Sunday Rewind: Quotes and Quips from My Lips

Lips 3Because many requested a “repeat” of some of my comments from the last two weeks, here are the quotes and quips” from my 2-part message on the parable of the sower, seed, and soils that seem to be either most requested or most provocative. For context to the comments, I encourage you to either listen or watch the messages, “The Sower and the False Roots” and “The Sower and the True Fruit” here.

Additionally, I’ve listed the Scripture passages to which I referred at various times for your continued study.


“The kingdom of heaven, amidst all kinds of responses, is supernaturally grown by the faithful sowing and fruitful hearing of the Word of God.” (Matthew 13:1-9 & 18-23; Mark 4:3-9 & 14-20; Luke 8:4-8 & 11-15)

“As long as we love our sin, we will be blinded to the Savior.”

“Shallow ground is, apparently, a quick and glad, albeit false, response, for it only lasts until the first sign of difficulty. Then, as quickly as they signed on, they sign off!”

“Shallow ground is in no way ground that loses its salvation. It is simply ground that is recognized as never having truly participated in salvation; a recognition there was no real seed after all. This is precisely the point of 1 John 2:19 – “They went out from us but they were not us; for if they had they been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out that it might become plain they all are not of us.” 

“Such is the case with life – watch out for the weeds!”

“When you combine Matthew, Mark, and Luke, you see that the good soil is, essentially, face-value acceptance and long-term submission to the Word of God with no ulterior motives.” (See also 1 Thessalonians 2:13)

“So what is the invisible key to fruitful ground? The Holy Spirit! Yet, what is the visible key to fruitful ground? The Word of God! One is what we do (i.e., sow), the other is what God does (i.e., show).” (See also 1 Corinthians 2:1-5 & 14-15)

“Hearing and sowing is a spiritual act of war, so it demands divine power. Hearers and sowers should expect a battle for belief.” (See also Colossians 4:2-4 and 2 Thessalonians 3:1-3, plus Peter’s story in Matthew 16)

“Suit up to sow! How? By pre-prayer-ing, not merely preparing.”

“Hearing and sowing is a mental financial transaction, so it necessitates counting the costs.”

“Jesus said two times in Luke 14 to ‘count the cost’ … to ‘deliberate’ about following him. Why? Because following Christ will inevitably cost you more than you initially think! And it’s at that point endurance will be necessary in the midst of the enjoyment.” (See Luke 14:28-33 plus how Paul strengthened the disciples in Acts 14:21-22)

“The question you ought to be asking is this: ‘What makes me think that this transaction is worthwhile? After all, it doesn’t seem to add up humanly?’ Ah, glad you asked! Using an earthly calculator, it won’t. Never has. Never will. But 2 Cor. 4:17-18 indicates we use a heavenly calculator. And when we line up the costs of momentary affliction vs. the reward of an eternal weight of glory, guess what wins? ETERNITY! This is why, even after counting the costs and realizing what is ahead, you should follow Jesus — because eternity is far more important than the present.”

“If you want your heaven now and your hell later, that’s exactly what you’ll get in the false gospel of prosperity.”

“Endure the worst Satan can dole out now, for later, all through eternity, the weight of what God has done will far exceed any light temporary struggle you are going through now.” (Rom. 8:18)

“Hearing and sowing is a physical rearrangement of our priorities, so it requires focus.”

“You must pay attention or else you will pay the price.”

“In a real sense, the ground of crowded interests is a warning against hearing with a pre-conceived agenda. Sowers and hearers must be sure not to promise or expect a rose garden. In fact, the stark reality is that the kingdom of heaven will require a rearrangement of your life. Adjustments aren’t requested; they’re to be expected.” (see also Luke 14:26 and Mark 8:35)

“This is not a call to be a monk (i.e., avoiding things in fear), but rather a manager (prioritizing things in faith). Sadly, too many of us think of ourselves as masters.”

“The question is not ‘Did I work at VBS’ or ‘Did I give to the boys or girls offering’ or ‘Am I going to Utah’ or ‘Do I take my monthly rotation among the greeters’? The deeper question is – ‘Around what do I orient my life?’”

“Hearing and sowing is supernatural germination produced by the truth and proven over time, so it calls for patience.” (See also 1 Corinthians 15:1-2; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-17; Colossians 1:5b-12, Philippians 1:6; Romans 1:16; Hebrews 4:11-12; James 1:18-22, plus Rev. 14:12 and Mark 13:13)

“Here, essentially, are the standout traits of good ground – truth and time. In fact, the good ground is the only ground where both are seen together long-term.”

“Fruitlessness proves faithlessness.”

“We can really only do one thing as kingdom managers – sow the seed prayerfully, correctly, and liberally! Then watch the ground patiently for fruit.”

“If we get the sowing and hearing wrong – the two important tasks in the kingdom — everything else comes up wrong. In other words, if we plant a false root, we will get false fruit. So we must work hard at hearing well and sowing well. Which means giving God’s truth and receiving God’s truth humbly (James 1:22), for it forms the foundation for everything we do around here. We are, at our core, Word centered, in every ministry and function.”

“Here’s a great summary verse — 1 Thessalonians 2:13: ‘And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God [the seed], which you heard from us [the sower], you accepted it [the soil] not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers [fruit].'”

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