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DocReits October 7, 2013 at 1:59 am

Hey Daryl,

Thank you for your great article and comments. I agree with mostly everything you said. My only thought would ask you whether it is not breaking away from Jesus’s metaphor when you compared the good soil and the “good heart”?

To me the good heart is an open, receptive heart, just as the seed is received by the good soil. Keeping with this metaphor then does not allow us to switch to the idea that the heart is good in a moral sense. You state, “there is an honest and good heart or a moral quality and integrity that makes righteous responses”.

IOW, I believe this good soil represents a good heart just as you would say to your daughter “Good for you” for her “A” on her homework. The “Good for you” comment does not speak to her “moral goodness”. Jer 17:9 says that “the heart [is] deceitful above all [things], and desperately wicked: who can know it?”

Jesus said, “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.” (Mk 7:21-23).

The “good soil” to me represents the heart of the man who has had the Holy Spirit reveal to him his complete depravity and “lostness” through breaking God’s law and his utter helplessness. He sees his heart (through the Holy Spirit’s conviction) as desperately wicked not in any way “morally good”. It is only in this way that he is able to see his need for redemption…the need of the Savior and hence yields his heart to the seed. In this sense his heart is “good” in its yielded-ness.

This soil then is indeed “good soil” , not in a moral sense and certainly not because it is able to make “righteous” decisions but because it understands through the Holy Spirit’s help , the need for the Savior because of its wickedness.

The stony, and thorny soil are those , IMO, who have had “false conversions”. They comprise over 50% of the folks in most churches in America. They have not been made aware of their complete depravity before a God whose Laws they have broken. They do not understand the need for repentance and faith in the Savior. They do not understand their need for deliverance from hell as a result of having broken God’s law( where the “worn dies not and the fires are un-quenched” (Mk 9:44) for all eternity). They might have said a little prayer to ask Jesus into their heart and that was it.

When tough times come they fall away (the cares of the world). If they understood their lost-ness, they would even cling tighter to Jesus during those times…not to get them out of those tough times but to deliver them from hell. The church needs to hear that “Jesus Saves” is exactly that! He saves us from hell and eternity lost from the presence of God. He does not save us to get us out of our earthly troubles.

Troubles are supposed to increase for the Christian not decrease in the world. Why? Because we are at enmity with the world because God was in Christ and now Christ is in us! “The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you” (Jn 15:19)

We need to start preaching the whole Gospel so that sinners will be saved and carry God’s Holy Spirit with them out into the world to proclaim the Gospel in order to “convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment” (Jn 16:8) Then through this “conviction” let it be our prayer that the sinner might fall at the feet of the only One who is able to rescue them from hell…Jesus! This is real “love”. Not the “Jesus has a wonderful plan for your life” business. That has made more atheists than anything I know. That is a different parable that I preach…it is about “bad seed” or Christians scattering the “wrong Gospel”.

Well you did say, “I know that this article might give many comments and opinions, which I welcome”

I did enjoy your article and thank you for your time and thoughts in preparing it. I get a little preachy so don’t mind me…its me not you….;-)



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