This passage is a great example of Jesus’ way of discipleship: life experience and relatable stories to establish spiritual principals to be put into practice. This is what ‘The Church’ is founded on! It is also about God controlling the grace that brings salvation & our stewardship of what He gives.

Luke 8: 8:4-21

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.

  • This is a message for the masses
  • The Farmer had a purpose: sowing seed
  • ‘Broadcast Spreading’ The Gospel is proclaimed to everyone
  • Seed on the path has no shot; no soil and it is exposed to being taken away
  • The seed on the rocky ground is without the means to grow (moisture)
  • The seed on the rocky ground couldn’t grow, seed need soil

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.”

  • The seed among the thorns couldn’t compete with what was already there (world)
  • What is there before the seed keeps growing (thorns grew up with the seed)
  • The seed cannot grow amongst the thorns, it needs to separate (called out)
  • The good soil had everything necessary for the seed to grow and produce fruit
  • Crops that are in the right environment reproduce more and more of themselves
  • If God has given you the ability to hear (‘Spiritual Ears’) then pay close attention

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.’ (Isaiah 6:9)

  • How a ‘Disciple’ should act: Going to God & asking for answers (James 1:5)
  • God allows some to hear & understand kingdom things others are destined to not
  • The Isaiah verse shows God has always operated like this
  • Here is where we find the tension between God’s control and our free will

11 “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God.”

  • The ‘Word’ of God is the fullness of who God is and how He is to us
  • God’s Word is the Gospel or The Kingdom.
  • Basically a synopsis of the Scriptures
  • God enabling us to embrace & surrender to His Word brings us into ‘Right Relationship’

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.”

  • The different soils are representative of different people and their receptiveness to God’s Word
  • ‘Along the path’ has the opportunity to hear but the Devil deceives them
  • This group is what we call ‘Non-Regenerate’ they literally cannot believe
  • Consistent in the Scriptures is the message that God controls who believes

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.”

  • The ‘Rocky Ground’ has an emotional response to God’s Word (not enough)
  • They receive it but it is not rooted, God’s Word is not foundational in their life
  • They are good with God while everything is smooth, but when life’s storms come..
  • Following Jesus without a foundation rooted in God’s Word is not following Jesus

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.”

  • Those ‘Among The Thorns’ hear but go on ‘their’ way, not changing to God’s way
  • They begin the process of surrendering their life but try to add it to current life
  • They focus on the things of this world over God’s Word
  • 2 Timothy 3:4b-5a…lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power.
  • They do not mature… Literal translation: ‘They bear not to completion’
  • Maturity is making it to the point where you reproduce (Mature things reproduce)

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.”

  • The ‘Good Soil’ is prepared by God, those who God has given grace to be saved
  • The Word of God is what makes us noble and of good heart (Hear & Retain)
  • Disciples of Christ find the Word of God to be of ultimate value.
  • Matthew 13:44 “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”
  • Those who God puts His Spirit in CAN & DO persevere in being lifelong disciples
  • Treasuring God’s Word transforms us, that’s what produces a crop (multiplication)
  • The Crop that is a hundred times what is sown = ‘Kingdom Reproduction’

The salvation implications of the parable: 3 of the 4 ‘Soils’ do not inherit the Kingdom. Then there are discipleship principals in this parable for those who are saved and the last four verses in this passage speak of stewardship regarding God’s Word amongst His Family.

16 “No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. 17 For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.”

  • Jesus gives some overall principals for how we apply the previous parable
  • The Word of God is the lamp, it has a obvious purpose to those who ‘Use’ it
  • The truth will be found to be the truth, at some point all will be revealed
  • This is true about your salvation and your discipleship

18 “Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what they think they have will be taken from them.”

  • This is a call to examine your follow-ship and discipleship in light of God’s Word
  • What does the the ‘therefore’ refer to? Both the soils and the lamp!
  • Are you being a good steward of what you have been given?
  • How well do you listen to God / God’s Word?

19 Now Jesus’ mother and brothers came to see him, but they were not able to get near him because of the crowd. 20 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.” 21 He replied, “My mother and brothers are those who hear God’s word and put it into practice.”

  • Does growing up around church or your linage make you Jesus’ family?
  • True Family is those who share your values, Jesus values God’s Word
  • What makes you part of His family is based on valuing & applying God’s Word!
  • Listening = Hearing + Understanding (practice)
  • Putting God’s Word into practice takes: motivation, faith, grace & intentionality
  • We call this process Discipleship!
  • It is meant to be done TOGETHER AS FAMILY!


  • Demonic forces are always working to diminish God’s Word.
  • A true relationship with God is founded on & rooted in God’s Word.
  • Jesus teaches we are to unrelentingly prioritize God’s Word over care for earthy things.
  • The goal of our salvation is to join God in reproducing it, based on God’s Word.
  • Jesus teaches we must share the light we have been given: God’s Word.
  • The measure of our being Jesus family is how we listen to and practice God’s Word.

Application Questions: (Assumption is that you want to Biblically Grow as a Disciple)

What does it look like to consider how you listen to God’s Word, making the most of the grace you have been given to understand the Gospel? (Listen = Hear & Understand ) (Use the grace given to open up to more grace)

How do you reconcile this Scripture saying some won’t listen to God’s Word & perish? (They will be ‘Unable to believe unto salvation)

Which are your biggest challenges & why? Spiritual attacks, your rooting in God’s Word or being preoccupied with things of this world? (letting lies run your life / lack of Scripture based life / what ‘captivates’ you?)

What fuels your vision of growing to maturity and reproducing as a disciple of Christ? (Motivation based on others and God’s Glory)

In what ways can you intentionally hear God’s Word & apply it so HIS light shines? (specific practices, priorities & lifestyle choices that grow your ‘Spirit-Living’)

In the life as disciples of Christ, serving in obedience to Christ and growing in Christ, there will be storms to ride out and demonic forces to face. As Jesus’ disciples gathered as His church how do we deal with these things?

When it comes to ‘Storms’ in our life, it’s not a question of if they come, but rather when. It’s not a question of demonic forces, it’s a question of how many… this is a fallen world! Often, and especially in times like these, it is some of both!

This is the reality of our world; storms & demons…but take heart! Christ is there with us! In the Storm and as we deal with demonic activity. As His surrendered followers we can weather the storms & rebuke the demonic forces.

Luke 8:22-39

22 One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and set out. As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger.

  • Jesus had a reason to go across the lake (eternal purpose marked every move)
  • Did he fall asleep on purpose?
  • Were they in great danger or did Luke express the view of the disciples?
  • Fear can create ‘alternate realities’ in our lives

24 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm.

  • They use the title ‘Master’ as in ‘Master Teacher’ NOT ‘Master of All Creation’
  • They didn’t fully know who Jesus was at this point so they reacted in fear
  • But Christ is there!
  • If we don’t fully know Jesus, we too will be fearful in the storm
  • When we give Him control of our lives (Discipleship) we see the storm differently

25 “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. In fear and amazement they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.”

  • Who is your faith in? Who do you think is in control of your life & everything else?
  • The combination of fear & amazement is a good learning environment
  • His control has been demonstrated, yet they are slow to understand (Like US!)

The Storm is a metaphor for the danger we face in this fallen world, our world. What makes this a dangerous and fallen world is the presence of sin & demons. 1/3 of the Angels created followed Lucifer in his attempted ‘Coup’ & became demons.

26 They sailed to the region of the Gerasenes, which is across the lake from Galilee. 27 When Jesus stepped ashore, he was met by a demon-possessed man from the town. For a long time this man had not worn clothes or lived in a house, but had lived in the tombs.

  • He is met…this was a ‘prearranged’ meeting. Are there any coincidences?
  • Christ is there with THIS guy and with everyone dealing with the demonic activity
  • This is someone we would call ‘Mentally Ill’…
  • Not all mental illness caused directly by demons
  • Then and even now, there is not much that humans can do for such people

28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell at his feet, shouting at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!” 29 For Jesus had commanded the impure spirit to come out of the man.

  • His recognition of Jesus was intense! He knows His ‘Name’
  • Demonic forces are subject to Christ, yet still totally rebellious
  • Jesus made it clear they were being cast out of the man and so negotiations start
  • Demons displays they believe lies about Jesus / God (Judgement V Torture)

Many times it had seized him, and though he was chained hand and foot and kept under guard, he had broken his chains and had been driven by the demon into solitary places. 30 Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” “Legion,” he replied, because many demons had gone into him. 31 And they begged Jesus repeatedly not to order them to go into the Abyss.

  • We get a description of how the demons possessed this man (they like to isolate)
  • Demons look for the opportunity to be of greater strength
  • Humans empower their activity by being deceived and giving them place
  • They traffic in lies (followers of ‘The Father of Lies’)
  • They know their next destiny is to be locked in the Abyss

32 A large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside. The demons begged Jesus to let them go into the pigs, and he gave them permission. 33 When the demons came out of the man, they went into the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and was drowned.

  • Places where pigs were kept were symbolic for places where God is not honored
  • (The story of the prodigal son in Luke 15)
  • The demons choose the pigs, or do they? They had to have Jesus permission
  • Not a good choice to destroy their host, the pigs…
  • Without a ‘Host’ the demons scatter (Jesus allows them to stay in the world)

34 When those tending the pigs saw what had happened, they ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, 35 and the people went out to see what had happened. When they came to Jesus, they found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting at Jesus’ feet, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid.

  • The pig herders lose their whole herd…and freak out!
  • When everyone came to see what happened they found the ‘Freed Man’
  • Seeing the massive change in the man scares them

36 Those who had seen it told the people how the demon-possessed man had been cured. 37 Then all the people of the region of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them, because they were overcome with fear. So he got into the boat and left.

  • The locals are more concerned with keeping the status quo than God’s work
  • Jesus Christ will not force Himself on anyone (The Ultimate Gentleman)
  • Fear kept them from seeing that God himself was there
  • Fear can overcome people and make them do stupid things (Tell God to Leave)
  • Even when Christ is shown to be a savior, there will be people who fear change

38 The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, 39 “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him.

  • Like the women who had been delivered this man wanted to go with Jesus
  • Jesus specifically wanted this man to be a ‘witness’ among his own people
  • This guy didn’t get the job he wanted but he did what Jesus asked HIM to do
  • I hope we can be grateful for what Christ has done in our lives & be content

The Storm can be something that causes us to fear and react irrationally. The Storm can also be a means by which we learn who Jesus Christ truly is. The battle we fight to keep from being influenced & impacted by Demonic Forces is our Biblical reality. The ‘Good News’ is: Christ is there with you! He wants to empower you to overcome. As a disciple are you ready? How strong is your faith in Christ and His power over demons?

Application Questions:

What things right now are making you feel like you are going to drown? (Talking with someone you trust about these things helps)

Jesus asks His disciples: “Where is Your Faith”? Answer that as specifically as you can. (Why is your faith in Jesus? How did you get to that place?)

What do you know about demons based on Scripture? (Knowing your enemy)

How can you leverage Christ’s power over demons as His Spirit-Indwelt follower? ( Biblical Understanding / Seasoned Guides / Faith Based on Experience )

How can you grow to trust Christ more in life’s storms and during demonic activity? (Taking Ownership of Your Discipleship)

This is a story of ‘The Experience of Forgiveness’ and how that experience will effect those who truly experience it. It is also a cautionary tale about what happens when you become ‘self-satisfied’ in your relationship with God. When we get ‘Holier than thou’ and begin focusing on the judgement of other people’s situations, we become the same as the Pharisees.

36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume.

  • Why did he invite Jesus to dinner?
  • He was aware of the miracles Jesus was doing, It was probably a test / vetting
  • Woman ‘who lived a sinful life’ would have been a prostitute in that context
  • She too had heard all that Jesus was doing…and she brought the ‘Jar’
  • She didn’t let her sin keep her from coming to Jesus

38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.

  • Coming face to face with God she seems to be under great conviction
  • The logistics of how it worked (she was in the background)
  • Her brokenness was such that she was without pretense or shame

39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.” 40 Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.” “Tell me, teacher,” he said.

  • He said to himself (thought it) Jesus answered (knew what He was thinking)
  • He was figuring out how to discredit Jesus rather than how to believe on Him
  • He supposes he knows what the whole story is (playing ‘holy spirit’)
  • Do you approach Jesus with skepticism or with faith?

41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.” “You have judged correctly,” Jesus said.

  • He tells the story do demonstrate the inequity of our transgressions
  • Yet he shows how God makes us all equal with His forgiveness
  • The awareness of sin & the depth of repentance (reality) is reflected in our love

44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair.

  • He demonstrates to Simeon what it looks like when you surrender to God
  • Her brokenness is to be our example

45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet.

  • The extravagance of her selfless actions opposed to his self-righteousness
  • Simeon didn’t recognize Christ in any way, she recognized Christ in every way

47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” 48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

  • Jesus says her forgiveness is validated by what she does
  • The reality of her experience of forgiveness changes how she acts
  • Jesus tells her directly that she is forgiven, a sweet assurance

49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” 50 Jesus said to the woman,“Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

  • The question only has one answer: God Himself!
  • Jesus gives her and us assurance of salvation
  • He had not even died for her and yet she puts her faith in Him (God given faith)

1 After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, 2 and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases:

  • The Twelve (Special category) called to leadership
  • The Women were there as a result of being healed by Jesus

Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; 3 Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.

  • They had been so impacted by Jesus (like the woman with the perfume)
  • They responded to what they had been given by giving
  • We see different roles played by different people in the community
  • What is your role in this community?
  • As a members there are some common roles we all play

We have two people, Simeon the religious leader & a Woman who lived a sinful life. Regarding the two of them, Jesus is going to basically say: be like her, not like him

Application Questions:

What are the specific sins that can keep you from being broken & intimate with Jesus?

Why should you not suppose to know what is going on in someone else’s spiritual life?

How do you specifically respond to God’s forgiveness? How much do you love?

How would you describe your experience of having your sin forgiven by Jesus Christ?

Are you a servant under authority? Who are you accountable to? Are you willing to live under the authority of The Risen Christ? In doing that will you be obedient to the human authority He places you under? Do you see the Authority you are under as ‘God Ordained’? An extension of God?

Are you good with God healing you & ones you love for HIS reasons & in HIS timing?

Do you believe He has authority over life & death? Do you recognize that the miracle of salvation, moving from eternally being dead to being eternally alive with God, is totally under God’s authority?

Today’s Scripture passage answers these questions and points us to how we should live under authority and accountable.

1When Jesus had finished saying all this to the people who were listening, he entered Capernaum. 2 There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die.

  • Post Sermon on The Mount: expectations of Christ’s followers is set
  • Why would he value a replaceable slave?

3 The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4 When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, “This man deserves to have you do this, 5 because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.” 6 So Jesus went with them.

  • This man has had revelation about who God is, who His people were…
  • Sensitivity to the work of God (Holy Spirit)
  • Recognition of God’s people and a desire to bless them
  • Person of Peace / Friend of God (The Unlikely Someone God Uses)
  • Jesus is responsive to that kind of openness to God, He will come see that

He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7 That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.

  • The massive humility of the Centurion is important (humility before Christ)
  • He knows who He is and Who God is (created & Creator)
  • The Centurion is tuned into God’s total control (even ‘remote control’)

8 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

  • His understanding of authority is his reality in the government / military/ God
  • Why does God use this example instead of Jewish religious authority?
  • He understands that if God is in control he has those He operates thru
  • Scripture teaching that God uses human authority structures to enact His Will

9 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10 Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.

  • Is Jesus really amazed or does He act that way to make His point?
  • The amazing thing is that this guys totally gets it (God has revealed it to him)
  • He points it out to the crowd
  • Great Faith is living like God is in control!
  • Great Faith is living like everything is an extension of His authority!

The Grace of God’s authority and accountability: We need it! Left to our own devices…we default to rebellion. His control is best for us; Christ wants what is best for us, always

11 Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. 12 As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her.

  • Jesus is traveling, bringing the reality of God’s presence to many
  • Scripture states a ‘Large Crowd’ went along with Jesus (not typical)
  • This was a death that hurt the community, a sonless widow
  • A large crowd was actively mourning and supporting the widow
  • Jesus had an opportunity to impact 2 separate & distinct ‘large crowds’

13 When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.” 14 Then He went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on, and the bearers stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.

  • Personal approach to the mother, this is really for her (disenfranchised)
  • Sneak peak of the ‘The Kingdom’…every tear will be wiped away!
  • Everyone stopped! Jesus says: ‘I say’ as in ‘God says’
  • The boy talking proves he is ‘Fully Restored’…given back to his Mother!
  • All is made right for someone who had only God to depend on

16 They were all filled with awe and praised God. “A great prophet has appeared among us,” they said. “God has come to help his people.” 17 This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country.

  • ‘Filled’ denotes being overwhelmed with and consumed by ‘Reverent Worship’
  • ‘A Great Prophet’ in their context, is one fully operating in God’s power
  • The embodiment of God’s presence coming to physically help HIS people
  • They almost get it right…
  • Bringing someone back from the dead is the biggest miracle possible
  • That is what happens every time God saves one of us; MASSIVE MIRACLE!

Application Questions:

Based on your bank account and your schedule; are there actions you take that are not under the authority of the Jesus Christ?

Do your recognize the human authority structure God has set you under, or are you answerable only to Jesus Himself?

Why might God want you to obediently operate under an authority you have doubts about?

Why does Jesus’ heart go out to this particular widow and raise her son from death?