Helping Others

 And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying,
“Behold, the sower went out to sow;  and as he sowed,
some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up.
Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil;
and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.
But when the sun had risen, they were scorched;
and because they had no root, they withered away.
Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out.
And others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop,
some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.
He who has ears, let him hear.”

 “Hear then the parable of the sower.
When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it,
the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart.
This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road.
The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places,
this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy;
yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary,
and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.
And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns,
this is the man who hears the word,
and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word,
and it becomes unfruitful.
And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil,
this is the man who hears the word and understands it;
who indeed bears fruit and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.”
Matthew 13:3-9 and 18-23

The seed that fell on the bad soil and didn’t grow well – I wonder if it is possible that someone could come and help those people to understand?  Is it a shut and close case or is there hope?  I think that it is the responsibility of Christians to be watching for people who are in those states.  We need to be alert to the needs of others and be willing to help them.  We need to be willing to help their understanding of the Bible, willing to help them get rooted in God’s Word, willing to help someone to handle the trials of life.  A Bible example of this is John Mark.  He traveled with Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey and then chose to leave them.  Paul is not willing to have him as part of the second team, which seems to indicate that there were still some spiritual issues in Mark’s life.  Barnabas parted from Paul and took Mark.  We don’t know what counsel he gave Mark, but we do know that some time later Paul said that Mark was “useful to me for service” (2 Timothy 4:11).

To be able to help others you need to “be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:9-10).   Then we can follow this next admonition.

We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly,
encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone.

1 Thessalonians 5:14

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