GO DEEPERFrom the parable of the soils we learn several critical lessons. This parable teaches us what it’s like to live in the confidence of the growing kingdom.Kingdom-confident people know that people receive the gospel in different ways.We never know who is going to respond and who is going to reject the gospel. Strangely, that leads us to a position of spiritual passivity. However, in light of the growth of the kingdom, our only position can be spiritual optimism! We sow the seed of the gospel to everyone, everywhere for reasons that we don’t know. We are not God, therefore we have to assume that everyone to whom we share is simply a pre-Christian. We assume this because we don’t know.This means that we should also not get too discouraged when people we love fall away from the faith. It is heartbreaking. However, Christ knows who are His. If they are in Him, they will return. We keep loving and pursuing them so that they can repent and come back to the faith no matter what.This also influences what we do after someone is saved. When someone gives their life to Christ, there is, for many of us who have been around church for a while, an imbedded skepticism. When someone professes faith, we tragically assume a wait-and-see posture assuming they will fall off and grow cold in their faith. How tragic. For the very reason that we don’t know, we should be ever ready to encourage, equip, build up and overall disciple the new convert. We do this because we assume that they are in Christ. If they are still coming to Christ, they will know this soon enough and have plenty of time to repent.Some questions:If you saw every person around you as pre-Christian, how would you act?What if you looked at every new convert as if their newfound faith was going to really take root?Kingdom-confident people know that the presence of evil in the kingdom is not a threat to the King.Our political system is a mess. Our faith as an institution is off. Our loyalties politically are threatened. There is no clear hope for the immediate future. Anyone with any sense can see just how awful things are. Jesus cracks this cold pessimism with the overwhelming message of the kingdom: the kingdom is taking off, it will start small and then it will grow strong. It will have enemies, but no bother; Jesus is going to take them all out. What an encouraging message! Jesus is going to come back and end the unrest.Some questions:What if we lived as if Christ was still on the throne and nothing rocked Him? How would that change our attitudes?How should we respond to political “enemies” in light of the fact that Christ is coming back to judge all of us?