4 As a large crowd was gathering, and people were flocking to Him from every town, He said in a parable: 5 “A sower went out to sow his seed. As he was sowing, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the sky ate it up. 6 Other seed fell on the rock; when it sprang up, it withered, since it lacked moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns; the thorns sprang up with it and choked it. 8 Still other seed fell on good ground; when it sprang up, it produced a crop: 100 times what was sown.” As He said this, He called out, “Anyone who has ears to hear should listen!” 11 “This is the meaning of the parable: k The seed is the word of God. 12 The seed along the path are those who have heard and then the Devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 And the seed on the rock are those who, when they hear, welcome the word with joy. Having no root, these believe for a while and depart in a time of testing. 14 As for the seed that fell among thorns, these are the ones who, when they have heard, go on their way and are choked with worries, riches, and pleasures of life, and produce no mature fruit. 15 But the seed in the good ground—these are the ones who, having heard the word with an honest and good heart, hold on to it and by enduring, bear fruit.
Not everyone who hears the Word receives and obeys.
Pharisees – Matthew 15
Then •Pharisees and scribes came from Jerusalem to Jesus and asked, 2 “Why do Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they don’t wash their hands when they eat!” g
3 He answered them, “And why do you break God’s commandment because of your tradition?
Crowd – John 6
66 From that moment many of His disciples turned back and no longer accompanied Him. 67 Therefore Jesus said to the Twelve, “You don’t want to go away too, do you?”
Rich young ruler – Matthew 19
21 “If you want to be perfect,” Jesus said to him, “go, sell your belongings and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me.”
22 When the young man heard that command, he went away grieving, because he had many possessions.
What keeps us from receiving and obeying?
Love of money
Not everyone who hears the Word receives and obeys but the one who does receive and obey will change the world.
When the day of Pentecost had arrived, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like that of a violent rushing wind came from heaven, and it filled the whole house where they were staying. 3 And tongues, like flames of fire that were divided, appeared to them and rested on each one of them. 4 Then they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different languages, as the Spirit gave them ability for speech.
5 There were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven.