Several years ago the Associated Press released a story about a 20-year-old man named Gene Tipps of Seymour, Texas. On May 21, 1967, Mr. Tipps was involved in a very serious automobile accident in which he suffered severe head injuries. He was in a coma for three weeks, after which he remained in a state of unconsciousness for eight solid years. During that extended period of time, this was his daily routine: his parents would prop him up in bed, move him to a chair, brace him up by putting pillows around him, and then feed him. They would usually have to open his mouth and help move his jaw so he could chew the food. He would then swallow. When he finished eating, they would comb his hair, talk to him for awhile, and then put him back to bed. For eight long years, that was his daily experience. Then, one day after all those years of slumber, Gene Tipps woke up! His nurse was startled because she was trying to give him some medicine when he awakened. His parents ran to him and shouted for joy. They called the doctor. Everyone was thrilled and shocked simultaneously.
Later someone asked him what it was like to be asleep for eight years. Tipps replied, “It’s all very strange, my girlfriend is now married and has children. The war in Vietnam is over. To everyone else I am 28, but in my mind I am still only 20.” He slept from 1967 until 1975. He went to sleep when L.B.J. was President of the United States, and woke up with Jimmy Carter smiling in the White House. He slept right through Richard Nixon! Can you imagine being asleep 8 years?
Samson and His Sowing to Self-Centeredness
Samson’s motto was, “I will do to them what they have done to me.” Revenge was what he was after (Judges 15:3, 15:7, 15:11). I really don’t blame him much. His father in law gave his wife to the best man (Judges 15:2). What ensues is long list of escalation, violence, death, and finally war.
Samson was called to defeat the enemy but down deep we long to see him fighting the Lord’s battle and not his own private wars. King David seemed to always connect the battles he faced and the enemies he faced as being enemies of the LORD. Be careful that your individual preferences don’t become religious temper tantrums or worse, religious demands.
Where does all this escalation come from?
We can’t fulfill our selfish desires. We have desires that are God given and yet we pervert these desires w/self-centered demands. We don’t get what we want, so we get mad, mad at God, mad at our friends, just mad! James 4:1-3 puts the problem squarely inside of us.
What is the result?
Galatians 6:7-8- The Law of the Harvest is as certain as Gravity. You reap what you sow. Samson sows to the Flesh will reap what he sows. Farmers don’t EVER wonder what is in the Harvest. That is impossible. The farmer knew exactly what he sowed and followed up daily on what he sowed. God will not be mocked. We won’t be able to turn our noses up to God…
You Reap what you Sow…She is bored with her marriage. There’s a man at work that is so tender and caring. Her husband doesn’t understand her any more, but he does. You reap what you sow. He was just a sophomore in college trying to make ends meet when a friend told him how much money he was making selling pills to some of his friends. Quick money, illegal drugs. You reap what you sow. He was spending more money than he was making, his bills were getting behind, creditors were constantly calling, and his credit score was getting worse and worse. You reap what you sow.
John Stott said
To ‘sow to the flesh’ is to pander to it, to cosset, cuddle and stroke it, instead of crucifying it … Every time we allow our mind to harbour a grudge, nurse a grievance, entertain an impure fantasy, or wallow in self-pity, we are sowing to the flesh. Every time we linger in bad company whose insidious influence we know we cannot resist, every time we lie in bed when we ought to be up and praying, every time we read pornographic literature, every time we take a risk which strains our self-control, we are sowing, sowing, sowing to the flesh. Some Christians sow to the flesh every day and wonder why they do not reap holiness.
John Stott also said
Sow a thought, reap an action.
Sow an action, reap a habit.
Sow a habit, reap a character.
Sow a character, reap a destiny.