Monday, July 22, 2019
Some principles of the Kingdom of God seem to stand in contradiction to logical principles of everyday life. Take farming for example. Good farmers don’t scatter seed. If they have any concern for cost efficiency and productivity, they spend a lot of time trying to make sure that every seed has a chance to germinate and bring forth a harvest. The preparations for planting are costly and time-consuming, but in the end, they bring a profitable return on the investment. The farmer plows and cultivates the soil, adding nutrients when necessary. Then, rather than scattering the seed, he brings in another piece of equipment that buries the seed in the ground where it can get started on its growth cycle. After the plant is growing there is additional cultivation and competition control so that the plant has exclusive rights to the nutrients in the soil. The goal is to produce the best possible harvest.
Jesus would fail Basic Agronomy 101 at the local technical college. He gave the disciples a spiritual secret of the Kingdom of God that could not be understood by the secular-minded people of the world. He told them to scatter the seed with no concern for soil preparation.
Luke 8:4-8 While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up. Some fell on rock, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
In His first parable of kingdom principles He provides His disciples, and us, with a foundational truth that we must understand and adopt – all the focus must stay on the power of the Word of God.
There is a lot of competition out there among seed companies to see who can produce the best seed. The goal is to convince farmers that there seed will produce the best crop. But not one of those seed companies recommends the scattering of their seed on unprepared soil with a guarantee of a hundred times harvest. In fact, if the farmer comes back with a complaint about the quality and production of the seed, the farmer will be asked to substantiate all his soil preparation and fertilizer applications, and he may even have to submit a soil sample for testing. There is no real seed guarantee without man’s responsibilities to give the seed what it needs to produce.
Unfortunately, we have adopted man’s farming principles into our evangelism efforts. We go to numerous conferences and classes and seminars to try to improve our soil preparation techniques so that when we finally get around to seeding the Word of God we have the best chance of getting a harvest. That is not what God called us to do.
The foundational principle of the growth of the kingdom is that all the power is in the seed, not in the farmer. It is the Word of God that prepares the soil. It is the Word of God that brings the harvest. As farmers we are asked to simply scatter the seed.
When God’s seed fails to germinate in the soil of someone’s life, don’t blame yourself. Don’t go looking for a fix from a “How To” book. Just go back to the source of seed – the Word of God – fill up the bin of your broadcast spreader, adjust the flow control to wide open, and start spreading more seed. God promised that some of it will fall on soil He has prepared, and it will produce an incredible harvest.