Laborers for the Harvest – Matthew 9:35-38

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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When this author’s father was a young man, he worked the family farm with horses. When it came time to harvest crops, it was very labor-intensive. Workers commonly traveled from one region to another to work for several weeks until the fields were empty of grain. It was a time of hard work, but working side by side forged life-long friendships, and all the workers were rewarded with generous pay.

As the Lord Jesus Christ “went about all the cities and villages…preaching the gospel of the kingdom…but when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion on them…” (Mathew 9:35-36). When many of us see masses of people, we often focus with irritation on their sinful conduct. It is noteworthy that when our Savior saw people, He saw their spiritual need and was moved to work to rescue them from eternal punishment. As the Son of God, He knew many were indifferent to His message of salvation and that most would turn away from Him, particularly around His crucifixion. Nonetheless, He knew some would respond and be saved. Therefore, He told His disciples, “The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few…(vs. 37).

We must not allow Satan to convince us that no one wants to listen or respond in saving faith to our gospel of grace. The field of souls is still ripe for harvest, many will still trust in Christ when they hear the gospel, and there is still an urgent need for workers. Like our Lord, we need to cultivate a compassion for lost souls in danger of eternal torment and allow a burden for their souls to motivate us to share with them the good news of eternal life. We also need another new perspective. Of the tens of thousands to whom the Lord ministered, only about one hundred and twenty actually believed on the Lord Jesus and remained faithful to Him until His ascension. Still, the Savior considered this a plenteous spiritual harvest of souls. In our era, when some ministries fill arenas and boast great numbers, we sometimes forget what our Savior considers successful ministry. We, too, need to begin to look at one, two, or three souls that we lead to a saving knowledge of Christ as a plenteous harvest, and begin to get busy giving out the gospel. Share a gospel track or a simple explanation of salvation with a lost soul today. You can forge life-long relationships and be richly rewarded in eternity.

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."