Chapter 6:6-10 (ESV) - Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 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. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
Question to consider: What does Paul mean when he writes, “whatever one sows, that will he also reap?”
Paul continues his instruction on how we are to serve one another in love. He reminds the Galatian congregation of believers to take care of their pastor. “All good things” refers to everything that promotes the welfare of your pastor: financial, physical, and spiritual. A pastor’s calling is a very difficult road to walk. A faithful pastor views the congregation as the spiritual flock under their care for which they must give an account to the Lord for each individual sheep. If they have to worry about how they are going to feed their family on top of this care, it will limit the amount of time and energy they have to fulfill their calling to the congregation.
If you think that Paul was writing this for personal gain, remember that he had a side job of making tents to take care of his financial needs to make sure that nobody could ever accuse him of trying to profit from the gospel. I know that televangelists abuse this idea of “sowing and reaping” by proclaiming that people can get their earthly desires met if only they put money into their broadcast (I refuse to call it a “ministry”). They are false shepherds because they don’t even know or care for their sheep, and they usually preach a false gospel that is focused on earthly things. They are merely telling people what they want to hear to profit off of their greed or desperation.
The “seeds” that we sow are our time, energy and resources. If we put our time, energy and resources into things related to our flesh, they may bring temporary satisfaction, but ultimately, everything rooted in this world is going to decay. As Christians, we think beyond this life because we know we’ll spend eternity with God and His people. This should influence where we put our time, energy and resources. If we support ministers and ministries that spread the gospel, we will reap a harvest of righteousness among people that will last for eternity.
Paul ends this thought of sowing and reaping with an encouragement to keep sowing through our good deeds. It is easy to become weary of doing good if we don’t get immediate results or satisfaction from it, but Paul says to keep going because eventually we will indeed see the fruit of our labor, even if it is beyond this life into eternity.
Lord of all creation, thank you for giving us the time, energy and resources to do your good works so that we can be a part of your good harvest. Help us to consider you and your kingdom in the way we use the talents you have given us. Please keep our pastors safe and show us how we can best minster to them to make their work more satisfying. Amen.