A CERTAIN farmer was trying to increase his profits. He noticed that his heaviest expenses involved the planting of the seed and the harvesting of the crop. He reasoned that eliminating these large expenditures would leave more of his money in the bank. So the next year he decided to let the few maintenance men he had do what seeding they could along with their other regular duties. This greatly reduced his expense at seedtime. Then he followed the same plan at harvesttime. Again, the saving was tremendous.
But when all the figures were in, the disappointment was overwhelming. The seeding had been so meager and irregular that there was not much harvest waiting. The harvesting work had been even less efficient. With their limited time, capabilities, and equipment the maintenance men had not been able to gather what scattered fruitage was available. The whole plan proved a dismal failure.
You say it was really a foolish idea in the first place? True! But do we not often fall into the same error in our planning for a harvest of souls for the kingdom?
The specialized and concentrated work of public evangelism is expensive. It requires the labor of an additional staff. It seems easy to say, "We can't afford it; let's try to get by without this additional expense."
But God's Word is still right: "He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully" (2 Cor. 9:6, R.S.V.).
When we curtail the work of public evangelism we don't save anything—we only reduce the harvest. It is not merely a matter of financial loss. It means that some souls will never be reached with the message of salvation, and thus will be lost forever.