Why are there so many stories of harvest in the Bible?

by Mike Dvorak

Greetings Everyone. How is your summer going so far? We haven’t seen any hot temperatures yet which is a good thing. I understand that the swimming pools are still a little chilly but I am sure that will get corrected soon.

Also the grass is nice and green plus many flowers and shrubs are looking good. Another thing that many people look forward to is the wheat harvest. Whether your actively involved in farming or reliving old memories, harvest is an exciting time of the year.

You don’t need to be a farmer to look forward to harvest. The gardeners among us love harvesting what they have grown. The same holds true for those that have fruit trees and orchards. Don’t forget the flowers in your beds and pots around your house. It is truly an exciting time where many get to reap what they have sown and many others get the benefits of the crops, food, and flowers that are around us.

The Bible talks about planting and harvesting in many stories and parables. Did you ever wonder why so much is made of the harvest in the Bible. First of all, the Biblical characters lived in an agrarian society. Growing and reaping were the mainstays of their society. Secondly, the harvest was the reward for all of the hard work the people had put in. Without a harvest there was no value in the effort that had gone into planting and pruning and tending for the crops, orchards, and vineyards.

Without the harvest, their efforts were futile and there was no benefit for their labor. Jesus was speaking the language of the people when he taught. He used stories of sowing and reaping, good seeds and weeds, nets and fishing, and sheep and goats, things they understood. His analogies compared what the people were surrounded by to the truths of what he was trying to teach them.

Had he of taught using stories of industrial manufacturing or space flight, no one would have understood 2000 tears ago. It is interesting to note that the lessons Jesus was trying to teach were not understood by many of the people. The Pharisees and the Sadducees (the Jewish religious leader) felt that his teachings were heresy and false. In many ways most of them felt they were too learned to listen to a carpenters son.

They did not understand his message, nor did they want too. Many of the “common” people were afraid of being seen as hypocrites or fanatics if they followed Jesus. In other words, many just wouldn’t accept the teachings of Jesus as truth and the fulfillment of the prophecies of the Torah (Old Testament). So what does all of this mean for us, people of the 21st century? The truths and the implications are many.

We know that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died on a cross and rose from the dead. We have the assurance that by believing in Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior that we will spend eternity with him in Heaven. As believers we know that God is with us everyday, through good and bad, through the thick and thin of life’s events. The Bible tells us that God is the same today as he was yesterday, and will be tomorrow. In other words, God is by our side and will never leave us, no matter the conditions we might face. We are called to be sowers and planters of the word.

Just as a farmer plants wheat, we are called upon to plant the word of God in the hearts and minds of those around us. If the truths of the Gospel are not sown, how will people know about God? It is up to us to spread the seeds of truth to the world. Reaping the harvest of souls may not come quickly but we must be persistent. We know a seed that is planted one day doesn’t yield wheat or vegetables the next day. It takes time to grow from the newly planted seed to a bountiful harvest.

The key is that the seed must be planted first. Whether the field is a child or an older adult, an atheist or a church going grandparent, it is important to cast the seeds of truth and faith on fertile soil and nurture. God can make it happen and we can be His hands to spread the word of hope and salvation. Be strong and be faithful. Be a planter of the seeds of faith. Peace and blessings to all.