Tuesday, March 3, 2009

MITN XIII, Verses 1- 23

Verses 1 - 11 were previously posted on the comments page:


1. On the same day Jesus went down to the beach and simply sat by the water to meditate in solitude.

2. But when the people saw that it was Him, they began to gather around Him in such great numbers that He got into a boat and remained sitting there, while the huge crowd stood on the shore and stared at Him in silent expectation.

3. And so He began to teach by telling them many things in didactic allegories or parables, saying, “A sower went out to sow.

4. And as he sowed, some of his seed fell by the side of the road, and the birds came and ate them up.

5. Still other seeds fell on rocky ground, where the soil was so shallow that it was virtually nonexistent; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.

6. But when the sun rose, they were scorched, and because they had no root system to nourish and anchor them, they just dried up and withered away.

7. And other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and suffocated them.

8. But other seeds fell on good soil, and yielded healthy grain. Some produced a hundred times as much as was sown, some sixty times as much, and some thirty.

9. He who has spiritual ears, let him listen and let him perceive, discern and comprehend by spiritual hearing."

10. After the conclusion of this teaching, His disciples came to Him and asked, “Why do You speak to them by telling these stories?”

11. And He replied to them, "I have unveiled the secrets of the Kingdom of/from the heavens to you first, but not to others yet.

12. You see, this is the way it (the Kingdom) works…everyone who uses what he/she already has within himself/herself (because the Kingdom is within you) will attract even more to himself/herself. But people who don't utilize what they already have within, will lose even what little they have already manifested without.

13. When I teach, I use allegories, or “stories”, as you call them, because they force my listeners to activate their inner vision, and to hear My words in their spirit. When they look only with the natural eye, they cannot see, and when they listen only with the external ear, they cannot hear or understand.

14. In this sense is the process of fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy, which says: You shall indeed hear and hear but never grasp and understand; and you shall indeed look and look but never see and perceive.

15. For this is about what is happening right now in this nation…and this nation's heart has grown grossly fat, their collective mind has become dull, their ears are heavy with prejudice so that they have difficulty in hearing, and their eyes they have intentionally and tightly closed. If this were not the case, they could see and perceive, they could hear and comprehend, and, most importantly, they could grasp and understand with the heart what can never be seen or heard with eyes and ears. If they allowed for this kind of insight and perception, I could turn and easily heal every one of them of the disease resulting from their self-inflicted blindness and deafness.

16. But you are blessed in spite of all that because your eyes have chosen to see, and your ears are purposefully open so that you can actually hear what I am saying now.

17. You don’t even realize the full impact of this, but it’s true anyway…many prophets and seers…righteous men and women of old who longed to see into the future…actually yearned to see what you are seeing right now. They believed for it, but did not see it. They wanted to hear what you are hearing, but they were not able to connect with it.

18. So listen with your heart, then, to the meaning of The Tale of the Sower:

19. You see, while anyone is hearing the Word of the Kingdom with nothing but the external ear, they fail to grasp and deeply comprehend it. So when something or someone who is adversarial to the Word that they have heard, challenges their revelation of it, that adversary is like an evil one who comes and snatches away the seed that should have been sown in the heart. Regardless of how much life-potential the planter scatters, when the seed remains un-sown…when it just sits lightly on the surface…it is vulnerable to enemies. This is symbolic of what was sown along the roadside.

20. As for what was sown on the thin and rocky soil…this is a similar issue. This represents the one who hears the Word (even beneath the surface), because he/she actually has the ability to comprehend the Kingdom on a deep level. So immediately this one welcomes and accepts the Word with joy, and embraces the revelation of it.

21. But even though he/she can recognize and receive Kingdom revelation, this person has no real internal root system, because he/she has formed no genuine relationships in the Kingdom. As I have already told you, the Kingdom comes in corporate revelation, so the “roots” here are the relationships that nourish and anchor an individual. So, because this one is isolated (and therefore rootless), he/she is inconstant, and only lasts a little while. When affliction or trouble or persecution comes to challenge the Word, at once he/she is caused to stumble, and just falls away because of his/her own disconnection.

22. As for what was sown among thorns, this is he or she who truly “hears” the Word…this one has both the required roots of relationship and the desired depth of discernment. But even though this one has everything that is needed, he/she fails to consistently get rid of what isn’t needed. And so the cares of the world…the wrong perception of the daily duties of life… and the deceitfulness of riches…the wrong idea that riches are something external…simply choke out and suffocate the God-breathed Word. In this case, someone who obviously should be fruitful and flourishing becomes bleak and barren, just by ignoring regular, basic garden maintenance.

23. And as for what was sown on good soil, this is he/she who hears the Word with the heart, or with spiritual ears, and grasps and comprehends it! This is the one holds onto their roots and gets rid of their weeds (they keep the relationships and let go of the cares), instead of the other way around. This one indeed bears fruit, and yields in one case a hundred times as much as was sown, in another sixty times as much, and in another thirty. In other words, a person’s harvest is ultimately determined by the quality of their soil, not by the amount of seed that is sown into them."

15 comments:

Izumi/JOY said...

THANK YOU!!!

What I like about the first pic, is how Jesus is looking up, thanking Abba.

Great lines:

12. But, people who don't utilize what they already have within...

13. ...force my listeners to activate their inner vision

14. ... process of fulfillment

15. ... ears heavy with prejudice & self-inflicted blindness and deafness. (oh, Jesus - how true. Thank You for grace and mercy.)

16. ... blessed in spite of all that. (Lord, I receive)

17. ... longed and yearned to see, believed, wanted to connect with the future

18. ... listen with your heart

19. life-potential seed

20. even beneath the surface; embracing the revelation of the Word

21. internal root system; Kingdom relationships

22. desired depth of discernment

23. ... holds onto their roots and gets rid of their weeds

What I like about the 2nd pic is how the sower is on the verge of stepping out of my screen. Also, it evokes compassion for the man who's searching on the ground. I appreciate the weeds in the forefront and birds in the background. The woman in the blue gown is interesting. I wonder if she's symbolic of the believer who's held on to her (royal priesthood) roots.

Pastor Dennis said...

“If this were not the case they could see and perceive”…..“Most importantly, they could grasp and understand with the heart what can never be seen or heard with eyes and ears. If they allowed for this kind of insight and perception, I could turn and easily heal every one of them” This dynamic equivalent (I would not call this a paraphrase given the context in which these words are stated) answers many questions that have been raised about this section.

Verses 18-23 give one of the clearest most thought provoking rendering of the explanation I have ever read.
I am loving it. Although I would change he/she and himself/herself to They, Them and Themselves
Peace,
Dennis

River said...

Hear The Word
Grasp The Word
Spread The Word

Seed produces Seed

Anonymous said...

Word ver: yeses

Enough said!

Anonymous said...

For me verse twelve appears to be the anchor for this chapter and it is reverberated by verse eighteen that simply tells us to listen with our heart.

Every person born is covered by the covenant of Eternal Love coming from a Source that can not be percieved with the natural senses yet that work bears witness to what is already within us.

Bishop, thank you for being persistent in this gospel for all the time that I've known you. Without much detail I must say that Teresa and I would not have come to be affected into greater knowledge of this gospel if she had not insisted that we come to hear you on a particular Sunday and she had been influenced to do that by Sandi at the time. I heard with my heart that day and a great flood of tears washed me clean from years of predjudice that my heart had been telling me all along needed to be separated from the fruit of my own spirit.

The gospel of reconciliation sets free and it always has. One of the main keys to transfering the peace associated with this gospel is to get people in touch with their own heart.

This may be the most powerful chapter that I have read in MITN. I am not only looking forward to more but anticipate that this gospel will be made real to many people around the world in their own languages in days soon to come.

Bishop, with all the love that I have for the Christ of this gospel I encourage, no I command you to complete this work in the name of the Jesus Whose Spirit is represented here even if you have to live and remain in good health for many years beyond right now to accomplish it.

JB

Brenda said...

Verse 22 stares me in the face like a mirror and each day I am working to get to verse 23. It is not an easy process but God is with me and as I sharpen my tools to remove the stuff that is not needed I began to walk in the blessedness of what God has prepared for me. The more weeds and thorns that are plucked out the more my children and grandchildren will see the glory of God in me. They will see the blessed Woman that I am because God says I am.
I've not arrived yet, I'm still striving to get to verse 23 but make no mistake about it I will get there because I am more than a conqueor.

Friend4Life said...

Good Morning,Every-1

Bishop, as I was reading your MITN; I was like I have read/heard this already. (How could this be?)
So, I turned to AYITN and some days I look at certain days; especially my birthday. And there it was.

~Support System~ May 2nd

~~~Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I have a SOLID ROOT SYSTEM in the BODY OF CHRIST to keep me from falling away when I encounter persecution for the Word's sake: pastors/shepherds, mentors, those who have set an example, teachers, intercessors, those who speak prophetically into me, prayer partners, friends, those with whom I am in covenant, the great cloud of witnesses that surrounds me in the spirit realm, angels who minister to and for me. I am not alone. I am CONNECTED. I have SUPPORT. I have ROOTS!~~~~~

What a reminder...I have ROOTS!

Avatar said...

OMG!

P. Debye said...

When you walked away from posting MITN XIII V 1-23 last night, you said "I think this is the greatest thing I have ever written".....I agree. In "This Glory" level that you are currently walking in, you are experiencing the depth, height, breath and width of God and His Word In The Now. I am very proud!

Iris said...

Father, anoint my ears to hear Your Kingdom revelation, anoint my eyes to see Your face, anoint my mouth to speak Your words. I give you my pliable heart to shape it how it needs to be. The soil of my soul is fertilized with Your love. Allow every seed to mature to its fullest potential, bearing much fruit and multiplying a hundred fold. Thank you for the understanding of how to recognize the harvest from the weed.

I love You God, my every heart beat whispers Your name.
Iris

Donald said...

The final sentence in verse 23 is without a doubt the perfect way to wrap up that portion of scripture.

Larry Usher said...

No matter what soil we were initially planted in, we have the right as seeds(as one translation puts it) to remove ourselves constantly to better soil. Physically or soulishly the enlightened disciple is always moving toward the rich, fertile soil.

I saw something this morning regarding the following verse:

12. You see, this is the way it (the Kingdom) works…everyone who uses what he/she already has within himself/herself (because the Kingdom is within you) will attract even more to himself/herself. But people who don't utilize what they already have within, will lose even what little they have already manifested without.

I imagined that if the widow in 1Kings17 had perceived the little bit of oil and flour she had left for the amazing harvest it really was, she would have been beside herself with joy and thankfulness. I am beginning to look at everything I "possess" and every ablity, talent and gift I have within myself in an exciting new light. It's like trying to wring every last drop of potential out of everything within my perview.
What is my "cruse of oil and tad of flour?

1Kings17:

7 -9 Eventually the brook dried up because of the drought. Then God spoke to him: "Get up and go to Zarephath in Sidon and live there. I've instructed a woman who lives there, a widow, to feed you."

10 -11 So he got up and went to Zarephath. As he came to the entrance of the village he met a woman, a widow, gathering firewood. He asked her, "Please, would you bring me a little water in a jug? I need a drink." As she went to get it, he called out, "And while you're at it, would you bring me something to eat?"

12 She said, "I swear, as surely as your God lives, I don't have so much as a biscuit. I have a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a bottle; you found me scratching together just enough firewood to make a last meal for my son and me. After we eat it, we'll die."

13 -14 Elijah said to her, "Don't worry about a thing. Go ahead and do what you've said. But first make a small biscuit for me and bring it back here. Then go ahead and make a meal from what's left for you and your son. This is the word of the God of Israel: 'The jar of flour will not run out and the bottle of oil will not become empty before God sends rain on the land and ends this drought.

What's in your wallet?(so to speak!)

Just a great, blessed day all around!

Bro Lar

peacemaker said...

Every chapter of MITN draws we the readers closer to the original idea expressed by the master teacher. The imagery of sowing may be dated, but the concept of kingdom understanding is timeless. Jesus was a master at using such imagery to convey a truth and you, sir, are a master at surgically removing that truth from centuries of dogma and mistranslation and re-introducing the readers to the Nowness of it.
That can't be learned. That is a gift.
I don't even know if this is your intent, and this may make some uncomfortable, but your paraphrase of the New Testament is restoring the to the world it's inclusive and universal teachings and significance. It is releasing those timeless words from the imprisonment of religion and breaking them free from the confines of one tradition, making them relevant to ALL.

Peace, Wisdom, and Joy to you as you continue this most important endeavor.

PM

Larry Usher said...

Great observation PM!!

Lar

Bishop Jim Swilley said...

Thanks so much, everyone...

Yeah, P. Dennis, the he/she usage can get a little tedious...I think that I write it that way because of all the insanity that's gone on with the TNIV...

Wow, thanks, PM...I'm speechless...glad to hear from you...I was about to come looking for you...I don't know if you saw it, but DBA put in a short appearance here day before yesterday...