Mystery of the Kingdom
For days, the multitude followed Him all over the countryside, listening with amazement and awe to His authoritative oratory concerning something He called “The Kingdom of God,” and watching with astonishment as He wrought all sorts of incredible displays of supernatural power.
Then suddenly without warning He abruptly but unceremoniously withdraws from the fervor and retreats into solitude to fervently seek the face of His Father. Then just as suddenly and subtly, He reemerges onto the sandy shore of the Sea of Galilee. Immediately, the throng spot Him and scurry to reassemble before Him, pushing and shoving to get as close as possible, in eager anticipation of hearing more of the inspiring and wondrous yet authoritative words that had been flowing from His gracious lips, and of seeing with their own eyes more of the mighty miracles of healing and deliverance He had been performing.
For most, the latter was the overriding reason they had followed Him around for days of itinerating through the towns and villages of the “chosen nation,” rather than the revelatory and revolutionary teaching He had been dispensing at every juncture. To Him, however, the weightier matter was the message He was delivering rather than the miracles He was demonstrating. The latter merely punctuated and validated the former.
From the humble platform of a small fishing boat, without fanfare, He began to unpretentiously deliver one of the single most important addresses ever delivered in the annals of human history.
The time? More than two thousand years ago.
The speaker? Jesus Christ of Nazareth.
The address? The Parable of the Sower.
Why so important? Because Jesus Himself indicated that it revealed the essence of “the mystery of the Kingdom” of God. Within this one parable, in capsulized form, is an allegorical revelation of how the Kingdom of God is reproduced in people. Moreover, Jesus Himself indicated this parable was the most important of all His parables, and that understanding it was necessary in order to understand all His other parables.
This book is an in-depth study of the Parable of the Sower, which paradoxically is simple yet profound. The Parable of the Sower is truly unique, in that no other single passage of Scripture captures within itself the very essence of “the mystery of the Kingdom” of God. Moreover, it is a remarkably ingenious medium of instruction and revelation, in that, within its relatively small span it touches upon all of the most vital elements of the Gospel of Christ.
In the parable, Jesus delineates four different categories of hearers of the Word of God, which are stereotypical of everyone who has ever heard the Word of God. Though each category of hearers heard the Word, it was productive in the lives of only one of the four categories. That is to say that only one category brought forth the fruit that the Word of God is intended to produce in the lives of earnest and effectual believers. The parable reveals with specific detail what it was that prevented the other three categories of hearers from bearing Godly fruit of the Kingdom of God in their lives, and what all believers must do to avoid the patterns that result in barrenness.
As is the case with the rest of the Word of God, the Parable of the Sower is like an onion — consisting of layer after layer of revelation knowledge. Just when you think you know all there is to know concerning it, you find another layer of revelation. I have taught on this parable many times, and each time I have learned something more. I even learned more while writing this book; hence, the final product contains more revelation than what I understood at the inception.
By no means do I purport to know all there is to know concerning this profound and paramount parable of Jesus, nor that this volume is the ultimate exposition of the parable. Indeed, as with all of Scripture, until perfect knowledge is come, no one will fully exhaust its meaning. Nevertheless, I am fully persuaded that the vast majority of believers do not grasp many of the truths that are revealed in this book, and that they would be substantially and inexorably revolutionized spiritually if they did.
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