By Charles Wages
“Be not deceived, God is not mocked, for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” (Gal. 6:7-8)
Just as there are natural laws that God has set in motion, so are there spiritual laws that are even more important and pronounced. Although these are “perilous” times, yet they are times of great opportunity. This is such a wonderful season in which to sow the Word.
There is an improper or bad way to sow. For instance:
- If we sow iniquity, we reap vanity (Eccl. 2:11).
- If we sow indifference, we reap poverty (Prov. 24:30-34).
- If we sow sparingly, we reap sparingly (2 Cor. 9:6).
It must never be forgotten or neglected that there is a proper sowing in the garden of life that will prosper and produce for God’s glory. Psalms 126:5-6 reads,
“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing bringing his sheaves with him.”
Seed must be sown in order to produce, but it must be the “precious” seed. Not only is this seed rare and precious, but it’s destiny is to be acquired for scattering. Also, in God’s divine providence, results will be sure and satisfying. George Williams in his Student’s Commentary on the Holy Scriptures says of Psalms 126:6, “But as the one bearing the seed basket certainly goes forth weeping because of suffering and hardship, so the one bearing his sheaves will surely come again rejoicing. Philip by divine command left joyful Samaria and went down into the Southern desert possibly lonely, depressed and tearful, but he returned rejoicing” (Acts 8).
This “precious seed” is the Word of God. Properly sown it Saves, Sanctifies, Sustains, and Satisfies!
One of the most enlightening statements on this subject is found in 1 Corinthians 3:6-8,
“I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither is he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one; and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.”
Paul desired to protect the proper sowing of the Word and very well knew that “God gave the increase.” Criticism from unregenerate or carnal Christians should not deter or detour the faithful servant of Christ. There are many enemies of the proper sowing of the Word, just as there are bugs, pests, diseases, and predatory animals that attack the garden.
The Lord Jesus, while here on earth, used the analogy of sowing and reaping. In John 4:35-37, He said,
“Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already unto harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal; that he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth.”
It is difficult when we plant anything to realize that the result is future. We are all so impatient! It takes a man of great faith to plant a tree in his old age. Why would he plant a tree knowing that he would never see it mature and bear fruit? The only answer would be that he trusted God for the future and was unselfish enough to desire others, after he was gone, to enjoy the fruits.
It is interesting to note that John 4:3 taken with 1 Corinthians 3:8 brings together something that seems contradictory yet is really complementary. Jesus spoke of the sower and the reaper rejoicing together, while Paul said “every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labor.” It must be recognized that there are great dispensational truths involved here. Not only are different peoples involved, but different times are meant as to the reaping and rewarding. However, the principle of “rejoicing together” is beautiful. Do we plant gardens just to benefit ourselves? Does the one who plants say, “this garden and its fruit is mine exclusively?” Does he who gathers the vegetables say to those who have sown, watered, and protected, “you cannot have any of the produce?”
When the Word is properly sown, we can leave the results to God and have an attitude of sharing the blessings with all of God’s saints.
Let us rejoice together and let us, “Rejoice Evermore” (1 Thess. 5:16).