Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Lord Of The Harvest

“Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He will send forth labourers into His harvest.

Matthew 9:38 (KJV)

I would like to take a moment to do some visualization. Imagine, if you will, a vast field of ripe wheat that stretches from horizon to horizon with no end in sight. The stalks of wheat sway in the breeze like undulating waves of the sea, their heads heavy with golden kernels bowing to the earth below. It is a unimaginable harvest of great proportions and if the sickle is not put to the straw, the kernels threaten to break loose from the heads and fall to the ground in waste.

The owner of the wheat field understands this threat for he sowed the individual seeds, watched them grow and tended them, and knows there is only a small window of opportunity that remains to gather the crop to his storehouses. He looks for laborers who will help him harvest the fruit, promising to reward them handsomely if they will. But the workers who come to him are few in number and the success of the harvest relies upon the intensity with which they toil. As the harvest continues, the bushels of grain are brought in and counted. Each basket is placed on scales and it becomes obvious to the owner they are lacking in weight. His eye searches out others with a willingness to join in the labor of securing this great harvest, but he only finds those who are wanting to enjoy the fruits of others labor instead of offering a hand to help. (John 4:34-38)

As the allotted time for the harvest draws to a close, the owner looks out over the field where he sees only dead stalks that remain standing. He knows there was great loss and that the final tally will indicate such. He closes the doors to his storehouses that hold the glistening, golden kernels and goes out to burn what remains.

Now, if you are able, put a face on the head of each stalk of wheat; a loved one, a friend, a stranger. The wheat field has become a sea of humanity, a swaying mass of souls whose roots cling to the hard-packed soil of the world and sin. The final harvest is near (Joel 3:13; Rev. 14:15), and God looks out to see who will come and help Him save some from it. It is a “plentiful” harvest, “but the workers are few.” (Luke 10:2) The majority of His children are unwilling to be sent out among the “wolves” (v3), even at the expense of knowing a soul may be lost to the flames that burn what remains.

In the original Greek, the word “send”, or “ekballo,” implies pushing forward or thrusting out. It is the same word used in Scripture for the expulsion of a demon in a possessed man, thus indicating a action with a degree of force compelling it. God does not force man to bend to His will. But He will send His Holy Spirit to compell a man to “thrust” himself into the harvest field and help Him bring souls into His storehouses for safe keeping. By doing so, the worker is reaping a harvest of righteousness that will last an eternity. Paul tells the Galatians to continue to do good, for “the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” (Galatians 6:8b) He exhorts us to “not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (v9) By having a willingness to labor for Him and trusting God to strengthen us, we are able to help Him bring others to Christ and are also rewarded for our toil.

The sea of faces that stretches from horizon to horizon are in great peril of becoming over ripe and falling to the dust below if there is not a desire within our hearts to assist the Lord in gathering them before they do. We all know someone who does not yet know their Savior Jesus Christ and whose soul is threatened with the “winepress of God’s wrath” (Rev. 14:14-20). We should be in constant prayer that the “Lord of the harvest” will send out His workers to reap the fields that are ripe and ready. But more importantly, we should be willing workers who yield to His gentle prodding and allow Him to “thrust” us out into the fields of humanity to help gather a great harvest for Him.

C. H. Spurgeon once wrote, “Lord, it is harvest time! Put in your sickle and reap!” While there is still time, push forward into the fields and plant the seeds of God’s Word in the hearts of men. Then watch Him reap a bountiful harvest of untold proportions!


Marlene said...


Janell said...

Makes me sad. I have so many loved ones who are lost. You are a great writer it was very vivid.

Mama Mimi (Dana) said...

Great imagry Karen. There are many in all of our lives that we haven't even begun to touch. Let's get going.