27.6.05

Bread and Seed

2Co 9:10-11 Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.


In a previous post, I mentioned how we can be reticent to ask God for what we want. I want to take this a bit further. Not only should we come to God for what we need, but we should ask for even more! God doesn't just want to give us bread to satisfy our own hunger, but also seed to be sown to meet the needs of others. God wants us to be channels of his blessing. That was his covenant to Abraham, "Through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed." Paul says in Romans "It is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham's offspring" - That's us! We are meant to be a blessing to the whole world. How do we do that? By doing good on all occasions. Blessing others with the overflow of the blessing that we have received from God.

God wants to bless us abundantly. Not so we can hoard it, but so we can give it away! So we can be generous on every occasion. When we pray for a financial need, we should ask for more than we need, so that after we have met our need, we can also sow our money to bless others. In the same way, God does not just want us healthy, but praying for the sick and seeing them healed. He does not just want us to be surrounded by friends, but for us to go out and befriend the friendless. He doesn't just want us full of the Spirit, but using our spiritual gift to edify the body and extend the kingdom. He does not just want us to be a success, but for us to sow our time and energies to help others to become all they can be too. If you read 2 Corinthians 1:5-7 you will see that this applies even in the sufferings and trials we go through; we don't just come out strengthened and comforted, but enabled to strengthen and comfort those who are currently enduring the same thing. A farmer who only cultivates enough to meet his own needs will come to ruin; if he does not have enough to both eat and sow, he will either starve, or go out of business!

This principle also (primarily?) applies to the word of God. In Isaiah 55 the prophet says:
Isa 55:10-11 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

The word of God that is over our lives, that will not return to God empty but will achieve all that he desires, is also bread and seed. It's not just to bless us, but to bless others. God wants me blessed so that I can be a blessing!

And it's not just the word that is over us that is bread and seed. It is also the word that is in us. Moses explained to the Israelites in the book of Deuteronomy that the reason God gave them "manna" in the desert, was to teach them that "Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord." The word of God is to be our "daily bread," just as the manna was for the Israelites. But it's interesting to note how the manna is described:
Ex 16:31 The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey.

Is it coincidence that the manna is also described as "bread" and "seed"? I think not! God has always intended that whatever blesses us, we should use to bless others. Our daily bread, is also our daily seed. If you read something that blesses you in the word - don't keep it to yourself!

God wants to give you bread and seed today:
Be blessed... and be a blessing!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent article Chris! I am now changing my thinking on this and beginning to ask God for more! It is amazing how sometimes we get into wrong thinking, and only ask God for what we think is 'righteous'. If we aren't poor, we shouldn't have 'poverty thinking', nor 'poor' asking!!-Chris Negron (USA)

Suemitch said...

You've challenged me too Chris to rethink how I see God's giving. So often we are told of God's generosity and see it as God's generosity to us. Yet here you challenge us to see God's generosity as a means that we can bless others.

I know when I got an unexpected tax rebate the other week it was sufficient to buy flights for my son and I to visit my mum in Spain (she's seriously ill at the moment), pay for a new passport AND tithe. Correctly I should have written Tithe, then buy the passports and ticket with what God had given me.

I was so grateful that God had given so generously to me. But now I can see more than just His gift to me. His gift will also bless my mum and my son. Your word will challenge me to sow seed whilst I'm there. Matt and I are already planning to encourage Mum to seek God.

We need to open our eyes more to the possibility of WHO God is blessing when we are blessed. What seeds are we able to sow due to His gifts to us?