Saturday, April 10th, 2010
"The sower went out to sow." (Mark 4:3)
As recorded at Mark 4:1-9, Jesus describes a sower who casts, or scatters, seed. In this illustration, the sower does not deliberately sow the seed on different types of soil. Rather, the scattered seed lands in various locations. Notice that Jesus does not say that different types of seed are being used. Instead, he speaks of one type of seed that lands on different types of soil, each of which produces a different result. The first type of soil is hard, or packed down; the second is shallow; the third is overgrown with thorns; and the fourth is fine, or good, soil that produces well. (Luke 8:8) What is the seed? It is the Kingdom message found in God's Word. (Matthew 13:19) What do the different types of soil represent? People with differing heart conditions.—Luke 8:12, 15.
(Watchtower issue: 7/15/08, 3:4, 5, 7)
I noticed somewhat of a similarity between this illustration, and an account I was reading the other day about the situation with the Israelites in the wilderness....since they also received the same spiritual *message* (like the seed represented in the parable), yet they also demonstrated differing heart conditions by how they responded to it:
(1 Corinthians 10:1-5, 11)
"Now I do not want YOU to be ignorant, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea and all got baptized into Moses by means of the cloud and of the sea; and all ate the same spiritual food and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they used to drink from the spiritual rock-mass that followed them, and that rock-mass meant the Christ. Nevertheless, on most of them God did not express his approval, for they were laid low in the wilderness . . . Now these things went on befalling them as examples, and they were written for a warning to us upon whom the ends of the systems of things have arrived."
-That last verse is interesting, because it shows how what occured back then, relates to us in modern times. Did you notice how it said that the "spiritual rock-mass" from which they all used to drink "meant the Christ"? Yet the majority of those Israelites (just like the majority of people today) didn't put true faith in what they saw and heard. -So even though they were 'on their way' to the Promised Land, most of them never made it in.
Which shows us that the majority of them must have had a heart condition similar to what's described by the first 3 types of soil, rather than the "good" or "fine soil" in the illustration.