I want to read to you the words of the Lord Jesus found in Matthew chapter 13. The parable of the sower explained. Therefore hear the parable of the sower. When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who receives seed by the wayside. But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy. Yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arise because of the word, immediately he stumbles. Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.
want to speak to the second soil in verse 20. He who received the seed on stony
places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy. 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. There are
some people who hear the words of Jesus and they're overjoyed to hear it.
They're overjoyed that Jesus will forgive them of their sins, overjoyed that
there is hope for them to be saved, and they're very thankful for that.
they don't count the cost of what it really means to follow Jesus, and because
they are like the seed in the rocky places, as they start to grow up in Jesus,
and then their family members and their friends, people at their workplace or
their school, all are against Jesus because they're anti-Christ.
are torn down by all the tribulations of their friends. Tribulation right now,
at least for in the United States, is not that bad. It will get a whole lot
worse. But right now, the amount of persecution, the amount of hatred towards
Christians, is enough to slow down almost everyone. Satan hasn't had to behead
people or to line people up to kill Christians in order to scare Christians
away from following Jesus.
he has to say is, your mom and your dad won't approve that you're a Christian.
All the devil has had to tell Christians is say, well, all your friends will
leave you, who will you party with, who will you have fun with? All the devil
has had to tell Christians is, who will you fellowship with? You'll be so
lonely, you'll go off and die.
because this small amount of persecution, or these small little stones and
rocks that are making the path bumpy, the Christians that want to follow Jesus,
they fall on these rocks, and they stumble, and they fall away from the truth
of Jesus. They're not able to walk down the straight and narrow path and
produce good fruit.
accounts for a whole lot of Christians. It's sad to see that people just want
to please people, but they don't care to please God. They don't care to do what
Jesus thinks is upright and pure and holy. They would rather look good to their
pastor, look good to their mom and dad and their church and their friends, and
because they care so much what people think, they will never be able to love
and obey Jesus and follow Him to the very end.
you notice, only the fourth soil and the fourth seed produces good fruit. Only
that fourth person who chooses to bear good fruit for Jesus and not let the
things of the world choke him out, not follow or try to please men, only that
person ends up producing good fruit. And only the one who produces good fruit
will inherit everlasting life with the Lord.
the devil snatches away the truth from you or chokes you out, or if you fall on
the stony places or on the byway, you're not going to inherit everlasting life.
You have to be the good seed in the good soil. So if you are willing to count
the cost to separate from bad friends, to separate from things that you know
are ungodly, to do the work to detox the world, to detox whatever you need to
get the parasites out of your life, if you're willing to do that, there's great
hope in Jesus and you will be saved.
you have to count the cost of what it means to follow the Lord. If you are
concerning yourself what He thinks of you and doing what is right, instead of
being concerned about people, your friends, all the things of the world, how
you will look at your workplace, are we concerned about Jesus and what He
thinks of us in everlasting life, or are we concerned with the here and the
I think a lot of people fall into this, into this category of caring too much
about what people think. But the third category is the category that we also
have to be very careful of, which is the one who fell on the thorns. The one
who fell on the thorns is he who hears the word and the cares of this world,
and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word and he becomes unfruitful.
we're really careful, money becomes a big problem. We start to serve money, we
start to serve things, we start to get more and more stuff of this world, and
all the worries of this world will consume us. We have to be very careful that
people are not distracting us, that we're not concerned just with fellowship,
just with trying to get into the right church, or just with how much money we
make, or what kind of food we're eating, or where we're living.
said that the Gentiles seek after all those things, but He said, as for us,
seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will
be added to you. If we seek first Jesus and put Him first in our life, then He
will give us the clothes we need, the food we need, the money we need to pay
our rent and everything else.
if we seek the things that Gentiles and heathens seek first, then we're no
better than a heathen. And a lot of Christians are falling into the category of
either the seed that is choked out by the world, they're not producing any
fruit at all because they're so concerned with money, clothes and food.
don't want to fall into that category, nor do we want to fall into the category
of being concerned what people think and falling on those rocks. Are you on the
straight and narrow path today with Jesus? Are you enduring with Him? Or have
you been distracted by other people, by money, and by the things of this world?
want to pray for those who want to overcome this world and who want to walk
with Jesus in peace and endure with Him to the very end. "Lord Jesus, I
pray for Your true church, for those who have come out of dead religion, for
those who have come out of worldliness. I pray for those who have an ear to
hear, that You would speak to them, that You would guide them, that they would
hear Your voice and know that You are not the Bible, that they would know that
You are the living God who speaks through the Bible, who speaks through
situations, that speaks through nature and all the things in our life.
we pray that we learn to hear Your whisper and Your voice in everything. We
pray that we truly have ears to hear and eyes to see, and that our hands would
do Your work and that our feet would run to obey. So I pray for the true body
of Christ, my brothers and sisters in the Lord who want to do Your work, who
want to overcome.
pray that You give them the power to overcome and that they would endure with
You through whatever trials and tribulations come their way. In Your name I
pray, Lord Jesus, Amen."