Matthew 13:3&5-6, “3 Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: “Behold, a sower went out to sow. … 5 Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away!”
It is one thing to pray, it is another thing to pray effectively with understanding. It is also vital to get wisdom from the word of God on how we pray and go about things so as to avoid traps, cycles of frustrations and trying to force things to work our way. In the next few series, allow me to touch on a message that is hard to receive but vital especially as we pray and reach our young people and others with the gospel. This is a message of hope.
To get us started, this parable in Matthew 13 is about a sower who went out to sow seeds. While sowing, some fell by the way side, some on stony places, some fell among the thorns and some fell on good ground. The seed was the same but yielded different results depending on where they fell. While it would be beneficial to touch on all the places the seeds fell, I will only touch on two, the stony grounds (places) and the good ground. This is the difference between true and false conversion. Sadly enough, many in the Christian circle are what Jesus referred to as stony ground hearers and we will get to know why.
Jesus says in vs. 5 “Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away”. There was something about this soil that gave an impression that the seed would do well in it. He says it did not “have much earth”, it had something that appeared to cause the seed to grow. Then something strange happened, it immediately sprang up because it had no depth of the earth. The ground was so hard and rocky that instead of developing roots and causing the roots to go deeper and stabilize the plant, they grew up fast and appeared to be healthy, only to be tested by the scorching sun before it withered and died. These are the people who hear some gospel message, they get excited about it, they say the sinner’s prayer and immediately crowned as a brother or sister in the Lord, only to be part of the 80-90% who fall away after they make a profession of faith.
Here Jesus explains the meaning of that ground, vs. 20 But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles”. The stony ground hearer receives the word with joy and gladness, and that sounds good however there is a problem with that and we will see it when we talk about the good soil. The stony ground hearers’ soil is barren not fit for sowing until it is prepared. The natural hardness of their hearts continues, and who remain unbroken by the word, and are without any true sense of sin, and repentance for it.
“Where they had not much earth, to cover them and take root in: this is expressive of such persons who have slight convictions of sin, and awakenings of the natural conscience; some little, light, and speculative notions of the word, in the understanding and judgment; some flashes of natural affection for it, and outward expressions of delight and pleasure in it; some show of grace, and a form of godliness, but NO REAL HEART WORK” … And forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth; to strike their roots downwards: and through the reflection of the heat, upon the rocks and stones, they quickly broke through the thin surface of the earth over them, and appeared above ground before the usual time of the springing up of seed: which may not only denote the immediate reception of the word by these hearers, and their quick assent to it; but their sudden and hasty profession of it, without taking due time to consider the nature and importance thereof; and the seeming cheerfulness in which they did both receive and profess it; though it was only outward and hypocritical, and more on account of the manner of preaching it, than the word itself, and through a selfish principle in them; and did not arise from any real experience of the power of it on their souls, or true spiritual pleasure in it: nor could it be otherwise, since their stony hearts were not taken away, nor hearts of flesh given them; wherefore the word had no place in them, and made no real impression on them..” John Gill
This put’s fear in me because I do not want to share the gospel and give a stony grounded hearer assurance of salvation if God has not truly saved him because I rushed him through the gospel and got a decision and rejoiced over the decision. God’s work must be done God’s way and by God if we are to see lasting results. By what means is the ground prepared? To continue blessings Ev
- Always Be Ready, Part 2of2, Evans Olang (magnifyhisword.wordpress.com)
- Always Be Ready, Part 1of2, Evans Olang (magnifyhisword.wordpress.com)
- Submitting To God’s Righteousness, Part 6of10, Evans Olang (magnifyhisword.wordpress.com)