Spiritual Gardens

June 4, 2016

“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption … What counts is a new creation.” (Galatians 6: 7, 8, 15)

The Apostle Paul wrote these words to the Galatians.  The first part of this passage is often preached to unbelievers, but Paul was addressing professing believers.  As believers this is a spiritual law of our lives in Christ.  Every day we can sow spiritual seeds in the garden of our life, or we can sow seeds of our flesh in that garden.  William Barclay, a professor of Bible at Edinburgh University for forty years, wrote that when the Bible refers to our flesh it means “human nature unaided by God.” According to Paul, human nature unaided by God is a seed that produces corruption.

We have the option to sow spiritual seeds in our lives every day.  Paul writes that these spiritual seeds produce a continuous creation.  David prayed “Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit in me.” (Psalm 51:10) In the New Testament the apostles refer to being born again as a miracle of creation.  “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God…” (2 Corinthians 5:17, 18)

This means we have two awesome options before us every day: creation or corruption.  We can sow spiritual seeds in the garden of our lives which continue the act of creation God is miraculously performing in us, or we can sow seeds that produce corruption.

What seeds are you sowing in the garden of your life every day?

Dick Woodward, 15 February 2011


Daily Spiritual Vitamins

May 29, 2015

“…  As newborn babes, earnestly desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby…” (1 Peter 2:2)

If babies do not receive breast milk, or their formula, they will not survive.  Peter is writing that “spiritual babies” should very earnestly desire the pure milk of God’s Word that they may grow.  When he writes this he uses Greek words that mean they should go after the Word the way babies go after the nipple, knowing their sustenance and growth depend on the nourishment they are receiving at their mother’s breast.

In addition to the Word of God there are other spiritual vitamins that provide spiritual nutrition.  Whether we are new in the faith, or have been walking with God for many years, we need spiritual vitamins like prayer, worship, fellowship with other believers, and a relationship with the risen, living Christ.  We also need to find and cultivate the works of service for which we have been saved.

Although the Apostle Paul emphatically writes that we are not saved BY good works he also writes emphatically that we are saved FOR good works (Ephesians 2: 8-10).  Serving the Lord and bringing forth the fruit that lasts is a vitamin we critically need for the growth and development of our faith.  Jesus taught that God will start answering our prayers when we understand this (John 15:16).

Having visited both the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea I observed the beauty of the Sea of Galilee which has an outlet, and the Dead Sea which has no outlet.  It is like that with us.  If we do not have the outlet of service, that makes us fruitful, we are stagnant and do not grow.

Are you getting your daily spiritual vitamins?

Dick Woodward, 05 November 2011


Spiritual Nutrition

October 24, 2013

“I fed you with milk and not with solid food…”   (1 Corinthians 3:2)

The Apostle Paul believed that when a person becomes a believer they are like a newborn baby who critically needs milk and formula to survive.  Babies need to be fed milk before they are ready for solid food.  Since a baby does not have a fully developed digestive tract we feed them milk.  Paul uses milk here as a metaphor for spiritual truth a teacher feeds to believers.  When we find spiritual truth without human help that is meat and solid food.

The bottom line is that new believers, like new born babies, critically need their milk and formula if they are going to progress to solid food that makes them grow into spiritual adults.

What is the nutritional formula for a new believer? A primary part is the Word of God.  Peter writes that as new believers, we should earnestly desire the Word of God the way newborn babies go after their mothers’ breast knowing that survival depends on what is received there.  Prayer is another vital part of that formula.  When we pray we talk to God, and when we open God’s word He talks to us.

We must add spiritual community and fellowship to this formula. We need the inspiration and encouragement we receive from other believers.  Witnessing and sharing our faith with secular people is another important part of our spiritual diet.  So are service and acts of love and charity.

Are you getting your spiritual nutrition?  Or are you suffering from spiritual malnutrition, barely surviving because you are not getting your formula and milk? Although we always need the truth we receive from teachers, we should also hunger for the solid food truth we receive directly from the Lord.