When Jesus told the crowds the parable of the sower from the boat, He distinguished between the different soils and emphasized that only good soil can produce a thirty, sixty or hundred fold crop. Then He continues about ‘hearing, understanding’, having a soft heart as prerequisite and called people who ‘hear’ the Word, blessed. (Mat 13:11-16)
The question which remains, however, is why the yield is different in good soil? Why will the produce sometimes be thirty, sixty or hundred fold? The answer lies in the presence, quality and quantity of five different components.
Good, living soil is rich in nutrients and has a Ph-level of about 6. Not too acidic or alkaline and well drained. A man can live on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord (Deut 8:3). It is living and active, sharp, can penetrate and judge attitudes (Heb 4:12). For that very reason and all the attributes of the Word written in Psalm 119, the apostle Paul advised to the Colossians to ‘…let the Word dwell in you richly’ (Col 3:16). It is therefore imperative to be submerged in the nutrients of the Word of God daily and to dwell upon it in order to produce a good crop.
Constant and regular watering of the seeds is vital for a good crop. Ezk.19:10-11 refers to ‘thick foliage because of abundant water’. Jesus, the source of living water (John 4:10-14) is always available and free of charge, but we have to ask. To be constantly connected to Jesus, there will be a continuous flow of water to the soil of our also hearts, the leaves will always be green and never fail to bear fruit (Jer. 17:7-8). “….for he has given you the autumn rains in righteousness. He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains …” (Joel 2:23-24) He provides it all!
Optimum sunlight is needed for optimum growth. ‘Many plants are known for their ability to track the movements of the sun by a process called solar tracking or heliotropism. Some plant species orient their leaves so they will be perpendicular to the sun\’s rays in the mornings and evenings to maximize photosynthesis, as the sunflower plant movie shows. The flowers of some plants also display solar tracking behaviour.’ A lack of sunlight can allow fungi to grow on the leaves and destroy the crop. Christians need to constantly keep our eyes on Jesus, the Way and the Shepherd and follow the ‘Son’ daily.
Removal of weeds
Very important, weeds need to be removed. In the book of James, Christians are encouraged to ‘wash your hands and purify your hearts’ and to ‘confess your sins to each other’(James 4-5) When Jesus washed the disciples feet and Peter wanted Him to wash his whole body, Jesus replied in John 13:10: ‘ A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet…..’ We all collect dust and sin which needs to be removed regularly.
The dictionary defines this as ‘to cut off or remove dead or living parts or branches of a plant to improve shape or growth’. To produce a bumper crop, the branches that already bear fruit, need to be pruned!!!(John 15:2, 16) Although this is an uncomfortable or painful experience, it forms an integral and important part of the growing season.
Kinds of fruit
The Greek word for fruit is, ‘karpos’, which refers to works or deeds being the visible expression of power working inwardly and invisibly.
Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22)
- Growing in the knowledge of God (Col. 1:10)
- Confessing his name (Heb. 13:15)
- Peace making (James 3:17)
Let us therefore strife to obtain ALL the components to unsure a hundred fold harvest of fruit that will last!
‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit- fruit that will last.’ —John 15:16