2 Feb. Mark 4:1-8

2 Feb. Jesus tells a story about planting seeds

"Jesus began teaching by the lake... 'A farmer went out to plant his seed. While he was planting, some seed fell by the road, and the birds came and ate it up.'"

"'Some seed fell on rocky ground where there wasn't much earth. That seed grew very fast, because the ground was not deep. But when the sun rose, the plants dried up because they did not have deep roots.'"

"'Some other seed fell among thorny weeds, which grew and choked the other plants. So those plants did not produce a crop.'"

"'Some other seed fell on good ground and began to grow. It got taller and produced a crop. Some plants made 30 times more, some made 60 times more, and some made 100 times more.'"

          (Mark 4:1-8)



Jesus was busy teaching parables (stories with an underlying spiritual meaning) by the Galilean lakeside during the summer of 28AD.

Today's Bible passage is often called 'The Parable of the Sower [God]'. But it's really about God planting the seed [God's word] in our hearts [the soil], and the way we receive God's word and 'bear fruit' in our lives.

Galilee has warm, wet winters and hot, dry summers. It's a fertile area where a variety of crops (e.g. wheat, barley, olives, figs and vines) grow well, and farming is an important activity.

In the 'Parable of the Sower' (Mark 4:3-20), Jesus compared the way God’s word is received by different people to the way in which plants grow in the ground:

Some seed is sown on the path – on hard, compacted soil - so the seeds can’t take root and the birds eat it.

Some seed is sown amongst the rocks where the seeds start to grow; but there isn’t enough soil so the plants easily wither due to the hot sun and lack of water.

Other seedlings are choked by thorn bushes competing with the seedlings for water, light and food.

Only good soil provides plants with all they need – water, air, nutrients and space for the roots to develop. The seed sown on good soil produces a good crop, giving thirty, sixty or even a hundred times more grain than what has been sown as seed.

The meaning of the parable (see Mark 4:13-20) is that the word that Jesus sows in peoples’ hearts only grows into faith if the listeners are receptive to the message. Only then will their faith in God grow like the seed in the good soil.

Which 'soil' are you? Read Mark 4:13-20 if you're not sure!

The photo shows an area of rocky ground in the Judaean hills near Jerusalem.

You can read more of Jesus's 'parables' @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/jesus-upsets-the-pharise…/

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