Isaiah 6:8-13 amd Psalm 115:1-8 and Mark 4:1-20
Do You Hear What I Hear?

Isaiah 6: 8-13

And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” And he said, “Go, and say to this people:

          “‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand;

          keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’

          Make the heart of this people dull,

                   and their ears heavy,

                   and blind their eyes;

          lest they see with their eyes,

                   and hear with their ears,

          and understand with their hearts,

                   and turn and be healed.”

          Then I said, “How long, O Lord?”

          And he said:

          “Until cities lie waste

                   without inhabitant,

          and houses without people,

                   and the land is a desolate waste,

          and the LORD removes people far away,

                   and the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.

          And though a tenth remain in it,

                   it will be burned again,

          like a terebinth or an oak,

                   whose stump remains

                   when it is felled.”

          The holy seed is its stump.


Psalm 115: 1-8

          Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to your name give glory,

                   for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!


          Why should the nations say,

                   “Where is their God?”

          Our God is in the heavens;

                   he does all that he pleases.    


          Their idols are silver and gold,

                   the work of human hands.

          They have mouths, but do not speak;

                   eyes, but do not see.

          They have ears, but do not hear;

                   noses, but do not smell.

          They have hands, but do not feel;

                   feet, but do not walk;

                   and they do not make a sound in their throat.

          Those who make them become like them;

                   so do all who trust in them.


Mark 4:1-20

Again he began to teach beside the sea. And a very large crowd gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat in it on the sea, and the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land. And he was teaching them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them: “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

And when he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parables. And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, so that

          “‘they may indeed see but not perceive,

                   and may indeed hear but not understand,

          lest they should turn and be forgiven.’”          

          And he said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? The sower sows the word. And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them. And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away. And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”


English Standard Version (ESV)

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.