Galatians 6:6-10 (ESV)
6 Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. 7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10 So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
As a pastor, one of the great honors that I’m given is when I’m asked to officiate a wedding. It’s wonderful to share in the joy of a couple as they commit themselves to one another in Christ. But it takes a great deal of work and preparation to get ready for that special day. It’s not so much about all the planning that goes into preparing for that one day, rather the work I’m speaking of is the pre-marital counseling that takes place prior to the wedding, work which helps couples prepare for life together.
Good premarital counseling will seek to help couples explore a wide range of subjects that perhaps they haven’t already considered; raising kids, how they spend time with one another, communication, intimacy, problematic idealistic expectations, and several other topics not the least of which is finances.
Finances, how money is managed and spent, is often the subject of difficult conversations in marriage.
And it’s often a difficult subject in the life of the church as well. I find it amazing that Paul can speak about money so freely without ever mentioning the word money, but here in this passage, Paul is certainly raising the subject of money and how we are utilizing our money and our resources.
Here, Paul is encouraging the Galatians to support the ministry through financial gifts and through the use of their time and resources. But Paul also has a wider view in mind when it comes to our resources.
Paul has the keen understanding that all of our material possessions and wealth are given to us as a trust, as a responsibility for us to use for God’s purposes in the world, and not to be hoarded for our own personal enjoyment.
Paul’s contrast between sowing in the flesh and sowing in the Spirit also paints a great picture for us. The warning regarding sowing in the flesh echoes Paul’s argument that adopting Jewish law and practice will be of no benefit to the Galatian believers; their efforts will be wasted and the harvest they will reap will not last.
But sowing in the Spirit will bring lasting benefits to themselves and others, a harvest for eternity, an effort that will bear amazing fruit if they stay the course.
In these short verses, Paul powerfully encourages and challenges the Galatians believers to pursue their relationship with Christ as they support and encourage the work of the ministry and one another.
Paul’s words are just as challenging for us today when we think about the great blessings that we have and what we’re doing with them. The foundational thought for us to grasp is that all we have is a gift from the Lord, given to us as a trust, for our benefit, but also to benefit the work and ministry of the Lord right where we’re planted and out into the world.
So what kind of harvest are you working towards; one that won’t last, or one that will have lasting benefits, not only for you but to all who know you?
God bless you and know that I’m praying for you constantly.