Luke 8&9

Sowing Seed and Overcoming

 In Luke 8:4-18 Jesus tells and explains the Parable of the Sower. The seed is the Word of God and the four types of soil represent how the Word is received. In verse 18 Jesus tells His disciples to be careful how they listen.

Following this are examples of the different types of responses to the Word about Jesus.

In 8:19-21 we read that He was told his mother and brothers were outside trying to see Him. This represents the hard soil that does not recognize who He is. We will read in John 7 that six months before He was crucified even His brothers didn’t believe in Him in spite of all He had done and taught.

In verses 22-25 we read that even though Jesus was with the disciples in the boat crossing over to the other side of the lake, when a storm came up they became afraid for their lives. After Jesus rebuked the storm He asked the disciples where their faith was.  Their roots of faith were shallow and when trouble came up fear overcame faith.

After they landed on the other side of the lake Jesus was met by a man who was possessed by a Legion of demons. Jesus allowed the demons he cast out of the man to go into a herd of pigs. The demons drove the pigs to their death in the lake. The herdsmen reported it to the people in the city who came out and found the demon possessed man had been set free and he was clothed and in his right mind. No longer was he a threat to the community but the pigs were more important. Those from the city asked Jesus to leave. They were the weedy soil deceived by wealth and income.

The man, however, wanted to go with Jesus but Jesus sent him back to where he came from to proclaim to the community all that Jesus had done for Him, which is what he did. In this man the Word of God found good soil.

In verse 40 we read that Jesus returned and was met by a Synagogue ruler whose twelve year old daughter was dying. There was a high price to pay for a leader in the Synagogue to seek out Jesus and put their trust in Him. The religious rulers had determined that anyone who followed Jesus would be put out of the Synagogue. This would mean a loss of income and being shunned by the community as well as possibly persecution. Jairus the ruler certainly had much to fear. As they were going to the home of Jarius a woman who has been suffering for twelve years is determined to touch Jesus hoping to be healed. She too must overcome her fear. As Jesus passed by she reached out and touched his cloak and was healed. Jesus wanted to know who had touched Him and so for a second time she had to overcome her fear and face Him. He called her daughter and told her that it was her faith that had made her well. There is a fine line between her toughing His cloak and being healed and her reaching out and touching His cloak by faith and being healed. Jesus made sure she understood the difference. She was healed not by works but by faith.

Jarius will face more fear as well. While Jesus is dealing with the woman word comes that the daughter of Jairus has died. It is unknown what He was thinking after he received the news but I would not be surprised to find he had some anger toward the woman because she delayed their arrival and his daughter died. Jesus encouraged him telling him to not be afraid but believe. He did and Jesus healed the girl.

We have looked at examples of different types of situations we will all face from time to time. Times of fear and doubt will come and test our trust in God’s Word. There will also be times when temptations will come that promise security, prosperity, and a good life if we will do things as the world does. Mix in a little worry about the future and one can find the light of God crowded out by the weeds. Pride can make the heart hard. I suspect Jarius may have had to deal with the temptation to harden his heart toward God when he heard his daughter had died.

Paul said that believers walk by faith. John said it is faith that overcomes the world. It is not that we won’t face these issues if we have faith. It is that these issues are overcome by faith when they come. That is what we need to learn. The Word of God becomes fruitful when it is planted in the soil of faith.

Are you an overcomer?

Pastor Dave