"Pray For a Crop Failure"
In the introductory verses of Ecclesiastes, Solomon writes, "all is vanity and grasping for the wind" (Ecclesiastes 1:14). This "grasping for the wind" denotes the futility and emptiness earned by striving to find peace and happiness in this world without considering God and things "above the sun". Like Solomon, the prophet Hosea also used the figure of wind:
"They sow the wind, and reap the whirlwind. The stalk has no bud; it shall never produce meal. If it should produce, aliens would swallow it up." (Hosea 8:7; 12:1)
Just as striving for the wind is futile and hopeless, sowing the wind likewise produces a harvest of futility and hopelessness. The Israelites, whom Hosea addressed, had sown the wind by worshipping idols and selecting kings, who only further led them into the empty worship of powerless gods (Hosea 8:1-6). Consequently, they would receive the destruction of the whirlwind as the return on their investment into the void (Hosea 10:13-15).
This principle is illustrated throughout the Old Testament, but it is worded succinctly in 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." Galatians 6:7-8
The question we must ask ourselves is, "What are we sowing?" Too often we deliberately sow our "wild oats" and pray for a crop failure. However, God is not mocked. The consequences of our sins cannot be avoided. Regardless if we are penitent or impudent, or if our sins are performed ignorantly or deliberately, our sins still bring consequences, even if it is only the darkening of our conscience and reasoning (Romans 1:20-28). This can be seen in the example of King David, who received forgiveness for murdering Uriah and taking his wife, yet David's family still suffered the turmoil and violence that was a consequence of his sins (II Samuel 11-18).
Considering this frightening picture, whether we are a Christian or not, why would we continue in sin? We cannot expect to mock God by deliberately continuing in sin, planning to take advantage of His mercy some more convenient day. Even if we are ultimately redeemed, what needless damage will we inflict upon the innocent, our families, our conscience, our reasoning, and our opportunities and ability to serve the Lord?
If one is desperate to avoid his just reward, and penitently seeks forgiveness, then God's instruction is to begin sowing a different kind of seed:
"Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the LORD, till He comes and rains righteousness on you" (Hosea 10:12).
God is a sympathetic God (Hosea 11:8). He does not want anyone to be lost (II Peter 3:9; Ezekiel 18:30-32). If we do not trust in our own ways, but instead turn to Him and "sow righteousness", then He will mercifully allow us to reap a different reward. Not only will God redeem the penitent, but He even may lighten their consequential, earthly load (II Samuel 12:5-13). It is only by trusting God, humbly seeking His will, and obeying His commands that we can avoid and overcome the harvest that awaits us. Moreover, by sowing His righteousness, we can look forward to a more blessed crop that will not fail (I Thessalonians 5:23-24).
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