1-31-15 “The Soil Influences Growth” – Pastor Shane Idleman

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The Soil Influences the Growth

The seed is the Word of God – it’s already successful:

  • We don’t see watermelons growing on concrete

  • There is nothing wrong with the seed, it’s the environment.

Matthew 13 On the same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the sea. 2 And great multitudes were gathered together to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. 3 Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: “Behold, a sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. 7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. 8 But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”

  • 4 Types of Soil – “whoever has ears” REQUIRES responsibility on our part.

  • The return is not up to us: “Consider the lilies of the field and how they grow.” Many of us refuse to grow where we are put.” Oswald Chambers –

The Purpose of Parables

10 And the disciples came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” 11 He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.12 For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.13 Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 14 And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled, which says: ‘Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, And seeing you will see and not perceive; 15 For the hearts of this people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, And their eyes they have closed, Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, So that I should heal them.’ 16 But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear; 17 for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

  • Why was it given to them to know the mysteries [spiritual things]? Because they had ears to hear.

  • He reminded them of Isaiah’s prophecy – “God’s Word doesn’t return void.” One of my responsibilities is to remind us what God’s Word says.

  • “For the hearts of this people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, and their eyes they have closed…” This is a very bad spot to live:


The fruit of good soil is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control growing in your life? Galatians 5:22-23

The fruit of a hard heart is anger, irritability, confusion, impatience, hostility, unfaithfulness, or a lack of self-control. Tons of excuses

  • But you’re out of God’s will.

The Parable of the Sower Explained

18 “Therefore hear the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. 20 But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. 22 Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. 23 But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”

  • When we follow Christ we have chosen sides…we have an enemy and he uses DOUBT, the CARES of this life, and TRIBULATION to draw us away.

  1. WAYSIDE: Instead of seeking God in their confusion, they allow doubt to drive them away. Doubt is a stronghold of the enemy.

  1. STONY PLACES: Roots go deep to anchor the tree.

Tribulation and persecution RESEMBLE the wind blowing something down that is not anchored.

  • If you’re not building your faith, your faith is declining.

  1. THE THORNS: The care of this world pull us away—being so ingrained in the culture that we are unproductive. We no longer resemble the Character of Christ who use to capture our attention.

*This happens in ministry as well.

God calls us to do something but the success of the call is determined by staying on the path

  • Be clear here: the cares of this world will draw you (and me) away from our relationship with God if we allow them to.

Are you being infected by the world? Like any infection, it can destroy the body, and, in this case, the soul. When we are infected, we infect others.

  • Parents, what influences are you allowing in to your home…into the minds of your children? Things that are pure, noble, and true … or dark, demonic, and false?

  1. The cares of this world destroy our relationship with Christ and genuine fellowship with other believers.

  2. They destroy our prayer life. A carnal Christian does not pray, really pray, and seek the heart of God. A deep prayer life exposes facades and crushes hypocrisy.

  3. They also destroy spiritual power and hinder the infilling of the Spirit. In short, everything that God calls us to be is compromised.

When Jesus said that we are “the salt and light of the earth,” He was saying that we should have a preserving and cleansing effect on the culture…we should bring a purifying aspect to all areas of life. Light dispels darkness; it does not cater to it.

  • The purpose of this sermon is NOT to upset; it’s to foster repentance and a deeper walk with God.

Grace doesn’t relieve us of responsibility; we now live under a higher standard.

Question: “What is hyper-grace?”

Answer: The term hyper-grace has been used to describe a new wave of teaching that emphasizes the grace of God to the exclusion of other vital teachings such as repentance and confession of sin. Hyper-grace teachers maintain that all sin, past, present, and future, has already been forgiven, so there is no need for a believer to ever confess it…The conclusion of hyper-grace teaching is that we are not bound by Jesus’ teaching, even as we are not under the Law; that believers are not responsible for their sin; and that anyone who disagrees is a…legalist. In short, hyper-grace teachers “pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality.” Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/hyper-grace.html#ixzz3Q85ZikIv

They want to avoid the extreme where people constantly feel guilty and condemned.

Some Honest Questions for Joseph Prince: http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/in-the-line-of-fire/47995-some-honest-questions-for-joseph-prince

  1. Are there spiritual benefits that come through obeying God’s requirements and spiritual losses that come from ignoring them? YES, THEY SAY NO

  2. The New Testament writers often exhort us to live in ways that please the Lord. Does that mean that it is possible for us to displease Him? YES, THEY SAY NO. We agree that He relates to us as His beloved children, but is He always pleased with us…And since Paul urges us not to grieve the Spirit, does that mean that we can, in fact, grieve Him? YES, THEY SAY NO.

  3. We agree that the Holy Spirit never condemns us for our sins as believers, but does He ever make us uncomfortable when we sin? To me, this is a very loving act of the Father, not wanting us to get comfortable doing things that could destroy our lives and the lives of others. Isn’t that something to be embraced? And doesn’t that drive us to the cross rather than away from it?

Look at it this way: a man with two sons

Closing: At this point you may think, “Why try? This is hopeless! I’ve drifted too far.”

Let me reassure you: God doesn’t let our relationship with Him hinge on “measuring up,” or on “following rules.”  RETURN TO ME AND I WILL RETURN TO YOU!

  • GOOD NEWS ABOUT THE GOOD SOIL: You can take a seed laying on the concrete and place it in the dirt.

I’m planting but nothing is happening:



The story of the vine and the bamboo [grows to 90’ in 5 weeks].

“Many want a skyscraper destiny built on a chicken coop foundation” (Tony Evans)

The deeper the foundation the stronger the structure.