|Luke 8:11-15 |
11 Now the parable means this: The seed is the word of God.1 [The Greek for word in this verse is logov <3056>, which in English means: 1) of speech; 1a) a word, uttered by a living voice, embodies a conception or idea; 1b) what someone has said. This does not refer to hearing the Bible read; instead it refers to hearing Jesus speak to you from within your heart. The Word of God is the name of Jesus, and there is a small measure of the Word and light in every man's heart, which is there so that we might hear it and obey it; that is the word of faith that the Apostles preached. John 1:1-4, John 1:7,9, Rev 19:13-16,Rom 10:8,17, Deu 30:10-14, Eph 4:21. The words we hear and receive with meekness are engrafted into our heart. James 1:21. The words he speaks to us are Spirit and impart the life of God to us. John 6:63.]
12 Those by the wayside are those who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.
13 Those on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; but they have no root. And although they believe for awhile, in time of testing [with affliction and persecution] they fall away. [When you hear the Lord speak to you, you have great joy! Every believer who takes up the inward cross of self-denial will eventually undergo trials of their faith with afflictions and persecutions — tribulations. As the great early Quaker, Isaac Penington wrote: "the way is long, the travel hard, the enemies and difficulties many." Some will be offended and fall away, back into the world.]
14 And that which fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go forth and are choked with the cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.2
15 But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word, keep it in an honest and good heart, and bring forth fruit with steadfast endurance. [Every believer who takes up the inward cross of self-denial will eventually undergo a trial of their faith with affliction and persecution. Some will be offended and fall away, back into the world. "By your firm and patient endurance do you [possess] attain the true Life of your souls." Luke 21:19. Those who endure and persevere to the end, when Christ comes to bruise the head of Satan under your feet, produce fruit to perfection, which honors and glorifies the Father.]
2 they have heard, go forth and are choked with the cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. People hear Jesus speak to them from within their hearts. Sometimes the devil takes what they have heard away immediately, even before they can understand and remember. Some hear, and receive it with great enthusiasm and joy; they obey for awhile, and then they fall to temptation to disobey what they understand God requires; and then they forget. Some hear but then fail to grow because they are choked with worries of the world, pursuit of riches, and indulging in pleasures; therefore they never mature as a Christian, which is to produce fruit. What fell on the good ground, (heard by a dedicated, hungry soul), brought fruit to perfection by perseverance — you must persevere to the end, when you see Christ bring your salvation and you are translated into the Kingdom of God. You must continue to make seeking and obedience the highest priority in your life, not only for salvation and union with Christ, but to avoid the fate of fire for the trees and branches that do not product fruit.
Fruit to perfection, refers to producing the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace (quietness and confident trust forever), patience (including longsuffering, steadfastness, and perseverance), kindness (including morality and integrity), goodness, faith, gentleness (including meekness and humility), and self-control (mastery of sensual appetites, passions, and desires); this involves ridding yourself of sexual immorality (including adultery and fornication), impurity, lust, idolatry (including covetousness), sorcery, hatred, arguments, jealousy, anger, ambition, divisiveness, factions, envy, drunkenness, revelry (partying), and the like. Gal 5:19-23. and When you bear (produce) much fruit, My Father is honored and glorified, and you show that you are truly my disciples [true followers]. John 15:8.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me, and I in him, he produces much fruit; for apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:4-6. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Mat 7:18-20. And Produce fruit worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, 'We have Abraham as our father.' For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. Luke 3:7-9. And If a person does not abide in Me, he is thrown out like a [broken-off] branch, which withers; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire, and they are burned. John 15:6. Do not say to Him, "I am a saved believer in Jesus; I don't have to be obedient to all of Jesus' commands in order to produce fruit." For He will likely tell you: Depart from me you workers of lawlessness, for I have never known you. Mat 7:21-23.
Fruit is produced through seeking the Lord, through silent waiting for him, listening for his voice, hearing his words and planting them in your heart to stay, and obeying them as directed from God.