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2nd of the 11th month 2021/2022
Please read Luqas/Luke 8:1-21.
In the Parable of the Sower, the Sower is יהושע and the Seed is His Word.
The Sower also represents for us today, any of יהוה’s people who share the Word of Elohim.
Like seed, the Word has life and power and can produce great spiritual fruit.
But the seed can do nothing until it is planted.
When a person hears and receives the Word, it is then planted in their heart.
What happens after it is planted, is dependent upon the nature of the soil, where the soil represents the heart.
This parable could also be called the parable of the soils – for the seed without the soil is fruitless and the soil without the seed is pretty much useless too!
Let me repeat that: the seed without the soil is fruitless and the soil without the seed is useless!
Soil and seed – both are necessary for the proper growth and production of fruit!.
The human heart is like the soil;
IF it is prepared properly, THEN it can receive the Word of Elohim and produce a fruitful harvest.
In this parable, יהושע described four different kinds of hearts, three of which did not produce any fruit!
In essence, you could say that only 25% of all the hearts produce fruit!
Now, in the world’s fleshly assessment of economy, that is a failure, yet we can learn from this parable that it is not so in יהוה’s economy, for a remnant can produce a bountiful harvest of fruit, aměn!.
The proof of our set-apart walk with Him, or proof that we are saved, is seen in the fruit of our walk, which is not simply by just listening only, or by making a verbal profession of belief in Messiah, when nothing else is being done.
יהושע made it pretty clear that we will be recognised by our fruit..
Let us briefly look at the four different soils, or rather ‘different hearts’, that יהושע speaks of.
This can and does represent four different hearts, and can also even represent how the same heart can go through the varying phases that are described here.
Our quest is to always keep our hearts pure and good!
Let’s now take a look at the four soils:
1 – HARD SOIL / HARD HEART (v5, 12)
This soil represents those who receive The Word of Elohim, which highlights that they are attending to the listening of The Word in some kind of way, yet show that they are not really paying proper attention, for they immediately allow the devil to come and snatch it away!
You got to ask yourself, “but how does this happen?” or rather “how did the heart become so hard?”.
Our Master speaks of the seed falling on the path, and the path would be a hard path due to all of the people walking on it!
In other words, there is a lot of foot traffic!!!
There are so many people on this path – people with hardened hearts!
It also represents being on the outside or on the side-lines, so to speak.
In other words, those who are on this path, are never engaged in the labour of the field. They hear The Word, yet they are so quick to chirp their opinions and comments from the side, typically done when they do not like what they hear.
In fact, those with the hard hearts are the biggest commentators and criticizers, of those who are actively doing their utmost in living out a life of love for יהוה, being properly expressed in a disciplined and loving obedience to His Word..
The other danger on being on the path, is that many walk by and comment too!
And this is extremely dangerous for hardened hearts, for this can lead to confusion and cause one to easily become disillusioned by the Truth, that gets all twisted by outsiders!.
Whatever goes into the ear or eye, finally enters the heart and so, one must always be careful, in regards to who is ‘walking over’ your heart, so to speak, guarding it from becoming hard.
This soil speaks of the one who hears the Word and then they hear hundreds of differing opinions to that Word, even form those who appear to be in the field, yet are simply also walking on the side-lines, evidenced by the fruit of the lives or the lack thereof.
And this listening to various mixed teachings that toss one to and fro, causes a resistance to the plain Truth that requires simple obedience.
Sadly, as a result if this, the one with a hardened heart, finds satisfaction in becoming hardened, without realising it, as they lose sight of the need to simply obey and allow varying opinions to seemingly give them options, highlighting that instead of seeking to have their hearts tilled correctly, they will rather go with the flow of the masses, on the path: the broad path that leads to destruction!
How do you know that they are walking on the broad way?
Well, you can check for the fruit of obedience or the lack thereof!
Is it easy for them to simply obey יהוה, or do they have so many reasons and empty excuses as to why they choose not to obey everything?
This is where replacement theologies etc. are birthed.
Let us not be a people on the side-lines, but rather, we are to be a set-apart people that get involved in the life of the Body of Messiah and co labour with the family of Elohim, keeping our hearts from being hardened by every wind of teaching, that only leads to a hardening..
2 – SHALLOW SOIL / WEAK HEART (v6, 13)
This soil illustrates the emotional hearer!
One who will quickly respond emotionally, yet the interest is very quickly lost, as the emotions change their willingness to obey, and then they do not continue in what they first received.
What I like about what Luqas writes, is that there is no moisture in this soil!
For me, this clearly speaks of one who walks not by the Spirit but simply walks by the flesh and so, their walk is purely based on whether they feel like it or not!
Water is often linked to representing the Set-Apart Spirit and so, here in this parable, no moisture is a significant picture of a shallow heart or a weak heart.
They may tend to ‘put on a show’ in order to look the part, and be able to fool many too – yet they have no depth of character and certainly they bear no lasting or real fruit.
Their walk is dependent upon their mood or emotions.
When feeling up to, they will go for it, however when they are down, they will run or hide..
In many parts of the land in Yisra’ěl, you will find a layer of limestone beneath the surface, being covered with a thin layer of soil.
On this kind of terrain, the shoot can grow up, but the roots cannot go down, and the sun withers the rootless plant.
The sun here, represents the testing that comes to all professing believers, in order to prove their faith.
Sun is good for plants: if they have roots.
Persecution can deepen the roots of a true Believer and cause great growth, yet the sun or ‘heat test’ can also expose the shallowness of the false/ shallow believer..
We cannot simply make decisions based on our emotions alone, for our emotions can easily change in any given circumstance, and if we base our belief simply on our emotions, then our belief will be easily weakened when the trials, pressures and persecutions come. This soil represents one without moisture, and highlights those who are always led by the flesh and their hearts have no grip, no staying power, and no endurance in persevering under pressure and is then clearly exposed under trials!.
3 – CROWDED SOIL / COMPROMISED HEART (v7, 14)
This soil represents the heart of one who hears the Word, yet does not repent and ‘weed out’ those things that can and will hinder the harvest.
There is enough soil in the heart and the roots can go down, yet there is little room for fruit to grow, as it is crowded out by so many weeds..
This speaks of a person who actively hears the Word, yet lives a compromised life.
They will not let go of things, and may even use the following kind of sayings:
“You cannot take my ‘Friday night’ and my ‘Saturday’ away from me! I will worship how I want to! I have a relationship with Him – my heart doesn’t condemn me – don’t tell me I have to anything!!!”
You see, when change comes through the receiving of the Word, we are required to rid the soil of our hearts from compromise or weeds, and this weeding can often be too hard for some and so, they just simply, and conveniently, settle for living a double standard, by trying to mix יהוה’s standards and their own together!
This is called syncretism, which is the mixing of worship styles or standards.
יהוה has one standard, given very clearly to us through His Torah, and we cannot afford to mix it with any other, for the sake of ‘ease’ or ‘custom’ or ‘tradition’.
This can only cause great frustration..
The crowded heart will gladly read, study and even learn the Word, as long as they can still have their own way!
As soon as they may have to change, or let go of something, they then resist the change and still claim to be totally obedient!
What happens in this case, is that the ‘cares’ or ‘worries’ and the ‘riches’ and ‘pleasures’ of life, come and choke out that very Word that is planted..
I believe that this state of the heart, represents the majority of professing believers today!
They are unwilling to let go of what they think is important to them and even their man-made traditions can so easily take precedence over the Word.
In other words, they truly have not considered the cost of being a taught one of the Master!
The 12 taught ones left everything to follow יהושע Messiah.
The 70, on the other hand, ceased to follow יהושע, when the teaching became too hard for them, when יהושע told them that unless they eat His flesh and drink His Blood, they will not have any part with Him!
Often, when we get into the ‘meat’ of His Word, the crowded/compromised heart will not eat it and it will simply spit it out as being ‘too hard and may even say, ‘you are asking too much of me!’
They may even use terms like ‘legalism’, or ‘legalistic’ etc., as a reason not to obey His Word, and are not expressing love to יהוה by His love language!.
Are there things in your heart that is taking up space?
Are there ‘unnecessary things’ crowding it out with compromise, which is cluttering your heart and mind!
If there is, it is time to till the ground of your heart and get rid of the weeds by chucking them out and let the Seed be properly sown and begin to harvest great fruit of set-apartness!.
We must be a people who can get past only drinking the milk of His Word stage, so that we can begin to properly eat the meat of His Word and grow!
In the letter to the Iḇ’rim/Hebrews, the writer tells them that they ought to have been teachers by now and yet they show that they need the milk all over again and anyone who lives on milk only, still being an infant in the Word, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness..
Solid food is for the mature, who have, by constant use, trained themselves to distinguish good from evil and can distinguish correctly, the set-apart and the profane. Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 5:12-14 “For indeed, although by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first elements of the Words of Elohim. And you have become such as need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone partaking of milk is inexperienced in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. 14 But solid food is for the mature whose senses have been trained by practice to discern both good and evil.” .
Constant training means that you are in the field! You are not in and then out and then in and then out, as other stuff crowds out your commitment!!!
A crowded heard can never fully give their all, as ‘self’ still takes priority in their lives!.
4 – GOOD SOIL / OPEN HEART (8, 15)
This soil alone is fruitful: in other words, it is full of fruit.
Tehillah/Psalm 139: 23-24 “Search me, O Ěl, and know my heart; try me, and know my thoughts; 24 and see if an idolatrous way is in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Tehillah/Psalm 19:14 “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing before You, O יהוה, my rock and my redeemer.”
These were the words of a man who sought after the heart of יהוה.
Dawiḏ understood the importance of having an open heart!
Open, that is, for the Word of יהוה to fill it and therefore, he recognised the need to be emptied of self.
Our Master tells us the following, in:
Luqas/Luke 6:45 “The good man brings forth what is good out of the good treasure of his heart, and the wicked man brings forth what is wicked out of the wicked treasure of his heart. For out of the overflow of the heart his mouth speaks.”.
Good or wicked treasure?
The Greek word that is translated as ‘wicked’ comes from the root word πονηρός ponēros – Strong’s G4190 which means, ‘malignant, evil which corrupts, worthless, vicious, toilsome, bad’.
The Greek word that is translated as ‘good’ is ἀγαθός agathos – Strong’s G18 which means, ‘good, generous, kind, useful, excellent, upright, honourable, distinguished’ and a word that is derived from this, and translated in Scripture as ‘goodness’, in speaking of the fruit of the Spirit, is ἀγαθωσύνη agathōsunē – Strong’s G19 which means, ‘goodness, uprightness of heart and life’.
The Greek word that is translated as ‘treasure’ is θησαυρός thēsauros – Strong’s G2344 which means, ‘treasure, storehouse, magazine, repository’, and refers to, ‘the place in which good and precious things are collected and laid up’.
The English word ‘thesaurus’, in general use, is a reference work that lists words grouped together according to similarity of meaning (containing synonyms and sometimes antonyms).
The main purpose of such reference works is to help the user:
“to find the word, or words, by which [an] idea may be most fitly and aptly expressed”..
What ‘treasure’ is coming out of your heart?
The Good News of The Good, sown by our Master, or the darnel of evil, sown by the devil while not guarding the treasure chest of the heart?.
Mattithyahu/Matthew 6:21-23 “For where your treasure is, there your heart shall be also. 22 “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, all your body shall be enlightened. 23 “But if your eye is evil, all your body shall be darkened. If, then, the light that is within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!”.
It is out of the overflow of our heart that we speak.
I have asked this many times before and I will ask it again:
“How is your speech?”.
Your speech will give you an indication of what is in your heart!!!
Good soil, or an open heart, hears the Word and receives it, believes it and acts upon it, in belief equipped by our Master’s favour..
All Believers may not produce the same amount of fruit, but all true believers will produce fruit, as evidence of a life that is being lived in Spirit and in Truth.
Our life is lived in Spirit and in Truth!
The Truth is יהושע Messiah, the Word of Elohim made flesh: the Living embodiment of His Torah.
We live, and are led, by His Word!
The Truth is enabled by His Spirit that dwells within us, having written His Love language, that is: His Torah, on our hearts..
The good fruit that is produced from good soil, may include many things such as winning others to יהושע, giving money to the work of Elohim, greater character of a set-apart believer, good works as you grow in the knowledge of Elohim and praise to יהוה etc.
We are to revere His Name, proclaim His Name, love His Name, and worship His Name!
His Name is יהוה!.
This parable of The Sower, also shows that יהושע is not necessarily impressed by the “crowds” that followed Him, for He knew that most did not truly “hear and receive” the Word into their hearts.
This parable was used to encourage His taught ones, in their future ministry and it is used to encourage us today too.
If you just think about how much preaching and teaching and witnessing that goes on in the course of a month or a year, you can often wonder why there is such a small harvest..
The fault is clearly not with the Sower or the Good Seed.
The problem is the soil – that is: the hearts!!!
What we must also be aware of, is that just as there are good seeds – the seeds of Our Master’s Word, there are also bad seeds – the seeds of the Devil, or better put – the darnel – the darnel of lies and deception, sown to mimic the true but bring no fruit to perfection.
The darnel of lies are untrue statements are sown with intent to deceive.
And hearts that are not properly guarded, will have darnel being sown, bringing about confusion and stubbornness to submit.
The Devil is very clever is making untrue statements in order to deceive us, saying something like: “Surely the Word doesn’t really mean that…”
How often do we hear this being used, when people find themselves easily escaping obedience when it doesn’t suit them!.
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 16 speaks of the Day of Disaster and highlights how many will ask the following, in verse 10:
“Why has יהוה pronounced all this great evil against us? And what is our crookedness, and what is our sin that we have committed against יהוה our Elohim?’”
Then, in verse 11-12, יהוה told Yirmeyahu to say to them the following:
“Because your fathers have forsaken Me,’ declares יהוה, ’and have walked after other mighty ones and served them and bowed themselves to them, and have forsaken Me, and did not guard My Torah. And you have done more evil than your fathers, for look, each one walks according to the stubbornness of his own evil heart, without listening to Me.” .
He goes on to write, in verse 19, that the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say “Our fathers have inherited only falsehood, futility, and there is no value in them.”
In Ma’asei/Acts 17: 30 we are told that having overlooked these times of ignorance, Elohim now commands all men everywhere to repent.
We cannot claim ignorance, for the Good Seed has been made known and has been sown – it is the hearts that are not receiving the Good News that is the problem!.
The devil has been sowing bad seed for many centuries!
Lies that have twisted the Truth, leading many astray into a form of selfish worship, for they worship according to their selfish desires and not according to the will of יהוה, as is written in His Word.
Where do weeds come from?
They are the lies of the enemy, that even comes from within as man that has not guarded the Truth and kept his house clean.
Think about weeds for a moment: weeds represent the lawless ones!
Weeds don’t need much soil to grow and take root.
Weeds can grow quickly into an unkempt heart.
Often, even in the smallest of cracks, a weed seed can blow in and before you know it, it takes over, just like weeds that can often be seen in between bricks on a pathway.
The longer they are left, the harder it becomes to get them out by their root.
Just think about it for a moment: for centuries lies have been rooted into unguarded hearts and they have become the accepted way of mad-made worship and those weeds are extremely hard to get out!!!.
We are to be diligent in keeping our hearts open before יהוה and kept pure, through walking in Him. Walking out of His will, opens the door for compromise, where weed seeds can easily drift in, through ‘every wind of teaching’, sowing confusion and strife.
We are to always be obedient to the Word and make sure that we are guarding the good soil of our hearts, not falling asleep to the Truth, giving the enemy a way to in to sow darnel!.
There are many examples that are given to us, in Scripture, of great men of belief who, by not obeying, found themselves in trouble;.
Here are a couple of examples:
1 – Aḇram
In Berěshith/Genesis 12 & 13 you can read of the account of how Aḇram was called by יהוה, to leave his country and follow יהוה, which he did, until the test came and the going got rough, so to speak. There was a severe famine in the land (the first Scriptural record of a famine) and without asking יהוה, Aḇram went to Mitsrayim for help, where he faced a new set of problems.
As soon as you try to run from one test, you will face another!
He moved from trusting to scheming, from confidence to fear, and from others to self, until he left Mitsrayim and went back to the very place that he had fled from, as He returned to יהוה and then let יהוה choose for him..
2 – Mosheh
Mosheh, in Bemiḏbar/Numbers 20, was told by יהוה to speak to the rock in order to bring out water from the rock and Mosheh, being so tired and ticked off with the disobedience of the Yisra’ĕlites, struck the rock and, as a result, was told by יהוה that because he did not trust in יהוה enough to honour Him as being set-apart before the people, he would not bring them into the Promised Land..
3 – Ěliyahu
In Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 19, Ěliyahu ran from Izeḇel and יהוה asked Him what he was doing there and sent him back the way he came..
4 – Yonah
Yonah tried to run away from obeying יהוה and ended up in the belly of a big fish, which spat him out, onto the place that יהוה had commanded him to go..
5 – Kěpha
Kěpha was the man, whose confession of belief in יהושע Messiah, was commended by יהושע, yet acted like a little coward, when confronted by a little girl, the night that he denied Messiah..
5 great men of belief, from which we are able to learn great lessons, through their errors in belief, having let their guards down for a moment and had clearly not keep the soil of their hearts guarded against worries and fears. Yet we can also learn that they learned from the error of their ways and are wonderful examples for us of men of belief who bore much fruit!.
We need to take heed to what we hear, how we hear and why we hear:
WHAT WE HEAR
The Word is what we need to hear and be hearing continually, every day, as we meditate on His Torah, day and night, so that it can be rooted in our receptive hearts, in order to bring about the proper belief that is needed to walk out the fruitful abundant life.
Romiyim/Romans 10:17 “So then belief comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Elohim.”.
HOW WE HEAR
We receive in order to share with others.
The more that we receive, the more we have to share.
If we receive carelessly, we will have nothing to give.
If we are always hearing, with a critical heart, then we will only receive what tickles our ears and end up being a lamp without oil!
יהוה shares His secrets with us, not to be kept for ourselves or hidden, but to lived out in obedience to His Torah and to be shared with others, displaying the clear fruit of righteousness!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret matters belong to יהוה our Elohim, but what is revealed belongs to us and to our children forever, to do all the Words of this Torah.”.
In Luqas/Luke 8, we take notice that the teaching of the lamp on a stand is being given straight after the Parable of The Sower, which highlights a valuable lesson on making sure that we are not hiding the Truth, but shining as true set-apart ones who have the soil of their hearts good and the lamp of their being kept burning, as we walk according to The Spirit and not according to the flesh!
How we receive it is critical! Our hearts must be pure and motivated by love, in receiving His Truth and instructions, so that we may correctly lead others too..
WHY WE HEAR
We are not to just hear the Word only to increase our knowledge and then try and boast about what we know. No, we are to hear the Word because we want to grow in the knowledge of יהוה and obey Him.
If we truly desire intimacy with Him, we must listen to His Word, receive it with joy and obey what it says.
Obedience not only enables us to learn more truth, but it also brings us closer to יהוה..
This parable of The Sower, helps us to look intently into the mirror of The Word and examine our hearts and determine the attitude of our hearts, and how we respond to the Word.
Hearing alone is not the total answer!
We must hear, trust, believe and obey, which is to do the Word!
Let me ask you:
Are your trusting and obeying skills, as good as your listening skills, or are you just listening? Perhaps you are only listening to what you want to hear?.
Some people are skilled in presenting themselves as good listeners, yet we often find that the listening does not translate into a proper trusting in the Word and obeying what the Word says.
When that happens, they are no different to those our Master said that Yeshayahu prophesied well about – saying that they are hearing but not hearing!
He who has ears, let him hear what the Spirit says!.
We all have ears – the question is whether a proper hearing is being done, so that proper obedience and trust can be lives out, or does the soil of one’s heart often become hardened due to ears that are only being tickled with compromised standards, having turned away from the proper hearing of The Torah!.
We are to hear, guard and do the Word, as we are to be doers of The Word and not hearers only!
It is a serious thing to attentively hear and obey יהוה, because this puts on us an obligation to share with others, the Living Word that we receive.
Everyone who receives the Good Seed, which is The Word of Elohim, becomes a Sower of that seed, becoming a light bearer of the Truth.
If we simply keep it for ourselves, we will lose it!
However, if we share it we will receive more..
How good is the soil of your heart?
Is it receiving the Good Seed, bearing the peaceable fruit of righteousness, in order to give out and be able to receive more?.
As His taught ones, we must take heed what we hear and how we hear, for we will be held accountable with what He has given us, and He has given us all of His commands, having been written upon the fleshly tablets of our hearts, by the Set-Apart Spirit!
The seed of His Word has been sown into our hearts, upon our acceptance of His deliverance and immersion in His Name!
It is a question whether one keeps the soil good and open, and free from weeds, or is it becoming weak or hardened.
Listening to the wrong things, or even listening to the Truth with the wrong attitude, will only rob us of truth and the blessing thereof..
Being a part of the family of יהוה is much more important than any human relationship and it is based on obedience to His Word, for this is what identifies us as His.
It is not simply enough to just hear His Word; for we must also keep His Word.
You know, it is so easy today, for many people to think that they are very ‘spiritual’, because they listen to one preacher after another, and maybe even take a few notes, or even mark their Bibles, yet they never really test the validity of what is being taught nor really put into practice what is learnt through careful study and application.
They are only be fooling themselves..
As believers, we must stop being simply an auditor if His Word, we must become doers of His Word, aměn!
His Commands are written upon our hearts by His very Spirit! Are we living according to them, is the question that needs to be truthfully answered?.
It is very sad to see that for many people, it is too hard to keep His commands as an expression of love, for this is actually what identifies us as His family: those who hear His Word and put it into practice..
A small example, is seen in the very clear command to remember His Sabbath, by keeping it Set-Apart! For many people that is so hard for them to do, because their twisted traditions have dictated otherwise?.
What about proclaiming His Name?
This is something that false traditions and the rules of men have suppressed!
His name is mentioned more times in Scripture than any other individual Word!
That says a whole lot, for He wants us to love, worship, revere, honour, respect and declare His Mighty and Wondrous Name: יהוה.
This has all been given to us in the form of good seed!
How are our hearts receiving it is the question?
Just think for a moment, what would be the best way for the enemy to deceive us?
In our identity!
So many have an identity crisis today..
What gives you an identity or by what can one been identified by?
Firstly, it is by a name!
Now, the name of our Elohim is not just a title, as in ‘The Master’, no, His name is יהוה (YAHWEH)!
And so, when we do not know or proclaim the Name of our Creator, how do we identify ourselves as His.
Secondly, יהוה has given us the Sabbath as a sign between us and Him forever!
That is like our ‘wedding ring’ that shows that we are His and that we belong to Him.
The enemy has been very crafty and deceptive for centuries, in causing many to forsake the sign of Sabbath remembrance, by keeping it set apart!
Instead, he has counterfeited it with another sign, with a sun-day worship, which is a pagan rooted day of worship to sun-deities.
The enemy has used deception in the form of ‘empty traditions’ that have robbed many of an identity in יהוה, and our hearts need to be opened to be cleansed, purified by and filled, with the very Living Seed of יהוה.
May our hearts be open to receive the Good Seed and walk in the ‘love language’ of יהוה, which is complete obedience to His Word, for anything less than complete obedience is no true obedience at all!.
The soil of our hearts will be revealed through our word and actions.
Our hearts may not be visible to each other, but יהוה knows our hearts and they are visible to Him!
What condition does He see your heart in?
Is it hard and critical over His truth?
Is it weak and emotionally driven?
Is it crowded with compromise?
Is it good and open to receive His truth gladly?.
Allow the Sower to sow the Good Seed into your prepared heart today, so that you may bear fruit – much fruit, aměn!.
“Why are people bearing bad fruit?”
The answer is simple…
The problem of people not bearing fruit, does not lie with the Word of Elohim, for it is Good Seed.
The problem lies with the hearts that are not being properly tilled and kept free from thorns and weeds.
So, when the Word is sown among the thorny hearts, it is quickly choked out and unable to bear the fruit of righteousness!.
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 4:3 “For this is what יהוה said to the men of Yehuḏah and Yerushalayim, “Break up your tillable ground, and do not sow among thorns.”.
This message/command, here in Yirmeyahu, needs to be preached and proclaimed today!
This was a stern rebuke for backsliding with a clear call to repentance and getting properly cleaned up to receive with meekness the implanted Word!
These words, that we find in Yirmeyahu, are very similar to that which we find in:
Hoshěa/Hosea 10:12-13 “Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap according to kindness, break up your tillable ground, it is time to seek יהוה, till He comes and rains righteousness on you. 13 You have ploughed wrongness, you have reaped unrighteousness, you have eaten the fruit of lying, because you trusted in your own way, in your many mighty men.”.
Sha’ul makes it very clear to us that we reap what we sow:
Galatiyim/Galatians 6:7-9 “Do not be led astray: Elohim is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he shall also reap. 8 Because he who sows to his own flesh shall reap corruption from the flesh, but he who sows to the Spirit shall reap everlasting life from the Spirit. 9 And let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not grow weary.”
I think that there are many, who are being easily led astray into thinking that it does not really matter what they sow, yet they are so wrong!
Those who sow according to the flesh and all the desires and lusts thereof, will reap the corruption that comes with it, which is death, while those who sow according to the Spirit shall reap everlasting life.
Here, the call for endurance is very clear and very fitting indeed, for the imagery of the work of a farmer that we see being used repeatedly, in Scripture, clearly reminds us how diligent we have to be and how farming is not an easy task but takes great skill, strength and endurance!.
Break the tillable ground and do not sow among thorns!
We are to sow righteousness and reap accordingly as we break up the tillable ground of our hearts!
The Hebrew word translated as ‘sow’ is the primitive root verb זָרַע zara – Strong’s H2232 which means, ‘to sow or scatter seed’, and clearly implies a much need action of ‘doing righteousness’, which is ‘to guard all the command of Elohim’ (Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:25)..
The Hebrew word translated as ‘break up’ is the verb נִיר niyr – Strong’s H5214 which means, ‘till the soil, break up the soil, freshly plough or till’, and the Hebrew word that is translated as ‘tillable ground’ comes from the noun נִיר niyr – Strong’s H5215 which means, ‘tillable, untilled, fallow ground’.
This root word נִיר niyr – Strong’s H5215 is closely identical to נֵר ner – Strong’s H5216 which means, ‘lamp, candle, light’, giving us the idea of the gleaning of a fresh furrow.
Therefore, we are able to see how vital it is to shine the light of the Truth, through a proper tilling of the soil of our hearts, that results in the proper bearing of the fruits of righteousness!.
In Hoshěa/Hosea, we are clearly told that they had ploughed wrongness and reaped unrighteousness!
This was due to hearts that were not properly being tilled, in order to receive the Truth of the Word!
The fruit of our lives, is a clear indication of the resulting actions of obedience or disobedience, and we must do our utmost to be bearing the fruit of repentance that results in set-apartness..
Ground that is not tilled and is left uncultivated, becomes hardened and needs to be ploughed and turned and cleared of all weeds, thorns and thistles!
Many people have allowed their hearts to harden, due to deceit, compromise or sin, and even though they think that they are ploughing, they are ploughing wrongness and reaping unrighteousness!
False and corrupted teachings and empty traditions that have been so engrained or ploughed into the deepest parts of the soil of hearts, causes people to reap unrighteousness, which is lawlessness and sin, and are easily identifiable by their bad fruit of unrighteousness, as they refuse to submit to walking in the Truth and obeying the Word!.
What we recognise, is that it is very easy for hearts to become hardened, especially when one becomes lazy, in keeping the soil of one’s heart clean and pure and free from thorns! Hearts that become hardened, cannot render the necessary fruit from any of the Good Seed that may be sown, which should cause us to be urgent in keeping our hearts good..
What are some of the things that can cause a hardening of the heart?
What are some of the things that can cause one to become lazy and slack in their duty of breaking up the soil and keeping it weed and thorn free?
Well, there certainly are many things that could be mentioned, and here are just a few of the things that can cause a hardening to take place:
Disappointment; tragedy; marital problems; relational issues; selfish desires; depression; fears; conforming to worldly behaviour due to the corruption and influence of bad company that is kept; inability to prioritise the Word and becoming too busy to read, study and pray; unwilling to learn; stuck in beliefs that have been handed down in error; refusal to submit to the leadership that Elohim has appointed!.
These are just a few that could be mentioned, and what we must recognise, is that the thorns of life must be kept out of our hearts, so that we DO NOT SOW AMONG THORNS!.
To break up the tillable ground, is a clear command to break off all bad habits and clear one’s heart of deep-rooted weeds and thorns, that can so easily choke out the life of the Good Seed of the Word!.
Have you been sowing among thorns and recognise that the proper fruit that is worthy of repentance is NOT being faithfully brought forth on a regular basis?
Perhaps this is due to a lack of proper tilling and breaking up of the soil of the heart and all that should be put away and removed, has not be done so diligently in order to properly receive the implanted Word!.
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:21-22 “Therefore put away all filthiness and overflow of evil, and receive with meekness the implanted Word, which is able to save your lives. 22 And become doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.”
The Greek word that is used here for ‘implanted’ is ἔμφυτος emphutos – Strong’s G1721 which means, ‘engrafted, implanted by nature, implanted by another’s instruction’, which is constructed from two Greek words:
1) ἐν en – Strong’s G1722 which is a primary preposition denoting a fixed position (in place, time or state) meaning, ‘in or on, with, by’; and
2) φύω phuō – Strong’s G5453 which is a verb meaning, ‘to bring forth, produce, spring up, to be born’.
What we are able to clearly recognise, is that our Teacher of Righteousness has come and caused His word to be engrafted upon our hearts and by His Spirit, He has implanted the Good Deposit that must spring up and produce the fruit of righteousness!.
As we continue to seek first the reign of Elohim and His righteousness, we must make sure that we do not sow His good seed among thorns that choke out the Word, but keep our hearts pure, clean and undefiled as we put away all filthiness and overflow of evil!
This we can only do when we become doers of the Word and not hearers only!!!.
In considering the powerful parable of The Sower, let me ask…
How is your heart?
Is it hard and deceived, shallow and weak, crowded and compromised or is it good and open… to receive, with meekness, the implanted Word, in order to bear much fruit as we stay in the Master and are done with sin!.
PARABLE OF THE SOWER.
יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show favour to you; יהוה lift up His face upon you and give you shalom!.....