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Scripture: Mark 4:16-17
“In a similar way these are the ones on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy; and they have no firm root in themselves, but are only temporary; then, when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately they fall away.
Insights: Today we look at the second type of person. You will recall the first type of person was hostile to the gospel and immediately rejected it. Today we see a second type of person who appears to want the gospel, but after a little bit of time, they turn away. The reason they turn away is because walking in faith with Jesus is hard. In fact, it is a lot harder than the person bargained. People at work start to make fun of them. Their friends stop hanging out with them. Persecution and affliction for their faith starts to increase. As a result, they reject the gospel. Now, I want to make it absolutely clear at this point that the person never actually encountered Jesus as Savior and Lord. This person was not born again. This person never really came into saving faith with Jesus. This type of person may have visited a church for a season, but they were never really Jesus’. If they had been, then they never would have walked away. The apostle John speaks of this person and says they never were a part of us (1 John 2:19). This passage does not negate the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints. Rather, it supports it by establishing the reality that true biblical conversion is the standard by which we observe and witness salvation. People can play the religious game and act spiritual for a time, but their true faith will eventually bear its real fruit. If one is of Jesus, then Jesus fruit will be evidenced. If one is lost, then lost fruit will be evidenced. One who finds faith to hard will display the fruit of quitting. They will walk away from the One whom they never truly knew. Beloved, be mindful not all who “pray a prayer” are truly born again and don’t let this truth hinder you from sharing your faith.
1. Have you ever experienced something that you thought was just too hard to handle?
2. In that moment, did you press on or did you quit?
Prayer: Father, in this world there are all kinds of challenges. Lord, help me to walk in Your grace and live victorious in Jesus. Amen.
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