The Reckless Sower! Luke 8:4-15

Series: Pre-Lenten Sermons

February 12, 2023
Rev. Nathan J. Rusert

Christ's Word is living and is the living Seed that saves sinners by grace through Faith in the salvation He alone accomplished for us. Sermon Text: Luke 8:4-15. Sermon Theme: "The Reckless Sower!" Preached for Sexagesima, February 12, 2023 at Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Tell City, Indiana by Rev. Nathan J. Rusert.

Episode Notes

Sexagesima                                                                 12-February-2023
Sermon Text: Luke 8:4-15
Sermon Theme: “The Reckless Sower”

I.N.R.I. Psa 44:1 We have heard with our ears, O God, Our fathers have told us, The deeds You did in their days, In days of old: The sons of Korah sing forth the Lord’s faith deliverance of the children of Israel. They heard with their ears of God’s mighty deeds through the voice of their fathers sowing the life giving seed of God’s Word. Rooted and grounded in the Promised Christ through hearing His Word, they knew where to turn when trouble struck. They pray, “Psa 44:23-26 Awake! Why do You sleep, O Lord? Arise! Do not cast us off forever. (24) Why do You hide Your face, And forget our affliction and our oppression? (25) For our soul is bowed down to the dust; Our body clings to the ground. (26) Arise for our help, And redeem us for Your mercies' sake.” From the dust of depression, destruction, and death they cry out trusting Christ’s mercy. His grace alone is sufficient in our weakness.
    Last Monday two severe quakes hit southern Turkey. Trusted buildings collapsed and entombed many. All of the world’s wealth could not stop or prevent earthquakes. All our imagined power to control nature is shown a farce in the face of a world groaning under the weight of Adam’s sin. As of this morning the death toll is estimated at 28,000. In the 49th Psalm the sons of Korah sing, Psa 49:5-9 Why should I fear in the days of evil, When the iniquity at my heels surrounds me? (6) Those who trust in their wealth And boast in the multitude of their riches, (7) None of them can by any means redeem his brother, Nor give to God a ransom for him— (8) For the redemption of their souls is costly, And it shall cease forever— (9) That he should continue to live eternally, And not see the Pit.” Worldly wealth cannot save, moth and rust eat it away, thieves break in and steal it.  
    We need to sow into our children’s ears the one thing that endures through every tragedy, disaster, and even death. What is it? Jesus preaches, Mat 24:35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.   How? Learn today from Jesus - The Reckless Sower!
    Jesus is preaching again. As St. Mark’s historical record reports, Mar 1:38-39 [Jesus] But He said to them, "Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth." (39) And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons.   The history record by St. Matthew informs us that Jesus was preaching in the synagogue at Capernaum freeing a man from demon possession. The Scribes and Pharisees objected, exiling Jesus from their synagogue. When the Jews were exiled they gathered by the water to hear God’s Word preached. It was no different as the crowds follow Jesus to the water of the Sea of Galilee and He climbs into a boat to preach. Creation is being reclaimed as the Father’s Word is spoken through His only-begotten Son breathing forth the Holy Spirit over the waters. (Vs.4-8)
    Jesus preaches a picture story, a parable of a sower planting seed. You don’t need to be a farmer to know that throwing seed on a parking lot isn’t going to yield a crop. Farmers often worry about their input costs. Modern corn and soybean seed is priced down to the cost of each seed. Seed catalogs arrive this time of year, gardeners know that good seed is expensive. You don’t waste precious seed by throwing it down on the beaten path, rocky soil, or soil full of weeds. You reserve it only for the good dirt - it alone promises to yield a crop.
    Why is the Creator preaching about planting seeds? He called forth the earth from the water on the third 24 hour day of the existence of all things. He spoke His Word and plants sprung up from the ground - each bringing forth seed to grow more plants after its own kind. His Word spoken that day 6,000 years ago is still living and active causing each seed to grow, each flower to bloom, each plant to bring forth fruit after its kind to feed both man and beast. As Jesus preached through the prophet Isaiah, Isa 55:10-11 "For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower And bread to the eater, (11) So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
    “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” Dirt receive the pure and living Seed - it alone brings life! (Vs.9-10) What does this mean? “To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of God!” You cannot know or believe by your own reason or strength. You cannot make a decision to follow Jesus. Unless God the Father draws you through Christ’s Word by His Holy Spirit - you cannot know - you cannot confess the truth from the heart. The truth that you have no goodness apart from Jesus. The truth that you have no life apart from Jesus and His Word. The truth that His grace alone is sufficient unto you. The Truth that when you are weak He is strong! This is the mystery revealed only in Christ Jesus the Word made flesh by His Holy Spirit. You are given to know the mysteries - that you might give them away following the example of the Reckless Sower.
      Listen! (Vs.11) The Seed is the Word of God! You are not to lock it up keeping it in the four walls of the church, or your home. It is given to bring Life to our dying world. (Vs.12) Speak the Word, even to those hardened by the world. Satan possesses them and quickly snatches the Word from their hearts, so they may not believe and be saved. He will not allow them to hear that salvation isn’t something they don’t earn. Sinners are saved freely by God’s grace for Christ Jesus has paid our full debt on the cross. Satan hardens them to trust in their good life, their own self chosen way to earn God’s favor - it is a lie. Cast the Seed of Christ’s Word into their ears - even if they hate you - follow Jesus!
    Listen!(Vs. 13) Cast the Seed of Christ’s Word on the rocky soil. They rejoice to hear, but when trials come, suffering - they quickly fall away. They forsake the Faith in trials. Trusting in ease, and not in the cross of Christ Jesus.
    Listen! (Vs.14) Cast the Seed of Christ’s Word even among the thorns and thistles. Those occupied with the cares, riches, pleasures of life. Those glued to their screens looking for escape, rather than for salvation and real life in a real Savior.  
    Listen! (Vs.15) Cast the Seed of Christ’s Word for it is living and active. Dirt doesn’t make itself good. It needs to be tilled, breaking up its hardness. Rocks need to be exposed and picked. The weeds need to be pulled. The dirt thinks that all the disruptions, all the upheaval and overturning, all the pulling out of that which is rooted deeply in its heart - means its death. It is only the tender hand of the Creator, the Gardener, the Reckless Sower - preparing it to receive the living Seed of Christ’s Word. His Word exposes the lies of the devil and breaks our hardened hearts. His Word, ‘I baptize you!” makes us a new creation breaking our stony hearts. His Word, “I forgive you!” pulls the weeds from our hearts, as we lay aside those false idols that cannot save - and cling to Jesus. His Word creates in us a clean heart - ready to daily receive the Seed - and to bear the fruit of love in patience.
    God the Holy Spirit teaches, 1Pe 2:9-10 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (10) who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.” You are the priesthood of all believers. Not to keep the Seed to yourself. The Lutheran Hour’s motto is “Bringing Christ to the nations, and the nations to the Church.” This is our motto - recklessly sow the Seed of Christ’s Word - proclaim His praises. How? Receive it from His hand every Sunday. Let Him plant it deeply in your heart in daily family devotions and prayers. Learn of its power in the trials and temptations you face. Speak it to all - never be ashamed to speak a Bible verse to the hardened, hurting, or distracted. Sow the Seed of Christ’s Word. It will accomplish His purpose - bringing life to the world - calling the elect into His Church on earth and preserving them in the Faith until the final harvest. Amen.  

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