At the Organic Church Conference, that I recently attended there was this recurring theme of the Garden throughout Scripture. While, I will not flesh that out here all you have to do is look into Genesis 1 & 2 and then see what else is around, or what comes back in Revelation 21 and 22 and you can start to see things in a little different light. I wanted to take a minute and flesh it out a little. I hope that in some way, it demonstrates and outlines, why some things are important, but that they cannot be made into rules of salvation.
When one has a garden there are certain tasks that must be done in order for it to be healthy and life giving. One my sow, reap, clear, and cultivate. One must water and weed the garden. It has to be tended to and there is a time for all the actions that make the garden fruitful. That is the same reality when we look at our faith and our walk with Christ. One cannot put that relationship into a box and say the way to have a strong relationship with the Lord is to do the following:
- Read your Bible for 15 minutes a day
- Pray for 30 minutes
- Attend Discipleship Classes
- Attend Church
- Give Money to the Church
- Perform Service Acts
While those things are good, they do not a relationship make. All they are, are false expressions to try and catch the Lord. They are ways of feeling holy without having to love and live within the Spirit of the Lord. If I can bring the garden into the discussion now, you will see that all of those things must be done at the prompting of the Great Gardener, so to speak. If you simply read the Bible with no purpose, then you will truly inherit nothing. If you attend church out of duty and not out of a love for Christ and the brothers and sisters there, you are being motivated by guilt to simply be there.
We must first have a relationship that is rooted in Christ to feel the movement of the Spirit, as we approach the actions that so often are prescribed to help us in our walk. But just as in a garden, we would not water the garden before planting the seeds, we cannot perform any action for the Lord without first feeling and hearing His prompting.