Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sowing to the Flesh/Sowing to the Spirit

(Galatians 6:7-9) "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.  For he that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."  One of the universal principles of the Bible that nobody will escape--saved or lost--is the principle of sowing and reaping.  Galatians warns us to not be deceived for God is not mocked.  Whatever we soweth, we shall also reap.  If we sow to our own flesh, then we'll reap corruption of our own flesh.  If we sow to the Spirit, we'll reap life everlasting.  Nobody will escape that principle.  Everyday in our lives we are sowing something.  What does it mean to sow? Sowing means to plant.  We are planting seeds of whatever sort they are.  One of these days we'll reap from what we've sown whether it be positive or negative; of life everlasting, or we'll reap corruption.  Allow me to cite an example.  Students in school have a responsibility to study their homework.  They are given assignments on a daily basis by their teachers.  The students are expected to read their material and to follow directions.  There will come a time when the students will be tested on the material they've been required to study.  If they diligently put in time and focus on their material, then the chances they will score a high grade on their test is very probable.  However, if they don't read or study their material, by the time they take their test, their chances of passing their test is nil.  What's the difference.  One will diligently prepare by sowing their time to studying their material.  The othe person is lazy and decides not to study.  As a result, the one who doesn't study and prepare scores a lower grade than the one that studies.  I've heard teachers say you won't get anything out of the class unless you're participating.  That same principle applies to the farmer.  If a farmer doesn't sow his crops earlier in the year and devote his time to pruning his crops during the spring and summer, he won't reap a harvest.  However, if the farmer plants his crops on time in additon to diligently caring for his crops, then the probability of him reaping a harvest is great provided it rains adequately during the spring and summer.
Parents who have young children have the responsibility to plant good seed when raising their children.  If they desire for their children to grow up to love and serve the Lord, then they must start training them as soon as they're born until they're an adult.  They must diligently teach their children the truths of God's word and discipline them.  Parents also must shield their children from worldly influences.  If parents fail to shield their children from worldly influences of entertainment, then there's a probability their children will stray and not serve the Lord.  Training children is very difficult and cumbersome.  Parents must sow good seeds in their children.  Many Christian parents today are very slothful in raising their children.  Many parents wonder when their children are grown where they went astray in raising their children.  It's because the seed they've sown was choked by the bad seeds that have been planted when they've allowed their children to participate in worldly things.  You can plant all the good seeds you so desire in your children.  However, if you allow your children to engage in amusements which counter the seeds you've been sowing, then everything you've taught them has been for naught.   You can't plant both good and bad seed and expect to reap a harvest.  For example, you can't teach your children the Bible, send them to church, and then in turn allow them to watch all the filth from Hollywood.  The filth from Hollywood will choke out all the good seed that you've sown in your children.
The first part of verse eight says that he that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption.  What are some of the things you can sow to the flesh?  Proverbs 6:14 says, "Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord."  There are many church members (both men and women) that are guilty of sowing discord.  God says he hates sowing discord among the brethren.  It causes division and strife in the church.  There are church members who use their tongue to ridicule the man of God in the church.  They run their mouth about anybody and everybody in the church.  The church is in an uproar due to discord.  God will judge those that sow discord.  I've heard of people dying terrible deaths as a result of raising their hand against the man of God.  Sowing discord destroys relationships.  It hinders the work of God.  Discord has torn homes asunder.  You'll reap destruction if you devote your time being a busybody sowing discord.  There are those that sow iniquity and mischief.  There are people whose feet are swift to mischief.  They are always looking for an opportunity to commit mischief.  There are those that involve themselves with substance abuse.  They start out smoking one joint and then before you know it, they're hooked.  Then the seed they've planted has grown into a tall plant which has its hooks into you.  It's something you no longer can control if you ever could.  Then before you know it, they'll go to jail due to substance abuse.  There are those that abuse themselves with alcohol.  What started out was one drink and before you know it they're drinking liquor on a daily basis.  They become drunkards.  The alcohol impairs their brain and mental faculties.  They are abusive when they're drunk.  They've beaten their wives, left their families, spent all their paycheck just to have another drink.  Drunkards have even been guilty of manslaughter when they kill someone due to drunken driving--which is against the law.  Their lives are shipwrecked.  There are other seeds you can sow to the flesh such as bitterness.  There can be a number of incidents that cause bitterness such as death of a child or a spouse, the loss of a job, the inability for a young married woman to become pregnant, or a prayer request that God hasn't answered.  It can be a number of things.  Bitterness can grow and become deeply rooted in your heart.  People who are bitter are mean, hateful, cantankerous, and they are backbiters.  They hate life.  Bitter people are some of the most miserable people on earth.  Sowing to the flesh will lead to corruption. 
What are some of the things you can sow to the Spirit?  Psalms 126:5 says that they that sow in tears shall reap in joy.  When the passage mentions tears, it's not referring to tears of madness or tears of not getting your way.  It's talking about those saints who weep for the lost or weep for those saints that are experiencing trials.  God says if we sow in tears we'll reap in joy. When you sow in tears, you are displaying that the things that matter to God matter to you.  You're humbling yourself in desperation desiring to see God move in an individual situation.  Christians are to go forth weeping and bearing precious seed.  We are to weep for the lost.  We are to weep over the eternal destination of their souls.  That kind of seed is precious to God.  It's precious because that's near to the heart of God.  God loves sinners and we're to have a burden for sinners.  We're to be moved with compassion over sinners.  Tears are a reflection of the burden we have for sinners.  Hosea 10:12 says we're to sow to ourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy, break up the fallow ground, for it's time to seek the Lord, till he come and rain righteousness upon you.  Christians are to sow seeds of faithfulness.  It's faithfulness to our families, the House of God, prayer, and our relationship with the Lord.  We're to sow seeds in righteousness.  We're to hide the Word of God in our hearts so we won't sin against Him.  We're also to allow the fruit of the Spirit to reign in our mortal lives.  If the fruit of the Spirit is manifested in our lives, then we'll sow seeds of righteouness, mercy, and tears.   If our heart is right with the Lord, then we'll sow unto the Spirit.  A Christian whose heart is right with God won't use their liberty to sow seeds to the flesh.
I've given examples of sowing to the flesh and sowing to the Spirit.  If you sow to the Spirit, you'll reap life everlasting.  If you sow to the flesh, then you'll of the flesh reap corruption.  What's suprising is the attitudes of church people about sin.  They think they can play around with sin and sow to the flesh and not reap destruction as a result.  It doesn't work that way.  You can't live to the flesh and expect to reap life everlasting.  The same principle goes with someone who's building a house.  If you don't exert some labor to build the house, then nothing will be accomplished.  If you expect to spiritually reap a harvest, then you must sow to the Spirit or you won't reap a harvest.  God doesn't contradict his word.  God's not mocked.  You won't escape the principle of sowing and reaping.

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