Sowing and Reaping
Summer has arrived and the rising temperatures testify to us that it is here with vengeance. Many people are preparing or in the process of preparing the ground in back yards, on farms, or other fields for the planting of summer crops. Each person into the ground is sowing tomatoes, spinach, lettuce, corn, peppers, and greens just to name a few. Now many are taking cautious care of every seed sown that they all may produce something useful or profitable in harvest time. When that person finally gets to the actual part of placing the seed into the ground, an exciting anticipation is already welling up in each heart knowing that in the appointed time a crop appears.
The person who is a novice at gardening or farming will probably run each day to the ground expecting to see some shoot or sprout coming up, but the seasoned gardener or farmer knows that it takes time for good soil to produce anything visible to the human eye. However, underneath the ground where the human eye cannot see a slow but very precise process is taking place in order to produce exactly and specifically the seed sown. There will be no mix up in the results but only a sure or certain production of the seed sown will come out of the ground at harvest time. This process is amazing and it is at times hard to understand but it never fails in its perfect and precise results.
Our lives as followers of Jesus Christ are like tiny seeds sown into the ground of His universe and eternity. Therefore, we must lay up our treasure in Heaven and not down here on this earth. Why would we even try to establish any earthly treasure when we should know so certainly that upon the Lord’s return all is new? Let us (by the grace of Jesus Christ) lay hold of our untamable tongues. Each of us knows that we often times stumble in our walk down here on earth. If we are able (by Christ’s grace) to keep or guard ourselves from stumbling with our words, then we will grow surely into spiritual maturity and able to bridle (the act of restraining power or action or limiting excess) our whole bodies.
For it will be but utter folly or stupidity to expect that we can camouflage (our hearts) and our daily practices from our Lord who sees both all things perpetrated by both the good and evil. His eternal eyes are ever roaming over the entire earth and He sees all. It is the lifestyle we practice that matters and counts before our Heavenly Father and not what proceeds forth from our lips. In my study and praying over the Gospels, it appears to me that Christ hates hypocrisy more than any sin. Pretending, acting, or putting on a show to disguise one's true self from other men is absolutely abhorred by our Lord, Savior, Master, and great God Jesus Christ.
All earthly farmers know that preparation plays a critical role in the outcome of the crop that their planted seeds would reap each season. The ground or the soil being meticulously raked, fertilized, watered and cleared of all weeds, brush, thorns, and other useless things that would impair the good seed from taking root and producing a good crop. The farmer uses some of the most sophisticated equipment that we have today at his disposal.
We must prepare the ground of our hearts with continual fervent prayer and reading and studying of God's Word daily. We must open our hearts to God's Word and allow conviction to take place and follow that with confession and true repentance. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ’s Word must break us daily that we may have our hearts in such a fit condition to hear from Him. We cannot allow our hearts to be obdurate (stubbornly persistent in wrongdoing) like that of the unbeliever but on the contrary our delight must be in the law of the Lord and on His law shall we meditate day and night. When we here messages from the Lord’s servants we must search our own individual hearts and ask God the Holy Spirit to reveal to our own hearts how this applies to each of us individually.
Psalm 139:23-24 Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Quick Amplified Bible)
We must do this daily even throughout the course of every day in order that we might reap harvest in our lives that produce good, pure fruit for our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ. Let us not be like some of those who came out of Egypt as slaves yet the Word preached to them did them no profit because it was not mixed with faith therefore, they all died wandering in the wilderness. What they did was murmur, complain, argue with each other, come against the Lord's chosen leader Moses, and commit sexual immorality and in so doing, they reaped a harvest of bitter fruit and eventual death and @#!*% . They put their hand to the plow and looked backed constantly to Egypt (represents the world for us today) and our Lord said that type of believer is not fit for the Kingdom of Heaven (is not a true believer) and will not enter into its eternal joys.
Galatians 6:7-8 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. (NKJV)
In this very blunt passage of the Word of God, I want each of us to underline or circle I believe the most important word in the entire passage and that is “whatever”. You see this is the reason we cannot mock God because of this one word. He is not the author of the things with which we sow but only the righteous and just overseer of every idle word that we speak in our lives whether it be good fruit or bad fruit. Therefore, is it even with our thoughts and certainly with the deeds acted out in our bodies whether they are good or bad?
Sowing evil out of our lives will never produce a good harvest in our lives and consequently if we continue in doing good we should never faint for because in due season we will reap a harvest of good from that sowing. Both are absolutely assured by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. There is no partiality with Him. Even the man after God's own heart (King David) found this to be true. When he sowed obedience to the Word of God, he was blessed and highly favored in the Lord's sight but when he committed the sins of adultery and murder against God, he received harsh punishment.
Listen to these words penned by Matthew Henry (1662-1714), “Men are very much inclined to flatter themselves that God is such a one as themselves, and that they may live in sin and yet die in Christ, may lead the life of the devil's children and yet go to heaven with the children of God. But this is all a gross cheat. Note, It is very much the concern of mankind that they do not cheat themselves in the matters of their souls. We cannot hope to sow to the flesh and yet reap everlasting life.”
Having become partakers of Christ Divine Nature, should exemplify a dramatic change in our daily lifestyles and His Divine Nature within us should drive us to the foot of the cross in love, gratitude, and humility to be eager to hear His words and do them. In other words, our desire should be much more now to sow good seed from our lives and consequently reap a bountiful harvest of fruit (souls truly converted and born again by the Spirit of God and the fruit of the Spirit).
This does not mean the absence of trouble. For all we have to do is examine the life of the Apostle Paul to see this truth, he sowed more good seed than many, yet he was under constant Satanic attack yet out of them all did our Lord, Savior, and great God Jesus Christ deliver him. It was Christ Himself who told us in Acts 9:16 “For I will make clear to him (Paul) how much he will be afflicted and must endure and suffer for My name's sake.” (Quick Amplified Bible).
When we sow good seed, we reap a harvest that will bring forth fruit that will remain and bring glory to Jesus Christ our Lord for all eternity. Therefore, in each of our personal lives, it is our responsibility to mortify or put to death our members in the body. This is impossible in our own strength and we need the power of God the Holy Spirit to carry it out but He will not do it for us. Our lives cannot be a hindrance to the gospel of Christ, but our lives must testify to the mighty saving power of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Romans 8:13 For if you live according to [the dictates of] the flesh, you will surely die. But if through the power of the [Holy] Spirit you are [habitually] putting to death (making extinct, deadening) the [evil] deeds prompted by the body, you shall [really and genuinely] live forever. (Quick Amplified Bible)
In the passage of Scripture from Romans above, count that Paul (by inspiration of the Holy Spirit) used “you” four (4) times. What he is saying is that our body is not us and that the real us (born again spirit man) who lives in these bodies is now responsible for the bodies actions. Paul does the same thing in Romans 12:1. He uses “you or your” four (4) times there as well. He is trying to tell us that what we (as Christians) what we sow out of our flesh (our body) is solely up to each one of us. We control whether it is moral purity or moral lewdness. Our lives must be a sweet smelling savor to our Lord and not something that smells rotten and causes His nostrils to close up. Therefore, no human being, demon, or the devil can force us to sow that which is unclean or corrupt. Whatever WE sow WE reap.
Ecclesiastes 10:20 Curse not the king, no, not even in your thoughts, and curse not the rich in your bedchamber, for a bird of the air will carry the voice, and a winged creature will tell the matter. (NKJV)
Listen to what Matthew Henry (1662-1714) had to say, “If men's religion prevail not to conquer and cure the wickedness of their hearts, it shall not always serve for a cloak. The day is coming when hypocrites will be stripped of their fig-leaves.”
Luke 12:2-3 Nothing is [so closely] covered up that it will not be revealed, or hidden that it will not be known. Whatever you have spoken in the darkness shall be heard and listened to in the light, and what you have whispered in [people's] ears and behind closed doors will be proclaimed upon the housetops. (Quick Amplified Bible)
Listen to this from Adam Clarke (1715-1832), “Death is at no great distance; thou hast but a short time to do good. Acquire a heavenly disposition while here; for there will be no change after this life. If thou die in the love of God, and in the love of man, in that state wilt thou be found in the day of judgment. If a tree about to fall lean to the north, to the north it will fall; if to the south, it will fall to that quarter. In whatever disposition or state of soul thou diest, in that thou wilt be found in the eternal world. Death refines nothing, purifies nothing, kills no sin, helps to no glory. Let thy continual bent and inclination be to God, to holiness, to charity, to mercy, and to heaven: then, fall when thou mayest, thou wilt fall well.”
Job 4:8 Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same. (KJV)
Therefore, having said this we see Christ allowing trials, test, and temptations in our redeemed lives in order that peaceable fruits of righteousness might be cultivated within each one of us. Our preparation as Christians (as the earthly farmer prepares his ground) is for life eternally with our Lord, Master, and Savior Jesus Christ. He who has begun this good work in each of His blood bought children will complete or finish it in our hearts and lives. Often times our wills are stubborn and we become stiffened clay in our Masters hand and therefore, He has to apply more pressure to mold, shape, and form the hardened clay.
However, we can rest assure that whatever He allows to come into each of our lives or causes to come into our lives, He is in full control of the pressure and the time period. We must remember when we sow seed (the Word of God) as His follower we will reap a harvest in our lives for our Lord and Savior. We know that His Word will never return unto Him void, but it will accomplish want He sent it forth to accomplish.
Jeremiah 4:3 For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and Jeruselum, break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns. (KJV)
Hosea 10:12 Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy, break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till He come and rain righteousness upon you. (KJV)
Often time the seed or Word of God sown into the ground (or human heart) does not produce a crop for a long time after the seed was sown. God the Holy Spirit is working or cultivating the ground of every human heart. He breaks up the fallow ground and makes every heart fit to take in the seed and ultimately produce a crop. Our Lord and Savior will work everything in our lives out for our good because we are in love with Him. Despite our folly (stupidity) at times and our sin, He is still in control of all of us who belong to Him. Here are some examples of reassurance and encouragement from our Heavenly Father's Holy Word:
Galatians 6:9 And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint. (Quick Amplified Bible)
2 Thessalonians 3:13 And as for you, brethren, do not become weary or lose heart in doing right [but continue in well-doing without weakening]. (Quick Amplified Bible)
1 Peter 4:19 Therefore, those who are ill-treated and suffer in accordance with God's will must do right and commit their souls [in charge as a deposit] to the One Who created [them] and will never fail [them]. (Quick Amplfied Bible)
When the Lord Jesus told us the story of the 100 sheep, He was illustrating the marvelous, majestic, overflowing and compassionate love He has for each individual one of His children. He went after the one, which strayed away and was in peril by being away from Him for a period. He confirms that none who has made their robes white by having them washed in His blood will ever be lost from Him and go out of His bosom. Wow! What love, joy, peace, and thanksgiving this should produce in each one of our hearts, souls, and minds. Every head should right now bow to Him, give thanks, and say AMEN!
Maybe you have come across this literary piece giving glory and honor to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and you do not quite understand all that you have just read but you would like to know this Jesus spoken about above. Well read the following:
How Can God Forgive Your Sin and Save You?
You must confess that you are a sinner having broken GOD'S moral laws and deserve death and total separation ( @#!*% & the Lake of Fire) from a Holy and Righteous GOD.
Scripture Verses: Acts 2: 19-21; Romans 10: 9-10; Proverbs 28:13
You must REPENT of your SINS. This means to change or alter your mind, conduct, and purpose from evil to good: to turn yourself away from all known SIN, be willing to stop sinning and turn your heart (will) to GOD.
Scripture Verses: Luke 13: 1-5; 2 Corinthians. 7: 10; Acts 2: 38-39
You must by FAITH accept JESUS CHRIST as your personal LORD and SAVIOR. The word LORD means to make JESUS Master, Controller, and Supreme in Authority in your LIFE from now until you meet HIM face to face. Example; you’ve been in the drivers seat of your LIFE, now you let go of the steering wheel and move over to the passengers seat and allow JESUS to take the wheel of your LIFE. Believe means to PUT YOUR TRUST IN. Example, as you would trust a parachute before jumping out of an airplane or a Surgeon before he/she operates on you or a chair before you sit in it. You do not think or reason you just simply trust. You will be born again or born from above by God the Holy Spirit.
Scripture Verses: John 3: 14-18; Hebrews 11: 1; Hebrews 11: 6; Luke 11: 23; Mark 8: 34-38; Matthew 10: 33; John 3:3
You must read the Word of GOD and obey what you read.
Scripture Verses: John 8: 51; Matthew 12: 50; 1 Peter 2:2
Pray this from your heart to the Lord Jesus Christ (you speaking directly to Him)
Dear Lord Jesus,
I confess to You that I am a sinner and I need Your forgiveness. I believe You shed Your Blood and died for my sins. I believe that You rose from the dead proving that You alone are God. I repent of my sins. I want to turn from my sins. I ask You Dear Lord Jesus to come into my heart and take control of my life. I want You to be my Lord, Savior, and my God. Amen...
Resurrection Life Evangelistic Ministries
“Where the Life we live is all because of The Lord Jesus Christ we Love”
John 11:25 “And Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life”
Clifford D. Tate, Sr., Evangelist
803 Ethel Street
Tallulah, Louisiana 71282
Sincerely in Christ,
Clifford D. Tate, Sr.
Author, Silent Assassins of the Soul (not yet published; coming soon)
PLEASE ENCOURAGE AUTHOR,
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