“Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.
Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
Jesus had turned to his disciples and said this after he saw the horrible treatment and conditions of the people he was preaching to. He had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. They had no guidance.
The harvest is mentioned multiple times throughout the New Testament. It is a metaphor to the gathering of God’s people and His chosen elect. We are promised success through a harvest. There was a multitude of people flocking to hear the ministry of Jesus and so many more that God wants to reach. However, we need more people committed to God to help reach out to these people. These people don’t have to be ordained ministers. He or she can be just an ordinary person that lives for God and are willing to spend their life to do God’s works. They don’t have to spend every waking moment preaching to people but they diligently do so when they have the ability and opportunity to give glory to God. They meditate in the scripture and pray with a faithful heart. They shine like lamps for God’s glory, not their own. It’s important that as a worker of God we have compassion.
What does a farmer gather when he harvests his crop? The ripe portions that are ready for consumption. Therefore, we must help ripen the spirits that are called to Him through preaching, witnessing, and testifying the name of the Lord. The harvesting field is not just the area of the globe that Jesus ministered to but rather the whole earth. We cannot deprive anyone of the opportunity to hear the gospel and receive God’s promises.
“…in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to knowledge of the truth.”
-2 Timothy 2:25
Missionary work is not the only way to reach out to His people. Prayer is just as important as the preaching of the Gospel to help touch hearts. In Mark 9:17-29 Jesus heals a boy of an evil spirit. The disciples had previously tried to cast it out but they could not. Jesus said, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.” Someone devoted to prayer is a good worker of the Lord.
2 Timothy lets us know some of the qualities of a good worker.
- do not quarrel about words; it only destroys those who hear
- do not be ashamed of the Word
- avoid godless chatter to avoid becoming ungodly
- do not destroy the faith of others
- cleanse yourself of useless and unclean things
- do not partake in youthful things like rebellion
- seek righteousness, faith, love, and peace
- avoid stupid and foolish arguments
- be kind to everyone and be able to teach with gentleness
Throughout the ages, the laborers for the Lord have been few compared to the loiterers. We can’t let it be this way and we must become good workers of Christ.