“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path…some fell on rock…other seed fell among thorns…still other seed fell on good soil.” Luke 8:5-8.
The story of the seed and the soil tells us as much about the storyteller as it does about the story. To relate something like this meant that Jesus understood people and He knew how to understand them.
Not everyone’s response to the Word of God is the same. People’s ways of thinking are molded by many different experiences – who our parents were, how we were brought up, the influence of our family and friends, where we live, our cultural and religious backgrounds, what we experienced as children and how we interpreted our experiences as we grew up.
God’s Word is a seed, and it has the power within itself to germinate and grow, but the soil it falls into will determine whether it grows to maturity or withers and dies without producing fruit.
This story also reveals how Jesus accepted what happened to the seed when it was planted. He placed no unfair expectations on any person’s response to His message. How they accepted and responded to His teaching was how it was. He did not bully people or try to persuade them to believe Him against their will. He allowed the truth of what He did and said to speak for itself.
He worked with those who believed Him, but He also respected the choices of those who were not persuaded. Jesus was never afraid to expose wrong thinking, false beliefs, and hypocritical behaviour but He always left people to make their own choices. He confronted people with the truth, and He confirmed the truth by what He was and did and allowed people to decide for themselves whether He was who He said He was.
The choice belongs to each person who hears Him. God’s final judgment will rest on the choices we made in this life. Jesus never forced anyone to believe in Him, but He also made it clear that our choices always take us somewhere. It is the fool who thinks that he can make the same choices that got him into trouble and have a different outcome.
Jesus IS the truth and He SPOKE the truth and He told us what the outcome would be if we choose not to believe Him. “As for the person who hears my word but does not keep them, I do not judge him…There is a judge for the one who rejects me…that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.” John 12:47,48.
Wherever we go and whatever we do after we die will depend on the choices we make now. That is how fair God’s judgment is. If we follow Jesus now, we will be with Him forever. If we choose a life of sin now, we will be forced to live in sin forever with all its terrible consequences.