Mark 4:24-34: The Kingdom Metaphors
After Jesus told the disciples that they couldn’t keep the light of the gospel to themselves but used it to spread it to the nations, He gave them a warning.
24 And he said to them, “Pay attention to what you hear: with the measure you use, it will be measured to you, and still more will be added to you. 25 For to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.”
He told them of the great responsibility they had in spreading the gospel of the kingdom because they have been given more. Jesus is communicating with the disciples that doing kingdom work is a privilege. Those who have more will not beg for less. In fact, those who are not doing His job, what he has will be taken away from him.
It is with such great honor and privilege that we serve the King of Kings. Millions of people around the world have flung their lives for the cause of the gospel. They understood and experienced the power of the gospel.
Jesus then illustrated what the kingdom of God is:
26 And he said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. 27 He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how. 28 The earth produces by itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. 29 But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”
What I love about God’s kingdom is that it is God who makes it grow. I am not responsible whether the seeds would germinate or not. It is supernatural. All God requires of me is to show up and do the work of the kingdom. When a farmer plants a seed, he does not wish nothing happens. In fact, every harvest time, he is expectant to harvest some or harvest much.
When we get this concept as Christians, we would be in the business of strategically scattering seeds of the kingdom everywhere we go because we know it is God’s business to make the seeds grow.
30 And he said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it? 31 It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown on the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, 32 yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”
A great reminder Jesus gave the disciples is that everything starts small. It begins with a seed. I have seen this truth in my life. From seeds of greatness, seeds of God’s dreams being planted in my heart in my teen years is now being fulfilled and lived out after more than a decade.
It is also good to remind ourselves to be patient. Sometimes we get impatient with the growth of our church thinking that our labor in the Lord is in vain. You will never know the full effect of some of the work we do instantly. You also would want a long-lasting impact on your labor for the Lord. So build generationally. Build and plant long-term knowing it would produce much!