James 5:7, “Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.”
Here James speaks to believers who were being persecuted. James uses the farmer as an illustration of the need for patience. The farmer plants his seeds and waits. First comes the early rain allowing the seed to germinate. Then the latter rain at the end of the season.
The Parable of the Sower
CM provided a very pithy summary of the Four Soils, Matthew 13:5-8:
• Wayside without understanding; birds steal the seed away.
• Stony places without root; fail under pressure.
• Among thorns; too entangled in the cares of this world.
• Good ground; hearing and understanding: bear much fruit.
To me, soils three and four apply to Christians. Soil three is the easily distracted Christian and Soil four is the spiritually mature Christian.
Matthew 13:7, “And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:” Here the earth was somewhat broken up but was not cleared of brambles and thorns. Do we Christians get so involved with the cares of the world that we sometimes take our eyes off God.
Matthew 13:8, “But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.” This is my goal; earth that is deep and well broken so the roots of the Word can take hold and the thorns/ Flesh are removed so the roots are not choked off. A goal that I often fall short of, a work in progress.
King David is an example of grace under fire and spiritual maturity. Psalm 141:3-4, “3 Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips. 4 Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works with men that work iniquity: and let me not eat of their dainties.”
The above verses, mentioned by CM, are compatible James 1:19-21, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: 20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. 21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls”.
As a work in progress towards spiritual maturity I work daily at keeping my focus on God as I wait for the Blessed Hope. According to “The Doctrine of Imminence” we can expect Jesus at any moment; there is nothing more required for the Rapture of the Church to occur. Like the five wise virgins in The Parable of the Ten Virgins in Matthew 25 I’m to keep my lamp filled with oil so I'll be ready when Jesus comes in the clouds for his Church.