“Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bring his sheaves with him.” (Psalm 126:5-6)
Marshall Craig was asked why he was always in a hurry, rushing here and there. “One reason is the urgency of the work to be done,” he answered. Leonard Sanderson says, “Spirit-born believers, who comprise churches of Christ, have the most urgent mission in the world. We must not allow ourselves to be forever involved in the parasitic entanglements of small things and secondary issues that sap our strength and occupy so much of our time. We must devote ourselves, under the power of the Spirit, to ‘the one thing needful,’ always careful that our practice matches our preaching.”
We might view Psalm 126:5-6 as the Old Testament commission to personal evangelism. We are reminded in these verses that when we devote ourselves to sowing the seed of God’s truth into the hearts of others — there will be precious fruit that is produced.
It seems that personal evangelism is the most neglected form of Christian service in churches today. We have attempted to turn the church into a consumer-driven commodity. We are more concerned about making sure people FEEL a certain way or have their NEEDS met than we are making sure we fulfill the command of God to go into the world and spread the Gospel. Somehow modern church growth “experts” think that we must prepare the soil and get the conditions “just right” so people can be properly led to the Lord — if that is even an objective in some of these churches.
As far as I know, the Bible never tells me that it is my job to prepare the hearts of people. That’s God’s business. What I am told is that as a believer, I am to be busy sowing and reaping. It is the business of God to prepare the hearts of people and it is my job to sow the seed of the Gospel message.
In other words, the Holy Spirit will draw men and women, boys and girls to Christ whether you have a band or an organ — whether your pastor wears skinny jeans or a suit and tie — whether you sing the latest contemporary diddies or old hymns — whether you meet in a rented auditorium or an ornate sanctuary. Our job is not to prepare the soil — our job is to sow the seed.
All that being said, look back at the verse for today…do you notice something that is sorely missing in our churches today?
WHERE IS THE WEEPING?
When was the last time you attended a service anywhere when anybody actually shed tears because people are lost and going to hell? Our worship styles — our dress codes (or lack thereof) — our smoke and mirrors will NEVER draw people to faith and repentance. But the Bible promises that when we “sow in tears” we shall “reap in joy.”
I hear people today talk about what they believe the early church in Acts would do if they were placed in the 21st century. We can debate that and speculate on that until “the cows come home” — the only thing that I am absolutely sure the church of Acts would do today is the same thing they did in the first century — POINT PEOPLE TO JESUS — SOW THE SEED!
They didn’t rely on gimmicks, trends, surveys or business leadership techniques. They relied totally and completely on THE HOLY SPIRIT! They were filled with the Spirit, they operated in the Spirit, they depended on the Spirit and THEY SOWED THE SEED.
It seems popular and humorous today to talk about the fact that “you just had ONE JOB.” Well, Christian — you’ve got just ONE JOB. Sow the seed and reap the harvest. Water the seed with tears of compassion and concern. Depend on the Holy Spirit to speak through you so Jesus might be magnified.
“He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.”
Christian — get busy! SOW THE SEED and leave the rest to the Holy Spirit. He promises a great harvest when we depend on Him.
Have a great day.