The good soil represents the person who breaks away from the slavery of the world.  Certainly, there is a cost in following Christ but, when one has been overcome by the love of God, he can no longer peacefully give his heart to the world.  One glimpse of God’s favor is worth more to him than all the enjoyments of the world.  The old nature is still active and, at times, gains the upper hand.  But the old character is now a recognized enemy.  The true follower of Christ hears and follows the words of God, and reflects, “Oh, wretched man that I am!  Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?”  From the depths of godly sorrow, true joy in Christ is born.  That is a well-rooted joy, and not even hell can remove it. – Frans Bakker (1919-1965), from a meditation on Mark 4.8.


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