As I sat here writing this letter to you my mind went back to a time growing up in the south when we had outdoor water pumps. We would crank the handle on the pump to get water out of the well. Sometimes, we had to prime the pump before the water would begin to flow. The more I think about that old pump the more I am reminded of the Word of God: I believe, like with the water pump, as you “Work the WORD, the WORD will work for you”.
I believe when the Word of God is sown in your heart by faith, it will release the supernatural of God in your life! Remember in Luke 1:38 (KJV) when Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word…” She allowed the Word to release God’s supernatural! We should be working the Word daily in every area of our lives as the final authority over everything: just as you would work a handle on a pump or jack up a car to repair a flat. The Word has to be applied in faith (that is part of the work), with belief in your heart if you are to see results.
You have to do more than just simply read the Word of God, you must put the Word into action, by believing in your heart, to see result as Abrahams did, even when it seem impossible. Romans 4:19-21 (NIV) “Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God.” Getting the Word of God established in your heart is vital – it is the key to LIFE.
Jesus said in Mark 4, when you plant seeds in the ground, it goes to work; it grows and produces, because the seed knows what to do! The Word of God planted in your heart works the same way. I am convinced that the Word will work every time you put it to work in your life. Mark 4:14 makes it clear that the seed represents the Word of God. The ground represents people’s heart.
The condition of a man’s heart will be reflected through his life. Matter of fact, the Word of God says in Matthew 12:34 (NKJV), “…For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Which is why
Proverbs 4:23 (NLT) says, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course (or decision) of your life.”
There are four different types or conditions of the heart represented in this parable recorded in Mark 4:10-20. Let’s invest some time allowing God’s Word to speak, verse by verse.
- :10 “And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.” A parable is simply a story used to illustrate a moral and spiritual lesson. It was one of the ways Jesus taught throughout the Gospels.
- :11 “And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery (hidden truth) of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:” These truths were not hidden from us, but for us. Take a moment to read Ephesians 1:9.
- :12 “That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.” For those who reject Jesus, the Lord does not want them to gain access to or comprehend the hidden truths some other way. For those who reject Christ and the truth of the Word of God they will always be blind to the meaning and understanding of the Word.
- :13 “And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? And how then will ye know all parables?” Jesus taught 12 parables in 1 day, but this was the most vital. If you cannot understand this one, you will not understand any other. Everything in the Kingdom of God works this way.
- :14 “The sower soweth the word.” Jesus was not teaching on farming, He was talking about a man casting seeds, not digging a furrow. He was using some truths about farming to illustrate how God’s Word works. It is interesting that He used a natural example like a seed. The Word of God here is like a seed sowed.
- :15 “And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.” The first type of heart is one that has no desire toward God’s Word. The Word never gets inside of the heart, but instead lays on the surface where it is easily stolen away by the devil. John 12:24 reveals, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” Therefore, understanding is the first step in getting the Word of God to germinate within you.
- :16-17 “And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended. This is the heart of a person who understood the Word and was excited about it, but that person did not take the time to get God’s Word rooted inside. Therefore, the Word did germinate, but it could not produce fruit because it did not have a good root system. (Roots develop underground, out of sight.) A seed that germinates in shallow earth will put all its energies into growth above ground, because there is nowhere else for its growth to go.
- :18-19 “And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.” The point being made by this third type of ground (heart) is that we only have so much attention. If we want fruitfulness, we need to focus on the Word and not other things that attempt to occupy our attention. The things of this world will attempt to steal energy and focus from us that could be going into the Word of God.
- :20 “And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.” What made this ground good? Did it have more than the other types of ground? No! It had less. It had fewer weeds and fewer rocks to drain the nutrients. So for our hearts to be good ground does not take more. It takes less occupation with the things of the world and more focus on the Lord.
God’s Word is an incorruptible seed (1 Peter 1:23) and It has the same potential in every situation. It is not the Word that is the variable, but rather the condition of the heart that is receiving the Word. Janice and I want to encourage you to allow God’s Word to work to the fullest in your heart and life. Guard your heart to make sure it is always a place that God’s Word can grow – good ground.
God bless you,
Richard B. Peoples, Sr.