“The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side. And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, so that he went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow; And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up: Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear. And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them. Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” Matthew 13:1-23
We certainly live in pressing times and the future appears to be grim. Jesus in Matthew 24:7-8 said, “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
We are seeing such things and have been for quite some time now, nothing new. However, one of the things we are also seeing is the apostasy in full bloom, getting worse and worse seemingly with each passing year. This is also one of the things that were prophesied to happen prior to the Rapture (1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Tim. 3:1-9; 2 Thes. 2:3), the falling away is ongoing.
There is a solution to these ongoing problems that humanity is facing in the world, that solution is simply Jesus Christ. Yet how many times, especially with older American adults, do we see the fruit of the bad seed that has been sown amongst us?
We live in a world with undeniable price increases, with clear wars and rumors of war, with pestilences and with a real prospect of a worldwide famine that could cause increase in food prices to be clearly unaffordable, due to shortages, by those who particularly live in third world countries.
There are many in the world that are concerned, for instance ‘nuke pills’ or potassium iodide pills are sold out, many who ended up paying well over a $100.00 for a 14 days supplies that would normally run less than $15.00. This is not the first time there has been a run on these pills, after the ordeal with President Trump and North Korea began, the pills also were in high demand.
Am I saying that having such a thing is wrong? No, I have had a supply for each of my immediate family members for years. The pills are good for 10 years and are relatively inexpensive when purchased at a time when there is no high demand.
Then there is a demand for storable food that is incredibly strong right now. From what I have heard and seen, there are shortages in that market all over, as well as strong price increases. For my family, in that regards, I simply put my trust in God.
“What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” Psalms 56:3
In an article that is published on the website called Unprepared: Prepped Without Oil these sort of things are discussed. The purpose here isn’t to chide a person one way or another in regards to whether or not they have storable food, a bomb shelter, nuke pills or plenty of weapons and ammunition, but rather to remind those that without Christ, you have nothing.
So while there is a lot on the horizon of what could happen or equally could not happen, for certainly we do not know the future of these things, what we do know is that all men die and all men need to repent towards God and by faith believe into Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” Hebrews 9:27-28
“Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” Acts 20:21
The problem we have here is bad seed that has been planted and grown up, producing not the righteousness that is found in Christ (Rom. 3:22), but rather a false Gospel, one that bears no true fruit and one that only leads to tares that will be burned (Matt. 13:30).
A portion of this fault certainly lies with Churches that are not careful about doing the Lord’s work of planting and watering, while allowing God to cause the increase (1 Cor. 3:6).
My family and I attend a independent fundamental Baptist Church in Rapid City, South Dakota. Inside the Church they have a tract-rack, some of the tracts are quite old. The other day I happened to take a look at these older tracts to see how they present the Gospel, while considering what the Bible says (Acts 17:11).
Though the Church didn’t produce these tracts, another ministry did, these tracts seemingly some from the 60’s and 70’s, though some had a good intro story to make a man think, they by and large lacked mention of repentance and most had a ‘sinner’s prayer,’ something stated to repeat that is found nowhere in the Bible.
This year, living in Rapid City, I decided that All Will Stand would due a public outreach to help spread the Gospel to the inhabitants here. Rather than just have a presence on shortwave/internet radio, books and the articles on the website, it certainly seemed good to spend a certain amount of time per week doing something that I hadn’t done in years and that was getting out there and jumping into firsthand trying to warn people of the danger of not yielding their life to Christ.
In order to be effective I needed a tract to hand out, some prayer on the matter and thought regarding the things that I had thought, what the Bible said and simply putting the matter into the Lord’s hands, knowing that through prayer and His will, I will accomplish, with diligence, the work of the Lord, not knowing what fruit it will bear.
Without no disrespect to my Church, a local group of Believers who faithfully meet, there simply was not programs ongoing to do such things that I was made aware of. In such a scenario, that does not negate my responsibility before my Creator to go out into the world and preach the Gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15).
I spoke to my pastor regarding my intentions, who then arranged for me to meet with him and another pastor, who was able to give me some first hand advice on what to expect on the field. Well certainly the ability to hand out a Gospel tract to those who accept one is simple enough.
At my disposal, I had a stack of tracts that I had ordered from a tract ministry, ones that do not include a sinner’s prayer and also preach repentance. Quickly however, I realized that while these tracts are good, they are not necessarily the tool that would have to be used on a regular basis, for the ignorance of the Word of God is MUCH greater than most would imagine.
One of the coworkers in the ministry, Brandon, has the opportunity to work with young people, as he manages them at a restaurant. He told me some time ago that these high school students have never even heard of the Flood, Noah, etc., I began to ponder these things. Could it be?
There was a time where God’s Truth was preached throughout the United States. There was large Sunday Schools where many children grew up with some sort of basic knowledge about God. They had buses all over that picked up the kids and took them to Church on a weekly basis, I know, I rode one of those buses with my sister many times when my parents did not attend.
Gospel tracts were popular and numerous tracts were handed out across this once great land. There were street preachers in the major cities, preaching the Word of God on the corner. They were people who by their conversation, which included modest dress, Christ-like love of their neighbor, decency, honesty, hard work and many other attributes that God’s Word declares as the right way, who might only in passing mention that they were a Christian and trusted in the Lord, but their fruit was evident to those who would see them, even in passing.
The Word of God was near, not far off. While arguing the Word of God is near still being true, it is (Rom. 10:8), those who seemingly have genuine faith in Christ doing His good works (Matt. 7:16) are far off from the norm of society.
How is it that we neglect to ensure that the Gospel tracts are accurate? Do we want to point people, in this jungle of apostasy, to a false gospel, to an apostate church?
I struggled with this myself in regards to a tract. I had thought of a theme to right one, but in the meantime I had wrote an article about What Jesus did on the Cross. This article was written to the glory of God for Resurrection Sunday. Afterwards and after receiving a comment on the article, I determined that that article would make a good Gospel tract.
For while there are still people out there who have had some knowledge of God through attending Church periodically or perhaps having went to Sunday School as a child, by and large we must realize the ignorance that is held by most people. Have you not seen their version of ‘church’ that is often found packed in communities throughout this once great land?!
Can those who know Christ really assume that such places of worship, such style of preaching, some ignorance of God’s Word, the twisting, the deception, leaving out portions that do not align with their ‘gospel’ are acceptable before the Almighty God, our Creator?!
The ignorance is ripe. While I assure you that, even if small, a group of Believers meeting and remaining separate for the Lord is effective, most of the world is in disagreement. They are sowing bad seed, they are watering tares, they are gathering up that which is to be burned at the end of the age.
“But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” Matthew 15:13-14
“But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.” 2nd Timothy 3:13
We must consider and pray regarding any work that we who are Believers are doing for the Lord. Who is our audience?
America was once a nation where God’s Truth was preached throughout the land, whether or not people received it. There has always been false teachers, though they are abundant now, as the Bible foretold they would be.
Most biblical Churches now are small, there power is small, not because of their size, but perhaps they have given up? Certainly the world doesn’t receive them, as they didn’t receive Christ (John 14:17), but our responsibility before God Almighty remains the same.
My tract has a lot of Bible verses in it, in fact it is a twelve page booklet that can be downloaded for free at the website. I know for many it is too much Bible, it likely will not get read. Perhaps some will keep it and one day when God has their attention and they are actively seeking Him (Jer. 29:13) they will find it, but perhaps not.
I’ve always had some interest in the comic book type tracts and used to hand out such ones a long time ago. Certainly as I was advised by a pastor, they get read. However, when I mentioned that there was no repentance preached and there was a sinner’s prayer, I was told that I could place a Church sticker over the back page to cover that up or just leave it. The final advice was that they got read and that fruit would come from it (Isa. 55:11).
What type of fruit, perhaps some good, but how much of it would be bad seed? I know the preaching of the Gospel is not popular (1 Cor. 1:18) to the dying world, but nonetheless, as I stand before God and will so also at the ‘judgment seat of Christ (2 Cor. 5:10)’, for me, I will prefer to hand someone something that contains the information that is needed, proper preaching of repentance, explaining what Christ did on the Cross, something that most professing ‘christians’ could not answer, remaining void of a ‘sinner’s prayer’ and rather letting the individual work out such things with a repentant heart towards God and faith in Christ Jesus (Eph. 2:8-9, Rom. 10:8-10). For I know there will be ‘few’ (Matt. 7:14).
I wish there was a revival in this country towards the things of God, in all truthfulness regarding the Holy Scriptures. I wish that once again the small congregations of Believers that truly meet in the name of Jesus Christ would grow in leaps in bounds, turning the world upside down (Acts 17:6), but I also know that the time of apostasy that happens before the “time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7) or the Tribulation is seemingly at hand. Still we are exhorted the following:
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28:19-20
There was an invitation card left on a table at work for ‘easter’ services. With that was a web address and I looked it up. This emerging church, which has ‘christian’ rock concerts performed by sensual world people, who though they profess to know God are far from His Truth (Titus 1:16), were having their ‘big’ service of the year in their two locations in the area.
Here, instead of a small group of faithful Believers, you have a large congregation which indeed needed a second location. Programs for every age, a large modern building, screens up on the stage, as the preacher preaches a watered down Gospel, not pointing to the way of life (Prov. 6:23), but to the ways of death (Prov. 14:12). Then driving around town I saw another church preparing for ‘easter’ advertising a bounce house and an ‘easter’ egg hunt.
Can God’s people compete with these things? Certainly so, for we do not peddle vain religion (2 Cor. 2:17), but those who are truly His preach His Word, warning every man (Col. 1:28). What is preached from the pulpit by a godly preacher is God’s Truth, that which has power (Rom. 1:16), what is preached from most has no power, but only a form of godliness (2 Tim. 3:5), one which will lead to the destruction of the hearers (2 Tim. 2:14).
The world can not have what their ears want to hear (2 Tim. 4:3) and the peace that is given from God (Phil. 4:7) regarding their eternal destination. All they can have is a false Gospel, one where they will find themselves, without receiving the love of the Truth (2 Thes. 2:10), separated from God forever in the Lake of Fire (Rev. 20:11-15).
These bad seeds are not being planted on behalf of Jesus Christ, they are being planted on behalf of our enemy (Matt. 13:28). They will not bear genuine fruit because the love of the Truth is not in them (Matt. 7:21-23). There will be ‘weeping and gnashing of teeth’ (Luke 13:28).
In this world which is falling fast and seemingly about ready for the ‘starting gun’ of the Rapture (1 Thes. 4:16-17) that will lead to the horrific time period of the Tribulation, where God’s mercy will still be available for those (Rev. 14:6) is coming fast.
Take heed to what is spoken of this last Church age in Revelation chapter 3.
“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:14-20
Take note to what Jesus says about him who overcomes.
“To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Revelation 3:21
We, as Believers, need to realize that a lot of ground that was gained for the Lord has been lost. The younger generation does not have these taught truths about the Bible instilled into them. A lot of them know barely anything except that Jesus lived and died and that they have heard there was a God.
We lost much of the ground work that was done by generations of Christians before us. When I look at the world and the ministry field, what could be done for Christ, I look at it in the eyes of a pagan nation who has never received the Gospel. I look at America being more like David Livingston going to Africa in his travels, having to carefully start at the beginning to a people living in darkness.