I Have a Heart Condition

Scott Stevenson

"As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, yet he has not root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away."  Matthew 13:20-21

Not too long ago, Pastor Jay preached a series called, "You Bet your Life".  I want to touch on an area of how we receive the Word of God.  I thought about the series because how we receive the Word is crucial.  There was a time when I would not have been willing to bet my life on how I received God's Word.  I thank God that He doesn't leave us the way He found us.

The rocky places that Matthew refers to represents the man who immediately accepts the Word in contrast to the hard ground of the person who does not accept it.  The person hears the Word of God and they are excited, but their excitement is only superficial.  Let me explain what I mean by that.  They don't count the cost to actually following Christ.  The Word of God is not able to take root in a person's heart and therefore they aren't able to repent or have remorse over sin, and they are unable to recognize that they are lost and not able to become broken about their sin.  At least the person whose heart is on hard soil has soil to work with...scary.  We think that the hard cases are impossible, but when the soil is broken up, you have genuine repentance and conversion.  In the case of the rocky soil, once a person's faith is challenged or when tribulation comes, and it will come, what happens?  God tells us that the person falls away.  There is no arguing with God, only realizing that His words prove true later in life.

What happens when you face tribulation or persecution because of your faith in God?  Examine your heart (soil).  That is the whole purpose of this exercise, to take scripture and examine ourselves in the light of the truth.  If your heart is not in the right place, then come to God, ask for forgiveness, and count the cost of following Him.  Let your words match your actions with God.

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