Harvest talk 6th Oct 2013


Genesis 1 27-31

So God created human beings[a] in his own image.
In the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.

28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”

29 Then God said, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and all the fruit trees for your food. 30 And I have given every green plant as food for all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, and the small animals that scurry along the ground—everything that has life.” And that is what happened.

31 Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was very good!

And evening passed and morning came, marking the sixth day.
Linked with
Leviticus 19 9-10
“When you harvest the crops of your land, do not harvest the grain along the edges of your fields, and do not pick up what the harvesters drop. 10 It is the same with your grape crop—do not strip every last bunch of grapes from the vines, and do not pick up the grapes that fall to the ground. Leave them for the poor and the foreigners living among you. I am the Lord your God.

Followed by Mark 8 1-8a
Jesus Feeds Four Thousand

8 About this time another large crowd had gathered, and the people ran out of food again. Jesus called his disciples and told them, “I feel sorry for these people. They have been here with me for three days, and they have nothing left to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will faint along the way. For some of them have come a long distance.”

His disciples replied, “How are we supposed to find enough food to feed them out here in the wilderness?”

Jesus asked, “How much bread do you have?”

“Seven loaves,” they replied.

So Jesus told all the people to sit down on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves, thanked God for them, and broke them into pieces. He gave them to his disciples, who distributed the bread to the crowd. A few small fish were found, too, so Jesus also blessed these and told the disciples to distribute them.

They ate as much as they wanted. Afterward, the disciples picked up seven large baskets of leftover food.

Theme  [keep it short and to point]
‘God’s immense generosity to us’
‘To Love and to Be Loved’.
We are loved because of His provision and we Love by not taking all we have for ourselves.

God’s Immense Generosity to Us

  • ask what they do if given something?

 

If they were given a bag of money?

God has done that for us given us the food we need to eat, fruit, veg, drinks, meat, cheeses etc. all of what we eat  and use has come from Gods gift to us of this world.

This is ‘God’s immense generosity to us’
So we should be thankful to him just as we would thank someone who bought us an ice-cream, gave us a bag of sweets or a bag of money.

  • But he has asked us to do something when we harvest this crop.

What has he asked of us?

He has asked us to not take all of it but to make sure that there is enough left over for those who do not have such easy access to the harvest.

So we share our sweets, money and other things we have, and we should share the harvest of the world.

God provides
We are not to grab it all
we are to share

Is this not what we tell our children, you must share.

  • in our Mark reading Jesus shows that if we trust God, thank Him for what we have and share then a small amount can go a long way.

Jesus asked, “How much bread do you have?”

“Seven loaves,” the disciples replied.

So Jesus told all the people to sit down on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves, thanked God for them, and broke them into pieces. He gave them to his disciples, who distributed the bread to the crowd.

The disciples gave up all the food they had, to share with many

A few small fish were found, too, so Jesus also blessed these and told the disciples to distribute them.

As the bread was shared so some fish were also added to the pot.

They ate as much as they wanted. Afterward, the disciples picked up seven large baskets of leftover food.

Yes there was an amassing sharing here as the disciples shared so more was added until there was more left than they started with.

‘God’s immense generosity to us’

Many Christians will tell you how when they give of there all, God blesses them with more than enough to live on.
‘To Love and to Be Loved’.

Jesus showed his love for the people around “I feel sorry for these people. They have been here with me for three days, and they have nothing left to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will faint along the way. For some of them have come a long distance.”

God shows His love for us my all of the gifts and resources He has supplied, we are to show our love for Him by not grabbing it all but sharing it and leaving it for the future as well.

I read this  – “In the bible we discover that the world has two faces, two aspects to its identity. One side reflects God’s love.

Ours is a world that God has shaped, loved, touched, entered and illuminated.

The world was made through Jesus. [Genesis]

God loved the world. [John]

Jesus came to be the Light of the world.

Surely, we may think, the world is meant to be a realm of beauty and blessing.

Yet its other face is altogether harsher and uglier.”

There are many people in this world who go to bed hungry, or die for lack of clean water and good food.

In this country there are many who are ill from eating to much.

What do you think Jesus would say about that?

I think He would say I feel sorry for these people are you?

My heart hurts for there situation does yours?

I think he would continue, you are not showing love for your neighbour, you are not caring for the poor and the foreigners living among you.

  • Today we thank God for the harvest, we do that in songs of worship, in prayers of thanksgiving and in sharing a meal together.

That is good, it is right to praise God.

But I think He would be more impressed if we made sure that we did not use more than our share of this harvest, that we thought of all those in Bath and beyond who do not have enough to eat or drink, who would be grateful even for the things we do not like.

As we go though today let us all think about how much of the harvest we consume and how we can help others have there share.

As Robert has put in the notice sheet

God has the knack of being generous. How does he do it?! And if He is so generous, and we want to reflect His image, in which the Bible tells us we are made, how can we be generous too? Or better still, as I put it to the Junior School children at Assembly this week,

how generous can we be? (think about the difference!!). I might change the title to:

God’s Impossible Generosity!

We are loved because of His provision and we Love by not taking all we have for ourselves.

  • Let us pray

Father God you give us all that we need to live, food, water and air.

for that we thank you.

You have told us how to live, by loving each other and sharing.

Father help us to live that way.

Living The Way Jesus did caring for others, even if it means less for us.

Jesus gave His all for us, we only have to give up a little to help others live well.

Holy Spirit help us to use what the Father has given us wisely.

Amen

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