Sowing seed

Mark 4:1-20: the seeds of the message about the Kingdom fall upon many types of ground, some of which is healthy and receptive while, from what Jesus describes here, most seed falls on less productive and even infertile soil. In looking at the various types of places where the seed falls we can see a similarity to the three enemies of the disciple of Christ: Satan, the flesh and the world. Jesus describes the birds that come and pick away the seeds of the message cast out by the farmer as the work of Satan. The rocky ground where the roots only penetrate superficially is flesh, the persecution and troubles that some face straight away when they joyfully receive the message of the kingdom but don’t let it enter deep into their hearts. Then there’s the thorn bushes that represent the world and all its’ needs and cares that suffocate so many people spiritually.
Even as the seeds of the message of the kingdom are cast out upon the field that the labourer is seeding the enemies of the disciple of Jesus are there, the spiritual predators, rocky soil so abused by this life and the thorny issues of life that choke out the spiritually deep roots. All these wage an unending battle against the seeds of the message of the kingdom.
However, there is one soil that has been prepared by the Father to receive the seeds of the message of the kingdom. Neither predator, rocks nor thorns have sufficient presence to eat up, dry out or choke off the message Jesus is bringing. The end result then is a crop to be harvested with more seed to be sown once again upon the four fields.
We must ask ourselves where we are in the parable. Are we the farmer casting out the seed? Are we the seed itself that will be cast upon various soils as we carry the message of the kingdom to the nations? Are we the soil that receives the message of the kingdom, Jesus teaching, in all its’ various types – the path, rocky, thorny or good soil?
We can also ask some questions about the methodology of the farmer. It appears that he paid little attention to where he was sowing the seed as he didn’t avoid infertile areas of his field. We can see him walking about the field casting out the seed allowing it to fall where it may making no effort to avoid the path, the rocks or the thorns. This was a field he had prepared for the seed so perhaps he just couldn’t know at the time of seeding where the dangers lay in which case he sowed liberally knowing that when the seed did fall on rich soil it would produce a harvest that compensated well for those areas that where unproductive. Only time would tell.
“Then Jesus said, ‘If you have ears, pay attention.'” (Mark 4:9, CEV)

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