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FIRST-PERSON: The principle of sowing and reaping

EL CAJON, Calif. (BP)–Everything was finished except the lawn. So, Carlos purchased a hundred pounds of … weed seed? Corn? Wheat? No, grass seed. And a few months later he was cutting his grass.

Wanting to furnish his new house with the best of everything, Carlos went from store to store filling out credit applications. Having sowed a handful of credit cards, he reaped a harvest of debt for years to come.

Lawns and loans operate by the same principle. The law of seeding — of sowing and reaping — is universal, designed by the Creator to work in every area of life. It epitomizes stewardship by asking: “What seed are you planting today?”

“Then Isaac sowed in that land, and reaped in the same year a hundredfold; and the Lord blessed him” (Genesis 26:12). God created this world to be cultivated, and He has commanded us to “tend and keep it” (Genesis 2:15). The world around us is in a constant cycle of sowing and reaping.


This “law of seeding” carries over to our moral lives. Gossip, selfishness, pride and jealousy are immoral seeds. A few careless words blown by the wind can sprout ill will like a field of weeds. And when we envy others, we’re sowing the seeds of discontent within our own souls — spending too much money, working too hard, suffering from high blood pressure.

“Little sins … resemble a trail of powder, which takes the fire until at last the barrels burst asunder.” Good thoughts, on the other hand, result in good deeds, and a lifetime seeded with pure habits results in a harvest of righteousness.

“Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked,” Paul wrote. “For whatever a man sows he will also reap, because the one who sows to his flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows to the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit. So we must not get tired of doing good, for we will reap at the proper time if we don’t give up” (Galatians 6:7-9).

What seed can you sow today? Perhaps a note to a friend? Extra minutes in Bible study? A random act of kindness?

The church that seeds its community with the Gospel will reap a harvest of souls, and the Christian who witnesses will see souls saved for the Kingdom. What one Gospel seed can you sow this week?


“He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let us each one give as he purposes in his heart….” (2 Corinthians 9:6-7b).

Henry Crowell, founder of the Quaker Oats Company, promised God he would honor Him in giving and, as his business grew, he increased his giving. After forty years of giving 60 percent of his income to God, Crowell testified, “I’ve never gotten ahead of God. He has always been ahead of me in giving.”


Jesus applied the harvest principle to investing our lives in His kingdom: “I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (John 12:24-25).

Here Jesus suggests visualizing ourselves as seeds buried in the earth. There’s a sense in which we must die to ourselves and be buried with Christ, willing to face persecution, not counting our own lives as dear. Such a life results in fruitfulness and in others coming to Christ.

The universal law of seeding applies to all of life. Want to reap an eternal harvest of happiness, productivity and souls? Sow the right seed. Decide on the future you’d like to have, then sow accordingly.

Encourage a friend. Invite your friend to church again. Be faithful in supporting the ministries of God. Sow the right seed, and pray for rain.

One day soon we shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
David Jeremiah is the founder of Turning Point for God, senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, Calif., and chancellor of San Diego Christian College (formerly Christian Heritage College). For more information on Turning Point, visit www.TurningPointOnline.org.

    About the Author

  • David Jeremiah

    David Jeremiah is the founder and host of Turning Point for God and senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, Calif. For more information on Turning Point, go to www.DavidJeremiah.org.

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