Luke 8:1-15New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
The Story of the Farmer
8 After this, Jesus traveled around from one town and village to another. He announced the good news of God’s kingdom. His 12 disciples were with him. 2 So were some women who had been healed of evil spirits and sicknesses. One was Mary Magdalene. Seven demons had come out of her. 3 Another was Joanna, the wife of Chuza. He was the manager of Herod’s household. Susanna and many others were there also. These women were helping to support Jesus and the 12 disciples with their own money.
4 A large crowd gathered together. People came to Jesus from town after town. As they did, he told a story. He said, 5 “A farmer went out to plant his seed. He scattered the seed on the ground. Some fell on a path. People walked on it, and the birds ate it up. 6 Some seed fell on rocky ground. When it grew, the plants dried up because they had no water. 7 Other seed fell among thorns. The thorns grew up with it and crowded out the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It grew up and produced a crop 100 times more than the farmer planted.”
When Jesus said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears should listen.”
9 His disciples asked him what the story meant. 10 He said, “You have been given the chance to understand the secrets of God’s kingdom. But to outsiders I speak by using stories. In that way,
“ ‘They see, but they will not know what they are seeing. They hear, but they will not understand what they are hearing.’ (Isaiah 6:9)
11 “Here is what the story means. The seed is God’s message. 12 The seed on the path stands for God’s message in the hearts of those who hear. But then the devil comes. He takes away the message from their hearts. He does it so they won’t believe. Then they can’t be saved. 13 The seed on rocky ground stands for those who hear the message and receive it with joy. But they have no roots. They believe for a while. But when they are tested, they fall away from the faith. 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear the message. But as they go on their way, they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures. So they do not reach full growth. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with an honest and good heart. Those people hear the message. They keep it in their hearts. They remain faithful and produce a good crop.
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