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- Sermon 11 -
Sexagesima Sunday. The Parable of the Sower
St. Luke VIII ,4-15: "And when much people were gathered together, and were come to him out of every city, he spake by a parable: A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it and choked ist. And others fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be? And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they migtht not see, and hearing they might not understand. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the wayside are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. They on the rock are they which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. But that on the good ground are they which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience."
(January 20, 1872)
This parable of the sower and the seed, which I once gave My disciples and the people surrounding Me, is given in an easily comprehensible form, all the more so as the Gospel also quotes the explanation I then gave to My disciples but not to the people listening to Me.
According to this explanation, the seed is My Word. Where this falls onto the road and is trampled underfoot, it denotes the indifference of those who hear it but disregard it and, indulging solely in their worldly interests, walk over it. The rocky ground onto which the seed falls describes those hearts which - like the scholars and theologians - accept the seed only as far as it fits into their scientific systems. However, as soon as their opinion differs, this seed on the rocky ground finds only little or no nourishment at all and must dry up. If the seed falls among the thorns and sprouts together with them, this means that My Word is only believed and applied to the extent it is reconcilable with worldly opinions. If it clashes with them or if My Word demands sacrifice and self-abnegation, it is put aside and, therefore, also does not bear fruit. Fine words are all it gets, but it does not come to actions.
This far I had already explained it to My disciples. Now it is of importance how this parable can be applied to the present time and wheter there is not any other important aspect of it. Prior to continuing with its explanation, we have to answer the following questions: What actually is seed? For what purpose is it sown and what is the sower's aim? - Only when these questions have been answered can a true interpretation and explanation through spiritual correspondence follow; for, generally, you use a lot of words without being aware of their deeper spiritual significance. Only he who knows the deepest meaning of the words and their spiritual correspondence really knows his language. He has the gift of producing sounds with his mouth that can be comprehended in a spiritual sense, and every word that flows from his mouth is a ray of the spiritual light that illumines his soul, spiritualizes it and gradually conveys it towards uniting with Me. Therefore, there is a great difference between talking and speaking. One may talk a lot and still not say anything, while the important meaning of spiritual speech can mould itself most significantly.
So let us begin with the word "seed" and examine its meaning more closely. Behold, infinity is contained within the seed. From a seed there keep forthcoming products of the same kind to which the seed belongs. Thus it was arranged at the creation of the material world that I created things only once individually. I included within them the germ for further reproduction, so that the initial effect, the evolvement out of itself, would not cease in eternity as long as the elements in the soil and in the air needed for the development of the seed are available.
As the seed of a tree carries within it all the nuclei for its future destination, thus My Word, which as a product of My Spirit keeps producing something new incessantly, never passes but continues forever. Therefore, John said: "In the beginning was the Word... and the Word was God!" I, too, am the seed out of which continuously and everlastingly only the divine can go forth. Wherever this Word falls as a seed, it stimulates the ground to activity - often permanently, often only temporarily.
However, since I am also the sower who sows the seed all over the entire creation, it naturally also happens that - as in the parable - not all the seed develops equally. One brings more fruit, the other less and the third none at all. Firstly, because even the worlds of My creation, together with their dwellers, are not all on the same level and, secondly, because everywhere men have their free will to act in whatever way they see fit. Hence the different spiritual results in all the worlds and with all human beings and the different lengths of road all created beings have to travel to reach their destination of the spiritualization of their souls.
I, as the sower, sow My seed everywhere. Where it is received with indifference, it is the souls' own fault if, due to bitter experiences, they have to go through a harsh schooling. Where My seed falls onto stony hearts where it cannot stay because the lightest worldly wind blows it away without leaving a trace of it, also there this hardness of heart will gradually be mellowed. Where My seed falls on thorny ground and sprouts together with weeds, it will share the fate of the weeds which have to be destroyed. Then those people will have nothing left but the fallow land of their heart on which nothing could permanently grow, neither vice nor virtue. Only where My Word falls on good ground, where the hearts were already prepared by Me beforehand, will the seed of My Word be sprouting, flowering and bearing fruits as an example for others.
My Word, as a seed, was and is still daily being sown in order to make true humans out of men, to make them worthy of Me, so that, as images of My Divine Self, they may gradually beome that fo which I have destined them.
Since I walked on earth, I and My chosen have always kept sowing My divine Word of love. And because My listeners consisted of different types of people, I intended by this parable to point out his thoughtlessness to one, his indifference to the other and his worldliness to the third, proving to them what would finally result if My Word were only heard but not practised. What I then said to My listeners and disciples: "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear!", I am saying again, for I, as the sower, shall soon come to gather the harvest from My seed.
My Word, as spiritual seed for everlasting beatitude, is now more than ever trampled underfoot on all the roads and eaten by birds that only want to make use of My Word in their own interests. For a long time it has been falling on too stony ground of selfish hearts where it has to wither without nourishment. And where here or there a stalk flowers, it is standing amid the worldly pleasures and is being cared for only as long as it is in harmony with the opinions of the world. As soon as it demands sacrifice, it is thrown overboard.
Only few keep My Word in their hearts, notwithstanding difficulties, struggles and suffering, tend it with care and also act according to it. As I once said that many were called to gain for themselves, with the help of the seed of My Divine Word, a lasting beatitude in the beyond after this short earthly existence, among the many called only few are chosen to receive the palm of victory, which I Myself once won through the cross and on the cross as a man.
I led the way for mankind as an example. As My life was not distinguished through high birth and other favourable conditions and I, finally, had to end My earthly life publicly as a criminal on the cross, all those who will follow Me will have similar experiences. They, too, will be persecuted, despised and ill-treated. But as My resurrection and afterwards My return into My Kingdom thwarted all human designs and I arrived in My heavens spiritualized, thus also those who offered their hearts as good soil for My Word, will once reap what I have here sown into their hearts. The knowledge that they have fought, suffered, but also conquered, will be their reward. They will receive their reward because they never -like careless wanderers - trampled underfoot the seed of love I had sown on their path. They also did not allow their hearts to harden nor did they neglect the germinating fruit for the sake of wordly pleasures which are the thorns for all that is spiritual. As good soil they shall bear noble fruits. As I once said: "Ye shall know them by their fruits!"
Thus the seed has ripened, so that finally the wheat can be separated from the chaff, the thorns and the thistles submitted to purification through a kind of fire and the ripe corn gathered into My barns. You can already notice everywhere how the sifting is commencing. I shall come to ask people to account for the seed I have sown. And the award will be in accordance with the work. My Word is divine seed, it is eternity's sowing for enternity. Whether the seed is ignored, whether it is trampled underfoot, whether it goes up among the thorns, - the divine germ remains forever, and one seed is sufficient to produce an abundance of that which is good and shower it upon the world. Therefore, it is of no importance if thousands of these seeds were sown in vain. For those which fell on good soil, into hearts full of faith, will be spreading the light over those who remain dark. And thus all that will never be destroyed which I, as the Creator, have brought forth, which I, as Jesus, sealed with My death on the cross and which I shall soon, as a reaper, be gathering from the fields of spiritual activity. Should the harvest also be small, this will still prove that the great never withers or decays if, encased in the small, it is capable of producing enormous effects. Therefore, do not allow your hearts to turn to stone or to be overgrown with weeds and thistles. Keep them at all times ready, so that My Word, which reanimates your soul in so many different ways, can sprout therein, so you do not have to share the fate of those who accept My Word only superficially and, when it requires action, prove that the seed had clung only to the surface of their heart but had not penetrated it at all.
Keep this in mind: A sower sows in order to reap one day. The time of harvest is approaching. Be prepared to be gathered into My barns and not to be compelled to start on the longer road of betterment together with the thorns and thistles. Therefore: Who has ears, let him hear whilst there is still time! Amen. (Sermons of the Lord, chap. 11)
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