Laborers for the Harvest – The Father’s House Church of Stockton

Posted on June 15, 2012

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The Harvest Is Ready

The Harvest Is Ready, Where are the Laborers?

Laborers for the Harvest – The Father’s House Church of Stockton

How well did Jesus know the future! Today as in Jesus’ day there are few disciples laboring in the harvest field of souls. One of the few things that there is a direct commandment for disciples to pray for is laborers for the harvest of souls. Jesus knew that few would do the job.

John 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. KJV

Luke 10:2 Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. KJV

Not My Job!

Really? The great commission was given to all disciples.

Matthew 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. KJV

We get two things wrong often in the church, the first being when Jesus gave the great commission, He was giving it to disciples that had spent nearly three and half years with the master.  Spending three years with Jesus was better than any Bible college or training program could do. So when Jesus gave the disciples the charge to go out and change people’s lives, He was speaking to very well trained and seasoned disciples, not to typical untrained Christians. The second thing about the great commissions is that Jesus was speaking to real disciples, people that had laid their life’s down already for the good news of the Kingdom. It is very difficult to maintain attendance in a six week teaching series in a church, let alone getting people to take on a three and half year commitment. You may be saying there are many that go to two and four year Bible college programs and I say to you, seriously, most Bible colleges turn out modern day Pharisees, not people with the heart of God. Even those Bible schools teaching about kingdom ministry, signs, and wonders often impart pride than humility of service.

Outside the Four Walls

Many churches place over their doors so it is visible to those leaving the building the phrase “Entering the Harvest Field.” What a great reminder of the great commission. We need more than a great reminder, but in depth training and exhortation to really show some success in bringing in the harvest. When Jesus gave the great commission he spoke that to seasoned disciples who had already ministered to the “lost sheep of Israel” on their own.

Often the woman at the well is used as an example that anyone, no matter how new in the Lord they are can witness.

John 4:27 And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her? 28  The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, 29  Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? KJV

Using the woman at the well as an example of evangelism is actually a poor example.  The woman was a novice and upon her encounter with Jesus just shared her experience which was about like asking someone to come to church. Inviting people to church, a revival, or crusade is not truly evangelism though a great thing to do. True evangelism is sharing a complete picture of the good news of Jesus Christ on your own and leading others to make a commitment to Christ. Both seasoned evangelist and people such as the woman at the well are in short supply, hence the need for the prayer for laborers in the harvest is valid for today.

He Sent Them by Two’s

The church seems not to get it today. Why is that so difficult? We try everything you can imagine to avoid going out into the harvest field like we were told to do.  Many ministries have great email lists, guess who the email notices go to, Christians. Ministries are competing for the existing pool of Christians instead of enlarging the pool with new believers. I know we all want to see more people get saved, but are actions or lack thereof speak louder than our words. Food, programs, contests, stadium events, you name it, we do all these things, put many hours and thousands of dollars into them seemingly to avoid actually physically going into our culture and looking for opportunity to share the good news. Statistically stadium events save less people than personal effort and the local church, yet people will get onboard with a stadium event and pour hours of labor and thousands of dollars into the less effective method.

Where is the Church and what are they doing?

The seeker sensitive method of church has captured and weakened much of the Christian world.  As the name suggests, they are seeking people more than helping people seek God. Today there are few that keep and promote regular church attendance and service in both the seeker church and the revival church. The local church is more of club house you attend on occasion than a place you regularly worship, give, and serve. The other end of the Christian spectrum is a church that is doing everything you can imagine but being a witness to the world. These people and groups are organizing special intercession, worship meetings, prophetic events, training, and fasts and mostly never entering the harvest field. Intercession and these are other things are great but they should not be replacing the laborers in the harvest field. It would appear that the church is out of balance.

Get Outside the Four Walls

I am amazed about how many intenerate ministers come inside the four walls of a church to collect their offering and tell us get outside the four walls and often this is said in an air of disdain for the local church. The local church in many cases is not perfect but is ordained of God and should be a center of learning, worship, giving, serving, and training to bring salt and light to the community. Being effective in winning souls is useless unless a place of assembly like a local church exists for the previously listed purposes. Getting outside the four walls needs to be disclaimed; there are two types of people, trained disciples like Jesus gave the great commission to and untrained people like the woman at the well. Both of these groups of people are important and need to be outside the four walls.  The untrained people need to do as the woman at the well did invite people to come and experience the transforming power of Jesus at the local church.  The trained people need to be leading people to the Lord outside the four walls and getting them plugged into the local church as a center for worship, learning, training, giving, and serving.

Be the Answer to Prayer

You can be part of the answer to the prayer for laborers in the harvest by either being like the woman at the well or a trained disciple. Your faithful action is making you a direct answer to the prayer. We need to encourage others as well to do so as well as we need to continue to lift up that prayer for laborers.

Laborers for the Harvest – The Father’s House Church of Stockton

Pastor Farris Baker

www.TheFathersHouseStockton.org

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