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Growing Seed (Mark 4:26-29)

Updated: Feb 27, 2020

Sermon on Sunday 9 February 2020 by Pastor Justin

The purpose of harvest is to harvest people into repentance, turn away from dark forces and come into the marvelous light. We are all called to sow the seed. The seed refers to the word of God, the gospel of Christ. We have a responsibility to go out into the world and bring the message of Christ. We must continue to sow. 

Mark 4:26-29 - And He said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come."

Your job is to sow.

At the beginning of Mark, Jesus gave the parable of the sower. Some seeds will fall into the hard ground, some into the stony ground, some infested with weeds and some into good fertile soil. Some people are not ready. Some want to receive the blessing. These are the people you should work with. The ground is important, but it is not up to you to choose the ground. You are appointed, in Jesus' authority, to preach the gospel. When you share the gospel, have faith that the Holy Spirit convict them to the truth. Let us be strong. Let us be courageous. 

Matthew 21:21 - Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and it will be done."

Mark 11:24 - Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 

No one will immediately respond positively by wanting to receive Christ, but God has a way. Anything that has life needs time to grow. You need to be patient. You need to work with the Holy Spirit.

Harvesting is a natural thing. You do not need a special outreach event to sow seeds. It should be an ordinary thing that we do at any time. Don't wait. 

John 9:4 - As long as it is day, we must do the work of Him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.

Deuteronomy 29:29 - The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

John 17:4 - I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do.

There is power in the words you say, and that power will fall onto that person you reach out to, and the Holy Spirit will work in that person. Life and death is in the power of the tongue.

Jesus Christ liked to speak in parables, because they are easy to understand. When you preach the gospel, talk to people in simple words. Help them understand. Do not use jargon. Jesus also wanted to hide the truth from people whose hearts were hardened. Only those who believed and were converted to be like little children, would understand. 

Matthew 11:25 - At that time Jesus said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children."

Mark 4:11 - And He said to them "To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to those who are outside, all things come in parables."

Your heart, the soil that you are in, is very important. If you seek knowledge only for the purpose of winning arguments, you will never come to the truth. 

2 Timothy 3:7 - always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

God so loved the world, but not all become children of God. We need to believe. It is a relationship with the Father that we should seek. 

John 1:12 - But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name:

John 16:13 - However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears he will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

The Holy Spirit will guide you. The Holy Spirit is a person, it is not an energy or force. The Holy Spirit will nudge you. 

1. Grow seeds on good ground

There are 4 types of ground - wayside ground where people's hearts are hardened (Mark 4:4); stony ground where people are glad to hear the gospel but they have no foundation so they will not grow as the seed is on a thin soil (Mark 4:5); thorny ground with weeds where people grow but are not fruitful because they are choked by the worries of the world (Mark 4:7); good ground with fertile soil where people are ready to be discipled (Mark 4:11).

Good soil can grow thirty fold, sixty fold and even hundred fold. The thirty fold people want to do the minimum and serve the Lord according to their own terms. They are productive but they are not mature. The hundred fold people surrender everything to God. When you live for Christ, the gospel is within you.

2. Sowing is not selective

Mark 4:23-25 - If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear. "Consider carefully what you hear," he continued. "With the measure you use, it will be measured to you - and even more. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him."

When you talk to someone, it is God who gives him the understanding. The earth yields crops by itself.

3. Sowing is the responsibility of all Christians

When you are a Christian, you are also a learner and do-er. Be obedient to sow the seed. Follow up closely with the people who are willing to receive the message. Stay close to them and teach them (Mark 4:27-28). 

4. Sow seeds with every opportunity that arises

Every opportunity is an opportunity to advance the kingdom of God. Be bold. Be courageous.

Philippians 1:12-14 - Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.

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