Matthew 13:4

And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the wayside, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
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Cyril of Alexandria

AD 444
Let us look, as from a broader perspective, at what it means to be on the road. In a way, every road is hardened and foolish on account of the fact that it lies beneath everyone’s feet. No kind of seed finds there enough depth of soil for a covering. Instead, it lies on the surface and is ready to be snatched up by the birds that come by. Therefore those who have in themselves a mind hardened and, as it were, packed tight do not receive the divine seed but become a welltrodden way for the unclean spirits. These are what is here meant by “the birds of the heaven.” But “heaven” we understand to mean this air, in which the spirits of wickedness move about, by whom, again, the good seed is snatched up and destroyed. Then what are those upon the rock? They are those people who do not take much care of the faith they have in themselves. They have not set their minds to understand the touchstone of the mystery. The reverence these people have toward God is shallow and rootless. It is in times...

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
And whilst he soweth. St. Matthew and St. Mark subjoin the following parables to what goes before, but St. Luke places the parable of the sower immediately after the second journey through Galilee, which he anticipates. Jesus Christ successively proposed four parables to the people, and then dismissed them; and being now retired with his disciples, he unfolded to them the meaning of the parables when in the house. (ver. 36) St. Matthew, however, interrupts the course of the parables, and after the first, anticipates the request of the disciples to have it explained; but from St. Mark, we learn that this did not take place till Christ was alone in the house. Of the eight parables, all spoken by Jesus on the same day, the first five were addressed to the people assembled on the sea-shore, the other three were added by him when alone with the apostles in the house, and are in some measure explanations of the former. In the first, we see the different success of the word of God from the di...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
He said not, that He cast them, but that they fell. A fourth part is saved; and not this all alike, but even here great is the difference. Now these things He said, manifesting that He discoursed to all without grudging. For as the sower makes no distinction in the land submitted to him, but simply and indifferently casts his seed; so He Himself too makes no distinction of rich and poor, of wise and unwise, of slothful or diligent, of brave or cowardly; but He discourses unto all, fulfilling His part, although foreknowing the results; that it may be in His power to say, What ought I to have done, that I have not done? Isaiah 5:4 And the prophets speak of the people as of a vine; For my beloved, it is said, had a vineyard; Isaiah 5:1 and, He brought a vine out of Egypt; but He, as of seed. What could this be to show? That obedience now will be quick and easier, and will presently yield its fruit. But when you hear, The sower went forth to sow, think it not a needless repetition...

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

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