Mark 4:3-9 “Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred. And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.”
Text John 15:2 & 8, “Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
A massive group of people have followed Jesus to the sea side; making it necessary for Him to acquire a boat so that He may adequately teach them. He taught them many things by the means of a parable; a method that gave clarity to the simple mind of man. Within our text there are a multitude of lessons to be learned, but I want to give consideration to one; the harvest. I want to point out several things; four of which are the same!
The first thing I see is the same agent, “there went out a sower.” There is the same individual (sower) and the same ingredient (seed). Within the text there is but one sower and there is but one seed, whatever happens can’t be attributed to the various attributes of man and their several abilities or a diversity of seed. I notice there is the same activity; “to sow.” The idea is to scatter through the idea of extending. With the extending of the arm, the individual scattered upon the field. We are made aware that it is the same account; there is not a diversity of sowers, seeds, or seasons. There is the same achievement; it all “fell.” The idea is to fall down so as to alight. All the seed came into contact with some type of soil.
In spite of all the similarities; same agent, same activity, same account, and same achievement; there was not the same accomplishment. The seed was “devoured”, “scorched”, “choked”, and “increased.” In three types of soil the seed was harmed, and in one, it was harvested. In the good soil we see that the seed “sprang up and increased” (vs.8); Matthew 13:8 said that it “brought forth fruit.” The word “fruit” means fruit as plucked, thus giving the evidence of harvest. If we were to stop there most individuals would have a right to be happy with a harvest, but Our Lord did not stop there.
In addition to not being the same accomplishment, there was not the same amount; “some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.” While we can all rejoice in the reception of the soil “sprang up”, can we rejoice in the response of the soil, “increased.” When speaking unto His disciples in John 2; Jesus pointed out that while the Father plucks branches that produce no fruit; He purges branches to produce much fruit; “Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit.” If you were to view the field from the Father’s perspective; would you be happy with the harvest?