Knowing the 3 Levels of Ministry: Sowing ~ Watering ~ Reaping
Based on the farming analogy there are 3 levels to effective Evangelism.
1) Planting the Seed
2) Watering the Seed
3) Reaping the Harvest
If you’re not clear on which type of ministry the person needs you cannot be effective in ministering to them.
The Bible says, “I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.” 1 Corinthians 3:6
It also says, “He who converts the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death.” James 5:20
These two scriptures confirm the 3 aspects of personal evangelism and include a 4th which is God’s part… To add the increase.
Adding the increase simply means God is the One who gives life and power to all we say and do.
He gives the grace to receive, and the faith to believe the Gospel we share with others.
Our effectiveness however, is in being led by the Holy Spirit to correctly identify what each individual needs as we’re speaking to them.
If they’ve heard the Gospel but are confused and still have questions, they need to have the seed watered.
If they understand the Gospel and are ready to make a decision for Christ, then they’re ready to be harvested.
If someone is ready to be harvested but you spend all your time trying to plant a word that’s already planted, you won’t have success!
If someone is confused and has questions but you’re trying to force them into making a decision they’re not prepared for, you won’t have success either.
That person may just say a Prayer to appease you without actually repenting and instead of becoming born again they may walk away more confused than ever… and still lost in their Sin!
It is the inexperienced Christian who feels that they must convert every person they share the gospel with.
Remember, it is God who gives the increase. He’s the One who actually saves and delivers the sinner… Not you!
Your job is first to find out from the Holy Spirit what this person’s condition is so you can effectively minister to their needs.
Then be guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit in meeting those needs.
If you have learnt to wait on the Holy Ghost He may empower you to lay hands on the person and minister healing to them and as a result they may now be perfectly ready to confess faith in Christ and enter the Kingdom of God.
In this case, ministering healing to them would count as watering the seed because after receiving healing they would now have a better understanding of the Kingdom of God.
So in this case, you would have watered the seed then reaped the harvest right after.
The key is to always be guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit in discerning what condition your prospect is in, so you can offer the correct type of ministry they need.