Multiplying God's Seed
Jul 12, 2007
The Bible speaks often of the "seed" of Abraham. We know that this word is a metaphor for one's children, or descendants, but the question arises: What does God do with His Seed?
Jesus Christ is called the Son of God. As the Son, He is the primary "Seed" of God and is therefore the Pattern Son. What happened to Him? Jesus Himself said in John 12:24,
"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains by itself alone; but if dies, it bears much fruit."
Seed is meant to be eaten, but in order to "bear much fruit," it needs to be sown in the earth. God gave Abraham a preview of this when He said in Gen. 17:2,
"And I will establish My covenant between Me and you, and I will multiply you exceedingly."
I had always taken this to indicate many children--and certainly, this is true--but this morning in prayer the Lord gave me a deeper layer of meaning to ponder. How does He multiply His children? By sowing them in the earth. The example is Jesus Himself.
There are two kinds of children: physical and spiritual. Both have a promise of multiplication. Galatians 4:29 tells us that Ishmael "was born according to the flesh," which is natural childbirth. Isaac, on the other hand, was born "by promise," which is totally unnatural, because his mother was past child-bearing years at 90 years of age.
Paul tells us that this was an allegory, a historical fact that has a spiritual meaning and application. Romans 9:7, 8 says,
" (7) Neither are they all children because they are Abraham's descendants [seed], but 'Through Isaac your descendants [seed] will be named.' (8) That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants [seed]."
The allegory of Ishmael and Isaac is interesting, because BOTH of them were promised a multiplication of seed. Ishmael's promise is found in Gen. 16:10. There are two ways of looking at this. The first is to compare the physical descendants of Israel with those of Ishmael. Both are today very numerous, unless one considers the Jews to be Israel, in which case, the Arabs far outnumber them. But when we see that Europe and other nations around the world are the physical descendants of Israel, then this promise is shown to be fulfilled on that level.
But the more important view is that which the Apostle Paul sets forth in contrasting the physical seed with the spiritual. In this view, it is not proper to consider the physical descendants of either Israel or Ishmael to be the spiritual seed. Physical Israelites have proven over and over again that they are not automatically spiritual just because they can claim descent from Abraham. We might cite some American presidents and European kings and Prime Ministers as proof of this.
Paul tells us in Gal. 3:7,
"Therefore, be sure that it is those who are of faith who are sons of Abraham."
I have heard it said that this means the so-called "Christian Nations" of Europe. Because the Gospel went to them first, and took root, then this is how one may identify the physical seed of Abraham--at least generally speaking. That may be a partial truth on a national level, but Paul was talking about individuals.
How does one identify the seed of Abraham? It is by his faith. There are countless physical descendants of Abraham who have not even professed faith in Jesus Christ, and many others who have done so hypocritically. Are these counted as the spiritual "seed"? No way--at least not yet. All Israel will be saved, Paul says, but most of them will have no faith until they bow and confess Him at the Great White Throne Judgment (Phil. 2:10, 11).
In the Pentecostal Age of the past 2,000 years, God has been sowing seed in the earth to prepare for a great harvest. In this way, He is multiplying the seed of Abraham. The overcomers, who identify with Christ in His death, are those who also identify with Him in His resurrection (Rom. 6:5).
Beginning with Abel, whom Cain slew, all who have died for the sake of His name can be counted as God's seed sown in the earth. Not all believers are called to be martyrs, but all believers are called to identify with His death in whatever way the Lord requires of them. Each is thus sown in the earth and will bring forth a harvest--some thirtyfold, some sixtyfold, and some a hundredfold (Matt. 13:8).
Passover believers will bring forth thirtyfold, Pentecostal believers will bring forth sixtyfold, and Tabernacles overcomers will bring forth a hundredfold. I might add, however, that they will bring forth NOTHING without dying in some manner. Death is ultimately what characterizes a true believer, for Paul says in Rom. 6:7, "for he who has died is justified [dikaioo] from sin."
This is the True Prosperity Message. The counterfeit is without death. The counterfeit wants to go directly into life without death. The counterfeit wants Jesus to do all the dying for us, while we reap all the benefits of His death. But that is not how it works. Paul died "daily" (1 Cor. 15:31), and he constantly spoke about believers dying to self, crucifying the old man (carnal mind) which we received from Adam. In speaking of resurrection, Paul says in 1 Cor. 15:42-44,
"(42) So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body. (43) It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. (44) It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. . ."
This is about sowing and reaping. This is about multiplying the seed of God. God first brought forth natural seed, in order that He might sow it in the earth and bring forth a harvest of spiritual bodies like Jesus had after His resurrection.
But this is not only about physical death. We are the living dead, having been crucified with Christ. The point is that the Adamic man has to die--not just the physical body, but the carnal mind itself. The carnal mind has assumed supremacy in our thinking ever since the first sin was committed. That is the real "flesh" that must die in order to bring forth an abundant harvest.
So God is the Husbandman, the farmer, who is sowing seed in the earth. It was prophesied with the nation of Israel on a corporate level in the second chapter of Hosea, verse 23, "And I will sow her for Myself in the earth." This was manifested in the prophecy of Hosea's son, Jezreel, which means "God scatters" and also "God sows." In order to sow the seed, they had to scatter it in the field, which is the world.
There is a corporate fulfillment, made up of many individual seeds gathered in the harvest. That corporate body is true Israel. They all have faith, because no one is included in that body until they have "died" in faith and have been raised again in Christ. Yes, they will all come to that place of faith eventually and be Israelites indeed in the sight of God--but only a minority of people will inherit the first resurrection.
Those who are sown in the earth as overcomers in the first six "days" of history (6,000 years) will be the first harvest called "barley." The second, I believe, will occur a thousand years later and will constitute the next harvest called "wheat." The final harvest is the grape harvest, which will bring forth new wine after it has been trodden under foot. When all things are "under His feet," and all men have had time to fully mature in Christ, then all will be Israelites, and God will be all in all (1 Cor. 15:28).
Dr. Stephen Jones