TEXT: Matthew 9:35-38
35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.
36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few;
38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.
Albert Barnes said, “A waving field of golden grain invites many reapers and demands haste. By the reference to the harvest here, Jesus meant that the multitude of people that flocked to His ministry was great. The people expected the Messiah. They were prepared to receive the Gospel; but the laborers were few. He directed them, therefore, to pray to the Lord of the harvest to send forth reapers. God is the proprietor of the great harvest of the world, and He only can send people to gather it in.
We have on hand to day an abundance of data and statistics which tell us that the Christian Church, at least in the West, is in a period of decline. We are told that people are turning away from “institutional religion” and embracing a vague spiritualism. However, what these statistics are also telling us is that the Church is largely failing to satisfy the spiritual yearning of the masses. While many may no longer identify as Christian believers, it does not mean that they have turned away from the concepts of faith and salvation. Rather, the majority find themselves still searching for some kind of spiritual satisfaction — something that only God can give them.
Jesus told his disciples, “The harvest truly is plenteous.” And that is what He is telling us today as well. The masses of people searching for a spiritual connection are the harvest that Jesus speaks of. Regarding this passage, John MacArthur writes, “The primary problem that hindered Jesus’ ministry as He taught, preached, and healed in Palestine is the primary problem that hinders it today: the workers are few. Even as the Son of God, Jesus could not reach all the people who lived even in His own country or His own lifetime. The first part of His training method, therefore, was to give His disciples the insight that the need for the Gospel to be brought to a world far surpasses the outreach of those who are seeking to minister it.”
Part of our problem as the Church today is that we are too inwardly focused. We are concerned about keeping the sheep in the pen and caring for the needs of those who already are a part of the Body. We have neglected the harvest. We must begin to see the world as Jesus sees it — ripe for the reaping — ready for us to bring multitudes to Him.
The problem, as Jesus states, is that the laborers are few. Why are the laborers few? One reason why is because many church members are self-centered and unconcerned about serving. They are satisfied as long as the church is there for them and to meet their needs. They will come once or twice a week to pray, sing, and listen to the preacher, and then go right back to their weekday lives blind to the harvest waving in the wind all around them. Another reason why the laborers are few is because those church members who are concerned about serving are only interested in getting a position inside the church. They want to be the head of a ministry. No one wants to do the glorious, but dirty work of going out into the world and harvesting the lost.
If we are to bring people to Jesus, we must open our eyes to the opportunities all around us. We cannot get angry at the world for abandoning religion. Millions are still searching for the way, the truth, and the life. But, if we don’t get engaged in the plentiful harvest, one day, they will have reason to be angry at us for abandoning them.
William Penn wrote:
The fields are white to harvest,
The grain is falling fast,
And soon the time of reaping
Forever will be past.
Come over then and help us,
The harvest bells do say,
Come quickly to the rescue;
This call we must obey.
Then do not tarry longer,
Make haste, the bells do say,
As everywhere they’re ringing,
Work while ’tis called today.
Then let us pray and labor
Until the end we see,
‘Till every friend and neighbor
From Satan shall be free.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.