The Parable of the Sower


Sun, Jan 03, 2021

Teacher: Yale Wall Series: Memes of the Bible Scripture: Matthew 13:1-23

JANUARY 3, 2021

Memes of the Bible


When you think about the word “meme,” I’m sure a dumb captioned pictures comes to your mind, but memes are not actually about their obvious subject matter: At their core, memes are all about imitation.

Definition of Meme:
“an element of a culture or system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, especially imitation.”

A meme is passing something on so it is imitated by non genetic means.

Throughout his ministry, Jesus spoke in memes all of the time, but we know them as parables.

  • Instead of just telling people that they should
 be responsible with what is given to them,
 Jesus tells the Parable of the Talents
  • Instead of just telling people that they should 
hold onto their faith to do big things, 
Jesus tells the Parable of the Mustard Seed
  • Instead of just telling people that they should 
leave their old lives behind for relationship with God,
 Jesus tells the Parable of the Pearl of Great Price
  • Instead of just telling people 
how much God sacrifices for them,
 Jesus tells the Parable of the Lost Sheep
  • Instead of just telling people
 how much God wants them to come back to Him, 
Jesus tells the Parable of the Prodigal Son.




Matthew 13:10-17
10 The disciples came to him and asked, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?”
11 He replied, “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. 12 Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 13 This is why I speak to them in parables:
“Though seeing, they do not see;
    though hearing, they do not hear or understand.
14 In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:
“‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
    you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.
For this people’s heart has become calloused;
    they hardly hear with their ears,
    and they have closed their eyes.
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
    hear with their ears,
    understand with their hearts
and turn, and I would heal them.’
16 But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. 17 For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

  • Because he’s primarily speaking to lost people

  • Because even though they would hear the truth,
 many people didn’t really get it.

Jesus, is not only pointing to truth and letting them figure it out, He’s using stories and metaphorical pictures to bring people into the story so they really get it! This is the God of the universe, coming into our world as a human, and literally speaking our language to get us to understand. We should be honored and humbled by that! And then, what’s the response? Just like the memes today: Imitation!




Matthew 13:1-9
1 That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. 2 Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore. 3 Then he told them many things in parables, saying:

“A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. 9 Whoever has ears, let them hear.”


Matthew 13:18-23
18 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 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. 22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. 23 But the seed falling on good soil refers to 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.”

Luke 8:11
The seed is the word of God


  1. The seed landing on a path 
is the Word of God hitting on deaf ears,
 where the enemy is ripping it away and getting you to believe 
that everything you’ve heard is a fairy tale.
  2. The seed landing on rocky ground
 is the Word of God taking root
 but only for a short period of time
 before everything else in the world tells you 
that that God thing is crazy and not worth it.

  3. The seed landing among the thorns 
is the Word of God taking root in the soil
 but never really truly going deep.
  4. The seed landing on good soil
 is the Word of God going deep into the soil,
 permeating every bit of your life.


Which one are you in in general?

Are are areas of your life that are in a different place?

Connection Card

  1. I feel like right now I am the:

    - Seed sown along the path
- Seed falling on rocky ground

    - Seed falling among thorns

    - Seed on good soil

  2. I’m going to start thinking about how I can use stories and things from the world around me to share Jesus with people.


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