Four Soils of the Human Heart

The Seed
The Word of God
Sown into the sinful human heart

The sower proclaims the Word of God
Christ as Lord
Shares the Gospel message

The hard heart
Unreceptive to the Word
The seed cannot penetrate
The soil of the hardened human heart
Ears hear, but the words are not understood
Soon the evil one will snatch away what was sown

Dare I say
We all were born with a hard heart
Alive to sin and dead to God

The superficial heart
Soil that looks good at first glance
But lying beneath is a bedrock of stone
Seed is sown and springs up ever so quickly
Soon it will wither and die under the sun’s scorching heat
Roots cannot grow deep nor penetrate a heart of stone

A heart preoccupied
Good soil, polluted with weeds and thorns
Rob good seed of nutrients and light needed to grow
Soon the seed will be choked out, slowly over time it dies
Just like the cares, worries and riches of this world
Leave behind an empty shell, with no life, nor fruit of faith

Lastly, we see the good soil
A heart prepared by God through His Word
The seed of the Gospel is heard and understood
A repentant heart responds
Bearing the fruit of the Spirit
Obedience and faithfully persevering

What is necessary for bad soil?
Nothing, do absolutely nothing!
What about good soil?
God uses His Word to prepare a sinner’s heart
Enables one to hear the Word
Understand it and bear fruit

So, which is it?
The Sovereignty of God?
The responsibility of man?
Yes!

By Susan Wachtel
March 10, 2019

This poem was inspired by a sermon from our Pastor, Tom Pennington on Matthew 13:1-23 – The Parable of the Sower, and  from the notes that I took.

I would like to encourage you to listen to this message, Four Soils Part 2. Perhaps you are concerned about the salvation of a loved one…someone you’ve prayed for. Maybe you are wondering if you are truly saved? Was there a profession of faith? When you look back do you see fruit? Fruit of repentance? Fruit of the Spirit?

There is absolutely nothing more important than knowing with absolute assurance that you are saved, forgiven of your sin, all because of Jesus Christ and His perfect and complete atoning death on the cross.

This last week, we saw news about celebrities who died unexpectedly. One was pretty young. The thing is, none of us knows the day and hour when we will die. Once we die, there are no second chances. There will be no changing our minds. It’s important that we get it right today. For today is the day of salvation. 2 Corinthians 6:2

That day Jesus went out of the house and was sitting by the sea. And large crowds gathered to Him, so He got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd was standing on the beach.

And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, “Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.” Matthew 13:1-9

Advertisements

Living and Powerful Word of God

Heb 4-12.jp_Resize

For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. – Hebrews 4:12

This week I was reminded of the truth of Hebrews 4:12 when God used scripture to expose my sinful tendencies to be critical and judgmental.

In Community Bible Study this year we are studying the Servants of God which includes the books of 1 & 2 Samuel.  I had done this study a couple of years ago and was familiar with the people in the scripture, not only with how they started, but how they finished.

Though the Israelites have rejected God as their King and desire an earthly king, so they can be like the other nations, God answers their request.  He gives them Saul as their first king, but not without ample warnings about the consequences of being governed by an earthly king instead of God.  Saul started out with promise, but his life took a left turn and he did not finish well.

As I completed this lesson, listened to the lecture and read this week’s notes the Holy Spirit has convicted me and revealed my sinful tendency to be critical and judgmental.  When I read about Saul’s beginnings, I found myself doubting his good intentions and didn’t want to acknowledge some of the good things that he had done.  He demonstrated humility after Samuel had first anointed him as king.  He chose not to take revenge against naysayers who were against him.  He rose up to defend people who were being threatened by an enemy.  I didn’t want to see the good because I know what’s coming down the line and the left turn that Saul will take.

To reinforce that conviction, early on in the lecture our teaching director Dave said, “Don’t dismiss or think you can’t learn something from someone who turns out to be a bad person.”  He also reminded us that this story isn’t about Samuel or Saul…its God’s story.

When reading this week’s notes I encountered the same thing when it talked about some of the things that Saul did that were good and right.

So how come I want to dismiss that or cast aspersions on his motives and think he wasn’t sincere?  The bottom line is that I don’t know the genuineness of Saul’s heart, only the Lord knows that.  He alone is the One who knows the thoughts and intentions of a person’s heart.  Unless God reveals someone’s motives in scripture then I am imposing my thoughts and interpretation on the text…eisegesis verses exegesis.

Lord…thank You for revealing where my heart and attitude was not right before You.  Thank You for the conviction of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God which is true and unchanging.  Please forgive me for my arrogance in presuming that I could be the judge and jury against someone.  Help me to recognize and repent of a critical, negative and judgmental spirit.  Help me have a heart like Yours.  Thank You that You have given me a heart of flesh and have removed my heart of stone.  Keep doing Your mighty life-changing work in my life.  It’s in Jesus powerful and transforming name I pray…Amen!

The WORD 8/11/13

The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17

 

1 Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
3 Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
4 Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s
Psalm 103:1-5

Jim Allis – A Heart for God – The Friday Five

Bible Heart Sepia- Heb 4-12

It’s been over 2 ½ years since I first started corresponding with Jim Allis.

One of the best things about the internet is the friendships that you make with people, some who are far away, with whose hearts you are knit together and who share a love for the Lord.

In those ensuing years since we started corresponding, we have prayed for one another as we go through various trials and tribulations.  Over the last year, the genuineness of Jim and Joy’s faith has been proven true through trials they’ve faced.  Their love for the Lord did not fail them.  Instead they continued to be God’s faithful witnesses wherever God led them.

Jim Allis has been a pastor and evangelist for over 40 years in England.  He and his wife Joy love the Lord, His Word, the lost and fellow believers.  The Allis’ know the power of God’s Word to save us and keep us.  They know firsthand the power of God’s Word to convict, convince, rebuke, encourage and strengthen us.

Out of his passion for evangelism and a desire to equip believers Jim’s has been writing weekly articles called “Think Spot”.  He also records them and Joy closes with a prayer.

Just recently, with the help of Joy’s son Mark, Jim has started a website JimAllis.co.uk where he has made the materials he has worked on over the years available to readers.  If you prefer podcasts as opposed to reading, there are many resources available for the listener.  More materials are being posted every day.

I encourage you to head on over to Jim Allis’ website and bookmark it as a favorite and visit weekly.  Be sure to leave a word of encouragement to this man who is faithful and uncompromising when it comes to handling the Word of God.

A special thank you to Wanda at The Watered Soul for inviting me to participate in her weekly Five for Friday article.  (I’m a wee bit late being that it’s Sunday.) Wanda’s is another website you should check out.  She shares from her heart and highlights many Christian websites and resources.

The Word of God

The Word of God
Creator of all things

The True Light
Rejected by His own

Receives children, born by the will of God
Those who receive and believe

The glorious Son of God
Christ Jesus full of grace and truth



by Susan Bunts Wachtel
September 18, 2011



In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God.  All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.  In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.  And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. – John 1:1-5

Charismatic Chaos Enters the Mainstream

A friend had recently shared how powerful Pastor John MacArthur’s sermons are on the Charismatic movement.  Truth filled sermons and exposing the lack of biblical doctrine, errors and documenting blasphemous, heretical teaching of many Charismatic leaders. 

I am so thankful for Pastor John MacArthur and Grace to You ministries who have made available for free the download of thousands of sermons he has preached for over 40 years.  I went online and downloaded Pastor MacArthur’s series “Charismatic Chaos”

My eyes were opened to the subtly of Charismatic teaching that has made its way into mainstream churches, pastors and Bible studies.  Teaching that is based on personal experience that’s put on par with or elevate over the Bible.  Feelings take precedence over Biblical truth.  People claim that they’ve received messages from God, however those messages don’t always line up with scripture. 

The problem comes if God is still speaking to us outside of scripture, then the Biblical canon is not closed. Who do you believe?  Do you believe the Bible or do you believe the person who is claiming to have a word from God?

Because the Bible is whole, perfect, complete and the plumb line by which everything should be measured, if someone’s teaching doesn’t line up with the Bible then they are in error. 

At first I found myself saddened when I recognized some of the errors in one of my favorite Bible study teachers.  But I realized that I should be grateful that we have been given the inerrant and inspired word of God by which we can discern error.  Am I going to love God and His word above all things and people?  Am I going to love Him with all my heart, mind, soul and strength?  Am I going to guard the truth?

I believe that all too often people, especially women, have a hard time confronting error and standing for the truth.  We are so easily led by our hearts instead of reason.  But when I see erroneous teaching, it’s an opportunity to reach out and do so with love and humility and covered in prayer. 

From the beginning Satan has been mixing the truth with lies.  He still does that today.  The enemy’s lies touch our feelings and emotions and it’s hard to see the truth from the lie.  But if we have an unchanging standard of truth, the Bible, we can measure what we are hearing against the truth in the word of God.

I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.  As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.  For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. – Galatians 1:6-10


To listen to Pastor John MacArthur’s sermons on the Charismatic movement click on the links below:

Some Thoughts…At the End of the Day

I am so grateful to have friends in my life who are more committed to my holiness than my happiness.  People who are not afraid to speak the truth from the word of God into my life.  They have an unbending standard and they can speak with confidence when their counsel is based on the solid rock of God’s word. 

I’m grateful for friends who know the King of kings and Lord of lords and are able come to the throne of grace in prayer.  Rather than someone telling me, “I’ll be thinking about you”, or “Best of luck to you”, I know that they will go to God in prayer and that He hears our prayers.