In spring, farmers sow in their fields what they want to reap. If it is expected that red pepper farming will earn them lots of income this year, they will plant red pepper seeds; and if it is estimated that the price of garlic will soar, they will plant garlic seeds. So, when the harvest season comes, they will reap red peppers from the field where they planted red pepper seeds and will harvest garlic from the field where they planted garlic seeds It is the same with us who are walking the path of faith, looking forward to the eternal kingdom of heaven.
Each and every day, we have to sow the valuable things that we want to reap in the future. Whatever we sow on this earth, we will surely reap in heaven. If we sow the things of the Spirit, not the perishable things of the flesh, we will reap the fruits of the Spirit; if we sow obedience, we will reap the fruit of obedience; if we sow faith, we will reap the fruit of faith; if we sow sacrifice, we will reap the fruit of sacrifice; if we sow patience, we will reap the fruit of patience; if we sow concession, we will reap the fruit of concession; if we sow gratitude, we will reap the fruit of gratitude; and if we sow love, we will reap the fruit of love. Let us diligently sow all these seeds, thinking about the rewards and blessings we will receive in the kingdom of heaven.
We should first sow something in order to reap its fruit. If we have not borne any fruit, we need to examine ourselves to see how much fervor and zeal we have poured out into sowing the seed of the gospel. We reap what we sow—this is an immutable law of this world, which is set forth by God.
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.Gal 6:6-8
We have to think about what and how much we have reaped until now, and we also need to think about what we should sow during our short life on this earth until we go to the kingdom of heaven. Those who have been doing their best to live each and every moment faithfully and diligently according to the will of God will certainly receive rewards from God for that. And those who always put off until tomorrow what can or should be done today, and then, when tomorrow comes, put it off again until the day after tomorrow, will also surely receive rewards for it.
Our every thought, attitude and action is a seed, which produces a fruit of its own. Let us pray eagerly, study God’s word diligently, and preach the gospel fervently to everyone around us, including our siblings, relatives and neighbors.
Preaching to them once is like sowing a kernel of wheat; if we diligently sow it, it will bring forth fruit without fail. If you have not borne much fruit, please take some time to look back upon yourself: ‘How eagerly and passionately have I planted the seed of the gospel, and how much seed have I sown?’ We cannot harvest anything where we have not sown.
When we sow a seed, we also need to think about what we should reap. As the old saying goes, “An onion will not produce a rose,” everyone reaps what they sow. Those who sow laziness will produce the fruit of laziness, and those who sow diligence will produce the fruit of diligence. However, even the people who are diligent will not produce the same good results; those who work hard for physical things according to the desires of their sinful nature and their selfish hearts will reap perishable things, but those who make every effort to do the things of the Spirit will certainly reap eternal life from the Spirit. We will bear fruit without fail if we sow to please the Spirit, always thinking about what we have to do for God our Father and Mother, for our brothers and sisters, for Zion, and for the kingdom of heaven.
The parable of the rich man and the beggar Lazarus, one of Jesus’ parables, teaches us about what the final result or outcome of things sown on this earth is, and what God’s sons and daughters are to do.
“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores. The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In hell, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.’ ”Lk 16:19-25
In the above parable, Lazarus suffered on this earth, while the rich man enjoyed all the pleasures in his lifetime. As a result, Lazarus was comforted in the arms of the Heavenly Father, represented as Abraham, and the rich man was in agony in fire.
The ultimate point of the above parable is not a simply dichotomous concept that a rich man cannot go to heaven and a beggar can enter it. Here, the rich man refers to the person who has wasted all his time satisfying his own physical pleasures. The fact that the rich man called God “Father” shows that he believed in God. However, his faith was just a “good-for-nothing faith.” According to the desires of the flesh, he did everything he wanted and enjoyed all the things he desired during his lifetime.
He did not hesitate to tell what he wanted to say, and he was authoritative and dominant over others. On the other hand, Lazarus was a man of suffering for the gospel. Preaching the gospel to save a soul, sometimes he was ragged and starved like a beggar, being ridiculed and despised. He humbled himself, thinking of others better than himself, and served them. The life of the rich man represents that of those who live only for themselves, and the life of Lazarus stands for that of those who live for others and for the Spirit.
We must not only sow for ourselves, but always for the Spirit. ‘I am more pleased to do this, but I will willingly do that for the salvation of the person,’ or, ‘It is tough work and I don’t feel like doing it, but I will spare no effort to do it for the glory of God.’ Having this kind of mindset is necessary for us. This is the same mindset as that of Lazarus who suffered on this earth and was comforted in heaven and that of the good Samaritan who willingly gave up his own pleasure to save the dying man (Lk 10:30-37).
Let us reflect upon our past lives again: ‘What kind of fruit have I borne?’ Although we have not borne fruit while other members have brought forth much fruit, let us not be worried or distressed but instead take some time to think about ourselves: ‘Have I sown the seed of the gospel so diligently and fervently like them?’
Then we will find the answer. Let’s take a look at another parable which contains Jesus’ teaching that we sow what we reap.
He said: “A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then to return. So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten minas. ‘Put this money to work,’ he said, ‘until I come back.’ … He was made king, however, and returned home. Then he sent for the servants to whom he had given the money, in order to find out what they had gained with it. The first one came and said, ‘Sir, your mina has earned ten more.’ ‘Well done, my good servant!’ his master replied. ‘Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.’ The second came and said, ‘Sir, your mina has earned five more.’ His master answered, ‘You take charge of five cities.’ Then another servant came and said, ‘Sir, here is your mina; I have kept it laid away in a piece of cloth… . His master replied, ‘I will judge you by your own words, you wicked servant! You knew, did you, that I am a hard man, taking out what I did not put in, and reaping what I did not sow? Why then didn’t you put my money on deposit, so that when I came back, I could have collected it with interest?’ Then he said to those standing by, ‘Take his mina away from him and give it to the one who has ten minas.’ ‘Sir,’ they said, ‘he already has ten!’ He replied, ‘I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away.’ ”Lk 19:12-26
“Put this money to work.” This means that we should sow the seed of God’s word diligently. Ten minas can never be earned without effort. The first servant’s mina gained him ten more minas because he had put it to work; since he sowed the seeds of the Holy Spirit, he reaped the fruit of the Spirit.
Through the parable of the minas, God tells us what kind of results the person who sows and the one who doesn’t will obtain respectively. God gave authority over ten cities to the person who gained ten more minas, and authority over five cities to the one who earned five more. It was because they sowed the seed of God so diligently in obedience to God’s will. The servant who hid his one mina was the one who did not sow it at all. God said to the man who did not sow, “You wicked servant!”
How many cities in heaven do you want to rule over? Do you want to end up just hiding your God-given mina and only living a comfortable life on this earth?
God will reward each of us in heaven according to what we have done (Rev 22:12). On that day, there will surely be a reward for those who have worked for the Spirit, and there will also certainly be a reward for those who have worked only for their own physical pleasures.
When we think of the eternal blessings we will receive in heaven, it is even better to gain a hundred more minas than ten more and to earn a thousand more minas than a hundred more. So, from now on, let us diligently sow to please the Spirit.
Whatever we do for the Spirit will reap fruit. All the things we do on this earth—our small volunteer efforts inside and outside the Church, our prayers for the souls of our brothers and sisters, declaring the praises of God and preaching the gospel, and everything else we do for God and for the gospel—will bring us fruit in the kingdom of heaven.
In recent weeks, the good news that our Heavenly Father has come to this earth and that Father has taught us about the existence of our Heavenly Mother has been spreading to all nations of the world. Starting in Peru where the news of Christ’s second coming was reported through more than 70 mass media channels such as television, radio and newspapers, the glory of Father and Mother is now being displayed through mass media in all parts of the world.
This is also the result of what we have sown. If we sow something for God, we are to reap fruit from it without fail. Since everything is possible for those who believe, if we sow a seed, God always brings forth fruit for us. If we have Christ in us, shouldn’t we plant God in the heart of everyone we meet?
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.Gal 2:20
God’s people, when they put God in their hearts, can find peace and happiness and joyfully put love into practice with hope and faith. Since the Apostle Paul realized this fact, he did not show off himself, and instead he always put all his heart and mind into the task of preaching Christ who lived in him. Being the apostle of all the apostles, Paul had an outstanding knowledge and ability and worked much harder for the gospel. So, whenever he felt an impulse to show off himself, he kept beating his body and made it his slave (1 Co 9:27). “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” Always keeping this in his mind, he preached the gospel. That was why he was able to establish a Church wherever he went and to experience an amazing work of God—so many people repented and came to God.
We, who are preaching the Spirit and the Bride—our Saviors in this age, should also keep in mind that God lives in us and works with us. When we sow God, we can become one with God. God likens us to the branches of the vine and says, “If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit” (Jn 15:1-8). So, if we exclude ourselves and plant Christ, who lives in us, in the heart of those who listen, they can grow to be God’s people who have life.
We should help people think about our Heavenly Father, our Mother’s sacrifice and the kingdom of heaven first rather than about any individual member when they hear the word “Church of God.” If we do so, more and more people will come back into the arms of God. When we sow God into their hearts, we can sow to please the Spirit, and as a result we can reap eternal life.
Those who work hard to sow their own abilities cannot naturally bear fruit. We must not foolishly sow ourselves in the hearts of other people, trying to make them think that we have much knowledge, sacrifice a lot and work very hard. If we preach the gospel to people with the hope that they will follow and serve us, not only we who preach but even the people who listen to us will fall into temptation.
Shouldn’t we be more pleased when someone follows God’s will rather than our own? “They listen to the pastor’s words very well.” This is not a pleasant thing to hear. Even as for the pastoral staff or those who have titles in the Church, if they sow their own things in the hearts of others, they just end up sowing themselves—sinners—in them. Since the sinners are planted in the hearts of people, a sinful mindset grows in them and God’s righteousness cannot take its place in their hearts.
Then they may become easily tempted and make a habit of grumbling and complaining, and eventually they will become rotten fruits.
We must never reap hell as the result of unrighteousness by sowing what is unjust and unrighteous. I would like to ask you again not to plant anything bad but to sow only God in the hearts of all people, so that they can always give praise, glory and thanks to God for His love and sacrifice.
Let us think about how much our Heavenly Father and Mother have suffered and sacrificed to save our souls one after another for such a long period of time 6,000 years. How many hardships must They have gone through to proclaim the new covenant to Their children even in the war against Satan? Our salvation has not been achieved easily at all. Over 1,500 years, so many sacrifices had been offered to God, and finally there was the sacrifice of God, who is the reality of all the sacrifices.
Only then was the way to the forgiveness of sin opened for us. Compared to the sacrifice of God, what we are doing now is nothing. All we do is just obey God’s words with gratitude to God because God has bestowed so much love and grace on us.
It is not an easy thing to exclude ourselves and sow God in the hearts of people. However, if we do so, the gospel of God can work in their hearts and their souls can be saved. I ask you, children of Zion, to lead many souls to the kingdom of God by sowing God in their hearts. Then God will compliment you when you go to heaven, saying, “You have worked so hard to do My work, not your own. Your efforts are truly praiseworthy!”
In 2012, let us all sow the seed of the gospel faithfully. If we sow, we will surely bring forth fruit. Whoever sows effort, fervor, faith, sacrifice and love for the gospel will receive certain results from God. I earnestly hope that you will all reap eternal life and the abundant blessings of heaven by planting God and the Spirit in the heart of everyone, always giving thanks to Elohim for Their boundless love.