Firstfruits – Opportunity for Prosperity – Part VI
Before You Leave…….
When You Get There……..
Leviticus 23:10 – ” Speak unto the children of Israel,
and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and
shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits
of your harvest unto the priest:”
Before we get started in the lesson I want us to go back to
childhood—to the days of sleep-overs and, as the older folk would say, “havin’
company.” I’m not talking about dating. I’m talking about when you
would beg your parents to let you spend the night at a friend’s house by making
all types of promises you probably would never make good on. Finally, when you got the O.K. to spend the
night, you had to be debriefed with the “Before you leave” speech, which
included you doing everything that you left undone all week . You had to make sure that everything was in
order before you left. Clean your room,
sweep the rug, take out the trash, etc.
Then once everything was in order, you got the “When you get there”
speech. This briefing was to tell you
how to act when you got there to ensure the hosts, those gracious enough to let
you come over, would have no problems with you.
Now I gave you that scenario to show you the parallel of the
children of Israel. Whenever God gets ready to move His people, He gives them
instructions not only for entering the new land but also for leaving the old
land. In the book of Exodus 12th
and 13th chapters, we see the Israelites going from the land of “not
enough” (Egypt/slavery) to the land of “just enough” (Desert/wilderness). In both chapters, they are given
instructions on what they needed to do.
The 12th deals with them leaving one place, and the 13th
deals with them entering into another.
The key for both situations was to follow instructions carefully. If they did not following instructions in
the 12th chapter (the Passover), they certainly would not have lived
to make it to the13th chapter (the desert).
Let me digress purposefully. We don’t need to take our “mess” with us
during a cross over period in our lives.
The Spirit of God is really speaking to me concerning us leaving
churches. If we gave the pastor our
“hand” of commitment in joining our church then we don’t need to just leave our
church without notifying our pastor.
There needs to be closure!! Now
don’t get me wrong. The Lord will and
has led people to other churches within the same town and even on the same
street. What we are dealing with here
is closure. I know everyone desires a new
beginning, but if we constantly run from beginning to beginning while not
dealing with the past issues, we usually just keep on running. We never resolve anything this way, and we
never get over past hurts, pains or strongholds. This is a word for someone.
Do not enter into your new church without closing out business with your
old church. Bring closure to that which
needs to be closed.
Back to the lesson.
From our text (Leviticus 23:10, we see that in addition to their
previous instructions, the children of Israel were also given instructions
before they went into the land of “more than enough”(the Promised Land). Here is what our text states:
“When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall
reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of
your harvest unto the priest:”
There are three promises within this verse. The first promise is that the children will
make it into the land of more than enough.
“When ye be come into the land which I give unto you”
This doesn’t say “if you come” or “you will probably
come.” It says, “when you come,” which
sounds like a promise in which failure is not an option.
The second promise is a promise of provision.
“[A]nd [you] shall reap the harvest
God won’t be leading us into a land of lack or need. The Israelites constantly believed that God
was moving them out of the land of not enough to kill them. But really, if He wanted them to die, all
He had to do was leave them where they were.
Instead, He was giving them a promise that He would provide for them if
they would just trust Him.
And the third promise is a promise of increase.
“[T]hen ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits (increase) of your harvest unto the priest:”
Don’t believe that God will move you laterally. I have seen people move laterally within
their careers without promotion, but God has increase in our plans. He has too
many blessings to keep us where we are.
He desires to bless us and increase us so that we can do more for His kingdom.
Now, interestingly enough, within these three great
promises, the children/we are given only one instruction: bring the increase
(firstfruit) to our men/women of God.
This is our job so that we can stay in the land of increase. Yet, believe it or not some of us have a
prophetic problem with giving firstfruits; I’ll explain.
I heard someone say this: “I have a problem with this
because what if I have to keep giving and giving and giving.” The answer is obvious. If you have to keep giving and giving and
giving then God must be constantly giving and giving and giving you
increase. I say this person had a
prophetic problem because she could even see where God was trying to take her,
but she was too stingy to get there.
Personally, I don’t have a problem with giving my increase because each
seed produces after its own kind. If
you sow your increase, you will get increase.
It’s too late for some of us to go back. Thank God for the good ol’ days, but our old
ways were for the old days.
Ecc: 7:10 – Do not say, "Why
were the old days better than these?" For it is not wise to ask such
our instructions for the cross over.
We don’t have to look back and wonder “Was it better then than it will
be?” Our increase is on the other side,
so let’s cross over into the land of “more than enough” and leave the poverty
mentality, the doubt, and the stinginess behind us — where it belongs.