Note: Before I get into the Word today, I want to share with you that RIPMinistries is wrapping up another successful year in our schools in the Dominican Republic. A special thanks to our partners and supporters. If you would like to support what we are doing there, please visit http://ripministries.org/donate.
Today we continue our new series entitled, “Expecting the Word to Work!” This is part 13.
We have been looking at the Parable of the Sower. For the past few messages we have been looking at the “rocky ground” in the passage. Let’s get back to it again today. Jesus said:
“Other people are like the seed planted on rocky ground. They hear the teaching, and they quickly and gladly accept it. But they don’t allow it to go deep into their lives. They keep it only a short time. As soon as trouble or persecution comes because of the teaching they accepted, they give up.” (Mark 4: ERV)
So what does this mean to you today? A few things.
1. Jesus likened the “rocky ground” to people who not only hear the Word of God, but they “quickly and gladly accept it.” The issue is not whether or not they rejected the Word. On the surface they did the right thing. They accepted what God said and they did so with a smile on their face. However, that’s all they did. Jesus explained that they did not allow the Word of God to “go deep into their lives.” As a result, the Word (which is seed) did not produce a harvest (life-changing results). Don’t make this mistake. Don’t just receive the Word of God initially. Follow up the initial excitement with a dedication to DO what God said. Your blessing is not just in your HEARING. Your blessing is in your DOING!
2. Receiving the Word with gladness on Sunday is good, but it is just the beginning. High-fiving your neighbor, taking good notes while your Pastor is preaching, and leaving church with a smile on your face BECAUSE of the Word is all good. But what happens after you leave the church is more important. Once you have the Word in your heart, you have to decide what you are going to do with it. The potential of the Word of God will attract opposition and if you don’t allow that Word to go deep into your life, you will quickly give up when trouble and persecution come BECAUSE of the Word you received. You must be determined to WALK OUT the Word you received, despite any opposition that may come your way! Because the opposition will come. You just cannot be moved by what you see in the earth. You have to remain focused on what God said from heaven.
3. Faith is voice activated. So when you receive a Word from God, the Father expects you to OPEN YOUR MOUTH and boldly declare what God decreed. And when the Word you received from God attracts trouble and persecution, do not allow what you SEE to cause you to CHANGE what you SAID!
4. What to do so you DON’T become the rocky ground Jesus described:
a) Receive the Word with gladness. Appreciate what God is saying to you through your Pastor or while you read the Bible. Get excited about what God said. This is the first step, but remember that it cannot be the only step. Even the “rocky ground” believers do this.
b) Allow the Word to go deep into your life. Jesus highlighted this as the mistake “rocky ground” believers make. After receiving the Word, you must nurse-it and rehearse-it. If it was good to you when God said it, it will be good to you as you meditate and medicate on it over and over in your mind.
c) Don’t get moved by opposition. Jesus taught that trouble and persecution will come BECAUSE of the Word of God. The Word itself will actually attract opposition from the enemy. So don’t be surprised when opposition comes. Don’t’ get frustrated if things get more challenging before you experience breakthrough. Focus on the Word. Meditate what God said. Don’t allow yourself to be moved. Don’t allow what you see to change what you said. And no matter what, don’t give up! Jesus said the “rocky ground” believers give up when trouble and persecution comes. Don’t let that be you! You stand strong on what God said. When opposition comes, you keep standing. When it feels like you can’t go any further, lift up your eyes to God, tap into the power of the Holy Spirit, and keep standing – with supernatural strength!
Father, this is a season of expectation for me. My expectation is tied to Your Word. I meditate and medicate on Your Word day and night. I live by every Word that proceeds from Your mouth to me. I receive Word from heaven daily. As I do, I am bold enough to open my mouth to DECLARE what You have DECREED. I say what I hear, and when trouble/persecution come, BECAUSE of the Word, I do not allow what I SEE to cause me to change what I SAID! This is how I live in sync with heaven. This is how I experience heaven-on-earth every day! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
This is Today’s Word. Apply it and prosper!