Saturday, December 26, 2015

Sowing in Your Own Field

When Abraham returned from Egypt to the land of Canaan after the first famine, he was very rich. When he came into Canaan he was "very rich in livestock, in silver and in gold." Genesis 13:2. Gold represents the wealth among all nations. Silver represents wealth within his own nation, and livestock represents the ability to produce wealth--it's the ability for increase, to produce more seed. It's a protection on wealth because if you are producing wealth you do not use up your "stored" wealth, and the stored wealth is a protection during times when increase is slow.

A similar concept is true concerning seed and bread. Seed gets sown (planted) in the ground and bread gets eaten. The Bible tells us God gives seed to the sower and bread to the eater.
"Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness." 2 Corinthians 9:10
Paul is talking about the Corinthians' generosity towards the ministry to the saints--giving to those in need. Most Christians understand the idea of sowing seed for the benefit of others--such as giving to the poor, supporting ministries that preach the Gospel etc. However, there is a concept of sowing in our own field that many have missed. 

When we cast our bread, not our seed onto the waters, it returns to us after many days. (Ecclesiastes 11:1). Bread is what we eat, not what we plant in the ground to produce a harvest. When we give bread, we are sacrificing what we would normally be eating so others can be blessed. This type of fast is a form of giving.

There is also a sowing seed into our own field to produce a harvest that provides a perpetual supply for us, that we use for our own provision, the provision of our family and future generations, and to preach the Gospel to the poor--the good news of the Gospel. Our wealth also affects our communities as we spend our money on righteous businesses.

What is our own field? It is the ability to produce wealth--like Abraham's livestock. It begins with a heart of righteousness. Throughout the book of Proverbs we see a correlation between righteousness, wealth, and diligence. As we work in the field we are called to, in obedience to God with a heart of righteousness, wealth will be produced in our life. Those who are righteous are also generous and not only use their wealth to help the poor, but use their wealth to perpetuate righteousness in the earth.

"The wages of the righteous is life, the income of the wicked, punishment." Proverbs 10:16

The wages, increase, of the righteous lead to more life. When the righteous spend money it is spent on that which will promote more righteousness. The righteous are not giving to promote evil in the earth. Their hearts are pure so what they spend or give their money on is also pure. Once our righteousness is evident then God gives the increase. When we sow and give to that which will promote righteous living, God increases us. If our money goes towards wicked purposes then punishment is attached to that. 

"Sow with a view to righteousness,
Reap in accordance with kindness;
Break up your fallow ground,
For it is time to seek the Lord
Until He come to rain righteousness on you."
Hosea 10:12

Our righteousness is attached to Jesus Christ. We are not righteous apart from Him. The first recorded tithe was when Abraham gave a tenth of all to the priest of God Most High--Melchizedek. This was right after Melchizedek, of whom Jesus is a priest after the order of, blessed Abraham and gave him bread and wine. Jesus also gave us bread and wine (His body and blood which provides righteousness) and blessing. (Genesis 14:17-20, Hebrews 7:1-3). As we accept the righteousness that Jesus Christ provided for us, and that righteousness is proven in our lives, the blessing of God is attached to that. Our response is the tithe, and really a righteous heart that affects everything associated with our finances.

The very first blessing in the Bible was to Adam and Eve--"God blessed them; and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over  the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth." Genesis 1:28. The very next verse is God telling them what they will eat--His provision. 

What does this mean? As your heart is pure before the Lord, made righteous through Jesus Christ, and as you live according to that righteousness in obedience to Him, you are sowing into your own field which will produce a prosperity--like Abraham's livestock--that will be a perpetual provision. Its the ability to produce wealth, given because you have lived out the righteousness of your heart before the Lord--even during difficult times. Don't give up! If your financial situation seems bleak, continue to live according to the righteousness of your heart that Jesus provided--the new man, the new creation--and receive His perpetual blessing!

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