Mark 4:1-34 (Fair Dinkum Mark Version)

4.1.  And again he began to teach them by the sea and a very large crowd gathered about him, so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat in it.  All the crowd was on the land facing the sea.  2  And he was teaching them many things in parables and was saying to them in his teaching:  3  “Listen!  A sower went out to sow.  4  And as he was sowing some seed fell along the path and the birds came and ate it.  5  And other seed fell upon the rocky ground where it did not have much soil and because it had no depth of soil it sprang up straightaway  6  and when the sun came up it was scorched and because it did not have firm roots it withered.  7  And other seed fell among the thorn bushes and the thorn bushes grew up and choked it and it produced no grain.  8  And other seeds fell on the good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding one thirtyfold, one sixtyfold and one a hundredfold.”  9  And he was saying, “The one who has ears, let them hear!”

4.10  And when he was alone those who were about him with the Twelve were asking him about the parables.  11  And he was saying to them, “The secret of the realm of God has been given to you, but to those who are outside everything exists in parables,  12  so that they might look and look but not see, and they might hear and hear but not understand, lest they should turn and it be forgiven them.”

4.13  And he said to them, “Do you not understand this parable?  How then will you understand all the parables?  14  The sower sows the word.  15  These are the ones along the path where the word is sown; straightaway, when they hear, Satan comes and takes away the word that is sown in them.  16  And these are the ones that are sown on the rocky ground; when they hear the word they receive it straightaway with joy,   17  but they have no root in themselves and they do not last very long; then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word they stumble straightaway.  18  And others are the ones which are sown among thorn bushes; they are the ones who hear the word,  19  but the concerns of the world and the love of riches and the desire for other things enter in and choke the word and it becomes unfruitful.  20  And those which are sown in the good soil are the ones who hear the word and gladly receive it and bear fruit, one thirtyfold, one sixtyfold and one a hundredfold.”

4.21  And he was saying to them, “Is the lamp brought in so as to be put under the bushel measure or under the bed?  Is it not placed on the lampstand?  22  For nothing is hidden except to be brought into the open, nor is anything kept secret except to be brought to the light.  23  If anyone has ears let them hear!”

4.24  And he was saying to them, “Pay attention to what you hear.  The measure you give will be the measure you get back, and still more will be added to you.  25  For to the one who has will more be given, and from the one who has nothing even what they have will be taken away.”

4.26  And he was saying, “The realm of God is like this.  It is like a person who scatters seed upon the soil, sleeps at night and rises in the daytime, and all the while the seed sprouts and grows, but they do not know how.  28  By itself the soil produces first the stalk, then the ear, finally the full grain in the ear.  29  But when the grain is ripe, straightaway they put in the sickle because the time for harvest has arrived.”

4.30  And he was saying, “How will we compare the realm of God, or what parable shall we use for it?  31  It is like a grain of mustard seed which, when sown upon the soil, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth,  32  yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”

4.33  With many such parables he was speaking the word to them as they were able to hear it;  34  he did not speak to them without a parable, but when he was alone with his own disciples he explained everything.

© Gill/Dyer 1991/1998/1999