Monday, February 29, 2016

The Threshing Process

UV 1686/10000 The Threshing Process
Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion: for I will make thine horn iron, and I will make thy hoofs brass: and thou shalt beat in pieces many people: and I will consecrate their gain unto the LORD, and their substance unto the Lord of the whole earth.
Micah 4 v 13

The people from all nations will be gathered as sheaves of grain in the threshing floor of the Lord of the harvest. The faithful are given the task and responsibility to thresh the sheaves. They will be given strength and power and grace to do so by the power of the Holy Spirit. The metaphor used is one of a strong threshing bull with hoofs of brass and horns of iron. The grain or the souls that are collected by such a process of threshing are the gain or profit that is dedicated or consecrated to the Lord.

The source of power for labourers in the field is the food that they eat and the labour that they do turns their bodies strong and sinewy. Similarly, the labourers in the field of the Lord are given strength and power by imbibing and consuming the commands, promises and precepts, by practicing the principles, upholding the values, emulating and being inspired by the models of faithful men and women who lived by faith. The sowing and growing is done by the Lord. The faithful who are called the “daughter of Zion”, the bride of Christ or the church are asked to do just the threshing. We are to arise and thresh, to separate the grain from the straw and chaff. The whole process of discipleship is nothing but threshing, separating the grain or what is useful from that which is of little or no use for human beings. The troubles and tribulations we go through in life are also part of the process of threshing so that we develop a right order of priorities, so that our character is perfected, our strength to endure is built up.

The substance or material goods that we own are dedicated to the Lord of the whole earth and universe. We are to use our resources and earnings to bless the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is not one of eating and drinking or festivities or accumulation of gain but it is peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Our material gain is not the end of life but a means to an end. This kind of perspective will give us a sense of contentment and enable us to be useful for others. Of course, our need will be met for a worker as Jesus said is entitled to his wages. But we will be freed from identifying the source of our happiness with material or monetary possessions or wealth. We will be freed from the illusion that they will provide us permanent security. As Jesus said, “ Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” It implies that we need bread or money or the wherewithal to survive and live in comfort but we live the abundant and eternal life by dwelling on, relying on, believing and appropriating the benefit from every word that the Lord has spoken to us in different ways.

Prateep V Philip

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