Jesus told this parable from town to town and it is mentioned in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. There is a message here of great significance. When a message is repeated over and over by Jesus and then again by his disciples it would be good to dig in and understand it. Jesus himself explains it. Let us examine some key points in Jesus's explanation.
Luke: "The devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts."
Mark: "Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them."
Matthew: "the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart."
2. Rocky soil
Luke: "They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away."
Mark: "When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away."
Matthew: "But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away."
They submit to God and repent from their ways seeking God's kingdom. They become enlightened and sense the spirit within them. They begin speaking about their experience from their heart and get resistance from others. Due to the resistance and difficulties they stop listening to the spirit.
Luke: "They go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature."
Mark: "but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful."
Matthew: "the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful."
"As they go on their way" could be those who seek 'their way' instead of God's way. They seek selfish gratification of wants and desires rather than God's desires. They do what they feel rather than do what is right.
4. Good soil
Luke: "But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop."
Mark: "hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown"
Matthew: "someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”
This type has a good and noble heart. They retain, accept, and understand the word. They persevere and produce! All three versions state that the word which falls on good soil will have production, great production. So if we have the word in us and we understand it then we will be productive.
Romans 11:22 Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off.
1 Corinthians 15:2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
Luke 8:4 While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: 5 “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. 6 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.” 9 His disciples asked him what this parable meant. 10 He said, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that,“‘though seeing, they may not see; though hearing, they may not understand.’[a]11 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
Persevere and Produce