Matthew 13:5 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 13:5, NIV: Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow.

Matthew 13:5, ESV: Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil,

Matthew 13:5, KJV: Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:

Matthew 13:5, NASB: Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and they sprang up immediately, because they had no depth of soil.

Matthew 13:5, NLT: Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow.

Matthew 13:5, CSB: Other seed fell on rocky ground where it didn't have much soil, and it grew up quickly since the soil wasn't deep.

What does Matthew 13:5 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Sitting on a boat on the Sea of Galilee, facing a beach crowded with listeners, Jesus has begun to tell parables (Matthew 13:1–3). He is describing a farmer who is planting a field, sowing seed. The parable fits alongside of the attempts by Jesus and His disciples to teach the people of Israel about the coming kingdom of heaven.

The parable describes a farmer who scatters seed liberally across the entire field, hoping to produce as many fully-grown plants as possible. Some of the seed overlaps the edges of the field, falling along the hardpacked path (Matthew 13:4). The birds came and ate those seeds. This represents Satan snatching away the truth of the kingdom from those who do not understand it (Matthew 13:19).

Here Jesus describes seed that falls onto rocky spots in the field, covered by a thin layer of soil. Those seeds quickly germinate, with new plants springing up from the shallow dirt. The following verse will show, however, that they cannot survive. Jesus will describe later (Matthew 13:20–21) what these failed seeds represent.