Other seed fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seed sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow. But the plant soon wilted under the hot sun, and since it didn’t have deep roots, it died. (NLT)
Most of us know people who seem to have embraced the Christian faith but are now nowhere near it. Though we need to recognise that only God knows the true state of their hearts. We have witnessed them tearfully respond to a Christian message. Or heard them deliver a rousing testimony in church. Or we have observed them actively serving Jesus in many ways.
And some time later, nothing much at all. Perhaps their positive response was a mainly emotional release triggered by a powerfully persuasive environment. Then the environment changes and the enthusiasm fades. Perhaps they were in a bit of a mess and felt that becoming a Christian might clean up the mess. And when the mess wasn’t tidied up, they gave up because the faith didn’t deliver what it seemed to promise.
Some are peer group Christians. As long as their social group of friends follow Jesus they will do so as well. A sense of belonging is so important. But when that peer group disperses, or when it is left behind, they find there is no deep and genuine engagement with Jesus to sustain them. They were in fact more committed to the Christian group than to Christ.
Such are the shallow responses to the message suggested by Jesus. Things might look good for a while, but unless there are deep and genuine roots, we might be left with mere good looks. Appearances can be deceiving.
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