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Sowing and reaping is a natural principle that we often take for granted. We expect that if we plant a seed, that some time in the future we will be able to get fruit from our tree.
Sowing and reaping have a spiritual counterpart which drastically affects the course of our lives.
As one of the most important of all Bible principles, this Bible Study takes a look at what Scripture says about sowing and reaping.
Gal 6:7-9 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. (8) For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. (9) And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
From this passage of Scripture, we can discover several characteristics of the principle of sowing and reaping.
First, this principle works whether or not a person believes in it.
To think otherwise is to walk into deception.
Second, although it is a spiritual principle, it works in much the same way as the natural principle.
If you sow tomatoes, you reap tomatoes, not cabbages; if you sow beans, you reap beans, not mangoes.
Likewise, the person who sows to the flesh reaps from the flesh, and the person who sows to the Spirit reaps from the Spirit.
Third, as with sowing any crop, you do not reap instantly.
It takes time for the seed to grow in the ground to the point where you can reap it.
It is the same in spiritual things; it takes time to reap what you have sown.
This is why in mentioning this principle, Paul also encourages us to hang in there.
He says, "Let us not lose heart".
Too many Christians sow their seeds, but give up before the time of reaping.
If you refuse to give up, you will reap in due season.
"Due season" refers to God's timing; every plant that is sown has its own timing as to when it comes to fruition and can be harvested.
And each plant is different, so in the spiritual realm, you can't compare one man's sowing with another's.
2 Cor 9:6 But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
The amount that we reap is determined by how much we sow.
This is obviously true for farmers, since if they only sow a small amount of wheat seeds they wouldn't be surprised to end up with a small wheat crop.
This principle is true spiritually too; you get out of it what you put into it.
If you put very little effort into spiritual disciplines like attending church, prayer, worship, reading the Scriptures, and so on, you shouldn't be surprised to find that you also don't get much out of it.
In the context of this verse, Paul is talking primarily about the generous giving of money.
In fact, almost all of 2 Corinthians 8-9 is about the giving of money.
Consequently, when Paul talks about sowing sparingly or bountifully, he is talking primarily about giving, and it very much applies to what you put in the offering in church.
Ps 126:5-6 Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. (6) He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
God understands that it is often difficult to sow, but promises that even though we may sow in tears we shall reap in joy.
2 Cor 9:10 Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness,
Sowing and reaping is a spiritual principle that applies to believers and unbelievers alike.
However, even though this is true, there is a supernatural element where we can look to the Lord to supply more seed, multiply the seed we have sown, and increase the fruits of our righteousness.
If you like these Topical Bible Studies, don't forget to check out our Expository Bible Studies too.