first place. Is Jesus really dwelling in their hearts? It's not our place to judge whether or not other people are saved, but let's be brutally honest and judge our own lives. Let's "examine [ourselves] to see whether [we] are in the faith" (2 Corinthians 13:5).

    Matthew 13:22 and Mark 4:19 tell us that the people in this group are "unfruitful" in their Christian walk:
    "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." (Matthew 13:22)

    "but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful." (Mark 4:19)

    It's unfortunate that the people in this group are unfruitful, because Matthew 7:18-20 and John 15:8 tell us that Christians are recognized by their "fruit" (their obedience to Jesus) and that "branches" which are unfruitful are thrown into the fire:

    "A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them." (Matthew 7:18-20)

    "This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples." (John 15:8)

    This might indicate (as many Christian scholars believe) that the people represented by this group are destined to be tormented in hell unless someone leads them to faith in Jesus as their Savior. Luke 8:14 says that these people are "choked," which comes from a Greek word that can also be translated as "strangled" or "suffocated." These words convey the idea of death, not the abundant life that we have in Christ.

    It's possible that thousands or millions of church-goers will step into eternity at death, but instead of a glorious welcome into heaven they'll be horrified to find themselves banished from God's presence and cast into torment in hell.
     
  4. awaken

    awaken
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    3,346
    Likes Received:
    0
    "But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop." (Luke 8:15)

    The fourth group represents those who truly are Christians and who are fruitful because of their obedience to Christ. Matthew 13:23 and Mark 4:20 say that they "produce a crop--thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown." Luke 8:15 says that they produce this crop by persevering. They don't fall away when the going gets rough nor when they're tempted by worldly desires and passions. Their highest passion is Jesus, and it shows. They remain obedient to the Word of God (the Bible), surrendering every area of their lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. This doesn't mean that they never make any mistakes or that they never sin, but it does mean that they don't continually sin and that when they commit a sin they quickly confess it and ask for forgiveness.

    The four groups described in this parable, only one group definitely represents true Christians. The majority of the people in this parable appear to be unsaved, even those who initially believed the Gospel (possibly with their heads but not with their hearts). This gives the impression that many people who believe they are Christians may in fact be bound for hell and they don't even know it. They are expecting a glorious welcome into heaven but instead they will receive the ultimate horror: Burning agony in the lake of fire and banishment from the glorious presence of God. Why? Simply from not examining their lives and not making the choice to be obedient to the Lord.

    Out of the three groups who believed the Gospel message about Jesus, only one group was obedient and fruitful. Jesus specifically said that it's our fruitful obedience which shows that we are His disciples (see Matthew 7:18-20 and John 15:8 ). Therefore, it's important for us to remain obedient to the Word of God and to surrender our lives to the Lord so that we'll be members of the fourth group in the Parable of the Sower.
     
  5. Bronconagurski

    Bronconagurski
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Messages:
    790
    Likes Received:
    0
    Friend, Paul said he planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. The scriptures also tell us that we are kept by the power of God. We can't keep ourself saved no more than we can seek God on our own. If one is truly saved, one will persevere. That doesn't mean that you will always be obedient. Staying obedient sounds too much like works salvation. Let me aske you, Awaken, do you believe that someone can lose their salvation after being truly saved?
     
  6. awaken

    awaken
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    3,346
    Likes Received:
    0
    Maybe you did not read my first comment...


    Salvation does not come through our obedience to God or through any righteousness of our own (we have no righteousness of our own). Salvation only comes through faith in Jesus as our Savior. However, our obedience is the evidence of our salvation.
     

Share This Page

Loading...