“Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them.” Mark 4:15
In Jesus’ famous story about a farmer who scatters seed on a field the Farmer is the person spreading the gospel, the seed is the gospel and the soil is the hearer of the gospel. What Jesus makes clear is that gospel sowing is a spiritual battle. There are things going on unseen even unknown to the gospel spreader and gospel hearer. Jesus never hid the spiritual battle that takes place in which his ministry, life, death and resurrection held centre ground. At the very beginning of his ministry as he was preparing in the wilderness Satan tried to knock him off course with temptations. Jesus repelled him with prayer, fasting and the word of God.
Jesus in this story teaches that the spiritual battle is active with all gospel work. Gospel work is every way the good news of Jesus is shared. In our modern society that includes social media posts, Youtube videos, websites of churches and Christian organisations. It also includes courses such as Christianity Explored and Alpha, Christian festivals such as New Wine and Spring Harvest. Debates that take place in the media, newspaper and journal articles, church services and events. An area we possibly overlook where the gospel is shared in a highly meaningful way is through the individual Christian’s life and conversation. However the good news of Jesus is spread the first line of opposition is immediate rebuttal.
The gospel can be whisked from the hearer’s mind by comedy, scorn, attempts to discredit the validity of the gospel, distraction or attempts to minimize its significance or relevance. It is even better for the evil one if the good news is made out to be bad news and therefore to be avoided at all cost. Paul warns of such teachers when he says, ‘Satan masquerades as an angel of light’. 2 Corinthians 11.14 From Satan’s perspective it is better the seed did not germinate than even had the slightest sign of growth. Paul speaks of the process of Satan obscuring people from perceiving the gospel, ‘And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.’ 2 Corinthians 4.3-4 Earlier in 2 Corinthians Paul wrote, ‘For we are not unaware of his schemes.’ 2 Corinthians2.11 Christians and bearers of the gospel should be aware of the risks to those who hear the gospel that might cause them to not even take in the message they hear.
‘For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.’ Ephesians 6.12
Lauren Daigle – You Say