Harvest time is the period when we must:
- Offer sacrifices of praise to God (Heb. 13:15-16);
- Celebrate His goodness and mercies (Ps. 118:1);
- Bring thanks offering to God (Col.3:15-17).
God has already blessed us, the celebration of the harvest is to thank Him for His grace (1 Cor. 15:10).
Unfortunately, many people don’t have a full understanding of the spiritual implication of the harvest. They fail to show gratitude to God for all His blessings.
- They are defeated by constant life struggles and worries;
- They forget in the midst of busyness and pressures;
- They feel let down by God due to painful life blows and losses;
- They are angry because they don’t get what they want.
Listen, ingratitude towards God is a sin (Rom.1: 21). It is the foundational sin of all other sins (Rom.1: 28-32).
This morning, I shall be speaking to us about how to store treasures in heaven.
1st Lesson (Exodus 34:22-26).
The 1st lesson speaks of the physical or earthly harvest. God commanded that Israel should observe the feast of weeks, of the first fruits of wheat harvest, and feast of ingathering at the end of the year (v22).These are celebrations of the harvest (Exo. 23:16; Lev.23:17 & 34).
Two important practices at this time were:
- All male Israelites shall appear before the Lord God of Israel. (v23): To show gratitude to God for all His blessings.
- The people shall bring into the house of the Lord, the first of the firstfruits of their land (v26):
- To feed the poor and needy (Deut. 14:28-29).
- To assure us, that God will take care of us, if we remain faithful to Him (v24).
2nd Lesson (Matt 6:19-21).
Jesus admonishes the multitude not to lay their treasures upon the earth but in heaven (vv19-20). For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also (v21).
2nd lesson speaks of the spiritual or heavenly harvest
- Our great treasures are: Salvation; the Kingdom of God; and Eternal Life (Matt. 13:44 – 46).
- They are attained through our relationship with Christ Jesus (John 3:16).
- Therefore, we are to treasure Jesus most of all.
When we commit all our resources (money, time, talents) to His work in this world, rewards are stored for us in heaven (Col.3:23-24)
Our heavenly perspective determines our earthly priorities. Let us set our minds on things above, not on earthly things (Col. 3:1-4; Matt. 6:33).
CCC Hymn 331: Oh praise the Lord all ye His Saints.
Four ways to acquire heavenly treasures
Let me show us four ways we can store treasures in heaven:
- By walking righteously and uprightly before Him because the Lord is holy (Lev. 11:45; Heb. 12:14);
- By displaying unwavering conviction; absolute confidence and unshakeable faith in God (Heb. 11:1 and 6).
- By giving generously and cheerfully to others (2 Corinthians 9:7– 8).
- By giving up earthly things to follow Jesus(Matt. 19:26).
- By appreciating God in songs and praises during worship;
“O Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation. Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! For the Lord is a great God and a great King above all gods.” (Ps. 95:1-3).
As we celebrate the harvest and rejoice before the Lord this year, let us remember that:
- God will only bless those who are grateful (Ps. 50:23).
- Those who bless others (Pro. 19:17).
In closing, let me remind us that we have so much to rejoice and be grateful to God for (Ps.103:1-7).