«Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord» (Hosea 10:12).
NOTHING CAN ESCAPE the law of cause and effect. Everything we did in the past has an effect on the present, and what we do in the present will have an effect on our future. Said another way, the type of fruit you reap will depend on the seed you sow. This is a concept that the Bible speaks about, for example in the two passages we are going to analyze today.
In Hosea 10:12, we read: «Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord.» This is a message from God to His people, who had sown iniquity and were therefore reaping iniquity. God was trying to teach them a basic law: if they wanted to live in peace and righteousness, they had to seek the Lord and sow the seeds of His character in their own lives.
Jesus indicated that from a corrupt heart (the cause, what is sown) comes corrupt behavior (the effect, what is reaped). «What comes out of a person is what defiles them. For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person» (Mark 7:20—23, NIV). Are you sowing evil? Get ready to reap evil. Jesus said that if a tree is good, it will produce good fruit; if it is bad, it will produce bad fruit (see Matthew 7:17, 18).
«The Saviour in His teachings ever showed the relation between cause and effect. To His followers in every age [that is, also to you and to me] He speaks, saying, ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven’ (Matthew 5:16). The man or woman who has a knowledge of the truth, but whose life does not express its principles, is hiding his light» (White, Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, p. 398).
What we sow (our cause) has to be the gospel; what we will reap (the fruits of the Spirit) «is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law» (Galatians 5:22, 23). Sow righteousness for yourself.