Sharing the Good News

He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.

In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.
Ecclesiastes 11:4,6 (ESV)

Read: Ecclesiastes 11

Consider: It isn’t often that I will refer to another translation of the Bible other than the NIV. However, I prefer the ESV over the NIV translation in this instance, as I think verse 1 of Ecclesiastes 11 loses its impact when the NIV talks of shipping grain overseas. The first time I ever read this chapter was in the KJV and I was struck by the words used in some of the verses and how they seemed to fit with how, as a Christian, we should share the gospel with others.

Let’s look at these verses and the language used:
Cast your bread upon the waters, for you will find it after many days. Give a portion to seven, or even to eight, for you know not what disaster may happen on earth.

He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.

In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.
(Ecclesiastes 11:1-2, 4, 6)

Verses 1-2 remind me of Jesus being the Bread of Life and should encourage us to be generous in sharing the good news of the gospel with others. It should also encourage us to think long-term, in that we cannot be sure when a person will respond to God’s offer of forgiveness. Giving a portion to seven or eight people means that we should be open and free about speaking about our faith.

Verses 4 basically speaks of not focusing our attention on the difficulties involved in sharing the gospel. If we do, we are likely not to start, but to offer excuses why it would be difficult to speak openly with others about Christ. Ask yourself where you find it most difficult to share the gospel and what excuses you make as to the difficulty. What we need to do is to put our focus back on to Christ and the gift of forgiveness he offers.

Verse 6 raises the theme of sowing seed and the words used resonate with the parable of the sower (Matthew 13). In this parable Jesus speaks of the seed (the word of God) being scattered and the varying responses people have to the word. Sowing in the ‘morning’ and the ‘evening’ would indicate that there is no ideal time to speak openly about the gospel and that we should spread the word at every opportunity.

Read Ecclesiastes 11 again and let the Holy Spirit open it up to your heart, asking God to speak to you through his Word.

Pray: Father, we thank you for the forgiveness you offer through the death and resurrection of your Son, Jesus Christ. May we be willing to sow the seed of this good news when the opportunity arises. Prevent us from focussing on the difficulties of sharing the good news with others, but instead keep our focus on you. Amen

Every blessing

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Author: profsloan

The purpose of this blog is to encourage others to read the Bible on a regular basis and to discover that God's Word applies to daily life. I will generally publish posts and a Verse for the Day alternately.

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