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Is He Really Saved Or Is He Playing Me?

April 24, 2013

I was speaking with a friend the other night and we were discussing prison ministry and how she felt that those that were in jail were most likely using their conversion as a means to gain some special favors. I missed a great opportunity to tell her, she is Jewish, how their redemption and salvation are real and I believe that the parable of the sower is very much alive in these types of situations. Instead I told her that I have a good sense of when I am being played.

There are only a handful of parables that are repeated in all three of the Synoptic Gospels and the significance of this fact cannot be confused. “That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. Such large crowds gathered around Him that he got into a boat and sat in it while all the people stood on the shore. Then He told them many parables, saying: A farmer went out to sow is seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and then withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed feel on good soil, where it produced a crop- a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. He who has ears, let him hear.” (Matthew 13:1-9)

As a follower of Jesus, I am confident that when I have looked into the eyes of those recently saved and have seen their joy, peace and contentment God’s hand is truly at work. Seeing the enthusiasm of their faith and the relief that they feel because He has taken their burden as He had promised is a very uplifting experience. The seed of faith is sown, what will the soil yield?

Does Jesus tell us this parable so that we may know that some are bound not to receive His message, to welcome Him gratefully into our lives? Does He give us an understanding of our own hearts capacity? Is there a call to action here?

Let us assume, a truly dangerous thing, that we recognize that we are the soil. What do we as a young follower of Christ want? I know that I want to be that good soil. I want to yield one hundred times what was sown. Each of us newly reborn, I think, wants the same things. That young Christian that is being released from prison, that has been born again, is looking for the same thing. Is he standing on his watchtower ever vigilant to changes in his “soil”? Has he instead been distracted by those challenges from his past, the ones that put him where he had just been released?

Is the soil our capacity to accept Christ? We are inviting Him into live within us. Is our house too cluttered with other things that making it impossible for Him to stay? Worst yet, is our house filled with the types of things that God does not want us to possess? When I work to answer these questions, I come back with some positive thoughts but mostly I see me falling short of the mark. That is when I know I have to seek Him and His nourishment.

(continued tomorrow)

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From → Prison Ministry

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