Twenty Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Lk 8: 4-15
When a large crowd gathered, with people from one town after another journeying to Jesus, he spoke in a parable. “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path and was trampled, and the birds of the sky ate it up. Some seed fell on rocky ground, and when it grew, it withered for lack of moisture. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some seed fell on good soil, and when it grew, it produced fruit a hundredfold.” After saying this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.” Then his disciples asked him what the meaning of this parable might be. He answered, “Knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you; but to the rest, they are made known through parables so that they may look but not see, and hear but not understand. “This is the meaning of the parable. The seed is the word of God. Those on the path are the ones who have heard, but the Devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts that they may not believe and be saved. Those on rocky ground are the ones who, when they hear, receive the word with joy, but they have no root; they believe only for a time and fall away in time of temptation. As for the seed that fell among thorns, they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along, they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life, and they fail to produce mature fruit. But as for the seed that fell on rich soil, they are the ones who, when they have heard the word, embrace it with a generous and good heart, and bear fruit through perseverance.”
SEED, THE WORD OF GOD: Most times, Jesus taught in parables when He wanted to deliver a message to His disciples. Today, He uses the parable of the Sower. He describes four kinds of hearts that are found in every assembly of the faithful. These ways show how we receive the Word of God. Some of us are hard-headed and are rocklike. Others are so immersed in worldly things that the Word is chocked or even carried away and denied fruition. Others allow the Word to grow, mature and yield. When the Word of God yields, we cannot remain the same. The Word of God must transform our lives. We are cautioned not to allow the Devil, through worldly pleasures and even suffering, to misdirect us away from receiving the Word and from yielding.
PRAYER: Lord, help us live by your Word.
PARABLE OF THE SOIL: God has an agrarian bent evidenced from the time he planted a garden in Eden. It is not surprising that most of the parables of Jesus have an agrarian touch. The Parable of the Sower is a story that is about the soil and resonates well with the farmer. Jesus tells the story of seeds sown on four different types of soil, leading to four different outcomes. In each case, the ultimate outcome can be traced back to the condition of the soil onto which the seed fell. What type of soil do you have? The seed is the Word of God and the soil is the heart that each of us has. What kind of heart do you have? Are gospel seeds able to take root? And if so, are they able to endure? When the sun scorches, do they survive? And having survived, is grain produced?