Bible Verse: Mark 4 vs 1-20

And again He began to teach by the sea. And a great multitude was gathered to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat in it on the sea; and the whole multitude was on the land facing the sea. 2 Then He taught them many things by parables, and said to them in His teaching: 3 "Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. 4 And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air* came and devoured it. 5 Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up it was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away. 7 And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop. 8 But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred." 9 And He said to them,* "He who has ears to hear, let him hear!" 10 But when He was alone, those around Him with the twelve asked Him about the parable. 11 And He said to them, "To you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God; but to those who are outside, all things come in parables, 12 so that 'Seeing they may see and not perceive, And hearing they may hear and not understand; Lest they should turn, And their sins be forgiven them.'"* 13 And He said to them, "Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? 14 The sower sows the word. 15 And these are the ones by the wayside where the word is sown. When they hear, Satan comes immediately and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts. 16 These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness; 17 and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word's sake, immediately they stumble. 18 Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the ones who hear the word, 19 and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. 20 But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred."

God made us to be fruitful; however, fruitfulness is not automatic in the life of a believer. God designed and empowered us to be fruitful but we can end up being like a museum relic if you are not conscious of this fact. We must understand that God made us primarily to be fruitful and that unfruitfulness is an abomination and takes us away from what He originally designed us to be. Every person born on the surface the earth is equipped to be fruitful but not everybody can become fruitful and this can be as a reason of choice or some events. However some spiritual activities that we indulge in can also render us unfruitful. In Mk.4, Jesus talked about the ground where the seeds were sown, the last two did not have any problems but the rest had, the one that fell on thorny ground did not do well not because the ground was not fertile but because the thorns choked it; what has made church members to be less fruitful spiritually and even though they are in church some cannot count the number of souls they have led to Christ neither has their lifestyle changed? They lie and carry animosity of all kinds of negative mindset and cannot boast of one testimony of what the Lord has done in their lives, and also there is no change in their social life or conduct. What is choking our salvation and making us to be like plants that have grown to become trees that cannot produce fruits? Why is it that some of us have been Christians all this while and there is no significant change in our lives? What is the cause this unfruitfulness? In Mk. 4, when Jesus spoke about the thorny ground, despite the fact that it was thorny, it was still fertile but because of the thorns on it choked the fruits, it became unfruitful; these thorns are found in Mk. 4:18-19 and they are.

1. Cares of the world- this is to be carnally minded, and when we become so carnally focused our mind is no longer subject to God and if our mind is not subject to God it cannot receive the things from Him that will make us fruitful. When we become carnally minded, our mind is enmity to God and we lose our connections to Him. The cares of this world brings about disconnection to life, no dead man can bear fruit only the living. If we are spiritually dead we cannot bear fruits or produce spiritually (Matt.6:36). Sadly, some of us are so much into the cares of this world that even in church we cannot concentrate on any message. For us to be fruitful, we need to remove the cares of this world from us because God sometimes will disconnect us first from one thing in order for Him to connect us to another but we can get so consumed by the very thing that God wants to disconnect us from and lose our ability to bear fruit.

2. The deceitfulness of riches- people are often deceived by riches, they don’t know what riches is or what it is for and how to get riches neither do they know when they are rich or poor (Deut.8:18, Lk.12:15). having things is not wrong, it is good to have things in abundance as a matter of facts, lack is not the will of the God and He is not always happy when we live in lack, however, we can have a lot of things and still be poor, this is because our true riches are not in the items we possess but our heart towards God. The reason we have become so unfruitful is because we are choked up with the earthly riches rather than having a right heart towards God. We need to get the right picture of riches and stop living in deception because we can have a lot of things and God still sees us as poor.

3. Lust of the other thing- lust is the extreme cravings and uncontrolled appetite for something we do not have. It is an extreme greed for material wealth and an insatiable eagerness to possess something at all cost. Whenever we are under the control of these things we will become unfruitful. According to C.S. Lewis, “there can be no desires until you see the satisfaction of desire”, there are certain things that may not appeal to you until it has been made to be satisfactory. Once a satisfaction is created, desire will follow. In Gen. 3, Eve did not have any interest in the tree until the serpent created a sense of satisfaction in her that made her desire the forbidden fruit. When things become deceptive in our eyes our decisions will be wrong.

For you to be fruitful you have to be connected to Christ Jesus whether your yield is 100, 60 or 30 fold because He is the giver of life. When you do not have God’s divine nature, you can be His son and not be fruitful.