“Behold, the sower went out to sow, and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up immediately because they had no depth of soil. But after the sun rose, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. But others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop, some a hundred, some sixty, and some thirty times as much. The one who has ears, let him hear.”Matthew 13:3-9
Let’s face it! When it comes to sharing the gospel, be it with family, friends, or strangers, we often place around our necks the added burden of failure. Our minds start to run all sorts of scenarios of what could go wrong while trying to keep what we want to say at the forefront of our thoughts. Simply put, we are exhausted before we even approach the person to say hello. Here is what we need to keep in mind when it comes to sharing the gospel with others: The convicting power of the gospel is the Holy Spirit’s job, and the willingness to step out and share the good news is ours.
Jesus shared a parable about a sower and the soils upon which he scattered seed, and each of the synoptic gospel writers, Matthew, Mark, and Luke, record it in their gospel account. Jesus said:
The first type of soil where some of the sower’s seeds fell was the road, which was likely hard, compact soil leaving the seeds exposed and easily picked off by the birds. That is a symbolic picture of a person whose heart has become hardened. Hardened to the point where the gospel seeds do not penetrate to take root only to give way to the person’s worldly interest.
The next soil type was rocky with minimal soil, and even though the seeds did sprout, the roots were shallow, meaning they could not draw water from the deeper ground to combat the hot, scorching sun. The same can happen to those who accept Jesus as Lord but fail to grow in their walk with God. For them, when times of difficulty and distress occur, they fall away from the faith because they are not rooted in God’s word.
Another soil is infested with weeds that quickly choke out the sower’s seeds. The weeds can be symbolic of worldly influencers. They are usually old friends who push and press a person to revert to who they used to be when living a sinful life instead of who they chose to be in Christ. In many cases, a person will succumb to intense peer pressure and fall away from the faith.
The last soil that Jesus speaks about is good, fertilized, rich soil where the seed takes root and flourishes. It grows into a crop that yields a great harvest, one after another. That is representative to the Christian who hears the gospel, cultivates his understanding of God’s word, and shares the good news of the gospel with others that further yields a greater harvest of souls for God’s kingdom.
Notice that no matter the soil encountered, the sower continued to cast his seed, knowing the increase was entirely in God’s hands. That is what Jesus expects from us as His disciples. We are to scatter the seeds of the gospel everywhere we go, knowing the increase is entirely in His hands through the convicting work of the Holy Spirit.
Whether a person accepts Jesus as Savior and Lord is not our responsibility, it is between that person and God. Our mission is to share the message Jesus has entrusted us to deliver and leave the rest up to Him. Therefore, be encouraged to get up, get out, and show and tell the gospel.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
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