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Why do people seem to accept Christ then fall away?

Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t you understand this parable? How then will you understand any parable? The farmer sows the word. Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown.” Mark 4:13-20

            Jesus told this parable that perfectly sums up the question of why people receive the Lord, but then, months later, seem to fall away.

            The real question is: were they really saved?  Was the response to begin a relationship with Jesus genuine or something else.  Only God knows for sure, in fact, that person may think they are saved.  Jesus’ parable about the seeds gives a few situational clues into what may go wrong.

1.      The person had a hard heart and the invitation sat on the surface of the person’s heart, never sinking in.  Satan stole the truth away. 

2.      The person received the invitation with emotional joy, but no practical steps occurred to grow that faith.

3.      Trouble or persecution in a person’s life distracted them away from faith and towards fear and worry.

4.      The world took over the person’s heart, turning it toward issues, greed, success, busyness.  The person’s faith is choked without the breath of God in the person’s life.

Who is to blame here?  Many factors, starting with the person who does not nurture or protect their faith.  Satan attacks and deceives.  The world crushes a person with demands on their schedule.  The church is to blame too when they don’t disciple their believers to the next step.

            A person’s salvation will only be known to others by the fruits of their actions.