What is a parable? The Sunday school answer that we have grown up with an earthly story with a heavenly meaning. The word parable actually means to go alongside, or to compare. Therefore, a parable is a comparison using terms and images that the everyday person is able to understand. Jesus used parables often when he would describe the Kingdom of God. Often times you can spot a parable because they start with the words, the Kingdom of God is like…
In our Burn4 Student Ministry Wednesday night devotions we are discussing parables. Over the next few weeks we will discuss several of the parables of Jesus.
The first one we looked at was the Parable of the Sower.
4 While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable:5 “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up.6 Some fell on rock, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture.7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants.8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
The key element of this parable is the soil and how it responds to the seed that is sown on the ground. It is important for us, Christ-followers, to determine what kind of soil we are. We have to do this through constant scrutiny and inward reflection. If we are unaware of what kind of soil we are, we won’t understand how growth in Christ (or lack of it).
- The path – those who have hardened their heart and are unwilling to allow the Word of God change them. They are content and happy in their sin and don’t want Christ to change them.
- The Rocky Ground – those who follow Jesus impulsively, living off their emotions only. These people turn and run from their faith and Christ when the going gets tough. At the first sign of struggle they walk away from their faith.
- The Thorny Ground – those who are unable to follow Jesus because their lives are packed too full. The thorns of life can be anything in their schedule that doesn’t allow them to commit fully to Christ. Anything that takes the place of God in our lives becomes an idol.
- The Good Ground – those who understand the word, follow it through from beginning to end and is unable to stop thinking of it until he knows the full meaning of it. He receives the word meaning they take it in and it becomes a part of who they are. They keep the word meaning they practice it in their lives.
How are you allowing the Word of God to affect you? Is it able to get in deep and produce roots and fruit in your life? Or has your schedule or hardened heart prevented it from producing any fruit? Which kind of soil are you?