Jesus Said, “The Laborers Are Few.” Why?

Adrian Despres

June 9, 2023

God’s calling to each one of us is simple. He wants us all to love Him, love others, and live every single day as a Kingdom Laborer, right where we are. A big part of this is sharing our faith, but it is also using our unique gifts to serve those in need. When you see people, stop what you’re doing, and spend time with them. After all, the Laborers are few, and we must each do our part. 

Why the Laborers Are Few

God wants to use you to make an impact for His Kingdom as an everyday, everywhere Kingdom Laborer who shares His love with everyone placed in your path. In Matthew 9:37, Jesus said to His disciples, The harvest is plentiful, but the Laborers are few.” 


I believe these are some of the reasons Laborers are few…

1. Fear

Fear can be positive or negative. When it comes to sharing our faith or serving vulnerably, the fear of what other people might think of us can be debilitating. It is difficult to walk through the fear that we are not “good enough” or the fear of critical responses. Fears are often barriers to boldly reaching out to others and sharing or serving.  

However, there is a positive fear that can be our ally. In 1 Corinthians 2:3, Paul came to the Corinthian church with “much fear and trembling.” In Ephesians 6:19, Paul asked for prayer that he would share the gospel fearlessly and again asks in verse 20 to pray he would speak boldly. If there is no fear, then there is no boldness. Boldness is what it takes to push through fear. 

The real question is, who do you fear more—man or God? 

Proverbs 1:7 says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. This is a reverent fear that can be helpful. I often think about the day I will die. Wouldn’t it be great to hear Jesus say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant”? Often the “fear” of not hearing that commendation from the Lord pushes me to take risks. Taking risks is the key to living as a Kingdom Laborer and addressing the issue that the Laborers are few.

We must risk and walk through fear to share our faith with others and to love and serve them daily. 

2. Ignorance

Many people think they will not know what to say when they come across someone who asks tough questions. They are paralyzed by the thought of not having an answer, not being able to communicate clearly, or being confused about what to say. 

Here are a few hints:

  • Tell them your story.
  • Tell them how you came to Christ. 
  • Tell them about your own experiences with the Lord and what He has done for you. 

It is also ok to say, “I don’t know, but I will find out.” 

Everybody wins when you do not know the answer, as it moves you to study and search the scripture to share what you learn with others. Read and study how to share your faith. Learn some specific techniques so you will be more comfortable. 

Many are confused about what Jesus said in John 8:32. If you read carefully, you will see it is not truth standing alone that sets people free. He said you must KNOW the truth, and the truth will set you free. Knowing truth brings freedom. Therefore, we have to study and learn and fight to understand. 

Don’t let ignorance be an excuse.

3. Love of Sin over Holiness

Loving and cherishing our sin keeps our eyes off the call of Kingdom Laborership that Christ has for us. 1 John 2:15-16 tells us not to love the world and its system—characterized by the lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life. I believe all sins today are related to these three, and they all fall under pride. When Adam and Eve were in the garden, Satan tempted Eve with the fruit. In Genesis 3:6, she said it was good for food, a delight to the eyes, and desirable for gaining wisdom, which are the same categories in 1 John 2:16. 

In Matthew 4:1-11, Jesus is tempted by Satan to turn stone into bread to meet His physical desire because He is starving. Satan also tempts Him to bow down and worship Him to receive all the earthly kingdoms as a gift and tempts Him to throw Himself down from the temple to test God—again, the same categories. These are Satan’s favorite weapons against us. Not recognizing our sin in these three areas will keep us from being Laborers for Christ. If we want to be holy men and women for the Lord, and to eventually build up more Kingdom Laborers, a great start is to examine ourselves and confess these things. 

4. Lack of Revival

In the mid-1700s in America, we had the first Great Awakening. In 1805, we had the second. In 1859, the third. Since then, we have not had a nationwide awakening. We have had spurts here and there but not nationwide. 

It seems that in the scriptures, every generation tends to move further away from God than the one before. King David was a man after God’s own heart. However, his son Solomon started well but finished terribly. His grandson, Rehoboam, Solomon’s son, did evil in the eyes of the Lord. Many of you know that your parents are saved, some grandparents, some great-grandparents. If you are the third or fourth generation away from those initially saved in your family, it is good to ask yourself if you have “gotten used” to God. In Revelation 2:2-4, only 35 years after Paul applauded the faith of the Ephesians, Jesus told the Ephesian church that they had left their first love. They had gotten used to God through time. 

Complacency is the number one enemy of Laborership. It’s one of the reasons the Laborers are few. We need to return to our first love. We need revival in our hearts!

The Laborers Are Few—Get in the Game!

I am reminded of Jesus weeping over Jerusalem when He says from His soul, “Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem, I would have gathered you as a hen gathers her chicks, but you wouldn’t listen.” I can feel the pain in His heart and His great desire to call out Laborers among His people. 

Remember that God wants us all to love Him, love others, and live every day as Kingdom Laborers. See people, stop what you’re doing, and spend time with them. Don’t let fear, ignorance, sin, or lack of revival keep you from being a Laborer for Christ! Advance God’s Kingdom in everyday life. 

In a college football game, there are 85,000 fans desperately in need of exercise and 22 players desperately in need of rest. It seems that is a picture of the church today. Let’s get in the game. The Laborers are few!