Good Ground

Luke 8:11-15
The seeds that fell on the
good soil represent . . . people who hear God’s
word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge
harvest (v.15).

At dusk, I left the house with a fistful of wildflower
seeds. I crossed the street and tossed them into
the open field adjacent to our home. I waited all
summer for the flowers to bloom, but all that grew was a
monster thistle bush, milkweed, and some prairie grass.
Since then, I’ve learned a bit about gardening. I now
know that my silly experiment was doomed to fail
because seeds prefer soil that is moist, free of weeds,
and deep enough to accommodate their roots. They need
good ground.
In the parable of the sower, Jesus said that we
are good ground for the gospel when we hear and
understand God’s Word. While most people get the gist
of the gospel, not everyone understands it. For example,
recent studies show that many professing Christians don’t
believe Jesus is the only way to eternal life. Our world
wants us to be cool with Christ, as well as other religious
leaders, teachings, and practices. That’s not what it looks
like to understand the gospel.
Those of us who comprehend the good news and
“cling to it” are supposed to bear fruit, patiently
producing “a huge harvest” (Luke 8:15). Spiritually
speaking, our lives should be characterized by Christlike
righteousness (Philippians 1:11). Over a lifetime of
experiences, our spiritual yield of righteousness should
multiply. Jesus said, “When you produce much fruit, you
are My true disciples” (John 15:8).
We can consider ourselves good ground for the gospel if we understand that
God sent His only Son to take the punishment for our sin, and that Christ alone
is the way to eternal life (John 14:6). Then we can bear the fruit of a changed
life—one that produces “thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had
been planted” (Matthew 13:23). —Jennifer Benson Schuldt

Read Colossians 1:3-7
to learn what happens
when people receive
the good news. Read
Matthew 13:19-23 to
find out how people
can become sidetracked
from living fruitful
Christian lives.

How have you changed
since receiving Jesus as
your Savior? Why are
we sometimes satisfied
with bearing just a little
fruit? What should be
our goal?