Spiritual Farming 101 – Deric Bartlett

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Sermon Notes

This week, Pastor Deric continues the series “The Gospel of Mark: Servanthood and Sacrifice in a Selfie World” with a message titled ‘Spiritual Farming 101’ based on Mark 4:1-20

  1. Plant the imperishable seed  
  2. Work the invisible field of souls
  3. Reap the bounty of the abundant life

What wastes the most time in your day-to-day life?

1. Why do you think Jesus used stories drawn from everyday life to communicate spiritual truths [Mark 4:1-9]? Why would agricultural metaphors speak powerfully to His audience? What do we learn from Jesus’ approach to help us communicate to our generation [cf. Matthew 4:18-20; John 6:35; and John 8:12]?

2. According to Mark 4:10-12, what was the purpose of Jesus’ parables for His disciples, and then “for those outside” [cf. Matthew 11:25-27; Romans 16:25-27; and Colossians 1:24-27]?

3. In Jesus’ parable, the sower and the seed remain consistent [Mark 4:14]. How does this impact how we go about our Christian mission in the world today [cf. Luke 1:1-4; Acts 5:17-20; and Acts 8:4]?

4. Jesus affirmed the reality of Satan and that he aggressively opposes the work of God [Mark 4:15]. How does this affect our approach to sharing God’s Word [cf. 2 Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 6:10-20, and 1 Peter 5:8]?

5. Jesus listed, in Mark 4:16-19, some of the reasons people fall away from following Him. What are these reasons, and how can we address them [cf. Psalm 1:3; John 15:18-20; and 1 Timothy 6:6-10, 17-19]?

6. The quality of the soil is the one changing factor in this parable of Jesus. How do you know God’s Word has fallen on good soil? What would that evidence look like [cf. John 15:1-11; Galatians 5:22-23; and Colossians 1:3-12]?

7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?

“It is of no use for any of you to try to be soul-winners if you are not bearing fruit in your own lives. How can you serve the Lord with your lips if you do not serve Him with your lives? How can you preach His gospel with your tongues, when with hands, feet, and heart you are preaching the devil’s gospel, and setting up an antichrist by your practical unholiness?” (Charles Spurgeon)