Field Work

Psalm 130; Genesis 2:4b–14; Luke 8:4–15

Regardless of where you are concerning the continuum of evolution to creationism, humanity is unique. Many of those who look at humanity from the evolutionary standpoint are less than impressed with the result of evolution. Many of those who look at humanity from the creationism standpoint are less than impressed with that result, too. Humanity with all its beauty, difference, and creativity, is a complete mess. If you need any convincing (doubtful), there is the news (from any source), the internet, and even basic interactions with people in the neighborhood that will likely convince you. If you read the Scriptures, they’ll convince you, too.

The Scriptures, whether First/Old or Second/New, also revolve around the acts of agriculture. The Israelites come from livestock handlers. Part of the legacy of Joseph was the area of Goshen, which was ideal for livestock. While we often focus on the bricks and straw of Exodus, we cannot exclude the previous generations and their animal husbandry. Most of us a fairly removed from the practice of agriculture. Some of us have gardens that grow some vegetables (and even fruit). Others go hunting (to eat not for sport). Others get together on a whole cow and share among families. Still, these are all really shadows of a way of life.

Thus when we read the story of the seeds being sown, we can miss a lot of the context. A farmer doesn’t just toss seed anywhere, but the sower did. It is symbolic of the grace of God, sowing the seed of the Word to the entire world.

The Garden of Eden, according to Genesis 2, had not yet had crops when God created humanity. As a fertile land, though, the implication is that humanity didn’t exactly need to farm crops. The wild abundance was enough.

Even later in Genesis 2, humanity was to work the crops. We are made to work. It is what we work at that makes all the difference to God.

All of us cast seeds. That really isn’t the question. It is the kind of seed that matters. All of us work the fields. It is the kind of fields that we work in that matters.
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