Reading Deeply (Part 3)

Tim Brown

READ : Matthew 13:18-23

But as for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. (v. 23)

Let’s look at Matthew 13 one more time. Eight parables make up the heart of Jesus’ teaching here, and the most familiar is the parable of the Good Soil. The disciples’ question gave birth to an insight into the gift-nature of salvation, and the clearest interpretation of any parable.

According to Jesus sometimes the evil one throws dust in our eyes so that we never see the Word’s value. Other times the threat of persecution scares the Word out of us, while still other times our anxieties slip a noose around the necks of our souls and choke our Word-life to death. But sometimes we hear the Word and live it as we ought. This is the good soil.

A mistake commonly made with this parable is to assume that each soil is a different person. The soils are not individuals but rather inclinations within us all. We are all like each type of soil. And this is why we must come to the Word with the same prayer that we pray at the Communion table: “Send your Holy Spirit upon us we pray.”


Father, may your Word be our rule, your Spirit our teacher, and the glory of Jesus our single concern. Amen.