13:4 And as he sowed, some seeds 1 fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them.
13:19 When anyone hears the word about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one 2 comes and snatches what was sown in his heart; 3 this is the seed sown along the path.
1 tn In Matthew’s version of this parable, plural pronouns are used to refer to the seed in v. 4 (ἅ…αὐτά [Ja…auta]), although the collective singular is used in v. 5 and following (indicated by the singular verbs like ἔπεσεν [epesen]). For the sake of consistency in English, plural pronouns referring to the seed are used in the translation throughout the Matthean account. In both Mark and Luke the collective singular is used consistently throughout (cf. Mark 4:1-9; Luke 8:4-8).
2 sn Interestingly, the synoptic parallels each use a different word for Satan here: Mark 4:15 has “Satan,” while Luke 8:12 has “the devil.” This illustrates the fluidity of the gospel tradition in often using synonyms at the same point of the parallel tradition.
3 sn The word of Jesus has the potential to save if it germinates in a person’s heart, something the devil is very much against.