The Soil of Matthew 13
by Bobby Bruno 4/10/2014 / Bible Studies
Matthew 13:52 -- He (Jesus) said, "Then you see how every student well-trained in God's kingdom is like the owner of a general store who can put his hands on anything you need, old or new, exactly when you need it" (MSG). In this parable, Christ taught that a well-trained student has everything he needs to teach people about the Kingdom of God. Only a true disciple of God can go about teaching others the truth that is the Kingdom of God. God has given the disciple the knowledge to know and understand His words and power through the revelations of both the old and new covenants, and the ability to teach them to others. As more disciples are brought into the Kingdom, the larger the Kingdom grows. The Jews would have thought that Jesus was talking about the scribes, being that they were the main teachers of the law, when He was really talking about all the disciples of God having the knowledge He supernaturally imparted to them.
Matthew 13:44-46 -- "God's kingdom is like a treasure hidden in a field for years and then accidently found by a trespasser. The finder is ecstaticwhat a find!and proceeds to sell everything he owns to raise money and buy that field. 45 "Or, God's kingdom is like a jewel merchant on the hunt for excellent pearls. 46 Finding one that is flawless, he immediately sells everything and buys it" (MSG). In these two parables, Christ teaches that the Kingdom of God is a treasure of great worth; worth more than the most excellent pearls the earth may give up. Some people want to have their treasure, but they won't do anything to gain it for themselves. But the person who gives all he has to gain that treasure, and does all that it takes to search for and find the treasure, has surely found something worth more than all the pearls the world has to offer. Christ is telling us that, when we give Him all we have to obtain His salvation, we have found the greatest of all treasures; eternal life and peace with God. The more we learn from the Holy Spirit, and the more we understand the meaning of the scriptures, the more treasure we obtain for this life knowing that our true treasure is yet to come. For the Jews this would have been an action done by someone deceiving the actual landowner by not telling him of the found treasure before the land was bought the land from him. Barnes' Notes on the New Testament says that "The conduct of the man would be DISHONEST. It would be his duty to inform the owner of the field of the discovery. He would be really endeavoring to gain property belonging to another at far less than its real value, and the principle of real integrity would require him to inform the owner of the discovery. But Christ does not intend to vindicate his conduct. He merely states the way in which people do "actually" manage to obtain wealth."
Matthew 13:3b-8 -- "A farmer planted seed. 4 As he scattered the seed, some of it fell on the road, and birds ate it. 5 Some fell in the gravel; it sprouted quickly but didn't put down roots, 6 so when the sun came up it withered just as quickly. 7 Some fell in the weeds; as it came up, it was strangled by the weeds. 8 Some fell on good earth, and produced a harvest beyond his wildest dreams" (MSG). In this parable, Christ taught that how deeply the Word of God is planted in your heart tells how deeply your heart belongs to God. If the roots did not break the surface of the soil, your understanding of the Word is fleeting, easily stolen away by the devil, and your life doesn't change. If your roots fell on stony ground, your understanding of the Word will last but a moment, and you will return to the world again. If your roots take hold in weedy ground, your understanding of the word will take root, but will mix in with the world, where the world will entice you to come back into your old life again. But if your roots went deep down into good soil, your understanding of the word of God is deep, solid, and will hold throughout the strongest of bad weather. The world, or Satan, cannot claim you back without a lengthy losing fight on their part. The Jews did not understand what Jesus was saying. Neither did the disciples, but since they were Jesus' closest followers, He explained the meaning to them, so they understood the full meaning of Jesus' words.
In 1983, I prayed with the TV pastor to be saved, but my roots fell on stony ground; they took for a year as I studied the bible, but, soon, I went back into the world again, struggling with the issue of childhood sexual abuse that I had repressed until 1998. On March 7, 1999, after many suicide attempts, I tearfully gave my life to Jesus. Since then, the roots of the Word (Jesus) have gone down so deeply that my life has turned completely around. It is not just the knowledge of the Word that has been deeply rooted in my soul; it is also the faith, trust, and love for and in Christ that have permeated my heart, life, mind, and soul. Everything I am today is because Jesus has helped me root His self into my life. Like Job, the second half of my life is the complete opposite of the first half of my life, thanks to the opening of my soul by God which lets those roots take a deep, deep hold on the man I am today. I am a product of the good soil that is Jesus Christ that has been churned, aerated, and exposed to the Son of my Father who is in Heaven.
Barnes, A. (2012). Barnes' notes on the new testament. Database 2012 WORDsearch Corp.
McGarvey, J. (2007). The new testament commentary: vol. I - matthew and mark. Database 2007 WORDsearch Corp.
Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.
Bobby Bruno was saved 15 years ago in a way that left him no doubt that Jesus wanted him to reach others with His great and abounding love. He started writing at the age of 12 and hasn't stopped since. He achieved Associates Degree in Biblical Studies from Ohio Christian University in early 2014.