This Christian walk is NOT for wimps and nor is it for quitters either…
But it is for people who are honest with themselves, honest enough to recognize that the way they were living their lives, before Christ, totally committed to the world, was not working, and nor was it satisfying.
You see God has purposefully put a God sized void inside each of our hearts, that can ONLY be filled with Himself; and as experience has shown most of us, the world is a miserly substitute!
We each have our different paradigm views and motivations for why we commit our lives to Christ, but there is ONLY one reason that truly makes us worthy of the calling which God has placed upon our lives.
Jesus gave us the Parable of the Sower (also known as the Parable of the Four Soils), which is found in Matthew 13:3-9; Mark 4:2-9; and Luke 8:4-8.
After presenting this parable to the multitude, Jesus then interprets it for His disciples in Matthew 13:18-23; Mark 4:13-20; and Luke 8:11-15.
The Parable of the Sower concerns a sower who scatters seed, which falls on four different types of ground.
The hard ground “by the way side” prevents the seed from sprouting at all, and the seed becomes nothing more than bird food.
The stony ground provides enough soil for the seeds to germinate and begin to grow, but because there is “no deepness of earth,” the plants do not take root and are soon withered in the sun.
The thorny ground allows the seed to grow, but the competing thorns choke the life out of the beneficial plants.
The good ground receives the seed and produces much fruit.
Jesus’ explanation of the Parable of the Sower highlights four different responses to the gospel.
The seed is “the word of the kingdom.”
The hard ground represents someone who is hardened by sin; he hears but does not understand the Word, and Satan plucks the message away, keeping the heart dull and preventing the Word from making an impression.
The stony ground pictures a man who professes delight with the Word; however, his heart is not changed, and when trouble arises, his so-called faith quickly disappears.
The thorny ground depicts one who seems to receive the Word, but whose heart is full of riches, pleasures, and lusts; the things of this world take his time and attention away from the Word, and he ends up having no time for it.
The good ground portrays the one who hears, understands, and receives the Word—and then allows the Word to accomplish its result in his life.
The man represented by the “good ground” is the ONLY one of the four who is truly saved, because salvation’s proof is fruit (Matthew 3:7-8; 7:15-20).
To summarize the point of the Parable of the Sower:
“A man’s reception of God’s Word is determined by the condition of his heart.”
A secondary lesson would be “Salvation is more than a superficial, albeit joyful, hearing of the gospel.
Someone who is truly saved will go on to prove it.
How we respond to the Gospel’s message will determine what sort of soil we are and what our true motivation is; whether it be self directed or God directed?
You see the ONLY way anyone can successfully live this Christian life, the way God intends it to be lived, is that we MUST be willing to die to ourselves, meaning we die to our own will, our own ambitions, and we make a complete paradigm shift in our life, by making a conscious decision (having been truly born-again, NOT by the will of the flesh, but by the will of the Holy Spirit), to live this life TOTALLY dedicate to God’s service!
J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)
We have seen God’s mercy and wisdom: how shall we respond?
12 1-2 With eyes wide open to the mercies of God, I beg you, my brothers, as an act of intelligent worship, to give him your bodies, as a living sacrifice, consecrated to him and acceptable by him.
Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould, but let God re-mould your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice that the plan of God for you is good, meets all his demands and moves towards the goal of true maturity.
What this means is that we now view our Chief Rabbi and Elder Brother, who is Jesus the Christ (meaning Messiah), as our model and example for how God the Father intends us to live our life; in the way we read in the Bible that Jesus lived His life here on earth, as it is recorded in the Bible.
1 John 2:6
Expanded Bible (EXB)
Whoever says that he lives [abides; remains] in God must live [walk] as Jesus lived [he walked].
And Jesus said to them ALL, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross (the symbol of his death to self) daily, and follow me.
You see the deal is this, you can’t live this Christian life with one foot in the world and one foot in the Spirit; because you can’t serve two masters, both the world and God; for as Jesus said, “you will cling to one and you will shun the other” (Mat 6:24).
So if you find that your life is being shook to its very foundation right now, please understand that God is allowing the superstructure of your old life to be torn down to its foundation, in order that you may know what your true foundation is, whether it is in Christ, or in something or someone else?
God is teaching all of us, in this process, that we are to look ONLY to Him, as our Source, in any and ALL of our life situations.
This pilgrimage is not easy, and out of necessity it will take a total and absolute commitment of yourself, that you are going to complete this race and that you will never ever quit!
Jesus himself is our “PRIZE,” He’s the reason why we run; and the Bible tells us that since He has already won this race for us (at Calvary’s cross), all we have to do, in order to be successful, is to keep running and NOT quit… just cross the finish line!
So the question is are you game, or not?
Will you be the man or woman that God created you to be?
You see Jesus has already committed Himself to us, by pouring out His life’s blood on Calvary’s cross; and in that selfless act He gave His very best, His life, in order to guarantee our position with Him for all eternity!
The reason why God has gone through all of this, and has given so much of Himself to make all of this possible, is because of the love He bears for us.
Living Bible (TLB)
35 Who then can ever keep Christ’s love from us? When we have trouble or calamity, when we are hunted down or destroyed, is it because he doesn’t love us anymore? And if we are hungry or penniless or in danger or threatened with death, has God deserted us?
36 No, for the Scriptures tell us that for his sake we must be ready to face death at every moment of the day—we are like sheep awaiting slaughter; 37 but despite all this, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ who loved us enough to die for us. 38 For I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels won’t, and all the powers of hell itself cannot keep God’s love away. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, 39 or where we are—high above the sky, or in the deepest ocean—nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us.
Jesus will not ever give up on us, and so let us make sure we never give up on Him!
Come join the Adventure!
Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Savior
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
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