by Tom Moline
The principles of sowing and reaping.
If you keep something, that’s all you’re ever going to have. But if you take what you have and you give it, if you take it and turn it into seed and plant it in good soil, God can multiply it.
Jesus said that what you give, God will multiply:
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. ~ Luke 6:38
Now, one of the reasons why this teaching can become distorted very easily is because of a common teaching that is known as the Prosperity Gospel. If you’ve been around the church world you might know what the Prosperity Gospel is. To me it’s a very distorted and false teaching, that if you just give and have enough faith then everybody’s going to have a Rolex watch and we are all going to drive Rolls-Royces and God has to make you rich. That is not a true and Biblical teaching. But don’t let it discount the truth that what you give God does multiply.
There is a flip-side of the teaching which is called the Poverty Gospel, which is if you have anything at all then you are unrighteous. The truth is, it’s not what you have that makes you righteous or unrighteous, it’s the condition of your heart about what you have.
I want to lay a foundation for sowing and reaping. Let’s look at a couple of principles and at several verses.
1.) You Reap What You Sow.
If you plant a seed in good ground you are going to get a harvest from that seed. In fact,
Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. ~ Galatians 6:7
If you read on in context, Paul said that if you sow seeds of unrighteousness, if you do wicked things, you are going to have wicked responses to what you do. You will reap what you sow. For example, if you sow a seed of corn you will not get spinach, you will get corn.
2.) You Reap More Than You Sow.
When you plant a seed in good ground, you will reap more than you sow. Jesus said:
And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. ~ Matthew 19:29
If you lay down your life for Christ, you will receive far more than you have given. Jesus talked about this principle in Matthew 13 as well. He told a story, He said that a sower went out to sow some seeds. He was just throwing seeds out and they fell along different places and some of them returned a 30-fold return, some a 60-fold, and those planted in really good soil returned 100-fold.
Three Giving Truths
If you keep something, that’s all you’re ever going to have. But if you take what you have and you give it, if you take it and turn it into seed and plant it in good soil God can multiply it.
I want to show you three giving truths that I pray will totally transform your life as they have mine.
1.) Your Heart Matters When You Give.
The attitude of your heart matters when you give. In 2 Corinthians 9:6-7, Paul said:
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly,….
In other words, if you keep a lot and don’t give much, don’t expect a lot in return. You don’t reap what you don’t sow. He says:
…and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.
You plant a lot of seeds, you’ll get a better harvest. Then here’s the key to me, he says:
Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
God loves a cheerful giver. In fact, the word in the Greek that is translated as cheerful, it can actually be translated as hilarious. It’s like going, Ha, ha, ha, I love to do this!
The heart matters. Give and give and give and give, until you love it.
Whatever you keep, it’s all you have. What you give, God multiplies.
2.)You Cannot Out Give God!
You can never out give God. 2 Corinthians 9:8-9 says:
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: He scattered abroad His gifts to the poor; His righteousness endures forever.
This again is like the metaphor of the sower sowing seed. He is giving gifts. What seeds do you have to give? You have your time, you have your gifts, you have your heart, you have your words, you have your things, you have your financial resources. He’s given you seeds.
Then 2 Corinthians 9:10 says:
Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.
3.) People will thank God because of what you give.
In 2 Corinthians 9:11 it says:
You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
Only financially? No way! Don’t you dare limit the blessings of God to just money. You will be made rich in every way! In a good marriage, in good children, in generations to come.
People around the world will thank God because of your generosity. When you sow seed, God will give you more seed and you can keep it and if you do that’s all you have. But if you give it back, He will increase your harvest of righteousness and people around the world will thank God on behalf of you.
God has made us rich, not so that we could drive better cars or live a life of comfort, but so that we could be generous on every occasion. As a church and as a people, we will strive to be the most generous people on planet earth, because we cannot out give God. When we give people will thank God for your generosity. Don’t you dare hear a name it and claim it, get wealth message, because that’s not we are about. We are about saying, God, whatever you’ve given me, what I keep is all I have, but what I give you can multiply for your Kingdom.
God, I ask that you would speak to all of us in a way that would transform us and enlarge the harvest of righteousness in our lives. I pray that you would bless your people in every way. God we would never want to limit it to just finances, but I pray you’d bless us in health and with great relationships, and with great children and with generations of a spiritual legacy. God, what have you given me that is seed? You give me the freedom to keep it and that’s all I will have or I can plant it and I can give it and God will multiply. Help me to find joy in the giving. Amen