This morning we continue our new series entitled “Leveling Up with the Word!” For the past few days, we have been looking at the parable of the sower. We are walking our way through it. Let’s get back to it today.
Setting the stage:
(Mark 4:13-20 ERV)
“The farmer is like someone who plants God’s teaching in people. Sometimes the teaching falls on the path. That is like some people who hear the teaching of God. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the teaching that was planted in them.
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.
Others are like the seed planted among the thorny weeds. They hear the teaching, but their lives become full of other things: the worries of this life, the love of money, and everything else they want. This keeps the teaching from growing, and it does not produce a crop in their lives.
And others are like the seed planted on the good ground. They hear the teaching and accept it. Then they grow and produce a good crop—sometimes 30 times more, sometimes 60 times more, and sometimes 100 times more.”
Today we will discuss the soil along the path. Jesus paints the picture of the Word going out to people, they hear it, but somehow satan comes immediately and takes the Word from them. Matthew’s version of the story gives us better insight into why this happens. Let’s take a look at how Matthew records what Jesus said.
Matthew’s version reads, “When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path.” (Matthew 13:19). Matthew’s version exposes the key issue with this type of soil: a lack of understanding. If you receive a Word from God and you do not understand it, then at that moment, you are like the soil along the path. That Word will not get down in your heart, and satan will come [immediately] to snatch the Word away.
So what does this mean for you today? A few things.
1. God does not deem anyone unworthy of His investment.
The parable says, “Sometimes the teaching falls on the path.” Other translations call it “the wayside.” My point here is that this does not seem like a prime piece of property. This is not a premium lot. This is just soil that is along the path. It’s not ON the path where it would seem useful. It’s not at a key site, ready for construction, or part of farm, ready to produce a harvest. This is just soil that is along the side of the road. Close enough to see it from the road, but ‘off the way’ enough for it to seem insignificant. But guess what? The sower (God) took the time to saw the same seed in this soil that he did in all the other soil. This soil may seem insignificant to the world, but it is not insignificant to God.
No human on this planet is deemed unworthy of investment by God.
You are unique. You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
No matter what the world may have said to you about your purpose, they cannot define or confine you because they did not create you. The one who created you sees you worthy of investing in.
God put the same seed in every type of soil. He put life in your body, purpose in your spirit, and faith in your heart. He invested in you. Now, what are you going to do with the life He gave you?
2. God instructs us to seek wisdom and understanding.
The path to gaining wisdom begins with seeking understanding. Solomon, the wisest man in the Bible, said it this way: “The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.” (Proverbs 4:7).
Although God graced Solomon with supernatural wisdom, the king explained that getting understanding may cost you all you have (Proverbs 4:7). Sometimes it takes focus, thoughtful/prayerful consideration, and careful study to gain understanding, but no matter what it costs you, it is well worth the investment!
If you hear a Word from God, but you don’t understand it, you are not in a position to make the most of the Word you received. You owe it to yourself to spend time with Him, with the Holy Spirit, seeking understanding.
Whenever you can see the Word, hear the Word, and understand the Word of God, you can be CHANGED into the Word you see, hear, and understand.
When you walk with God, fill your heart with His Word, and spend time with the Holy Spirit, you position yourself to walk in the wisdom and understanding of God. This is a wisdom that far exceeds your education and experience. I am a witness! I cannot tell you how many times God has given me a download from heaven (revelation), and as a result, I am able to understand, comprehend, and apply complex concepts in ways that produce the desired outcome. This comes as a result of filling your heart with God Word, meditating and medicating on it day and night, and then being sensitive to the Holy Spirit.
If you want to walk in divine wisdom, it will cost you. You must invest the time in God’s Word and with God’s Spirit. But if you do, the return on the investment will be well worth it.
Prepared blessings come to prepared people. God does not bless laziness. If you want to LEVEL UP your life, you are going to have to LEVEL UP your commitment to reading, studying, understanding, and applying God’s Word on a daily basis!
3. You will never maximize what you do not understand.
When you have a true understanding of something, you are in position to apply it, leverage it, and benefit from it. But if you do not understand a truth, that truth is not useful to you.
Don’t approach the Word of God as an obligation. Don’t read God’s Word because you are simply holding yourself to a reading plan. Don’t go to church out of tradition. Don’t sit under teaching without a heart to receive or ears to hear. When you have an opportunity to receive the Word of God, whether in written form or audibly, always position yourself to hear what God is saying to you through His Word. Pray for wisdom. Seek understanding. This is the only way you will develop a “working knowledge” of scripture that is useful/beneficial in a way that brings about significant change in and through your life.
The Bible is not a textbook to study. It is a LIFEBOOK to live! If you don’t turn the information you receive into the application for your life, you are wasting the investment God made in you when He deposited His Word down in your heart. And as the text says, satan will come immediately to snatch the Word away. But here’s the good news, satan can’t snatch a Word you understand. Once you understand it, and you have it down in your heart, that Word is yours. People can attempt to take many things from you, but they can’t take what you know. The text teaches us that satan can’t even take it once you have understanding.
Please make a decision right now that you are going to renew your commitment to studying, believing, understanding, and applying God’s Word to your life daily. You can be CHANGED by any Word you understand!
Declaration of Faith:
Father, I seek divine wisdom daily. My pursuit of wisdom begins with gaining a clear understanding of Your Word. I can do this because You placed the author of the Book inside of me. Whenever I am in a position to receive Your Word, whether in church, through someone else, or in my reading time, I always approach the moment with my heart open to receive and my ears anointed to hear. Through the Holy Spirit, I gain clear insight and spiritual understanding. You give me a working knowledge of the scriptures and I am able to apply Your truth to my daily living. The Bible is not a textbook I study, it is a LIFE-BOOK I live! I live and apply Your Word daily because I gain divine understanding. Living this way, I LEVEL UP my life in 2021! GREATER IS COMING FOR ME! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.