October 11, 2016

Leftover Sheaves

Deuteronomy 24:17-22

When you are harvesting in your field and you overlook a sheaf, do not go back to get it.

—  Deuteronomy 24:19

“Never leave money on the table.” This classic advice from business negotiators instructs people to squeeze as much out of every deal as possible, to drive tough bargains and maximize every opportunity.

During the harvest, some sheaves of grain would inevitably fall to the ground. Good business sense would dictate that the harvesters would go back and collect those sheaves.

But that’s not the way things went in ancient Israel. God instructed his people to use the harvest as an opportunity to care for vulnerable members of society: the poor, the foreigner, the orphan, the widow. The gospel changes the way we view our financial resources. God has no problem with businesses turning a profit. But profit is not the believer’s only motive.

“Remember that you were slaves . . . and the Lord your God redeemed you,” God tells his people. Just as God rescued Israel from slavery in Egypt, so he rescues us from slavery to sin. Because of Jesus’ work, our worth is not in how much we can grasp, but in the new life provided by our Redeemer.

As a result, we have the privilege of telling others about God’s redeeming work. We use words to tell the story of Jesus’ victory over sin, and we express this in our actions as we care for people around us.

How is God’s redeeming work flowing through you to others?

Lord, in redeeming us, you have put us in a place to care for others. Show us the people who need to know Christ’s care through us. Amen.

About the author — Joel Vande Werken

Joel Vande Werken has been a pastor since 2007, serving churches in Sussex, New Jersey, and in Whitinsville, Massachusetts. He and his wife, Brandie, have five young children.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!