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VisionOfYou
Jan 18th 2008, 06:44 PM
Could anyone expound on this parable? I was just reading it today and, while I have some ideas on what it means, it occurred to me that I don't think I've ever heard/read anything on this particular passage.

Mark 4:26-29:
And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”

coldfire136
Jan 18th 2008, 06:53 PM
I would encourage you to read the whole book of Mark, and see how it fits into the Marcan theology. My other suggestion is to stop looking for what a parable "means." Parables are meant to be pictures. Spend some time considering the imagery in the story. Try sitting down and reading the whole book of Mark in one sitting. It will really help you to understand the individual stories better.

VisionOfYou
Jan 18th 2008, 07:18 PM
I would encourage you to read the whole book of Mark, and see how it fits into the Marcan theology. My other suggestion is to stop looking for what a parable "means." Parables are meant to be pictures. Spend some time considering the imagery in the story. Try sitting down and reading the whole book of Mark in one sitting. It will really help you to understand the individual stories better.

I have read the entire book of Mark. :) By "meaning" I was referring to imagery, and like I said, I have an understanding of what I think the parable is saying. But that is only my opinion, and I'm interested in hearing what others have gotten from the passage. Perhaps I'm reading your post incorrectly, but it seems that you're scolding me for looking for some discussion of the scripture; I thought that was what Bible Chat is for. ;)

RJ Mac
Jan 19th 2008, 05:03 PM
I agree with Mickey O's comments; Not that you need to examine all Mark but certainly the whole chapter is making one point and that is get your priorities straight. It begins with the Parable of the sower, you can change your soil - if you make the word of God number one in your life.

After all you don't hide the lamp under a bushel, therefore let the word shine from your life for all to see. Take care , if God's word is not number one in your life, if you don't treat it with respect it shall be taken away from you. Vs.25

As Mickey O said, the soil is a man's heart, our job is to scatter seed, we can't make it grow in a persons heart 1Cor.3:6; but when it does we will be able to see the changes in their life, as John says, show deeds worthy of repentance,Mt.3:8; and when that happens then he's ready, is the harvest baptism or death or are they not the same?

Kingdom of God is like a mustard seed, this is not referring to the world wide church, Mark is still referring to God's word in your heart. Those other seeds, plants are worldly studies, be they a lawyer, scientist, doctor, the greatest seed is the littlest seed when you plant it in your heart but it shall be the biggest plant in your life, even the birds, friends and love ones, will come and take advantage of the fruit in your tree, Gal.5:22,23 peace, joy, patience, love .. the fruits of the Holy Spirit. A doctor can extend life but we can show people eternal life.

Then see how the chapter ends with Jesus stilling the seas. Mark closes with a beautiful illustration of what he's trying to teach us. Jesus told them lets travel to the other side, nothing can stop God's word, Jesus is so assured of that, He sleeps through the storm, but they left the focus on the word, the commandment of God and focused on the storm of life, oh you of little faith. Don't let the worries of this life get you down, focus on what is true, right and honorable, make God's Word and obeying it number one in your life and it will grow to be the biggest thing in your life, and friends will see that in you and you shall reap eternal life.

Love Mark - incredible book, enjoy the study. Hint - every chapter teaches one key thought, then take all the key thoughts and apply them to your life.

RJ

Lars777
Jan 19th 2008, 05:28 PM
Could anyone expound on this parable? I was just reading it today and, while I have some ideas on what it means, it occurred to me that I don't think I've ever heard/read anything on this particular passage.

Mark 4:26-29:
And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”




And he said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed upon the ground, and should sleep and rise night and day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he knows not how. The earth produces of itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come." (Mark 4:26-29)



This is a secret of the kingdom of God, and to me it is one of the most encouraging of all the parables Jesus ever uttered. He is speaking of how this rule of God increases, how it grows in a life.

He explains it as a coming to harvest by a patient expectation that God will work. The key of this whole passage is, "...the seed grows, he knows not how.

The earth bears fruit of itself..." That is, there are forces at work which will be faithful to perform their work -- whether a man stews and frets about it or not.

He does what he can do, what is expected of him. But then God must work. And God will work. And in the confidence of that, this man rests secure.

As Jesus draws the picture, this farmer goes out to sow. It is hard work as he sows the field, but this is what he can do. But then he goes home and goes to bed.

He does not sit up all night biting his fingernails, wondering if the seed fell in the right places, or whether it will take root. Nor does he rise the next morning and go out and dig it up to see whether or not it has sprouted yet.

He rests secure in the fact that God is at work, that he has a part in this process, and he must do it; no one can do it for him. But he will faithfully perform it.

So the farmer rests secure, knowing that as the seed grows there are stages which are observable: "...first the blade, then the ear then the full grain in the ear."

It is only as the grain is ripe that he is called into action again. When the harvest is ready, then he is to act once more.

This is exactly what Paul describes for us in that passage in First Corinthians 3: "For we are laborers together with God:" (1 Corinthians 3:6a KJV). This is the way we ought to expect him to work.

It involves a witness first, perhaps a word of teaching or exhortation to someone -- or to ourselves. And then an inevitable process begins, one which takes time and patience, and allows God to work.

One of the most destructive forces at work in the church today is our insistent demand for instant results. We want to have immediate conversions, immediate responses, immediate dedications every time we speak.

We tend not to allow time for the Word to take root and grow and come to harvest. But our Lord is teaching us the great truth that we ought to.

Frances
Jan 19th 2008, 06:06 PM
Could anyone expound on this parable?. . .
Mark 4:26-29:
And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”

Not an exposition by any means, I usually 'personalise' what I read so -
How does this apply to me?
If I submit my life to God through Jesus Christ I am part of God's Kingdom, I have become the soil in which He will grow a suitable crop.
His good seed will sprout and grow in my life, but also 'weeds' which must be irradicated.
The 'seed' of Christ's Life in me must be given time to grow before my Lord will gain a crop. All I can do to help this crop to reach maturity and harvest is to be diligent in pulling up 'weeds' (unGodly thoughts and actions). It is God who decides when to reap the harvest (not me). The Lord, like many farmers, may well have undersown that crop with another different one, which will already be taking some of my time and effort. . . or my life may need ploughing and harrowing (to go through difficulties) to prepare for the next crop; or leaving fallow (having a rest from active service).
It is the owner who decides how to use the ground - not the soil.

coldfire136
Jan 19th 2008, 09:28 PM
Hi. I want to clear up some things that I have read here that I think either I am misunderstanding or would be misunderstood by other people.



Originally Posted by Mikeo
The seed represents the gospel and the ground represents the heart of the person. The seed of the gospel is planted in our hearts and takes root if we are saved.

Luk 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

Luk 8:15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep [it], and bring forth fruit with patience.

First, Mike makes the mistake of attempting to interpret Mark in terms of Luke. That would be like me using J.R.R. Tolkien's books to interpret the Chronicles of Narnia. Although both of these men lived at the same time, had similar religious views, and were friends, we cannot interpret one in light of the other. It is true that they may have both used similar stories, but they should be compared rather than used to help interpret one another.

For instance, it is interesting that while Luke uses the term "word of God" Mark only uses the term "the word" (Mark 4:14). What is the significance of this change?

Second, I want to make clear that when people like MikeyO used the word "saved" to describe a Christian, there is no such "saved" language in the text. It is beyond the realm of interpretation, and it appears that MikeyO's theology is interpreting the text for him.



Originally Posted by RJ Mac
It begins with the Parable of the sower, you can change your soil - if you make the word of God number one in your life.

Again, it is interesting that Mac uses the Lucan gospel to interpret Mark's gospel. The technical term used in Mark is "the word" and not "word of God." Such a grave mistake can lead to very erroneous interpretations of the text.

Second, Mac goes beyond the text to speak of "changing" soil. This seems to be him interpreting his American context (upward mobility/modern American gospel) to interpret the passage. If you read the text, the seeds fall where they will when they will from the hands of the farmer. The seeds have no chance to change their soil. They are born where they are born.

Third, Mac says that we must "make the word of God number one in our lives." I am giving Mac the benefit of the doubt that he is not referring to the Bible, but if he is he is again wrong as the Bible was not canonized until 300 years after the book was written. If this text was authoritative in the early church, it was only authoritative insofar as it stood on its own. The word must refer to the gospel as it is the proclamation of the kingdom of God earlier in Mark.



Originally posted by RJ Mac
the soil is a man's heart

Read the Luke passage again, and you will also see that you are wrong with this interpretation.

ServantofTruth
Jan 19th 2008, 09:57 PM
Could anyone expound on this parable? I was just reading it today and, while I have some ideas on what it means, it occurred to me that I don't think I've ever heard/read anything on this particular passage.

Mark 4:26-29:
And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”


It is good to share our personal reading and study. This came into my daily reading this week and these verses i felt the need of my Matthew Henry commentary. So i have already looked up the meaning for myself. This was because i thought i understood, but i was only partly right.
To start with the seed is sown. Basically it is lost beneath the earth. Nothing happens immediatly. Then it sprouts and produces. The same is true of the good news/ gospel. It is told to the world and the individual and often nothing happens. How sad we feel. But always God's Spirit is at work and produces fruit - often we don't know how, like how the seed sprouts.
It is interesting to me that we have discussed on other topics who converts non believers and the answer is not us, or that great guy in the pulpit or on telly, it is God in their hearts. His word, his love, his victory.
The commentary talks of the mustard seed, and the beginings of the worldwide church. Act 1:15 One hundred and twenty people only.
While i agree with another poster that we must be careful in our study comparing different gospels and similar seed stories, it is never a bad thing to bare these stories in our minds. Jesus standing in the open, with great crowds in awe of him, looking over there heads perhaps to see men working in the fields, and shepherds, and all manner of every day activities and using them to explain complex mysteries of the kingdom.
Sometimes study can be too deep, and seek to divide or exclude those not inclined or able to understand. Thank God/ Jesus that much was hidden from clever people and given to me on a plate in simple language!

RJ Mac
Jan 19th 2008, 10:01 PM
Cold fire - I do not use Luke to interpret Luke but you did at the end of your post.

The seed is the Word of God, which you believe is different in Marks time than from today. You believe if the Bible says the 'word' it is referring to one thing and the 'word of God' it is referring to another thing. Love to hear the explanation of that.

The seeds fall where they will, we do not have to decide where we throw our seed, we just have to throw the seed. The parable is not to teach that people are set in stone and cannot change, I believe the parable shows different conditions of the heart. Oh yes we all want to believe we are the good soil, but what if you see yourself as the bad soil. The seed can change the soil, the Word of God can change your heart if you will let it.

Did the apostles have good soil, no. They also struggled but they stuck it out because they knew Jesus had the words of Life. They made mistakes, they struggled, like many of us in our early years walking with God, but we stuck it out because we knew if we didn't change, we wouldn't make it. So with God's help, our families help, the church's help, we pulled through or are still pulling through. But thankful nobody said - oh well bad soil, don't try, you can't change.

Working hard with a brother who came in from the streets, hooked on crack, married with child, its been a long 1 year of being sober but he made it, never quitting because he knows if he gives it his best God will do the same. Not willing to settle for loser, he strives to be a Christian and God rewards those who strive, Heb.11:6

Illustration - we are in a row boat going up river away from the waterfalls. You have one oar, God has the other oar. God can only pull as hard as you because if He pulls harder, we will go in circles. But God will match our efforts, He will never desert us, so pull hard, fight the good fight.

Eph.3:2o To Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us ...
Think big brethren, because God is your partner.

RJ

coldfire136
Jan 20th 2008, 12:11 AM
Posted by RJ Mac
The seed is the Word of God, which you believe is different in Marks time than from today. You believe if the Bible says the 'word' it is referring to one thing and the 'word of God' it is referring to another thing. Love to hear the explanation of that.

All right we need to settle on our terms:
1) What do you mean by the "word of God?"
2) I don't think the connotation of "word of God" in Mark has changed from Mark's time until today, I think the connotation still means, "The gospel spoken that the kingdom of God is near." This is the "word" that Mark refers to, the coming of Jesus Christ.
3) When you refer to "the bible" you are really referring to 66 books, each of which has an interpretation of how we are to view the world and how we are to view God. I am saying that it is interesting that Mark uses "the word" while Luke uses "the word of God." We would have to study the theology of the two books to attempt to understand what the difference is. This is beyond the scope of this thread.


The seeds fall where they will, we do not have to decide where we throw our seed, we just have to throw the seed.

Who is the farmer in the parables?


Did the apostles have good soil, no.

I'm not sure where you pulled this from.

Buck shot
Jan 20th 2008, 01:20 AM
And he said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed upon the ground, and should sleep and rise night and day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he knows not how. The earth produces of itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come." (Mark 4:26-29)



This is a secret of the kingdom of God, and to me it is one of the most encouraging of all the parables Jesus ever uttered. He is speaking of how this rule of God increases, how it grows in a life.

He explains it as a coming to harvest by a patient expectation that God will work. The key of this whole passage is, "...the seed grows, he knows not how.

The earth bears fruit of itself..." That is, there are forces at work which will be faithful to perform their work -- whether a man stews and frets about it or not.

He does what he can do, what is expected of him. But then God must work. And God will work. And in the confidence of that, this man rests secure.

As Jesus draws the picture, this farmer goes out to sow. It is hard work as he sows the field, but this is what he can do. But then he goes home and goes to bed.

He does not sit up all night biting his fingernails, wondering if the seed fell in the right places, or whether it will take root. Nor does he rise the next morning and go out and dig it up to see whether or not it has sprouted yet.

He rests secure in the fact that God is at work, that he has a part in this process, and he must do it; no one can do it for him. But he will faithfully perform it.

So the farmer rests secure, knowing that as the seed grows there are stages which are observable: "...first the blade, then the ear then the full grain in the ear."

It is only as the grain is ripe that he is called into action again. When the harvest is ready, then he is to act once more.

This is exactly what Paul describes for us in that passage in First Corinthians 3: "For we are laborers together with God:" (1 Corinthians 3:6a KJV). This is the way we ought to expect him to work.

It involves a witness first, perhaps a word of teaching or exhortation to someone -- or to ourselves. And then an inevitable process begins, one which takes time and patience, and allows God to work.

One of the most destructive forces at work in the church today is our insistent demand for instant results. We want to have immediate conversions, immediate responses, immediate dedications every time we speak.

We tend not to allow time for the Word to take root and grow and come to harvest. But our Lord is teaching us the great truth that we ought to.

Good Job! I love the way our Savior uses every day examples to teach us amazing truths. We really can't see how things grow but we do know our Father takes care of it. Sometimes we want to rush things or help things along when we should be just waiting, watching, and praying.

RJ Mac
Jan 21st 2008, 02:49 PM
The farmer in all the parables varies according to the parable. I t could be a real man - ie rich farmer, it could refer to Christ sowing seed or it can refer to Christians sowing seed.

When one looks at the lack of faith the apostles had, one can see the growth for some of them over the 3 yr period. Some made it, some didn't, I guess they were examples of all the different soil conditions.

RJ

Friend of I AM
Jan 21st 2008, 07:18 PM
The seed represents the gospel and the ground represents the heart of the person. The seed of the gospel is planted in our hearts and takes root if we are saved.

Luk 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

Luk 8:15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep [it], and bring forth fruit with patience.

Yup. And the seeds put forth by the enemy within the heart are lust, confusion, doubt, self-condemnation, wrath, and any other thing that goes against sound doctrine, Love, and God's Word.

ServantofTruth
Jan 21st 2008, 07:21 PM
If any posters here get the time could they read Matthew 5: 22. & 5: 43-48. Lastly Matthew 5:13-16. If we are not helping eachother, we are hindering eachother. I tried to bring peace before and it has been ignored. If we want to grow like the seed then the 'blades' must be helped by those who consider themselves 'heads.' Or perhaps a 'full head of corn' may enter the debate and actually show us all how foolish we are!

VisionOfYou
Jan 21st 2008, 07:35 PM
Thank you to everyone who shared their insights - you've brought up some good points that I hadn't thought of yet. :)

There seems to be some difference of opinion on the scope of the message in this and other parables, for example, is it speaking of a single person or the church in general. I think there can be more than one level of interpretation, and that this is intentional. I also think it's interesting that some parables begin with "the kingdom of God is like" and some just begin with the story. Do you think there's any significance to that? And if a parable begins with "the kingdom of God is like", would it then go on to describe one aspect of the kingdom or would it give an overall picture?

Friend of I AM
Jan 21st 2008, 08:03 PM
Thank you to everyone who shared their insights - you've brought up some good points that I hadn't thought of yet. :)

There seems to be some difference of opinion on the scope of the message in this and other parables, for example, is it speaking of a single person or the church in general. I think there can be more than one level of interpretation, and that this is intentional. I also think it's interesting that some parables begin with "the kingdom of God is like" and some just begin with the story. Do you think there's any significance to that? And if a parable begins with "the kingdom of God is like", would it then go on to describe one aspect of the kingdom or would it give an overall picture?

It goes on to explain the overall picture sometimes, as well as one aspect. Some of the parables are metaphorical representing true events that happen in day to day life, some of them are literal and are representative of future/past events that have transpired.

You're definitely correct about more than one level of interpretation. If you actually read some earlier scriptures within the Word, you'll see that a lot of the bible can be looked at in more than just one level - even the stuff that can be taken for literal.

Teke
Jan 21st 2008, 08:33 PM
Could anyone expound on this parable? I was just reading it today and, while I have some ideas on what it means, it occurred to me that I don't think I've ever heard/read anything on this particular passage.

Mark 4:26-29:
And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”

"The kingdom of God is" like the "seed" which by the power of God produces harvest. This is an image of the mysterious working of the Kingdom-beyond human measure and expectations.

This parable is only in Mark.:)

VisionOfYou
Jan 21st 2008, 08:36 PM
You're definitely correct about more than one level of interpretation. If you actually read some earlier scriptures within the Word, you'll see that a lot of the bible can be looked at in more than just one level - even the stuff that can be taken for literal.

Oh definitely - this is what I find so fascinating about the OT.:)

Tanya~
Jan 21st 2008, 08:52 PM
Mark 4:26-29

And He said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, 27 and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. 28 For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. 29 But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come."
NKJV

Parables are understood in different ways, but Jesus spoke in parables in order to conceal the secrets of the kingdom from those who rejected Him. He explained everything to His disciples, and in some cases we are privileged to have a record of it. But not in this case. That's why there are so many different interpretations.

The picture of the ripening grain and the immediate harvest speaks of something that happens all at once, as soon as the time is right. I think this parable refers to the kingdom as it leads up to the second coming. Jesus said that He Himself did not know the day or the hour of His coming. But from the time that Jesus came and "planted the seed" of the word, the gospel of the kingdom of God, it has been growing. The time will come when the harvest of the earth is ready and at that time He will return and reap it.


Rev 14:14-16
Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. 15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, "Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe." 16 So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.

VisionOfYou
Jan 21st 2008, 09:54 PM
TanyaP, that is actually the first passage (Rev) I thought of when I read the parable this time, because of the similarities. When I read Mark 4:28 the phrase "in the fullness of time" kept coming to mind, so that kind of leads into it. Thank you - your explanation makes a lot of sense.:)

coldfire136
Jan 23rd 2008, 12:06 AM
Mikey
The problem is that you are using obviously man made methods of interpretation.

There are a few things I have learned in college. The first, nothing is obvious. Second, I am using methods taught to me by pastors, friends, scholars and family members. I am doing my best to be faithful to the scriptures as they stand.


If we can not use a part of the bible to interpret another then we will never come to truth.

There may be times when it is good to use one part of the Bible to help us understand another part, but primarily this takes place in using the Old Testament to help us understand the New Testament. The New Testament is based, for the most part, on the Old Testament. Without an understanding of the Old Testament, there can really be no understanding of the New (which was primarily a fulfillment of the old). Using NT to interpret NT is fuzzy because these authors did not think they were writing scripture. Most of these authors believed they were living at the end of time and were only writing as a prelude to the eternity in which all of God's people would share the kingdom of God.

The other problem is that people often use the theology of one text to impose their theology on another text. For instance, if I challenge someone's interpretation on this board, they often quote the gospel of John or the Epistle of Romans. Hardly ever does one quote from Jude or 1 Thessalonians. Why? Because certain theological outlooks better suit modern Christianity.


In your view there can be no interpretation of scripture.

Totally incorrect.



You must be saying that we should only read what the text is saying and not look for spiritual truth in the text. Sounds man made to me.

1Cor 2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

Mikey, you are quoting Paul out of context. The passage above is referring to the wisdom of God that allows us to see truth through the ability of the spirit. You absolutely have to understand the eschatological views of Paul as they have everything to do with his letters. He believes that soon the rulers of this world will "come to nothing" (2 Cor. 2:6). In other words, when Jesus Christ comes, he wil put to shame all those who shamed him on the cross (2Cor. 2:8). He quotes Isaiah next. Read what Isaiah says in Isaiah 64 (from which Paul is quoting):

Since ancient times no one has heard,
no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen any God besides you,
who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.
-Isaiah 64:4

In other words, Paul is speaking prophetically that Jesus is coming again in such a way that has not been seen "since ancient times." And Jesus will act on behalf of those whom he loves. Paul is looking forward expectantly to the day when Jesus would bring an end to the oppressive empire and usher in the final understanding of the kingdom of God among all people. And how does he know? By the Spirit (2Cor. 2:10). They are to be given "words taught by the Spirit" (2 Cor. 2:11).

You then impose your 21st century western theology by proclaiming that what Paul really means is that we will be able to understand the Biblical truths spiritually by the Holy Spirit when we read the Bible spiritually. But I cannot emphasize how much THIS IS NOT the case. Paul is speaking of the spoken word (this is primarily an oral culture), and the power that Paul has as a result of this spirit allows him to speak spiritually as a wandering teacher in all the places he visited. It was by this spiritual hearing that the people of Corinth were able to understand and discern what Paul was saying to them. They are taught to seek the spirit in order to understand the spoken words of the spirit. Otherwise, they cannot understand the deep things of God.

The text you quote has nothing to do with the Bible and everything to do with the spirit.


You must think that Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John have different views of truth. You must think that what they wrote proves this. The grammatical historical method of bible interpretation. You think that whoever reads the bible must know what the writers at the time were thinking and going through. This is were you gravely mistaken.

I hope that someday you will let me speak for myself. If you would like to know what I believe you can always ask and I will always be willing to share. Thanks for this courtesy.


Truth never changes.

This may be true, but how do you define truth?

coldfire136
Jan 23rd 2008, 12:23 AM
Mikey has asked me for my interpretation of the parable.

We must not get caught up, as some have been doing here, in what each individual character and symbol in the story "represents." This would be more appropriate if the imagery Jesus was using here was allegorical (as it was in the parable of the sower earlier in Mark 4). Here, however, Jesus makes no mention of an allegorical aspect of this parable. This leads me to believe that the point of the parable is to point his disciples in a certain direction rather than for disciples to understand an esoteric truth or allegory.

First, we must notice that the passage has a connotation that, whether night or day, the seed is sprouting and growing (4:27). In other words, there are two aspects of the kingdom that Jesus is trying to get across. First, that the kingdom is growing in spite of the harvest cycle. One might argue that Jesus was speaking in spite of the oppression of the Roman Empire (this would only be passing reference, however, and the text does not directly support such a cryptic reading. I, however, think it may be a good point because of the context in which Jesus preached). Such an interpretation of the kingdom as growing in spite of the Roman Empire can be further understood by the mustard seed parable that also takes place (Mark 4). In the mustard seed parable, Jesus attempts to get across that even the smallest seed (which may parallel those who have small amounts of political power) can become great in the kingdom of God. In other words, the kingdom of God does not work like the kingdom of this world. Political influence in the present age does not guarantee political influence in the next age.

Second, that the man does not understand how the seed grows (4:27). In other words, there is really no way to describe the kingdom. Jesus can poitn out what the kingdom is like, but he never overtly states, "The kingdom of God is x or y." He can only tell us what it is like. There is a certain amount of mystery in the kingdom of God.

The term "all by itself" is quite strange in reference to the soil (4:28). I do not know why the author uses "all by itself" and any help in this regard would be most helpful from fellow board posters.

What we do know, however, is that the soil produces first the stalk, then the head, and finally the "full kernel" (4:28). It seems that Jesus is trying to protray the various stages in which the kingdom will grow until the "harvest" comes. The harvest reference is not explained either. All we know is that the harvest is coming "when the grain is ripe" (4:29).

There is some kind of consummation of the kingdom that will come at an unknown time. This is what we can gather from this particular passage. There is much more as well, and I would love to hear other opinion's or those who disagree with my analysis.

Teke
Jan 23rd 2008, 01:18 PM
The term "all by itself" is quite strange in reference to the soil (4:28). I do not know why the author uses "all by itself" and any help in this regard would be most helpful from fellow board posters.


Mar 4:28 For the earth bringeth forth fruit (because it is fertile is the meaning in relation to the Greek word used) of herself; (Greek meaning, 'self moved' or 'spontaneously')

It is common in scripture to use agricultural terms when relating God's work. As it is God who causes all life. In John 12:24 Jesus relates the principle of dying to bring life. This is how the fertility comes about, and is an agricultural principle also in the law (ie. the land fallows to become fertile once again for use, yet it continues to produce even in that uncultivated state) A farmer would relate this as rotating crops. The agricultural principle of the law, was not only to allow the soil to become fertile, but also feed the poor and animals while in the state of fallowing. Which also helps the land to be fertile.:)

Exd 23:10 ¶ And six years thou shalt sow thy land, and shalt gather in the fruits thereof:

Exd 23:11 But the seventh [year] thou shalt let it rest and lie still; that the poor of thy people may eat: and what they leave the beasts of the field shall eat. In like manner thou shalt deal with thy vineyard, [and] with thy oliveyard.

ServantofTruth
Jan 23rd 2008, 01:39 PM
Well i have no place on this topic. My study book against yours, my teacher against yours..... I believe my bible is the same and it is likely any authority i could produce would more than likely agree with any authority anyone else could. Because their study is greater which is why they teach and people like us listen and study hard.

coldfire136
Jan 23rd 2008, 08:07 PM
What do you believe by the way concerning this comment you made?

I mean, ask me questions. Don't assume that I believe something based on something I typed.