Soon afterwards he went on through cities and villages, proclaiming and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. The twelve were with him,
as well as some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out,
and Joanna, the wife of Herod's steward Chuza, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their resources.
When a great crowd gathered and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable:
"A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell on the path and was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up.
Some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered for lack of moisture.
Some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it.
Some fell into good soil, and when it grew, it produced a hundredfold." As he said this, he called out, "Let anyone with ears to hear listen!"
Then his disciples asked him what this parable meant.
He said, "To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but to others I speak in parables, so that "looking they may not perceive, and listening they may not understand.'
"Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
The ones on the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved.
The ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe only for a while and in a time of testing fall away.