Parable of Unsaved Believers

Mark 4:3-8 “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it. Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have 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 seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop. But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”

sower

Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Landscape with the Parable of the Sower, 1557

Christ mentions about 4 grounds where the seed fell.

  1. Wayside – Birds came and ate it
  2. Stony ground – No roots to grow
  3. Thorny ground – Being choked by thorns
  4. Good ground – yielded crops. Some 30 fold, some 60 and some 100.

Christ then explains what the parable means.

Mark 4:14 The sower sows the word

The seed is the word spoken by Jesus or God’s word. The parable speaks about four groups of believers which we will discuss in detail.

Deaf Believers

Mark 4:15 And these are the ones by the wayside where the word is sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts.

The first group are called the deaf believers. This is because, they hear the word but the word is immediately taken away as if they had never heard the word. They come to church, listen to good sermons etc but what goes into the left ear comes out of right ear. Satan takes away the word that was sown in their hearts. Hence the wayside ground represents deaf believers.

Stumbling Believers

Mark 4:16-17 These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness; and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble.

The second group are called denying believers. This is because, they hear the word to receive it with gladness but stumble if tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake.

John 13:37-38 Peter said to Him, “Lord, why can I not follow You now? I will lay down my life for Your sake.” Jesus answered him, “Will you lay down your life for My sake? Most assuredly, I say to you, the rooster shall not crow till you have denied Me three times.

Peter was like a stumbling believer before the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He heard the word and received it with gladness but when he was tested, denied Christ thrice.

Unfruitful Believers

Mark 4:18 -19 Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the ones who hear the word, and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

The third group are called unfruitful believers. This is because, they hear the word but because of they are fully occupied with the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches and the desires of other things the word grows but become unfruitful.

John 15:2,6 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.  … If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.

Any believer in Christ that does not bear fruits, God the Father takes away so they no longer abide in Christ. If anyone does not abide in Christ, they are cast out, withered, gathered, thrown into fire and burned. Nothing must come inbetween us and obeying God or following His teachings. Not relationships, cares or riches. If anything comes inbetween, they must be cut off so that you can bear fruits.

Disciples

Mark 4:20 But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”

The fourth group are not just believers but disciples. They not only hear the word but accept it and bear fruit. They word grows to bear thirtyfold, sixty and some a hundred. When tribulation comes, the word in them are still rooted. There are no thorns to choke the word. It grows, have roots and bear much fruit to the Master.

Luke 14:33 So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.

The people who have good ground will forsake all that they have to follow Jesus Christ.

John 8:31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.

These are the people who abide in His word.

Matt 28:19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Finally, Christ doesn’t require us to make believers of all nations but disciples who are ready to take up their cross and follow Him.

Conclusion

Are you deaf to Christ’s teachings, always hearing and not growing?  Do you stumble when you are tested in faith not rooted in the word? Are you an unfruitful believer bearing no fruits? Repent now! God the Father will take you away from Christ to cast you out to be thrown into fire and burned.