Posted by Shofar/Liz
We are on Chapter 6 where the hearers of the Word of God had the Word stolen away by Satan. They are the Way Side Christians which comprise the majority of Christians today; they are also considered ‘nominal’ Christians by some, but by the conclusion of this study, they will be seen to be ‘marginal’ Christians as well. For now we will continue with-
STONY GROUND CHRISTIANS
This second group has the seed of the Word of God sown into stony ground and,
“.. when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away” (Luke 8:13).
There is no soil to grow in, thus no roots. That’s why the prophet Hosea said, “break up your fallow ground” (Hosea 10:12) It is impossible for anything good to come from stony ground. In the parable of the fig tree, Jesus described men as being like trees needing the soil turned, fertilized, branches pruned, etc. Time was given for it to have healthy growth, but if after all that was done and still a tree bore no fruit, then it would be cut down (Luke 13:6-9).
Simply stated, Stony Ground Christians are shallow Christians. The Bible says that those in this group of Christians initially receive the Word of God with joy, but then because of trouble or persecution that arises over the Word, they allow doubt and confusion, fear and intimidation to cause them to distrust and reject the Word (Mt 13:21 paraphrased). How could they receive the Word with joy, then reject it? In Jesus’ day, thousands of people followed Him when they liked what they heard and saw. They liked seeing and being a part of the miracles He performed, but when they found some of His teachings too difficult to accept, they stopped following Him.
John 6:66 states,
“From that time many of his disciples went back and walked no more with Him.”
In the Bible, hard or stony hearts are also related to rebellion, stubbornness, disobedience, and spiritual blindness (Eph 4:18; Job 41:24; Isaiah 30:9). Samuel, the prophet/judge told King Saul,
“rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry” (1 Sam 15:23).
Stony ground Christians include ‘religious’ people who hold on stubbornly to only what they want to believe, or what they have been taught to believe. They are self-righteous and hypocritical in that they believe they know everything they think they should know, and there’s nothing more you can tell them, i.e. they’re right and you’re wrong. They are proud and have unteachable spirits. Their hearts are hardened.
They often follow customs, church traditions, rituals, etc. and are legalistic in their doctrines. Many Stony Ground Christians have also remade God and the Bible palatable to what they feel is acceptable to them. Many churches have compromised the Word of God with unscriptural teachings that God is a God of Love and not of Judgment, and have caused schisms in their own denominations, e.g. with some stubbornly rejecting the idea that homosexuality is a sin and an abomination to God. They are spiritually blind, and are resistant to truth even to the point of provocation and violence.
It was the religious people of Jesus’ day, the scribes and Pharisees, who thought they knew everything and did everything properly, who resisted the teachings of Jesus vehemently and did not acknowledge Him as the Son of God, and finally put Him to death. Today, Stony Ground Christians are some church leaders, who can be compared with the Pharisees of Jesus’ days, who did not enter into the kingdom of God; neither did they let others to enter in also! They lead the pack in this rebellious generation today in rejecting God and His Word! They are not open to the guidance and teachings of the Holy Spirit and divide the body of Christ, bringing reproach to God and His Word, and are a major stumbling block to the unsaved (Mt 23:13).
(next- Thorny Ground Christians)
Tags: Compromisers, Disobedient, Hypocrites, Legalistic Christians, Marginal Christians, Nominal Christians, Parable of the Sower, Rebellious, Satan, Self Righteous, Spiritual Blindness, Stony Hearts, Stubbornness, Thorny Ground Christians, Way Side Christians