The process of cultivating land and raising crops, from soil preparation to the storage and transport of crops to market. Agricultural pursuits are mentioned in the opening pages of Genesis (Gen 2:15
, Gen 4:2
, Gen 9:2
), and farming activities were important enough to be regulated by Mosaic law (Lev 19:9
; Lev 25:3-5
; Deut 22:9-10
). The orderly system used in working the land was attributed to God (Isa 28:26
), and Jesus used figures derived from farming to picture the coming of God’s kingdom (Mark 4:3-8
; Mark 4:26-29
). Plowing for winter crops did not begin until after the “early” or “former” rains of autumn (Prov 20:4
); only then could lightweight plows scratch the surface of sun-baked fields. Sowing, which was usually accomplished by broadcasting seed, could precede or follow plowing. After a bumper crop, the threshing and winnowing process could last all summer. Meanwhile, summer crops had been planted after the winter rains; these plants were cultivated throughout the dry summer months. The harvesting of fruit, including olives and grapes, began in late summer and continued into fall. In the Bible, almost every aspect of agricultural work assumed a figurative meaning in the minds of ancient speakers and writers (Isa 21:10
; Amos 9:13
; Mic 4:12-13
; Matt 9:37-38
; Matt 13:3-32
; Luke 9:62
; 1Cor 9:9-11
; Gal 6:7
; Rev 14:14-20
15The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it.
2Next she bore his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a tiller of the ground.
2The fear and dread of you shall rest on every animal of the earth, and on every bird of the air, on everything that creeps on the ground, and on all the fish o ... View more
9When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest.
3Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather in their yield;4but in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of ... View more
9You shall not sow your vineyard with a second kind of seed, or the whole yield will have to be forfeited, both the crop that you have sown and the yield of the ... View more
26For they are well instructed;
their God teaches them.
3“Listen! A sower went out to sow.4And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up.5Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did ... View more
The Parable of the Growing Seed
26He also said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground,27and would sleep and rise night and day, ... View more
4The lazy person does not plow in season;
harvest comes, and there is nothing to be found.
10O my threshed and winnowed one,
what I have heard from the Lord of hosts,
the God of Israel, I announce to you.
13The time is surely coming, says the Lord,
when the one who plows shall overtake the one who reaps,
and the treader of grapes the one who sows the seed;
the mo ... View more
12But they do not know
the thoughts of the Lord;
they do not understand his plan,
that he has gathered them as sheaves to the threshing floor.13Arise and thresh ... View more
37Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;38therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harve ... View more
3And he told them many things in parables, saying: “Listen! A sower went out to sow.4And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate th ... View more
62Jesus said to him, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
9For it is written in the law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain.” Is it for oxen that God is concerned?10Or does he not s ... View more
7Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow.
Reaping the Earth's Harvest
14Then I looked, and there was a white cloud, and seated on the cloud was one like the Son of Man, with a golden crown on his head, ... View more