Too often, agriculturists see only the effects, while the actual causes of the crisis grow worse and more complicated. Yet we must recognize our agricultural problems—their causes—and CORRECT THEM.
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Man has the choice between two ways of life summarized as “life and blessing” or “death and cursing.” This is the same decision he has faced since the beginning.
This article is excerpted from the book Mounting Worldwide Crisis in Agriculture by Dale L. Schurter, the world’s foremost authority on biblical agriculture and sustainable husbandry.
In the Garden of Eden, God placed two trees symbolizing two opposing ways of life: “the tree of life” and “the tree of knowledge of good and evil” (Genesis 2:9).
Man has been living the way of “the tree of knowledge of good and evil” for millennia. Simplified, this means he decides for himself what is good and evil, what is right and wrong.
The results have been drastically mixed. The genius of the human mind has brought incredible advancement and progress coupled with dastardly evil acts.
God warned man to not eat from this tree, saying, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it [do not eat the fruit representing a mix of true knowledge with false]: for in the day that you eat thereof you will surely die [relying on humanly devised knowledge leads to sickness, disease and death]” (vs. 17).
Man deciding what is right and wrong is the core problem of the agricultural crisis. Trying to change nature through genetic and chemical manipulation is a futile effort.
Notice: “And God saw everything that He had made, and, behold, it was very good…” (Genesis 1:31). For example, God created insects for our good. But in man’s eyes, insects are a mix of good and evil.
The laws of nature implemented by the Creator are good. They do not need “perfecting” by a meddling mankind!
Left on his own, man can—at best—produce results that are both good and evil. History proves this true. Due to this, there is a dire need to educate humankind in proper farming practices. And the solution must be implemented on a global scale.
World leaders have often echoed the need for a close-knit worldwide government. Sir Winston Churchill once said: “The creation of an authoritative all-powerful world order is the ultimate aim towards which we must strive. Unless some effective World Super-Government can be set up and brought quickly into action, the prospects for peace and human progress are dark and doubtful” (Never Give In!: The Best of Winston Churchill’s Speeches).
And a supergovernment is exactly what God has in mind.
Yet the Creator’s solution will not come in the way men seem to think, and not through any so-called “united” coalition of nations or any other “world order” of man’s design. Yet it is guaranteed to happen.
Notice Daniel 2: “But there is a God in heaven that reveals secrets, and makes known…what shall be in the latter days…And in [those days] shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people…and it shall stand forever” (vs. 28, 44).
Under this kingdom, the whole world is going to learn the right way to farm—the right way to live—the way to abundance and happiness. All destructive and toxic agricultural, social and religious practices will come to an end! They will be replaced by the life-giving and life-sustaining laws and blessings of God’s government. They will produce far-reaching breakthroughs in food production and prosperity that will stagger the imagination. It will deeply and directly affect the life of every person in every country on Earth.
The Bible paints an exciting picture about some of the tremendous and wonderful changes that will occur in coming years.
At that time, society will be agriculturally oriented. Farming and gardening, orchards and vineyards, livestock and poultry husbandries will be so popular that even city dwellers will want to take part. But not in the way so many do today, “playing at” farming just to gain tax benefits.
Rather, people in tomorrow’s cities will want to have their own gardens and small orchards just for the pleasure of working with the soil, of being close to God’s Creation, and of growing part of their own food.
Because of changes in tomorrow’s urban areas, many people in towns and cities will have room for small-scale agricultural activities. Some may even keep a few chickens, cows, sheep or goats!
Vast new acreages of fertile, well-watered land will become available for growing crops and raising livestock. Perfect weather and bumper crops will become the rule—not the exception.
In his book Real Truth Editor-in-Chief David C. Pack outlines the dramatic changes that will occur with the establishment of the kingdom of God:
“At the end of Christ’s 1,000-year rule...vast billions will be resurrected to physical life and given an opportunity to receive salvation. The Earth must be ready to receive them. God has a plan to prepare and reclaim potentially available land, in such vast expanses, that this problem will be solved for all time.
“Catastrophic prophesies, to be fulfilled just prior to Christ’s Return, will bring unparalleled devastation and destruction to the earth’s surface. God is most specific about what will happen. Weapons of mass destruction will be unleashed before, and possibly during, Christ’s Coming. The ‘waste places’ spoken of previously may include nuclear ‘dead zones’ in multiple places. Biological and nerve weapon releases may leave vast areas uninhabitable.
“God will have to literally rehabilitate the surface of the earth in order to make it fit, once again, for human habitation. Bear in mind that 77 percent of the earth’s surface is already uninhabitable oceans and seas. (Indications are that this percentage could actually temporarily increase for a short time due to climate change.) Enormous deserts and great mountain ranges occupy a large percentage of Earth’s landmasses, including islands. Some regions of land (the two Poles) are too cold to inhabit. Only about 10 percent of the earth’s surface is suitable for agriculture, with no more than 15 percent inhabitable.
“God has a Master Plan! No man could ever think of it, or bring it to pass if he did. Yet it will solve every problem related to overpopulation, pollution, and production, procurement and distribution of food and water. It will involve a complete change in entire weather patterns around the earth, including ocean currents, jet streams, and flow of Arctic air. Beautiful, clear water will be available—and in abundance—in all parts of the world. The nature of mountain ranges, islands, and even placement of continents will allow a repopulation of Earth simply inconceivable to modern planners of cities and nations.
“Let’s take a look.
“The world is now running out of fresh drinking water—but that will soon change dramatically. Here is one of the most incredible prophecies in the entire Bible: ‘Then shall the lame man leap...and the...dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert. And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes’ (Isa. 35:6-7).
“Verses 1-2 add more to what this will mean for all the deserts of the world: ‘The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the Lord, and the excellency of our God’ (Isa. 35:1-2). Take time to read the entire inspiring 35th chapter of Isaiah.
“The following is a phenomenal prophecy about a river that does not yet exist. It will flow from Jerusalem—in what will no doubt be the largest natural spring in the world, even bigger than Mammoth Springs, Arkansas—eventually reaching around the world: ‘And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be’ (Zech. 14:8).
“Wastelands of sand and cactus will break forth into a scenic beauty of lush greenery that is hard to imagine. Pasturelands, trees, shrubs, brooks, streams, rivers, and gardens will replace all the deserts of the world.
“But it is not just the deserts that will radically change in tomorrow’s world.
“Take a moment to savor the meaning pictured in this related prophecy, also in Isaiah. Notice what will happen to the mountains:
“‘Fear not...you men of Israel; I will help you, says the Lord, and your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel. Behold, I will make you a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: you shall thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shall make the hills as chaff. You shall fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and you shall rejoice in the Lord, and shall glory in the Holy One of Israel. When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue fails for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water. I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree, and the myrtle, and the oil tree; I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree together: that they may see, and know, and consider, and understand together, that the hand of the Lord has done this, and the Holy One of Israel has created it’ (Isa. 41:14-20).
“Can you imagine this happening around the world? Mountains and hills being shred like mulch, bubbling springs and new rivers appearing suddenly, and wilderness areas disappearing and being replaced by great forests of diverse trees. God says to ‘see,’ ‘know,’ ‘consider,’ and ‘understand’ the scope of what He promises.
“How awesome are the ways of God!
“This amazing prophecy depicts a world with plenty of room for people—and cities, parks, forests, recreation areas, crops, lakes, and rivers. The biggest challenge might be where to store the gargantuan food reserves that could soon appear. This would be a much better ‘problem’ than the food wars that numerous experts predict will come, if something does not happen soon. (Incidentally, do not forget that millions of pounds of beef on the hoof will be available in places such as India, once superstition and ignorance is replaced by cooperation and true knowledge. So will the perhaps half of India’s crops that are lost annually during the typhoon-monsoon season.)
“And why should Isaiah’s prophecy seem strange? God’s purpose has always been that people be happy and peaceful, contented and joyful. While this is strange and unusual in this world, it is neither strange nor unusual to God. This is what He always intended for His creation. He wanted Adam and Eve to enjoy the garden from which they eventually had to be expelled.
“Since God formed the mountains (Psa. 90:2; Amos 4:13), He can also re-form them in any way that He wishes. He apparently will use great earthquakes to do much of the work (Zech. 14:4; Rev. 16:18), because He states, ‘The mountains quake at Him, and the hills melt…’ (Nah. 1:5).
“Isaiah 40:4 states, ‘Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain.’
“There are many great mountain ranges on Earth. Imagine the desolate, snow-covered, windswept stretches of the Himalayas, Alps, Rockies, Andes, Hindu Kush, Sierras, Pyrenees, and other great mountain ranges lowered or leveled and made fertile and inhabitable. Then picture the vast icepacks and mountain ranges of Antarctica, Greenland, and Siberia, including immense areas of tundra and permafrost, becoming available. Countless millions of acres will be made available to a mankind that could never do this for itself. (Could all the nuclear weapons on Earth blast away even a few of the world’s great mountains? And what would remain if they could?)
“Now imagine how many great deserts would disappear. Start with much of the Middle East and almost all of Northern Africa. Picture the Sahara in Africa and nearly all of Saudi Arabia becoming lush and verdant. Then picture the Gobi desert in Asia and the Kalahari and Lake Chad basin, also in Africa, suddenly turning green, along with much of the American West and Southwest. More countless millions of acres of virtually useless land will become available for multiple purposes.
“Astonishing, but true—and in your lifetime!”
Hunger and malnutrition will become a thing of the past. Everyone in every land will be able to enjoy fresh, clean, wholesome, tasty, nutritious food—grains and nuts, meat and dairy products, and fruits and vegetables in unbelievable variety and abundance. No, it will not happen overnight, but it will happen!
A large percentage of the world’s populace will live on prosperous family-sized farms. Millions of these well-kept country areas with spacious, beautiful homes on them will dot the landscape. Families will enjoy stable economic prosperity, radiant health, and a sense of satisfaction, accomplishment and fulfillment from their work.
They will strive to work in harmony with the laws of God in every aspect of their husbandry operations. Farming will be a respected occupation and farmers will take pride in what they produce. Their goal will be to produce food that is high in true quality—tasty and nutritious—not just a lot of “bulk.”
This means that careful attention will be paid to building up the land. Management practices will be used that produce healthy soil rich in humus and biological life—with vegetation practically impervious to insect infestation and disease. This fertile soil will be protected and further built up by proper tillage methods, diversification, crop rotation, and other conservation practices. Such carefully managed soil will make maximum use of available moisture. It will not be plagued with erosion and a troublesome amount of weeds.
Diversification will replace monoculture. Farmers in the world to come will raise a large variety of crops, planted at the right time on the right soil.
Pesticides and other harmful chemicals will be totally unnecessary! Forcing and mining soil, which produces yields of inferior quality, simply will not be practiced.
A land sabbath will be observed every seventh year, during which the land will rest—yet with an abundance of food for all. Recall from earlier: “Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather in the fruit thereof; but in the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath for the Lord: you shall neither sow your field, nor prune your vineyard. That which grows of its own accord of your harvest you shall not reap [for market or storage], neither gather the grapes of your vine undressed [for market or storage]: for it is a year of rest unto the land.
“And the sabbath of the land shall be meat [food] for you; for you, and for your servant, and for your maid, and for your hired servant, and for your stranger that sojourns with you. And for your cattle, and for the beast that are in your land, shall all the increase thereof be meat [food].”
“Wherefore you shall do My statutes, and keep My judgments, and do them; and you shall dwell in the land in safety. And the land shall yield her fruit, and you shall eat your fill, and dwell therein in safety” (Leviticus 25:3-7, 18-19).
The government of God will be in place ensuring proper care of the soil, plants, animals and people. The give way of life—the way of the kingdom of God—will be in place everywhere! Gone will be the way that leads to death, which we see all around us today!
Since animals play an important part in the ecology of the life cycle, tomorrow’s farms will have a variety of poultry and livestock. Animal wastes will be properly used to make an important contribution to soil fertility.
Though livestock may be temporarily penned for fattening purposes, they will not spend most of their lives confined in crowded feedlots. Neither will chickens stay cooped up in cages so small they can barely turn around.
These farm animals will not be given a host of drugs and shots, and feeds of unnatural, unbalanced, highly concentrated mixtures that cannot possibly produce high-quality meat. Rather, poultry and livestock will be given healthful feed and forage that is clean, balanced and high in nutritional value. This wholesome feed will produce strong and healthy stock that will result in robust offspring of the same high caliber.
Selective breeding of both plants and animals will be practiced to build up factors of, again, true quality—not genetically engineered by man. Development and use of inferior hybrid strains and GMOs will be neither permitted nor desired. Neither will there be such practices as artificial insemination.
It is actually a violation of God’s laws to interbreed different kinds of animals. “You shall keep My statutes. You shall not let your cattle gender with a different kind: you shall not sow your field with mingled [blended, hybrid] seed…” (Leviticus 19:19).
This scripture speaks of gendering cattle with diverse kinds. But the Hebrew has only one word that means both “kind” and “variety” or “breed,” in the sense used here. It would be better translated “variety” or “breed,” not kind. It would normally be impossible to gender cattle with any other kind—such as horses, sheep or dogs, buffalo, elk or deer. “In the wild,” none of these animals interbreed, and we are not to “force” it. (Read the example of Jacob in Genesis 30:29-43 for more about correct selective breeding for herd improvement.) From time to time throughout history, a new breed (or variety) has occurred, but this is only through a natural mutation process that reproduces like kind.
When God, for a purpose beneficial to mankind, blesses us with different varieties derived from parent stock, He wants those varieties kept pure. He does not want what He has wisely done to be undone by man (through methods such as hybridization of plants and animals).
Varieties in both animals and plants are a blessing!
The high quality evident in farm produce will also be reflected in the personal life of a husbandman and his family. There will be work, of course, but it will be enjoyable, challenging and rewarding. Remember, Adam and Eve were given a very large garden and the responsibility to “dress [work, serve, till] it and to keep [save, hedge about, guard, protect, preserve] it” (Genesis 2:15). Work is good when work is for good. And farm life will not be a humdrum existence of toil and sweat from dawn to dusk with no time out for culture, relaxation and enjoyment of a rewarding life.
In this world to come, all farmers will be educated, cultured individuals—in a profession looked up to by the rest of society, not “looked down on” as it is in many regions today.
Nearby cities will offer additional rich varieties of cultural, recreational, educational and social opportunities for rural families. And scenic areas and parks of natural beauty will be available for hiking, boating, camping, fishing and more.
As mentioned earlier, in this new world, nations “shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Micah 4:3).
Instead of making instruments of destruction for a war-oriented society, men will make instruments of peace, and society will become agriculturally oriented, productive and service-oriented—excited about serving our Creator, family and neighbors. Agriculture will be a respected profession, and many, many people will be engaged in it: “But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken it” (vs. 4).
Can you imagine what it will be like when man wholeheartedly works in harmony with all of God’s physical and spiritual laws? The results will be breathtaking.
The Bible describes it in these terms: “Therefore they shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together to the goodness of the Lord, for wheat, and for wine, and for oil, and for the young of the flock and of the herd: and their soul shall be as a watered garden; and they shall not sorrow any more at all” (Jeremiah 31:12).
And again, “Behold, the days come, says the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that sows seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt…and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them” (Amos 9:13-14).
Yes, there is fantastic hope for the future! There is wonderful good news that lies ahead. With the establishment of the government of God throughout the Earth, there will be no famine, no malnutrition or hunger, and no war any more—in the world to come for all who respond to His benevolent rule.
You can begin to live a foretaste of this way now—if you choose to live by the guidelines found in the Bible!
Once again, read God’s solemn but inspiring words: “I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both you and your seed may live.”