Derek Prince Sermon: The Two Harvests (Full Transcript)

Full text of Derek Prince’s sermon titled “The Two Harvests” which was preached in September 29, 1990.

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Derek Prince – Bible Teacher

Harvest is a major theme of Scripture that runs right through from the first book to the last. I think it’s first introduced in the time of Noah with God’s promise to Noah that as long as the earth remains, seed time and harvest will continue.

But I want to turn, first of all, to the book of Deuteronomy which is the book in which we have Moses’ instructions to Israel, just before they entered the land of Canaan. And he gave them very thorough instructions as to how they were to conduct themselves and how they would be able to enjoy the benefits and blessings of the inheritance into which God was taking them.


And we’re going to read from Deuteronomy 11:13–14. You have to remember that Israel had come out of Egypt, which is essentially a flat country, and where there is relatively little rain. And the main source of water is not rain but the River Nile. And in Egypt they have a device called a shadoof which they dip a bucket into the water of the Nile, pull it up and pour it into little channels which direct the water to the area where it’s needed for the crops.

So, in a certain sense, the water was under their control.

Moses said to Israel, when you get into the land God is giving you it’s not like that. It’s a land of hills and valleys, and it receives rain from heaven. And he said: it’s not under your control. You won’t be able to just get the water any time. But, if you’re obedient and faithful to God, He’ll give you the rain that you need.

And here is the promise. But, joined with the rain almost invariably in the Bible is the promise of the harvest. And we have to understand that the harvest depended on the rain. That’s true, of course, ultimately in every nation. But it’s much more true in the land of Israel.

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Because there really are only two main seasons: the hot, dry season and the cold, wetter season. There’s very little spring and virtually no autumn that you can notice.

And during the hot dry season, from about April to usually the end of September, no rain falls at all. Just none. And then they have what’s called the former rain, which comes at the beginning of the winter season. And in the economy of the agriculture, its purpose is to soften the soil, which by then is baked hard, so that the farmer can begin the processes which will lead to the harvest. And it’s usually a major outpouring which covers the whole nation.

Then throughout the winter, rain falls sporadically here and there. But there’s no major overall outpouring until what’s called the latter or the last rain which usually falls about the time of the Passover which is the first month in the biblical year, corresponding to our Easter, i.e., about March or April.

And the agricultural purpose of the latter rain is to cause the seed to germinate. If either the former or the latter rain fails, the harvest is probably going to fail. So, the rain is always intimately linked with the harvest.

And in this promise that Moses gives to Israel here, he specifically joins the two. He also specifies three main types of harvest. They’re not by any means all but it is the Grain, the New Wine and the Oil. You’ll find through the Bible —at least through the Old Testament— these are the three basic harvests: the grain harvest, the grape harvest and the olive harvest.

And they’re mentioned here. Now I’ll read the passage. Deuteronomy 11, beginning at verse 13:

Deuteronomy 11:13–14: “And it shall be that if you diligently obey My commandments [this is the LORD speaking] which I command you today, to love the LORD your God and serve Him with all your heart, with all your soul; then I will give you the rain for your land in its season.”

Notice it’s a gift from God. And the Bible emphasizes that rain is under the sovereign control of the Lord.

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“Then I will give you the rain for your land in its season; the early rain [or the former rain] and the latter rain…” And then notice the purpose in God’s economy: ‘…that you may gather in your grain, your new wine and your oil.’

There are the three forms of harvest. And this actually runs through the Bible as we’ll see it recurs in Revelation.

Now also through the Bible —and this is an unfolding revelation— the rain is a picture of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. And again, I believe, in the history of the church the outpouring of the Holy Spirit corresponds to the former and the latter rain.

And the former rain fell on the Day of Pentecost and on the early church. And it was a universal outpouring on the church as it then was. And it set in motion the processes that were designed to lead to the harvest.

Then throughout what you call the winter season there have been sporadic outpourings of the Holy Spirit almost every century in the church somewhere. But, no major outpouring that visited the whole church.

Topeka, Kansas, January 1, 1901 – Outpouring of the Holy Spirit

And then, as I believe and this is my own understanding, at the beginning of the present (20th) century, actually on the first day of the century, the first of January 1900 — in a certain sense the outpouring of the latter rain began. And why I say the first of January is because on that day in a Bible school in Topeka, Kansas in the United States, a young woman student went to the teachers of the Bible school and said to them: “I want you to lay hands on me that I may receive the Holy Spirit according to the New Testament pattern.”

Well, they didn’t believe that that would result with speaking in tongues but they did what she asked and she spoke with tongues. And that, in a sense, broke through with the truth of the baptism in the Holy Spirit.

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Then in 1904 in Azusa Street, Los Angeles, there came the celebrated visitation there.

Now there had been some previous indications of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Primarily, as a matter of fact, in Armenia, interestingly enough, at the end of the last century.


But anyhow, you can say basically the latter rain began to fall the beginning of the present century. And it has been a visitation that ultimately has come to affect the entire church. In the course of the 90 years that have elapsed, basically there is no country and there is no section of the church which has not had some kind of supernatural visitation of the Holy Spirit.

I believe this is the latter rain. I don’t believe it’s the fulfillment of the latter rain. I believe that much more is yet to come. But we need to bear in mind always in the spiritual, as in the natural — listen carefully — the rain is given for the purpose of the harvest.

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