Summary: Sowing and Reaping

Picking, What You Plant (GAL. 6:6-8)

INTRO: In my life time I’ve eaten a lot of taters and beans

In fact I’ve grown a lot of taters, and I’ve grown a lot of beans. But I’ve never raised beans from a tater plant, nor have I ever got taters from a bean bush.

If fact, I found that 99% of the time you reap what you sow, down here in Tennessee we call reaping and sowing , Planting and picking. The only time I’ve ever seen the law of planting and picking not work is the time I planted bird seed, you know them seeds didn’t produce the first Robin, or Canary in fact I didn’t even get an old Crow of them seeds.

Planting and picking is a Spiritual and Physical law that always is true. You will always Pick what you plant!!


Galatians 6:6-8. “Anyone who receives instruction in the word must share all good things with his instructor. Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”

Illus: When ole Leroy was a SOPH.

In Leroy’s sophomore football season, we experienced a lot of rain and our football field was a muddy mess. So in the early spring our head coach, Coach WEEB , plowed the field between the hash marks. We were too poor to lay sod, so Coach planted grass seed. Coach WEEB was obsessive about his precious grass and he carefully watered and tended it. It was his pride and joy.

One Friday night Leroy was staying with his buddy, who lived a few blocks from the stadium. In his sophomoric wisdom we came up with the brilliant idea of sneaking into the stadium and planting corn seed in Coach WEEB’s grass crop. So after midnight we climbed over the stadium fence and planted two bags of kernel corn in his field. In a few weeks these tall corn sprouts started appearing in the middle of the football field and Coach WEEB was as mad as a hornet. He complained that he had been sold bad grass seed. He pulled some of them up and the next day there would be other sprouts.

Of course, all the students were laughing about it, so WE couldn’t keep our mouths shut. We started to brag to our friends that we were responsible for the corn. Of course we asked our friends not to tell anyone our secret. A couple of days later an extremely irate

Coach Weeb called us into the office and told us he knew what we had done. As punishment, every afternoon after school for two weeks we had to run up and down the stadium steps until we were drenched with sweat, and then we had to walk up and down the football field bending over pulling up the corn stalks with Coach Weeb following and yelling. He made it clear it would not go well if we dared to tread on one blade of his precious grass. Believe me; I learned the hard way you reap what you sow—you pick what you plant!

The law of the harvest is both a natural law and a spiritual law. It’s true in agriculture that you pick what you plant. But it’s also a great spiritual truth that you reap what you sow


Your life right now is basically the harvest of your habits. That’s too profound to miss so let me say it again. Your life is the harvest of your habits.

The law of the harvest can be summarized this way: every choice has consequences.

1. Good choices have good consequences

2. Poor choices have unpleasant consequences.

3. Parents, one of the most important values you will ever teach your children is that they need to make wise choices, because choices have consequences. But what is true for children is also true for adults.

4. Who you are and where you are right now in life is the result of a combination of factors. Your parents and family have influenced you. Our society and circumstances have influenced you as well.

5. But your choices have been the main factors in your attitude, your position, and your character. Your circumstances have had an impact as well. But a large part of your present situation is the direct result of a series of choices you have made in your past.

There are three realities about the law of the harvest:

A. You always pick WHAT you plant

Jacob is a good example of this spiritual principle.

1. Deceived His Dad

2. Tricked and stole from His Brother

3. Was deceived by His Father-in-Law

4. Was deceived by his children

If you have a bitter, angry disposition toward others, don’t be surprised that you receive hostility from others.

But if you are planting seeds of kindness and love, you will find that other people are kind and loving.

B. You always pick MORE than you plant

Seeds don’t reproduce one for one; they multiply . When you plant a pea, a pea plant grows, and on that bush are pea pods containing dozens of peas.

A tiny acorn becomes a mighty oak tree, which produces thousands of acorns over its life.

A tiny word, deed, or choice may seem small, but it can result in a massive harvest.

ABRAHAM /SARAH: Isaac/Ishmael

Four thousand years ago God promised Abraham and Sarah they would have a son. But years passed and there was no son. So Sarah decided to help God out and suggested Abraham take her maid, Hagar, into his bed. Abraham agreed. What a tragic choice! Hagar gave birth to a son named Ishmael. Later, Sarah gave birth to Isaac. But that choice wasn’t just about two brothers—it’s about two races of people today. Ishmael was the forefather of all the Arab people and Isaac was the forefather of the Israelites. The reason millions of Jews and Arabs hate each other today is because of a bad choice made 4,000 years ago. You reap MORE than you sow!

Seeds are small, but they turn into large plants. You may think a tiny word or deed is insignificant, but it always multiplies and grows into large consequences. There is a harvest cycle that is true in life as well as agriculture: “Sow a thought; reap an act; Sow an act, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; Sow a character; reap a destiny.” You will always pick more than you plant.

C. You always pick AFTER you plant

In the story of Jack and the Beanstalk, the magic beans he purchased grew into a huge beanstalk overnight—but that’s a fairy tale. When you plant a seed, it doesn’t pop out the ground immediately. It takes time for a seed to grow into a plant. It takes patience to be a good farmer because you have to wait for the harvest.

Spiritually speaking, the choices you make may not have immediate consequences. Sometimes they do. But there will eventually be consequences because you always pick after you plant.

By the way, the law of the harvest not only applies to individuals, it applies to nations as well. In the Old Testament, Israel had turned from God and started worshipping the idols of their neighbors. The result was national calamity. God spoke through the prophet Hosea these words, “Israel has rejected what is good…with their silver and gold?they make idols for themselves?to their own destruction.” Then God gave the Old Testament version of the law of the harvest. He said, “They sow the wind?and reap the whirlwind.” (Hosea 8:3-4, 7)

I believe America is facing a national crisis because we have made the same mistake Israel made. We have forgotten the God who has given us our liberty.

Now at this point, you may be feeling discouraged about the condition of our country. Or you may be feeling despondent about the bad choices you’ve made in the past.

But here’s the good news. There’s hope for you and there’s hope for America. And HOPE is Having Only Positive Expectations. There’s a great promise in the law of the harvest as well. You can’t do anything about your past, but you can certainly do something about your future. Let’s look at the law of the harvest from a different angle.


A. Be careful! Selfish living is self-destructive

The Bible says, “The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction.”

John Stott, the New Testament scholar wrote: “To ‘sow to the flesh’ is to pander to it, to cuddle and stroke it, instead of crucifying it.

The seeds we sow are largely thoughts and deeds. Every time we allow our mind to harbor a grudge, nurse a grievance, entertain an impure fantasy, or wallow in self-pity, we are sowing to the flesh.

The Bible doesn’t say if you plant poor choices you MIGHT pick a crop of bad consequences. It is a law.

That’s why Paul started this verse with this warning: “Don’t be deceived. God is not mocked.” That’s a word that means to “turn up your nose” at God. You can’t live in sin and just thumb your nose at God and think you’re going to get away with it. It’s just not harvest time yet.

SOW to the FLESH and mocking GOD

1. Ahab / Jazabel – Naboth’s vineyard Dogs

Be patient! You may not enjoy your harvest for a while

You can’t do anything about last year’s harvest, but you still have time to do something about next year’s harvest.


If you’re only into planting so you can pick personally, then you’ve missed the point. We plant good choices so others who come after us will have a good harvest.

What we will be tomorrow is based upon the choices we make today.

So, keep on planting good seeds; good choices lead to good habits, which leads to a good harvest.

John Wycliffe

In the 14th century, a Catholic priest named John Wycliffe was highly educated professor at Oxford. He read the Bible in the original languages of Hebrew and Greek. As he read the Bible, and compared it to the church of his day and noticed the two didn’t line up. There was no Biblical basis for a Pope and for the iron fist the Catholic Church used to control the members.

So John Wycliffe did something so revolutionary it was illegal. He had the audacity to translate the Bible into English.

He was arrested and charged with heresy. He was removed from his teaching position at Oxford and stripped of all his rights. Heartbroken, he died of a stroke a few years later while he was preaching to a small group of like-minded Christians.

Forty-four years after he died, he was still so hated by the church that Pope ordered his body exhumed. His body was then burned along with his books and Bibles and his ashes were sprinkled on the Thames River in London.

The enemies of John Wycliffe celebrated, “Wycliffe is dead and forgotten.” But if you’re holding an English Bible in your hand, hold it up today. This is the harvest that John Wycliffe has left for us. He never saw it in his lifetime, but he was faithful to plant seeds of obedience. What will you leave behind?

Today, we are enjoying the harvest of the sacrifice and service of faithful people who have come before us. So be faithful and be patient



You always pick:

A. What you plant

B. More than you plant

C. After you plant


A. Be careful! Selfish living is self-destructive

“The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction.”

B. Be patient! You may not enjoy your harvest until eternity

“The one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”