Heart Soil - Part 2 - David Mitts
Last chapter, we began to look at the parable of the sower and the times that we live in. One of the keys to successfully navigating difficult times is coming to terms with the strategies of the kingdom of darkness and the power that is available to us when we align with God and His Word.
Yeshua used the parable of the sower as the master template for all His teaching.
"And He *said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How will you understand all the parables?" Mar 4:13 (NASB)
Parables are unlocked by a shift of perception. Yeshua calls this shift, seeing:
"Jesus responded and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless someone is born-again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”" Joh 3:3 (NASB)
Being born-again is all about the seed of fatherhood that we receive into the soil of our hearts. We are “born” into the seed of the world system, or the word of the world system. This is a harsh reality for most to grasp. We would rather believe in the innocence of our birth and the basic goodness of man. Yet the basic nature of man is selfish, even as a sweet little baby. We hate this admission. We would rather blame evil on something outside of ourselves, like Satan. Yet the scripture clearly teaches that our heart begins as evil:
"“The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it? “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, to give to each person according to his ways, according to the results of his deeds." Jer 17:9-10 (NASB)
Therefore, we truly need to be born-again, to receive an implanted word-seed which transforms our parenting.
"Therefore, ridding yourselves of all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls." Jas 1:21 (NASB)
All power comes from identity. Identity confers the flow of life, the blessing. Fathers bless children. This is more than a prayer or even the gesture of laying hands which confers the authority of the father. This is just a ceremony of blessing. The true blessing comes through the lifetime of impartation of identity through words, gestures and everything that makes up face to face impartation.
This is the root reality of the priestly blessing, which is a model of all blessings:
"Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘In this way you shall bless the sons of Israel. You are to say to them: The LORD bless you, and keep you; The LORD cause His face to shine on you, And be gracious to you; The LORD lift up His face to you, And give you peace.’" Num 6:22-26 (NASB)
The Lord bless you and keep is the context. The content is to cause His face to shine upon you. This is an expression of face-to-face communication. In this place grace flows from favor. The same though is in the lifting up of His face towards and the result is peace.This is a description of the transformation that is available from the Lord from the evil parenting of this world.
The Apostle Paul, master trainer of disciples explained this condition of a shift in parenting this way:
"but whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. But we all, with unveiled faces, looking as in a mirror at the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit." 2Co 3:16-18 (NASB)
This is not some ethereal spiritual statement, but a description of where true transformation occurs, in the saturation in His Presence, His Word. This is where being “born-again” moves from a doctrine to a living reality. The biggest flaw in religion is taking a relationship and making it a statement of faith.
Like natural parenting, the blessing isn’t just a way of describing key events but the outflow of love that is developed and displayed through communion of hearts.
I am blessed by truly knowing you, not just showing up at key events.
It is in this context that we want to open up the parable of the sower. The first relationship description is called the side of the road.
"as he was sowing, some seed fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate it up." Mar 4:4 (NASB)
Yeshua interprets this for the disciples by ascribing to the “birds” the power of Satan.
"“These are the ones who are beside the road where the word is sown; and when they hear, immediately Satan comes and takes away the word which has been sown in them." Mar 4:15 (NASB)
The side of the road is the place of high traffic impact. Today the side of the road is any place where mass communication can occur. This includes, social media, TV, radio, and the literal side of the roadways. This is the place for the ruler of the airways, the prince of that power system:
"And you were dead in your offenses and sins, in which you previously walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all previously lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the rest." Eph 2:1-3 (NASB)
It is for this reason that the most public display of mass communication, the cross and the crucifixion occurred in the most public place, to make an open display of Yeshua’s triumph over the power of public humiliation and shame.
"When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him." Col 2:15 (NASB)
In practical relation terms, the public nature of the attack of the enemy is to use the fear of death, physically, mentally and emotionally to torment us into obedience to the pressures that come from the public. This is the place where we contend with conformity. The seed of God’s word is snatched away when we look to the public for agreement. Therefore we need to be unashamed of the gospel for it is the power for true salvation:
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written: “BUT THE RIGHTEOUS ONE WILL LIVE BY FAITH.”" Rom 1:16-17 (NASB)
The second heart condition is the relation to the Word through the impact of rocky soil.
"“Other seed fell on the rocky ground where it did not have much soil; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of soil. “And when the sun had risen, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away." Mar 4:5-6 (NASB)
Yeshua interprets the symbols in this heart condition:
"“And in a similar way these are the ones sown with seed on the rocky places, who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy; and yet they have no firm root in themselves, but are only temporary; then, when affliction or persecution occurs because of the word, immediately they fall away." Mar 4:16-17 (NASB)
Rocky soil is hard ground that is difficult to penetrate deeply with word. What does grow easily in rocky soil is weeds. Why is this the case? Weeds are wild by nature. They are native to the environment. They have adapted to the environment over the centuries. This is the seed of Satan. It thrives in the rocky soil which is also a picture of hardened hearts.
Last chapter we spoke about the weed seeds and war of the seed. The root of this is the hardness of hearts. This is where we trade the love of God for self-imposed legalism. We want the joy of the promises of God but when that includes sacrifice and suffering, we retreat to the easier road of rules and expectations.
The third heart condition is easily the most relatable.
“Other seed fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked it, and it yielded no crop." Mar 4:7 (NASB)
Again, Yeshua interprets:
"“And others are the ones sown with seed among the thorns; these are the ones who have heard the word, but the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of wealth, and the desires for other things enter and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful." Mar 4:18-19 (NASB)
Thorns relate to the worries of the world, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things. Thorns are usually a type of protection for the plant from predators. The Apostle Paul spoke of a thorn in his side related to pride in his life.
"Because of the extraordinary greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! Concerning this I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might leave me. And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me." 2Co 12:7-9 (NASB)
The thorn is identified as an agent of Satan that was sent to torment Paul, to keep Paul from self-exaltation. It kept Paul aware of his vulnerability and weakness in respect to pride. The pride of life is one of the basic temptations that come as we grow in the anointing of God and in the power of the kingdom.
"For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God continues to live forever." 1Jn 2:16-17 (NASB)
This heart condition is the most powerful and yet the most vulnerable. As the power of God increases in our life the imbalances that we have become stronger. This is the place where we have to learn the importance of weakness and of grace.
This brings us full circle to the place of 30-60-100 fold.
"“Other seeds fell into the good soil, and as they grew up and increased, they yielded a crop and produced thirty, sixty, and a hundred times as much.”" Mar 4:8 (NASB)
"“And those are the ones sown with seed on the good soil; and they hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirty, sixty, and a hundred times as much.”" Mar 4:20 (NASB)
The key to this heart condition is in the listening. Yeshua calls it hearing the word, accepting the word and bearing fruit. Bearing fruit is all about learning to abide in the Lord which is all about our listening.
"“Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit of itself but must remain in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me. “I am the vine, you are the branches; the one who remains in Me, and I in him bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. “If anyone does not remain in Me, he is thrown away like a branch and dries up; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. “If you remain in Me, and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. “Just as the Father has loved Me, I also have loved you; remain in My love." Joh 15:4-9 (NASB)
The fruitful life is all about the seed and the soil. The seed is His word, the soil is the cultivation of a receptive heart. In that place anything is possible. This is why He said, ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you
Activation: Abiding is the key to fruitfulness. The 30-60-100 fold return is the same seed as that which is snatched away. The difference is in the soil of heart which has been cultivated by the washing of the water of the Word and the fertilizers of death, death of self. Ask the Lord what death do you need in your life to bring more life.