Anyone who receives instruction in the word must share all good things with his instructor. Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. (Galatians 6:6-10 NIV)
Where do we invest our lives, and why does it matter?
If we read between the lines a bit in our passage, we can assume some of those who had been misled by the Judaizers (those who oppressed others with the Old Testament law, in addition to Christ), were neglecting their responsibilities in the church. This seems to have been true on three levels:
First, they were neglecting their teachers. Those who gave their entire lives to the teaching of the Word of God in the church needed to be supported in some way. If not, they would have to return to the marketplace to earn their living and wouldn’t have time to teach.
Secondly, they were neglecting the fruits of a Spirit-led life. All of the ungodly acts and attitudes outlined in chapter 5 were cropping up in the absence of an emphasis on the all-sufficient grace of Jesus.
Third, they were neglecting the health of the church body. With teachers starving and legalism running rampant, the church was suffering. People were getting weary. The work was suffering.
Such is the nature of deception and the work of Satan in our world. What he does to one of us affects all of us.
On the other hand, the nature of the Spirit is to remain focused on Christ and to form a solid front against Satan’s attempts to discourage us. In this case, what we do for one another makes us strong.
The goal is a good harvest. To have a good harvest we must sow the right kind of seed and commit ourselves to the crop. And if I remember right from my days on the farm, even a few days of neglect can spell disaster.
I know it is human nature to think our failure to be responsible in God’s work really won’t matter all that much. We think someone else will pick up the slack. But in fact, those who pick up the slack are further burdened and discouraged.
If there is something we think it is important, and the Lord’s people would certainly put His church and His work in this category, then we must invest our lives in making sure it is healthy and successful. If we think good things will just magically appear in this world without our devotion to the cause of Christ, we are deceiving ourselves.
Dear God, help me be a good sower. In Jesus’ name. Amen.