REAPING AND SOWING
Good morning brothers and sisters. Greetings in the name of the Lord Jesus. Öshall we pray.
The message thatís been put on my heart today is the Subject of sowing and reaping. Most of you will have heard a sermon on this subject before, so I pray that I donít bore you and that it might be of benefit to you somehow.
Our main Scripture today is from Galatians 6. Keep a bookmark there because weíll come back there often.
Galatians 6 :1, reading from the MKJV Brothers, if a man is overtaken in a sin, you the spiritual ones, restore such a person in the spirit of meekness, considering yourself, lest you also be tempted. (2) Bear one another's burdens, and so you will fulfill the Law of Christ. (3) For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. (4) But let each one prove his own work, and then he alone can have pride in himself, and not in comparing himself to another. (5) For each one will bear his own load. (6) But let him who is taught in the Word share with the one teaching in all good things. (7) Do not be deceived, God is not mocked. For whatever a man sows, that he also will reap. (8) For he, sowing to his flesh will reap corruption from the flesh. But he sowing to the Spirit will reap life everlasting from the Spirit. (9) But we should not lose heart in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we do not faint. (10) So then as we have time, let us work good toward all, especially toward those of the household of faith.
Now weíve covered the important topic, found in v6, of giving and supporting the church and our leaders and weíre not going to go into that again. But this passage gives us another very important principle, which sets out the reason why we ought to be faithful in supporting our church leaders in all good things. That principle is this: that whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap. The principle of reaping and sowing does not only apply to supporting the church. The apostle Paul sets down for us here a principle that is so broad that it deals with practically every aspect of life. It includes all the truths that Paul deals with before verse 6. In these verses, he tells us, that
∑ - we should be faithful in restoring our sinful brother,
∑ - we should bear other peopleís burdens,
∑ Ė that we should never boast, be proud or conceited,
∑ - we should bear our own burdens and not burden others with them
∑ - we should try please the Spirit, not the flesh
∑ - we should do good to all, especially to Christians
In all these things, we are promised that we will reap accordingly to however well or poorly we do them.
To paraphrase the importance of these concepts Ė consider this:
∑ If we are not faithful in restoring a sinful brother, how can we expect to be restored ourselves?
∑ If we donít share someone elseís burdens, how can we expect others to share ours?
∑ If we are proud and conceited, how can we expect others to be humble?
∑ If we sow to the flesh, how can we expect to harvest from the Spirit?
You see, Reaping and sowing affects every aspect of our lives here on earth.
What goes around, comes around. We reap what we sow.
This is God's rule. This is a principle which God has set down.
What a man sows, that is also what he reaps.
∑ How a man treats others is how he will be treated.
∑ How a man gives, is how he will be given.
∑ What a man does, will be done unto him.
These are quite sobering thoughts, something that we ought to take careful note of, as we live our lives. To even think that we wonít reap what we sow, is to mock God in our hearts. Why is that true? Because it is God's rule. It is a rule which cannot be set aside, because it abides as surely as the God of heaven abides. Therefore we better be careful what we do. We better be careful what we sow because what we sow, we will reap.
And how ever well or poorly we sow, will determine how well we will reap, either on this earth or in the afterlife.
At this stage, weíd do well if we reminded ourselves, of the parable of the sower.
Keep a bookmark in Galatians and turn with me to Matthew 13:18 "Hear then the parable of the sower. (19) "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road. (20) "The one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; (21) yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away. (22) "And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. (23) "And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty."
Now this passage deals mainly with witnessing and Christian growth. But being an avid gardener myself, I see many parallels to actually living a Christian life. So how do we sow? Firstly, we need a gardening lesson.
∑ We need to actually understand what we are doing and how things work. In other words we need to know the Truth.
∑ We need to be prepared to work hard, and our hearts need to be right before the Lord.
∑ Then, we need to prepare the soil, with no rocks or stones that will prevent our roots from growing deep and strong,
∑ with no thorns or weeds in our lives that will choke out the goodness. Only then can we sow good seed.
∑ And once weíve sown the seed, we need to continue working,
∑ we need to water it, feed it and fertilize it, and there is no better nourishment than the Word of God.
∑ While feeding our seeds, we need to disciple them and nurture them with love, protecting them from the pests and the storms of life. Then, with time and patience, we will be able to reap a good harvest.
Every year round about winter time, the beautiful little Namaqualand daisies come into flower, and once theyíve flowered, each flower bud forms a cluster of maybe 20 seeds. So from any one plant, one can collect about 40 or 50 brand new seeds, if you watch over them and reap them at the right time. If you take the seeds from many plants, and look after them, we can grow hundreds of new plants the following year. And thatís how the Christian walk should be. If you sow bountifully, you will reap bountifully. And if youíre a gardener, you might have noticed that if youíre lazy in collecting the daisy seeds when theyíre ready, or forget to sow them at the right time, the following year there is still an amazing amount of new growth that just sprouts up out of nowhere. These come from the seeds that fell by themselves. You see, God WILL accomplish His work and His will, in His own time, with or without, your help.
The point is that you should want to serve the Lord, because you love Him and more importantly, because He first loved you.
Turn with me to:
2 Corinthians 9:6 Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. (7) Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (8) And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed;
Then onto verse 10 ÖNow He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food, will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness; (11) you will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God.
The idea here is, that when a man scatters seed in his field, God provides him with the means of sowing again. He not only gives him a harvest to supply all his needs, but he blesses him in also giving him the ability to sow more seed, through the harvest of new seeds. If you sow sparingly, your harvest will be poor and you wonít have enough new seed, in order to sow again. It becomes a vicious circle. We need to sow bountifully from the start.
But lets study this passage further. In Galatians 6 verse 1, Paul says, that those brothers who are sinning are to be restored "in a spirit of meekness or gentleness." A Spirit of gentleness implies that we canít go shouting our mouths off in rebuke, with Spiritual pride. The Bible lays out perfect guidelines on how to treat a brother who is in sin. Go to Matthew 18:15 "If your brother sins, go and show him his fault inÖ. private; (the KJV says tell him his fault between thee and him alone Ė that means in private. And this is where we are to be gentle and meek) if he listens to you, you have won your brother. Verse 16.. "But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed. (17) "If he refuses to listen to them, then tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector, (in other words, cast him out.)
And 1 Timothy 5:20 confirms this by saying, Those who continue in sin, rebuke in the presence of all, so that the rest also will be fearful of sinning.
But before this happens, before we rebuke them, we are to restore them and try bring them back, in private, in a spirit of meekness. At the same time we need to be very aware of our own fallen nature, lest we also fall into the same sin. We need to be careful that we donít become puffed up with our own Spiritual pride, and we also need to remember too, that we need to have the logs taken out of our own eyes, before we take the splinters out of others. Rom 2:1 Therefore you have no excuse everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge, practice the very same things.
You cannot hope to restore a sinful brother if youíre in the same sin yourself.
So, the way we treat a sinful brother is an important duty in our lives within the Christian family, and how faithful we are in dealing with the issue, will determine how we reap in this regard. Ė
Jam 5:20 says: let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
Now isnít that a fantastic motivating factor to be obedient! Do you want to have a multitude of sins covered? Then restore your brothers in a Spirit of gentleness.
Onto Galatians 6 v2, Bear one another's burdens, and so you will fulfill.. the Law Öof Christ.
Now what exactly is this Law of Christ? Turn to John 13Ö..
John 13:34 And you can take a red pen and highlight this verse, draw stars and asterisks round it with exclamation marks, because itís one of the most important verses in the whole Bible. It is the law of Christ Ė and in it, Jesus says: "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.
The Law of Christ. A vitally important law, that Peter confirms: 1 Peter 4:8 Above all, [Notice that Ė above ALL Ė that implies it is more important than anything else] Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.
Thereís another great motivating factor to doing what God wants you to! Love covers a multitude of sins!
So, here in verse 2, we are instructed to bear one anotherís burdens and by doing that, we can fulfill the law of Christ, which is to love one another. And Romans 15:1 confirms this principle - Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength, and not just to please ourselves. (2) Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification.
We are supposed to carry each otherís burdens Ė and this is something that is quite disturbing, here at Elijah. The world out there is so ungodly, so evil, such an unfriendly place, a place that we cannot and should not find fellowship, because there is no partnership between light and darkness. We are supposed to be Christians, yet why is it that we are so unfriendly and unloving, especially to our own brothers and sisters here at church? We hardly even welcome newcomers to our church Ė itís always the same faithful faces that do these things. Let me ask you family, do you know the person sitting next to you, on either side of you, in front of you and behind you? Look around you, how many people do you actually know? ÖÖ..
As a supposed family then, how can we even think of carrying each otherís burdens, when we donít even know our brothers and sisters names? We donít even know their names, let alone their circumstances and their burdensÖ.. Maybe we all too often wallow in our own self-pity, weíre too wrapped up in our own selfishness to even consider those brothers and sisters around us. We are supposed to be a family, people, and we are instructed to support each other and carry each otherís burdens, and thatís something we all need to work on, because I promise you that the world out there is not going be there for us when we need help.
How is it that we donít even know their names?? Maybe we all need to examine our hearts. As individuals we are responsible for our own actions, but as a Christian community we are responsible for each other. We will all reap what we sow.
But lets move onÖÖ.back to Galatians 6
Paul begins V7 with the warning: "Be not deceived." This word "deceived" is the Greek word ďplanaoĒ and it literally means "to be led astray," either by yourself and your own humanistic ideas or by someone else. The world is filled with people who have been deceived, people who think that all religions serve the same God. That Jesus Christ was just a messenger, just a prophet. They have been deceived into thinking that the Gospel of Jesus is the lie, that the Bible is just a set of moral guidelines. They think that good behaviour will get them to heaven, and they make the critical mistake of thinking that they donít need a Saviour, that they can actually save themselves.
We read of the Devil and his deception in Revelation 12 verse 9: And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world:
and Satan is busy right now, especially on Sunday morning, deceiving the whole world. It began way back at the beginning of history with Eve, and the Devil has been doing that ever since. And do you think heíll stop. Not a chance, heís going to continue to deceive until the end of the age, when he will finally be cast into the bottomless pit. Until then, he is not yet done. He has raised up so many false prophets and false teachers in the church, that are leading so many people astray, that it must be a truly grievious thing to our Lord.
Jesus speaks of this in Matthew Chapter 24, verses 4 and 5: And Jesus answered and said unto them, 'Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. We see that everywhere in the world right now. Many people, hundreds and thousands and millions of people, have been deceived into following false christs, rather than the true Christ. Benny Hinn and his cronies even prophesied that Jesus was going to show up at one of his crusades! Kenneth Copeland believes that he could have died on the cross in Jesusí place.
Such blasphemy from within the church itself and we wonder why there is so much sin and wickedness in the world today. Know for sure, brothers and sisters, that there is a definite relationship between the truth, and holy living on the one hand, and the lie, and sinning on the other. The truth leads to Godly living. The lie leads to evil. If a man does not have the truth, he can do nothing but sin, he has no choice in the matter. If a man wants to live a Godly life he must know and love the truth. That is why it is so important for us to have a knowledge of the truth Ė and that is why we are so absolutely blessed in this ministry, here at Elijah Ė there are many many people here today who will testify to the fact that it is almost impossible to find a true Word based ministry out there today. Many people have searched for years to find a church that is not caught up with serious error, or the latest trend of church growth or false prophets with false anointing. Now donít get me wrong, I am not saying that Elijah Ministries is the perfect churchÖ. I know that for sure, because the minute I walked in, it became very imperfect. But thankfully, Elijah is based on the Word of God, on the Bible, on the Truth. And people, I urge you, donít ever take this ministry for granted. Thank God every day for the wonderful blessing of knowing that we have a pastor that is fundamentally grounded in the truth, that doesnít get swayed by the pop psychology of Alpha courses or church growth schemes or the Purpose driven life rubbish that is the latest Christian fad. Instead of trying to grow his church himself, our PJ lets God do the growing. And we thank the Lord for him. Amen?
And while weíre on this subject, Iím not sure how many of you actually realize how much work goes into preparing a truth based sermon. Itís very easy to read one verse from the Bible, as so many churches do, and then tell a worldly story of how it relates to life. But itís an entirely different thing to do a proper exegesis or study of Scripture. Itís a massive responsibility to take on the teaching mantle of God, and with it comes an enormous amount of work just to prepare one sermon, no matter how trivial you might think a particular sermon might be. And when you are about to preach the Truth, you can be guaranteed to be absolutely hammered with tests, trials and really nasty persecution. Just ask my poor wife, she will testify to this. And with all this, PJ still has to keep down a fulltime jobÖ.. Please people, donít ever take this ministry for granted and never forget to lift PJ and his family up in your prayers, every day. I know how much he needs it.
Be not deceived is what the Word says. If we are deceived with respect to the truth, it can only lead to destruction.
But Paul is not talking about deception in general here. He is talking about a very specific type of deception. Notice the rest of verse 7: Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap. You know, one of Satanís greatest joys is to deceive you into thinking that you can get away with things, that you donít have to answer to anyone, that you can sow whatever you like and not reap what you sow. The Devil would like us to think that we can sin and get away with it, just like he told Eve in the Garden of Eden, that we can break God's commandments and still be blessed by Him. This is the type of deception that Paul is talking about here. You think that you can do this sin or that sin and no one is going to know about it. Well, Iíve got news for youÖ.. you can fool yourself, you can even fool your spouse, you can fool your friends, fool your parents, fool the taxman and even your pastor. You can fool most people.
But can you fool God? Ö.Lets just go through a few ScripturesÖ
Matthew 10:26 "Therefore do not fear them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be made known.
Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, Watching the evil and the good.
Jeremiah 23:24 "Can a man hide himself in hiding places where I canít see him?" declares the LORD. "Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?"
Jeremiah 32:19 great in counsel and mighty in deed, whose eyes are open to all the ways of the sons of men, giving to everyone according to his ways and according to the fruit of his deeds; Ö. and finally in
Job 34:21-22 "For His eyes are upon the ways of a man, And He sees all his steps. (22) "There is no darkness nor deep shadow where the workers of iniquity can hide themselves.
Clearly then, you cannot hide anything from God. So if you think you can, you are deceived. If you think you can escape Godís discipline or justice, you are deceived. If you think you can sow and not reap, you are deceived.
Turn with me to 1 Corinthians 6: 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, (10) nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.
If you think you can commit adultery and hide from God, you are deceived.
If you think you can live in sin with your girlfriend and escape God, you are deceived.
If you think you can lie, or cheat the taxman or be a Christian homosexual, you are seriously deceived, because God sees everything and HE says you will reap what you sow.
God has even written this rule into creation itself. Never does a farmer sow wheat and get anything else but wheat. If you sow daisies, you never get anything else but daisies. Even the unsaved who donít know God, know that this is a rule of creation, all around them, staring them in the face, created by God. So, to think that you can frustrate this rule, to think that you can sow evil and reap good, therefore, is to mock God.
What about Sunday Christians, the great pretenders? A so-called Christian that only comes to church to keep the peace at home, or to please his wife, or to do the right thing for pretences sake Ė to show others how apparently holy he is, but he sits there week after week, never singing, sometimes listening, but most often dozing, and never really having the conviction of truth in his heart. People like this Ö. they mock God with their deceit. And what does the Lord say regarding thisÖ. Turn to Psalm 50
Psalm 50:16 (from the New American Standard) But to the wicked God says, What right have you to tell of My statutes and to take My covenant in your mouth? [Here he is speaking about Communion. And itís another good reason not to take the act of communion/the Lordís Supper lightly] (17) For you hate discipline, And you cast My words behind you. (18) When you see a thief, you are pleased with him, and you associate with adulterers. (19) You let your mouth loose in evil and your tongue frames deceit. (20) You sit and speak against your brother; You slander your own mother's son. (21) "These things you have done and I kept silence; You thought that I was just like you; I will reprove you and accuse you before your own eyes. (22) Now consider this, you who forget God, or I will tear you in pieces, and there will be nothing left to rescue:
Thatís a really hectic warning. If this Scripture speaks to you, then I urge you to quit delayingÖ. Its time to make a real commitment. Donít be a hypocrite. You can fool everyone else, but you canít fool God. Donít even try mock God, because, as He says, He will tear you to pieces.
And God will not be mocked. That's what the text says. That does not mean that a man cannot lift up his nose at God, sneer at Him, make fun of Him or blaspheme His name. What it does mean, is that in spite of all of this, the rule of God still stands.
∑ Man can think what he wants to think.
∑ Man can deceive himself as much as he wants to be deceived.
∑ Man can be as wicked as he wants. He has all those choices.
But all of that will never change God's rule. And it is a rule that operates both in the physical and in the spiritual realm. It is a law which God has put into the very fabric of the universe. That rule can no more be changed than the rule that we must eat and drink to survive. God is not mocked, because whatever a man sows, that he will surely reap -- no matter what.
A very good example of sowing and reaping, and of mocking God, is the political situation in this country. Iíve mentioned this before, and I stress that it is just my opinion, so you might want to disagree with me, and probably many will, but for decades the white government oppressed the black population with the hatred of Apartheid and itís unspeakable evils, some of which I witnessed first hand. And they did all this while hiding behind their bible and their religion. What amazes me, is that Apartheid is still alive and well and still kicking, that to this day, there are Christians out there, who are still out-and-out racists. Now, I can accept that unbelievers can be racists, but for a Christian, it is unbecoming to think of your fellow man as being inferior to you, in any way. Unfortunately for these people, God is not mocked, God created us all and we have seen that the Law of Christ commands us to love one another. Notice too, that in the Law of Christ there is absolutely no reference to skin colour! Love your neighbour as you love yourself.
And, because of Godís abiding law of sowing and reaping, the seeds that the Nationalist government sowed in the past have now turned full circle, into a harvest of reverse racism. White people, in general, are now reaping what their Government sowed. Now itís a form of racism in reverse, with the noble initiatives of Black Economic Empowerment and Affirmative action having failed dismally. Instead of lifting up the suffering of the poverty stricken millions, as it was designed to do, we have fat cats like Cyril Ramaphosa and Tokyo Sexwale making themselves obscenely rich at the expense of their so-called comrades, at the expense of the grass roots millions, who actually put them in power.
Isnít it amazing how principled men like these, and many others, including Jacob Zuma, Jay Naidoo and Mac Maharaj, who were heroes of the freedom struggle and gave much of their lives for the fight against apartheid Ė (Zuma, Sexwale and Maharaj each spent 13 years on Robben Island)Ö now they are caught up with the love of money, the root of all evil. Not so long ago, Ramaphosa founded the National Union of Mineworkers and together with Sexwale has gone from humble beginnings in fighting for the rights of the masses, to becoming billionaires overnight, and the sad thing is that they have all but forgotten the people they were once fighting for, the same people who got them where they are today. All for the love of money. Its amazing how every manís soul has a price.
On the good side, the events of the Shabir Shaik trial have left us with a chance to be much more positive about the future of our country. For once, our President has given us new hope by having the guts to stand up and do the right thing by firing Jacob Zuma. I just wish heíd have the guts to stand up to Robert Mugabe. Thereís renewed hope for our country. Thanks to good financial leadership, we still have a great economy and we have a level of transparency and accountability that was missing in the previous government. At least something gets done when corruption is exposed, unlike the days of Eschel Roodie and Connie Mulder. And while the gravy train hasnít stopped yet, at least it shows signs of slowing, which is encouraging. We need to continue praying for our President and our Government, because goodness knows they have a difficult job. How do you right the wrongs of the past without hurting anyone? Itís an impossible job and one I wouldnít want for all the tea in China. Thereís only one way to solve the problems of our country Ė and thatís to return to the morals of a God-fearing society.
And even though it can be a difficult life in South Africa, with unemployment, crime and corruption so high, isnít it a marvelous comfort to know that our lives are totally in Godís hands Ė that He will camp His angels round about us in times of trouble, as it says in Psalm 91. Instead of walking in fear as most unsaved South Africans do, isnít it wonderful to have the peace that surpasses all understanding?AMEN?
As is the case with Jacob Zuma, we will all reap what we sow.
And so it is in the spiritual realm. Whatever we sow, no matter what that might be, that is what we reap. Nothing more, nothing less. Your spiritual harvest will be equal to your spiritual sowing.
That is the clear teaching of the Word of God. Turn to Romans 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, (6) who will render to each person according to his deeds: (7) to those who by perseverance in doing good, seek for glory, and honor, and immortality, eternal life; (8) but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.
God will render to each one of us according to our deeds. And this is confirmed in Proverbs 1:31: "Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.
And in Job 4:8: "Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, they reap the same.
And there are many more passages like these in the Bible. Don't be deceived. Don't be led astray. This is God's rule and God's rule always stands.
Back to Galatians 6Ö.
So far, Paul has been speaking in general terms about reaping and sowing, but then in verse 8 he becomes very specific: "For he that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."
What does it mean to "sow to the flesh"? The word "flesh" refers to our old, sinful nature, the old man, all that we are in Adam, all that we are apart from the grace of God, apart from our rebirth. The flesh is that sinful nature which produces the works of the flesh: Go back a little to Galatians 5Ö
Galatians 5:19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness/impurity, lasciviousness /seduction, (20) idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance/strife, emulations/jealousy, wrath/outbursts of anger, strife/selfishness, seditions/dissention, heresies, (21) envying, murder, drunkenness, revellings, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Even outbursts of angerÖ.. aiya yay
To sow to the flesh is the same thing as doing the works of the flesh. But thatís not all. A man may be very honest. He may be honorable. He may even attend church, but if he doesn't look to heavenly things, if he does not actively seek Christ, the Gospel, and the truth, then he, too, sows to the flesh.
What will such a person reap who sows to the flesh? Notice the text: "...shall of the flesh reap Ö..corruption." The word "corruption" means literally destruction, to perish. It is very closely associated with the idea of death, as the punishment of sin.
In Romans 8, is a similar text to the one weíre studying now, but instead of using the word "corruption", it uses the word "death": Romans 8:13 for if you are living according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. And thatís the crux of the Christian walk, to die to self.
Let us be warned. Let us never think that we can sow to the flesh and somehow escape corruption. It cannot be done.
but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting." Just the opposite kind of sowing and just the opposite kind of reaping. The Spirit here is the Holy Spirit, the Spirit whom we receive at the time that we are born again. He is the Spirit who gives to us the new nature and who produces, out of that new nature, the fruit of the Spirit, as we read in Gal 5 :(22) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
To sow to the Spirit means that we walk in the Spirit. We live according to the Spirit. We do those things which are the fruit of the Spirit. This is our calling as Christians.
And what will happen to us if we sow to the Spirit? They shall of the Spirit, reap life everlasting. When we sow a field of Spirit works, Spirit fruit, then when harvest time comes we will reap eternal life.
Eternal Life Ė thatís the very opposite of corruption and death. It is the life of Jesus Christ. If we sow to the Spirit by the grace of God, when we die we will go to heaven. And there we will be with Christ. There we will have blessed fellowship and communion with our Savior. And when the world comes to an end, we will enter into the glory of the eternal kingdom of God in the new heavens and the new earth. Then all the blessing of that kingdom will be ours. We will enjoy all the good things that God has for His people, things which we have never imagined, things which our eyes have not seen, things which we have never heard. And that will be our place forever. That's the blessing that we harvest when we sow to the Spirit.
To end, Galatians 6: 9 "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up."
Donít give up in doing good, because God hasnít given up on you. Amen.