“Sow your seed into our ministry” is a well-known statement in the Church world. The practice of asking people to Sow seeds(money) rose to fame in the Last century and is a dominant practice now. “Sow your seed and you will get back 100 fold”, “Sow your seed and you will be debt free”, “Sow your seed and you will be healed” is the heart cry of many ministries. Tune in to a Christian channel and “Sow your seed” will take 5 mins of a 30 mins show. Is this belief and practice biblical? Did Jesus and the Apostles follow this? Let’s dissect this subject.
The Law of Sowing and Reaping:-
The Law of Sowing and Reaping is the foundation of this concept of Sowing money into a ministry. If you sow money into this ministry or that ministry, you will reap money is the core belief of this subject. I don’t want to get into the story of how this belief got into the Church, I want to take my time to dissect this subject from every angle possible.
First of all, the Law of Sowing and Reaping is a natural law not a Spiritual law or a Kingdom law. If you sow Apple seeds, you will reap Apples. If you sow wheat seeds, you will reap wheat. What you sow is what you reap. This law will work for everyone not just believers because it is not a Kingdom law. Anyone can sow and reap.
If you sow money(deposit) into a bank, you will reap money(interest). If you sow money(investment) into a business, you will reap money(profit). It works for everyone. You don’t have to sow into a ministry to get money, you have million other ways to sow and reap money. Why make Church Ministry into a Business sector?
The Major problem, I have with this practice is that people move beyond money and start selling healing, miracles and debt-free anointings. I heard a preacher say on TV-“Sow your seed of 1000$ and you will receive the blessings of Pentecost”. I was like-“What??? The Blessings of Pentecost are free. The Holy Spirit is a gift from the Father. You can’t sell Him brotha”. The Holy Spirit is Not for Sale. Healing is Not For Sale. Miracles are Not for Sale. Peter blasted Simon, when he tried to buy the gift of the Holy Spirit with money. Jesus commanded His disciples to “Heal the sick, drive out demons and work miracles” for free. This is dangerous ground. You don’t sell, what God has provided for free. Debt free living is possible, when you walk under the Wisdom of God, not by sowing into a Preacher’s pocket, who claims to have a Debt free anointing.
Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy,[a] drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give. Matthew 10:8,9(NIV)
You don’t have to sow your seed into a ministry to be healed of your sickness. Jesus payed for your healing 2000 years back with this wounds. It is a free gift. You just have to receive it by Faith, you don’t have to drop money into that “Healing anointing” Preacher’s pocket to receive your healing. There was this Man of God, during the Healing revival, who had this practice of taking offerings when a remarkable miracle takes place in his meetings. He died young. This is dangerous ground. I have a different practice. If someone gives me money after receiving healing or a prophetic word from me, I give their money back. God’s blessings are invaluable, you can’t pay for them and that’s why God gives them for free. Think about this- If you sow Apple, you get Apple not Orange. If you sow money, you get money not Healing or Pentecostal blessing.
By his wounds you have been healed. 1 Peter 2:24(NIV)- Healing is a done deal. Please note, this verse is in past tense. You are already blessed- you are already healed. Just receive it. You don’t have to pay for it.
As you can see on the surface, this belief and practice is wrong. It is harmful to the Church. It has left many believers robbed. Let’s get deeper.
Sow your Seed, Jesus and the Apostles:
Every doctrine must have its foundation in the teachings of Jesus. Jesus is the foundation, not Apostle Paul, not your Pastor, not that Prophet. Only Jesus. Paul and the other Apostles built upon Jesus. So Let’s start with Jesus and then move to the Apostles. Jesus didn’t go around asking people for money. He never said-“Give your money to My ministry. Drop your money in Judas’s bag. If you do, you will receive a miracle. 50 dollar seed for healing, 500 dollar seed for driving out demons and 1000 dollar seed for Dead raising. Call that number on the screen right now”. Jesus said-“Sell your possessions and give to the poor”, you won’t hear anyone preach on that. All you will hear is “3 steps to receive your financial breakthrough” and “5 keys to be prosperous and blessed”. I’m not against financial blessings, but what are you going to do with what Jesus said?
One of the favorite passage of the “Sow your seed” preachers is the Parable of the sower. Sow money and you will reap 30, 60, 100 times of what you sowed. What? It’s like saying Tom cruise is taller than Michael Jordan. C’mon, you don’t need someone to interpret this parable because Jesus gave us the interpretation.
Seed – Word of God, not money.
Sower- Preacher, not a believer sowing into a ministry.
Ground- People’s heart, not Preacher’s pocket.
Many will scream saying-“Jesus said-“Give and it will be Given””, I will roar back saying-“Jesus didn’t say-“Give, with the motive of getting more, and it will be given””. You give because you Love God, because you Love to give like your Daddy in heaven. Yes, God will give you back but you are not bothered, you don’t think about it because Love is not self-seeking. Love gives without expecting something back. The Kingdom of God is not about profit, it is about Love. It is not about how much you get, it is about how much you give. Moreover, in context, Jesus’s teaching was on Giving to the poor not Giving to a Preacher, because there was no Church when He walked this earth.
Let’s move to Paul. Paul’s usage of the Law of Sowing and Reaping in the Book of Galatians was in connection to sowing into the Spirit and sowing into the Sinful nature, not sowing money. Paul’s long talk on giving in Second Corinthians is about “Giving to other believers/ other churches in need”not “Giving to a ministry to get blessed”. Check Paul’s statements, it was always direct towards “Giving to a place of need” not “Giving to get something out it”.
“God loves a cheerful giver” they say, “Read the full verse” I say. You decide in your heart how much to give, not the Preacher. You don’t do it under compulsion or manipulation. You don’t have thoughts like-“What will I get out of this” or “How much will I get back”. You give because you want to give, because you are Giver like your Daddy in heaven. You give with a smile because you have been given the opportunity to meet someone’s need as a Resource person of the Kingdom of heaven. You give because it puts a smile in your Daddy’s face. Giving to Get something is business not Giving. Don’t get caught up in this Money-minded world of some Leaders and believers. It is not just the Leaders, but believers who treat God as a Genie. Be careful, many are in ministry for money not for God. Many believers have come into the Kingdom to receive this and that from God, not for God.
You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully”. 2 Corinthians 9:7(NLT)
Note:- God’s blessings are gifts but it costs to conduct meetings, conferences, run a church, pay for the staff, make CDs, etc. You must rightly divide everything.
You are already blessed:-
You don’t have to sow into a ministry to be blessed. You are already blessed in Christ. Every blessing you need is in Christ and you are in Christ. God has already blessed you with everything, you just have to take hold of it by faith. It is like this- 2000 years back, Jesus set aside a million dollars under your name. When you believed in Jesus, the million dollars was credited to your account. Now, you have million dollars in your account. It’s yours. But it is not going to benefit you, unless you take your Bank Card out and use it. Get it? God has already blessed you with every blessing. You have an account full of blessings but it is your job to take them. If you don’t, nothing will be done. You will die a beggar with million dollars in your account, You will die under curses with an account full of blessings. Okay Wait, the Million dollars is not literal 😛
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who “has blessed us”(past tense) with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. Ephesians 1:3(NKJV)(Emphasis mine)
You don’t also receive blessings by Praying hard or Fasting long or Serving in your church, if it is so, then God’s blessings cease to be gifts and become paychecks given to you as salary. Praying and Fasting can help you get out of doubt and into faith, but it is Faith that gets the job done. Rewards are different but the Blessings of the Redemption are gifts given to every believer, you can’t earn it. You don’t have to pay for them because Jesus payed for them.
Let’s get back to Jesus. What was Jesus answer to receive the blessings of God, to have your needs met? Find the Most Anointed Preacher and send your check? No. Give first priority to God and His Kingdom, then everything you need will follow you. You must not run after money, money must run after you. Your Job is to run after God and His Kingdom. If preachers had spend their time preaching on this truth rather than on “Sow your seed into my ministry”, we would have had a Kingdom minded Church by now, with believers focused on Loving God and Expanding His Kingdom. Simple- Give first priority to God and His Kingdom, and every blessing out there will chase you. It won’t work if you act as if you are giving first priority to God to get blessed, it will work when you focus on God and His Kingdom in Love. This is a Kingdom principle. This is the Father’s heart.
But seek “first” his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33(NIV)-
I believe, Jesus would have known that there will be teachings like this in the future and answered in advance. Jesus’s answer to the “Sow your seed” teachings is here:-
Look at the birds of the air, for they neither “sow nor reap nor gather into barns”; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?. Matthew 6:26(NIV) – We are more valuable to God than the birds of the air. If the birds don’t have to sow and reap, do you think we have to?
More than that, your job is not your source. Trust God for your life, not your job or your degree. Sowing is Equivalent to Working, Reaping is Equivalent to Earning and Gathering in barns is Equivalent to Saving. God takes care of us because we are His kids, not because we work and earn and save. I’m not asking you to stay back at home and do nothing, the Bible also warns us against idleness. No matter what we do, our Trust and Hope must be in God not in our efforts or savings.
Another Big Lie:-
Another Big Lie that comes out this practice is the concept of “Partnering by Giving” or “Become a Partner”. According to this concept, if you partner with a ministry by giving your money, you become a part of whatever the Preacher does. If the Preacher goes to Africa and conducts crusades, it is as if you are conducting the crusades with the Preacher. You are a Partner. They say-“Help you us take the Gospel to the Nations by sowing your seeds”. Stuffs like this makes mad. These kind of lies has given birth to a Lazy Church-“Go to church on Sunday, read your bible and pray. that’s it. God is pleased with you”. What? C’mon…Time to wake up from Laziness.
Jesus said-“All of you, take the Gospel to the nations. I will give you the Holy Spirit and He will empower you to do the works of the Kingdom” but what has happened is that some carry the Gospel with the Holy Spirit and others stay at home with the Holy Spirit, send offerings and watch TV. Every believer is called to do ministry, that’s why the Holy Spirit is given to everyone who believes. I have a bad news for both Leaders and believers- “You can’t partner with the Work of God by just giving. You partner with the Work of God by Working. Giving has it’s place and we must give for the advancement of the Kingdom. But at the end of day, you have to play your part and your part involves work, not just sitting at the comfort of your home and sending offerings”. I give for this ministry, I’m supporting that missionary, well and good, but what are you doing? I’m giving. Yes, you are giving but what about getting out and doing the work of the Kingdom. Every Christian is called to live like Jesus. Jesus went around doing good, healing everyone who was oppressed by the devil. Jesus didn’t send offerings and stay back at home. Jesus didn’t support Peter’s ministry and live normal. He modeled a life for us to follow. Follow Jesus. Give, Give more than ever but get into the field, get into the battlefield, and work for the Kingdom.
As “each part” does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. Ephesians 4:6(NLT)
From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as “each part” does its work. Ephesians 4:6(NIV)
The Church is portrayed as a Body and Paul declares that every part in the Body of Christ must perform it’s function for the Church to be healthy. Similar to the physical body, you have to all your body parts functioning or else, you are not healthy. You have a unique function, unique position in the Kingdom. Don’t waste your life, get to work. Please understand, I’m not discouraging you from giving to ministries. Why we give and Why someone asks for money must be right, that’s my point. God sees our hearts not our checks. I know, Most Leaders will be mad at me by now. Neva Mind, I don’t care 😛
Giving to ministries- Balancing the truth:-
I don’t want to leave you with this, I want to balance this subject. While Sowing your seed into a ministry to be blessed is false, it is Good and Important to Give to those who bless you spiritually. Another Kingdom Principle-“If someone blesses you spiritually, you bless them materially or financially”. You don’t pay for the blessings you receive or the spiritual food you receive. You give as a way of honoring them. When the Bible says-“Honor your parents”, it means “You take care of them and Give them what they need”. It doesn’t mean having respect and value for parents in your hearts and doing nothing with it. You honor them by taking care of them. The Same Bible commands us to give “Double honor” to our Leaders in the Kingdom. It means that you must take care of them and give to them, more than you would do to your parents.
The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of “double honor”, especially “those whose work is preaching and teaching”. 1 Timothy 5:17(NIV)
Many believers have taken the devil’s side on this matter, they go against the Word of God and say “Leaders must live like Gandhi”, while the Word of God says-“Double honor”. So, Go crazy in blessing your Leaders in the Kingdom. The One who leads your Church group, the one whose message touched your heart, the one who spoke encouragement to you at the right time, the one whose book sparked a fire in your heart. Bless them in anyway you can. Give them double honor.
To know about the truth behind Tithes and offerings, jump here- http://holyspiritrevolution.com/the-truth-about-tithes-offerings-and-money-mindedness/
Let’s get everything we learnt in short- You don’t have to sow your seed into a ministry to be blessed. Holy Spirit is Not for sale. Healing is Not for sale. You are already blessed in Christ. Give first Priority to God and His Kingdom, and everything you need will follow you. You can’t partner in the Work of God just by giving, you must get out and work. You must give because you want to give, because you are a Giver like your Daddy in heaven. You must give to your Leaders, to those who bless you spiritually. They deserve Double honor. Remember, “Love for money is the root of all kinds of evil”. Focus on Loving God, Loving people and Expanding His Kingdom, not on money. Did this post bless you? Any doubts? Drop your comments….