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GOOD SOIL BEARS GOOD FRUIT

Date: September 17

Category: Godly Character

Matthew 13:23
"As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the Word and grasps and comprehends it; he indeed bears fruit and yields in one case a hundred times as much as was sown, in another sixty times as much, and in another thirty."

Slobodan & Ljiljana KrstevskiMost people say that this is a parable about the sower. But after closer scrutiny and analogy of this text, I conclude that this is really a parable about the soil. Now what is the parable of the soil supposed to do? Well it says in verse 11 of this chapter, "And He replied to them, To you it has been given to know the secrets and mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given." In other words, this parable of the soil is to teach us the secrets and mysteries of the kingdom of heaven. So understanding it means you understand the kingdom of heaven.

We know that the sower is the Son of Man, which is Jesus and the seed is the Word of God. But a sower could also be a preacher or anyone who delivers the Word of God to people. Now the different soils are the different types of people who respond to the preaching of the Word. In this parable, Jesus says that there are four types of soil.

Let's look at the first type of soil. According to verse 4, the first type of soil is the roadside. The seeds that fell along the roadside were quickly eaten up by the birds. The interpretation for that is found in verse 19, "While anyone is hearing the Word of the kingdom and does not grasp and comprehend it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the roadside." So because this type of person didn't understand the Word of God, the devil came and snatched the Word from his heart and therefore that Word could not produce any fruit.

The second type of soil, which we read about in verses 5-6, is the rocky ground where there wasn't much soil. So after the seed was sown, it sprang up quickly but when the sun arose, they were scorched because they had no root. In verses 20-21 it says, "As for what was sown on thin (rocky) soil, this is he who hears the Word and at once welcomes and accepts it with joy; yet it has no real root in him, but is temporary (inconstant, lasts but a little while); and when affliction or trouble or persecution comes on account of the Word, at once he is caused to stumble [he is repelled and begins to distrust and desert Him Whom he ought to trust and obey] and he falls away." In other words, this person receives the Word immediately, but as soon as difficulties and persecution arises, this type of person begins to fall away and abandon the Word, therefore not producing any fruit either.

Then according to verse 7, the next type of soil that the seeds fell upon was among thorns, but those thorns choked them out and nothing could grow from those seeds. In verse 22 we read, "As for what is sown among thorns, this is he who hears the Word, but the cares of the world and the pleasure and delight and glamour and deceitfulness of riches choke and suffocate the Word, and it yields no fruit." So these are the people, who listened to the Word of God, but the cares of this life and the pleasures of this world drew them away from the Word and as a result, there was no fruit produced in their life either.

But there is one type of soil that produces fruit and that is the good soil. In verse 8 we read, "Other seeds fell on good soil, and yielded grain – some a hundred times as much as was sown, some sixty times as much, and some thirty." That's similar to what we read earlier in verse 23. That's the type of person who hears the Word of God, grasps it into his heart and comprehends it well. These do not allow difficulties or persecution, cares of this life or pleasures of this world to obstract them from their goal of obeying the Word. Because of that, he bears fruit in his life in accordance to the Word of God.

If you are good soil and you receive the Word of God into your heart, then your life should bear fruit, meaning there should be a change in your life. You should no longer think the same way the world thinks or act the same way the world acts. There should be a transformation in your life because that Word or that seed has been planted into your heart, which is good soil. Because that has happened, fruit must be produced in your life – a hundred fold, sixty fold, thirty fold in return.

Everything in the kingdom of God grows. So you and I should always be growing and always be developing fruit. What kind of fruit should we be producing? Well Galatians 5:22-23a says, "But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence)." So the fruits of the Spirit are the qualities that we should be producing. Every day we should be shaped and molded to become more and more like Jesus Christ. So make sure that your heart is always good soil and you're always ready to receive the Word of God because then you'll always bear good fruit in your life for the glory of God.

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