Matthew 13:2-8 …Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside, and the birds came and devoured them. Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
For years there have been some misconceptions about these verses. Jesus does go on to explain them in verses 18 through 23 and yet we it has not really spoken to us.
Misconception 1: The wayside are those with hard hearts. – That is not so. Jesus gives one explanation which happen one of two ways. The problem is that the hearers do not understand. This happens when the teacher, preacher, or anyone attempting to share scripture does not communicate it. The burden falls back to the one sharing God’s Word.
The second way that the lack of understanding does not happen is when we are privileged enough to speak to a crowds or individuals who have never heard the message of Jesus Christ. They do not know the stories of the Bible and find it hard to relate to basic principles. It takes time. Jesus didn’t have much problem communicating to his audience because most of the men had the Old Testament memorized.
Misconception 2: That the four soils represent four types of people. It does not take long as a teacher or pastor to realize that people move through stages. Those who do not understand can become understanding.
- Clueless – they do not always find it easy to relate to basic truths of faith, salvation, healing, etc, right away.
- Overwhelmed – when it does click they are ready to tackle the world.
- Dysfunctional – learning the truths but finding it hard to practice them because the old junk in their lives are battling for influence. Most of American believers are here.
- True Learners – Faith is working great. Prayer is working. The gifts of the Spirit are flowing.
Our goal is to move to the True Learner stage and determine to stay there.
Misconception #3: Cares of this world and riches do not affect us. We are effected by these two all of the time. Materialism has a very strong hold an Americans. The cares of this world are the world thought systems. It makes faith hard. It makes praying hard. It makes commitment hard. It makes bible study hard. It makes sharing your faith hard.
The function of every believer in Christ is to produce fruit/results that are godly. When this does not happen then your walk is not functioning correctly, dysfunctional.
Misconception #4: Good soil is always good soil. I have never seen a garden that you only had to week once. It is a constant task. One of the greatest tragedies are when leaders take it for granted that their soil will always be good and begin raising up learners who have the same dysfunction as they do.
The wisest thing that we can ever do is to recruit a friend to help you watch out for thorns popping up in your garden.