“Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.”
Something sinister happens to us when we sin and do not receive an immediate consequence. We begin to think God is OK with our behavior, even though the Bible clearly teaches it is wrong. When we are not struck by lightning or swallowed by a whale, we think we have gotten away with our sin, and can keep on with it, without consequences. If that is the case, we have forgotten the very nature of how sin works. Paul wrote,
Galatians 6:7-8 “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.”
Paul uses the illustration of farming to teach us to make proper investments in our lives. The farmer teaches us at least three things about sowing.
First, we will reap what we sow. If a farmer plants corn seed, he expects to harvest corn. If he plants wheat, then wheat; rice, then rice. The concept is simple, whatever is planted will be harvested. The same is true of our lives. If we make investments into our relationship with the Lord, we will harvest eternal life. Eternal life is not something that begins after we die, but at the moment we receive Christ. Jesus expanded on this idea when He promised His followers would have abundant life. Each time we choose to make spiritual investments, we will ultimately reap spiritual rewards. On the other hand, if we sow to sin, we will reap corruption. Corruption is a process of decay that makes things worse. When metal is corrupted it becomes weak and brittle. The same is true of our lives.
Second, we will reap after we sow. We expect immediate return on our investments. We microwave our food, have our friends on speed dial, and pay for the highest speed Internet connections available. However, sowing and reaping are not always like that. Just as the farmer expects a time gap between sowing his seed and reaping his harvest, so we should expect a delay. Although it may not seem like there are consequences to our sin, they will, in fact, come. Just because we have not been chastened by the Lord, does not mean he approves of our sin.
Finally, we will reap more than we sow. A handful of seed will produce a truck full of fruit, come harvest time. This is very encouraging when we consider the investments we make in the kingdom of God. What might seem like a small investment to us, may in truth, yield great fruit for the kingdom. On the other hand, this should be very frightening when it comes to sin. What we might think of as just a little sin, may in fact, create a massive storm, and devastate our family.
If you are misbehaving and think everything is OK, because you have not been caught, take Solomon’s words to heart. Sit before the Lord, confess your sin and ask for His strength to turn from it. On the other hand, if you are discouraged, because you have been doing right and do not see the benefits, keep in mind, the harvest will come and it will be great.