The farmer’s tale
A farmer sowed some seeds in his field. As he scattered the seeds, they fell in different areas of the field.
Some seeds fell onto the path and the birds quickly ate them.
Some seeds fell onto rocky ground, where there wasn’t much soil. The seeds grew quickly into plants. But because the roots were not in good, deep soil, the plants couldn’t get enough water. When the sun shone down they got too thirsty and the plants died.
Some seeds fell into an area that was full of weeds. As the plants tried to grow, the weeds got in the way, and the plants died.
But some seeds fell onto good ground, so the plants grew well. When they were grown, the farmer harvested lots of plants.
Jesus explained to the people who had gathered to hear his story what the parable means.
The farmer is like Jesus and the seed is like the message of God. Jesus sows the seed of the good news in different places, and different people react differently to God’s message.
When seeds fall on the path and are eaten by the birds it’s like when people who hear the good news pay no attention. They carry on living their lives without Jesus.
The seeds that fall on the rocky ground grow quickly but then die because they can’t take root. This teaches us that some people listen to the good news at first, but their interest has no real root. When these people come across problems, they give up on Jesus.
The seeds that fall amid the weeds are choked and the plants die. Some people accept God’s message, but they don’t fully commit to Jesus. They let other things – like money and worries – get in the way of their faith. Like the weeds choke the plants, so these people’s faith is smothered.
But the seeds that fall on good ground grow into big, healthy plants. The good soil is like the hearts of people who love Jesus, who hear the good news and rejoice. God’s word takes root in their lives, and they remain faithful to God. Their faith grows and grows.