The Parables of the Sower

19 Mar

The “parable of the sower” is recorded in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Examining all three accounts together yields a much greater understanding:

Isaiah 28:9-10  Whom will he teach knowledge? and whom will he make to understand the message? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts?  (10)  For it is precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, there a little.

Jesus declared the “parable of the sower” the foundation for knowing and understanding any of His parables:

Mark 4:13 And he saith unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how shall ye know all the parables?

Knowing this parable will greatly enhance our understanding of why Father cuts some saved Christians, likened as branches, off of His Son Jesus who is the true vine:

John 15:1-2  I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.  (2)  Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

Jesus makes very clear distinctions between the four types of hearts, likened as ground, where the Word of God is sown into.

Those “by the wayside” hear the Word of the kingdom but do not understand it. So satan steals the Word from their heart. These do not believe and thus are not saved:

Matthew 13:18-19  Hear then ye the parable of the sower.  (19)  When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the evil one, and snatcheth away that which hath been sown in his heart. This is he that was sown by the way side.

Mark 4:14-15  The sower soweth the word.  (15)  And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; and when they have heard, straightway cometh Satan, and taketh away the word which hath been sown in them.

Luke 8:11-12  Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.  (12)  And those by the way side are they that have heard; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word from their heart, that they may not believe and be saved.

Jesus made it very clear in Luke 8:12 that those by the wayside did not believe and so were not saved:

Acts 16:30-31 and brought them out and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? (31) And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be saved, thou and thy house.

He then goes on to prove the three other types of ground represent those who hear, receive, and believe the Word sown in their heart and thus are saved.

Those likened to rocky places receive the Word of God with joy, enduring for a while in that salvation. But they do not allow the Word of God to root deep enough to overcome trials and temptations and thus fall away:

Matthew 13:20-21  And he that was sown upon the rocky places, this is he that heareth the word, and straightway with joy receiveth it;  (21)  yet hath he not root in himself, but endureth for a while; and when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, straightway he stumbleth.

Mark 4:16-17  And these in like manner are they that are sown upon the rocky places, who, when they have heard the word, straightway receive it with joy;  (17)  and they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, straightway they stumble.

Luke 8:13  And those on the rock are they who, when they have heard, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

Jesus makes it very clear in Luke 8:13 that those with rocky soil are believers.

Unlike those rocky believers who only endure for awhile, we are required to endure temptation unto our end to be approved and receive the crown of life:

Matthew 24:13 But he that endureth to the end, the same shall be saved.

James 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he hath been approved, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord promised to them that love him.

Those Christians with thorns in their ground are distracted with the cares and pleasures of this life. This chokes the Word bringing no fruit to perfection:

Matthew 13:22 And he that was sown among the thorns, this is he that heareth the word; and the care of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.

Mark 4:18-19  And others are they that are sown among the thorns; these are they that have heard the word,  (19)  and the cares of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

Luke 8:14  And that which fell among the thorns, these are they that have heard, and as they go on their way they are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.

Christians are to come out of the world of sinful passions and idols so that we may bring forth fruit unto God in our temple:

Romans 7:4-5 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also were made dead to the law through the body of Christ; that ye should be joined to another, even to him who was raised from the dead, that we might bring forth fruit unto God. (5) For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were through the law, wrought in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.

1 John 2:15-17  Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the vainglory of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. (17) And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

2 Corinthians 6:16-18 And what agreement hath a temple of God with idols? for we are a temple of the living God; even as God said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (17) Wherefore Come ye out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, And touch no unclean thing; And I will receive you, (18) And will be to you a Father, And ye shall be to me sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

The good ground represents the Christians who learn to separate from the world and its many idols that distract us from time in the Word. In an honest and good heart we are to hear and hold fast to the Word bringing forth the required fruit:  

Matthew 13:23  And he that was sown upon the good ground, this is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; who verily beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

Mark 4:20  And those are they that were sown upon the good ground; such as hear the word, and accept it, and bear fruit, thirtyfold, and sixtyfold, and a hundredfold.

Luke 8:15  And that in the good ground, these are such as in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, hold it fast, and bring forth fruit with patience.

Diligent study of our Father’s Word helps us to recognize the difference between being approved with good fruit or rejected for having no fruit:

2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Manifesting the good fruit is to enter the narrow door of the Word where we learn to do the will of the Father:

Matthew 7:13-23  Enter ye in by the narrow gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many are they that enter in thereby.  (14)  For narrow is the gate, and straitened the way, that leadeth unto life, and few are they that find it.  (15)  Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.  (16)  By their fruits ye shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?  (17)  Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but the corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.  (18)   A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.  (19) every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.  (20)  Therefore by their fruits ye shall know them.  (21)  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.  (22)  Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy by thy name, and by thy name cast out demons, and by thy name do many mighty works?  (23)  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Paul warned that shortly after he departed over 1900 years ago that men who are believers among us would rise up teaching many perverse things:

Acts 20:29-30 I know that after my departing grievous wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock; (30) and from among your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.

These men turn the grace of our Father into lasciviousness which is a license to sin by denying that their Master Jesus who bought them can overcome their sin nature:

Jude 1:3-4 & 12  Beloved, while I was giving all diligence to write unto you of our common salvation, I was constrained to write unto you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered unto the saints. (4) For there are certain men crept in privily, even they who were of old written of beforehand unto this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ…..(12)  These are they who are hidden rocks in your love-feasts when they feast with you, shepherds that without fear feed themselves; clouds without water, carried along by winds; autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;

In true hypocrisy, these teachers will be quick to quote that we can do ALL things through Christ BUT in the same sentence deny we can overcome our sin nature through Him:

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

To be “twice dead” is to be spiritually dead before one is “saved”. Then after being born again that Christian turns back from the Word into the world of sin:

2 Peter 2:20-22  For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein and overcome, the last state is become worse with them than the first.  (21)  For it were better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after knowing it, to turn back from the holy commandment delivered unto them.  (22)  It has happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog turning to his own vomit again, and the sow that had washed to wallowing in the mire.

These Christians were saved and called into righteousness but over time fall away causing spiritual death to reoccur:

2 Timothy 1:8-9 Be not ashamed therefore of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but suffer hardship with the gospel according to the power of God; (9) who saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before times eternal,

He first saves us when we are born anew as a baby Christian that begins to “see the kingdom of God”:

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except one be born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

But only those who actively seek sanctification through the washing of water with the Word and being led of the Holy Spirit will “enter into the kingdom of God”:

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except one be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:25-26 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself up for it; (26) that he might sanctify it, having cleansed it by the washing of water with the word,

Romans 8:12-14 So then, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh: (13) for if ye live after the flesh, ye must die; but if by the Spirit ye put to death the deeds of the body, ye shall live. (14) For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

For more understanding on what it means to be sanctified please see this link:

Those who walk by the Spirit of God learn to crucify the flesh with its passions and lusts so the Spirit can then lead us into bearing all the fruit:

Galatians 5:16-25 But I say, Walk by the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. (17) For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are contrary the one to the other; that ye may not do the things that ye would. (18) But if ye are led by the Spirit, ye are not under the law. (19) Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these: fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, (20) idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousies, wraths, factions, divisions, parties, (21) envyings, drunkenness, revellings, and such like; of which I forewarn you, even as I did forewarn you, that they who practise such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (22) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) meekness, self-control; against such there is no law. (24) And they that are of Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with the passions and the lusts thereof. (25) If we live by the Spirit, by the Spirit let us also walk.

The false teachers with their lies strip a believer from understanding the need to produce the fruit of the Spirit. But those who hold fast to our Father’s Word are abiding in Jesus learning to do the will of our Father. This is producing the good fruit which keeps them from being cut off of Jesus:

John 15:1-6  I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.  (2)  Every branch in me that beareth not fruit, he taketh it away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he cleanseth it, that it may bear more fruit.  (3)  Already ye are clean because of the word which I have spoken unto you.  (4)  Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; so neither can ye, except ye abide in me.  (5)  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same beareth much fruit: for apart from me ye can do nothing.  (6)  If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

No one becomes a branch on the vine who is Jesus without believing on the Lord Jesus Christ:

Acts 16:30-31  and brought them out and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  (31)  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be saved, thou and thy house.

As believers, we are required to be servants of God who present our members as His servants to righteousness producing the fruit unto sanctification:

Romans 6:19-23 I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye presented your members as servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity, even so now present your members as servants to righteousness unto sanctification. (20) For when ye were servants of sin, ye were free in regard of righteousness. (21) What fruit then had ye at that time in the things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. (22)  But now being made free from sin and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto sanctification, and the end eternal life. (23) For the wages of sin is death; but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

This requires losing our life for the life of Christ through faith:

John 12:24-25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a grain of wheat fall into the earth and die, it abideth by itself alone; but if it die, it beareth much fruit. (25) He that loveth his life loseth it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I that live, but Christ liveth in me: and that life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me.

As we look earnestly for the manifestation of Jesus’ life in our mortal flesh, in this life, which is called the peaceable fruit of righteousness that our Father brings through chastening:

2 Corinthians 4:10-11 always bearing about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life also of Jesus may be manifested in our body. (11) For we who live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh.

Hebrews 12:6-7 &11  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, And scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. (7)  It is for chastening that ye endure; God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father chasteneth not?…..(11) All chastening seemeth for the present to be not joyous but grievous; yet afterward it yieldeth peaceable fruit unto them that have been exercised thereby, even the fruit of righteousness.

This manifestation of Jesus’ life in our mortal flesh is to partake in Christ’s suffering which proves we love and obey the gospel of God:

1 Peter 4:12-19 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial among you, which cometh upon you to prove you, as though a strange thing happened unto you: (13)  but insomuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings, rejoice; that at the revelation of his glory also ye may rejoice with exceeding joy. (14) If ye are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are ye; because the Spirit of glory and the Spirit of God resteth upon you. (15) For let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or an evil-doer, or as a meddler in other men’s matters: (16) but if a man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God in this name. (17) For the time is come for judgment to begin at the house of God: and if it begin first at us, what shall be the end of them that obey not the gospel of God? (18) And if the righteous is scarcely saved, where shall the ungodly and sinner appear? (19) Wherefore let them also that suffer according to the will of God commit their souls in well-doing unto a faithful Creator.

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