Lesson 154-May 13, 2018
Lesson: “The Mystery of the Seed”
Scripture: Mark 4:26-29
Lesson Goal: Identifying the mystery of the seed. It is all about the work of God.
HAPPY MOTHERS DAY! Today is a beautiful and special day set aside to honor all the moms that have blessed our lives in countless ways. We wish all the mothers of our church family, community, and families a happy and blessed Mothers Day. May God bless you all!
Introduction: Mark records Jesus fashioning a second parable about the sowing of seeds. This parable is unique to Mark and it is Mark’s only unique parable. This parable continues Jesus’ thought of the Parable of the Sower (Soils) but unlike the previous parable that focused on the necessity of the sower and the types of soil, here the emphasis is on the innate power of the seed. We must always be aware of and remember the power found within the seed. There is power, even unexplainable power, in the seed. The power lies within the seed-The Word of God! This simple parable is a reminder that we are not to think too highly of ourselves as we sow the word or exaggerate our significance and involvement in final successes but rather we are to see the innate power of the seed (Word). In the words of David Platt, “Let the Word loose and watch it work.”
Perhaps nowhere is this seen with anymore clarity than with two ministries that are very important in the work of Mars Hill Baptist Church. Both of these ministries share a primary and unique focus on the seed (Word of God). The two specific ministries that I reference are the Gideon’s International and Wycliffe Bible Transla- tors. Most of us have heard the living, life-changing testimonies shared by those that have encountered the power of the Word of God.
“What began in 1908 as an association of Christian businessmen placing Bibles in hotel rooms has evolved into an expanding mission to provide Scriptures to all people in nearly every facet of life. The Gideon’s Or- ganization has taken more than 2 billion Scriptures in more than 95 languages to 200 countless territories and possessions across the globe” (www.2.gidoeons,org).
“For more than 70 years Wycliffe has helped people around the world translate the Bible into their own lan- guages. In 1917 a missionary named William Cameron Townsend went to Guatemala to sell Spanish Bibles. But he was shocked when many people could not understand the books. They spoke Cakchiquel, a language without a Bible. Cam believed everyone should understand the Bible, so he started a linguistics school that trained people to do Bible translation. The work continued to grow, and in 1942 Cam officially founded Wyc- liffe Bible Translators. Over the following decades Wycliffe celebrated many milestones; from the first trans- lation completed in 1951, all the way to the 500th translation completed in 2000. Around the same time, Wycliffe adopted a new challenge, a goal of seeing a Bible translation project started in every language still needing one by 2025” (www.wycliffe.org).
Both of these Christian organizations are testimonies to the power of the Word of God. When the Word is spread (turned loose) it is a power unexplainable to the human mind.
(v26) The focus of verse 26 is not on the “man” but upon the “seed”. Please do not misinterpret or misunder- stand, it is important that someone sows the seed but what Jesus is helping us to understand by this parable is that the power for the seed to germinate (sprout, bloom, grow) is not found in the man. It is important that the sower sows but the sower can not make the seed grow nor does the sower have the power to produce a harvest.
(v27) No matter how the sower has sown, no matter the care to fertilize and provide water, he can not make the seed germinate or grow. “The biologist can dissect the seed and expose and name its various parts. The
produce identical plants. He can breed and produce hybrid plants. But if no life is there it is all in vain. The law of biogenesis states, “There can be no life without antecedent life”. Ultimately all life comes from God” (Phillips).
The farmer has done his part and now he must wait. He has responsibly sown the seeds now as he waits the mystical power “he himself does not know how” works within the seed doing what no farmer or anyone else can do.
(v28) In verse 28 we are able to see the unfolding process “first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head.” To many the process is unnoticeable but be assured the process is at work.
Something to think about: When God designed for His Kingdom to come, He did not make it noticeably spectacular but He was nevertheless at work. It was an obscure village called Bethlehem, a mere carpenters shop, a band of ragtag, somewhat misfit disciples, an old rough wooden cross, and a borrowed grave.
Although many did not recognize and all did not fully understand, nevertheless God was at work!
(v29) We can sow the seed but there comes the place that the sower has done all he can, then it becomes the work that is up to the Spirit of God.
Hobbs, “The sower should keep on sowing, the seeds but he should be patient to leave the results with God.”
Question: Have you ever become discouraged when you did not see immediate results of the seed you have sown?
In this parable Jesus teaches us that we should never exaggerate our importance at the expense of the power of the seed. Please explain.
Let us all remember, God is not operating by our STOP WATCH!