Posted January 29, 2014 by FLL Editorial Team in
 
 

Parable of the Sower


From Flickr © madison.murphy

福音讀經

耶穌在海邊上開始施教,有大顆群眾聚集在他跟前。他只得上了一隻船,在海上坐著,所有的群眾都在海邊地上。他用比喻教訓他們許多事。在施教時,他向他們說:「你們聽:有個撒種的出去撒種。他撒種的時候,有的落在路旁,飛鳥來把它吃了;有的落在石頭地裏,那裏沒有多少土壤,即刻發了芽,因為所有的土壤不深,太陽一出來,被曬焦了;又因為沒有根,就乾枯了;有的落在荊棘中,荊棘長起來,把它窒息了,就沒有結實;有的落在好地裏,就長大成熟,結了果實,有的結三十倍,有的六十倍,有的一百倍。」他又說:「有耳聽的,聽吧!」當耶穌獨自一人的時候,那些跟從他的人和十二門徒便問他這些比喻的意義。耶穌對他們說:「天主國的奧義只賞給了你們,但對那些外人,一切都用比喻,使他們看是看,卻看不見;聽是聽了,卻聽不明白,免得他們回頭,而得赦免。」耶穌對他們說:「你們不明白這個比喻,又怎能明白其他的一切比喻呢?那撒種的人撒的,是所講的「話」。那撒在路旁的「話」是指人聽了後﹐撒殫立時來﹐把撒在他們心裏的「話」奪了去。同樣﹐那撒在石頭地裏的,是指人聽了這「話」後,立刻欣然接受;但他們心裏沒有根,不能持久,及至為了這「話」發生艱難或迫害,立刻就跌倒了。還有那撒在荊棘中的,是指人聽了這「話」後,世俗的焦慮、財富的迷惑,以及其它的貪欲進來,把「話」蒙住了,結不出果實。那撒在好地裏的,是指人聽了這「話」,就接受了,並結了果實,有的三十倍,有的六十倍,有的一百倍。」
馬爾谷福音 4:1-20

耶穌來到世上,並非為報復那些不忠信的管家,而是因我們充滿罪惡,無法進入天堂,只能藉著祂才能得救。祂在撒種的比喻中,以種子比喻祂的聖言,土壤比喻人的靈魂;撒種的人就是祂自己。在舊約中,依撒意亞先知曾用葡萄園作類似的比喻(依5);在這裡,耶穌用的是撒種的比喻,來告訴我們接納並服從天主的話,如今已是更容易,也更快能結出果實。

在比喻中,撒種的人沒有區別土壤的種類;同樣,耶穌也沒有區分聆聽祂話語的人,無論是貧窮還是富有,明智還是愚笨,懶惰或是勤勞,勇敢或怯懦的人,祂都一概願意教導。撒出的種子落不到土壤,並非撒種的人的過失,而是土壤本身,亦即是人的靈魂,往往基於不同的原因未能接納這些種子——即天主的聖言和訓導。撒種的人本該明白種子不該撒在荊棘中或石頭地上,可是天主卻從中給我們希望,因只要我們願意悔改,其實荊棘也能被除去,石頭地也可成為好的土壤。

(本文以英文為準)

Gospel Reading

On another occasion, Jesus began to teach by the sea. A very large crowd gathered around him so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down. And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land. And he taught them at length in parables, and in the course of his instruction he said to them, “Hear this! A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep. And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it and it produced no grain. And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit. It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.” He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.”

And when he was alone, those present along with the Twelve questioned him about the parables. He answered them, “The mystery of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you. But to those outside everything comes in parables, so that they may look and see but not perceive, and hear and listen but not understand, in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.”

Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? Then how will you understand any of the parables? The sower sows the word. These are the ones on the path where the word is sown. As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once and takes away the word sown in them. And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who, when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy. But they have no roots; they last only for a time. Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. Those sown among thorns are another sort. They are the people who hear the word, but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches, and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word, and it bears no fruit. But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”
Mark 4:1-20

Jesus comes to us because we could not enter heaven, our sins fencing us out from the entrance. And for what purpose? To destroy the ground teeming with thorns? To take vengeance upon the unfaithful stewards? No; but to till and tend it, and to sow the word of godliness. For by seed here He means His doctrine, and by land, the souls of men, and by the sower, Himself. Just as the prophet Isaiah has compared the teaching of the people to the planting of a vine (Isaiah 5); here it is compared to sowing, to show that obedience is now shorter and more easy, and will sooner yield fruit.

As a sower does not make a distinction in the ground which is beneath him, but simply puts in the seed, so also Jesus Himself addresses all without distinction of rich and poor, of wise and foolish, of slothful or diligent, of brave or cowardly. However, the greater portion of the seed is not lost through the fault of the sower, but of the earth, the soul which hears and received it. A real steward, if he sowed in this way, would be rightly blamed; for he knows that rock, or the road, or thorny ground, cannot become fertile. But not so with the soul; for there it is possible that stony ground may become fertile; and that the road should not be trodden down, and that the thorns may be destroyed, for if this could not take place, He would not have sown there. By this therefore He gives to us hope of repentance.

參考 References:
Catena Aurea (St. Thomas Aquinas)
Homily 44 on Matthew (St. John Chrysostom)


FLL Editorial Team