We Can Learn From The Ant
Proverbs 6: 6-8, 30: 24-25
Solomon was wise. He studied ants and saw that they make great examples of wisdom for men. Only 2 references in the Bible to ants, so they are conspicuous by their limited mention. Did you notice “her” ways, meat food? That’s because all the workers are female. The queen lays eggs and the males are for mating. In studying the ant we observe:
Ants never wander aimlessly through life.
Queens and males leave the nest to mate in trees, high places, or even in grassy areas. Queens bite off wings, nest and lay eggs. Feeds the pupa and larva with sterile eggs for food. When they become adults they begin to forage and hunt for food. They do all this without a guide, overseer, or ruler. When you see them, they are always on the move going to food or going back to the nest.
As Christians, we should have a definite advantage because we have a guide, on overseer and a ruler. Our guide is the Holy Spirit (John 16:13) Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. Our overseer is our pastor (Acts 20:28) Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Spirit hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood.
And our ruler is Jesus Christ Eph 1:20-23 Which He wrought in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is His body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all.
Consequently, we ought to be even more directed in our work for the Lord than an ant is in its work for the colony. The reason more doesn’t get done, according to the text, is that many Christians are sluggards (lazy).
Ants are always sufficiently nourished.
Sweet foods give ants power as sources of energy i.e. “honey”. (Psa 119:103) How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Bugs provide protein to “build up” their bodies “i.e. strong meat.” (Heb 5:12) For when for the time you ought to be teachers, you have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God, and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
Honey pots. Store honey for the colony (honey = Word of God). Memorize scripture.
Nests can go 12-15 feet deep. Grass seeds collected in harvest are stored in the deepest chamber of the nest to supply food for the winter. The text says, “provides her meat in the summer.”
Pheromones (scent trails) point the way to good food – “follow me to church [good food].”
Many Christians are undernourished because they don’t eat the sweet Words of God and strengthen themselves with His strong meat. Furthermore, when some find good food, the rest don’t follow them to the good food source.
Ants always carry their share of the load.
The text says, “a people not strong” – yet they can carry objects 5 times their body weight and can drag 25 times their body weight. Jesus said, “my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Work together division of labor in the colony, transport food, kill insects – tend eggs, construct, excavate, forage, and hunt. Bible says, “bear you one another burdens.” The reason Christians don’t get more done is that they underestimate their strength in the Lord – you can carry more of a load than you are carrying – and they don’t work efficiently together on a common productive cause.
Ants are never stopped by obstacles.
The text says, “they are little upon the earth. Go around obstacles. Build bridges over rough terrain. Ball up and float downstream in flood. The reason Christians don’t get more done is that they quit too easily. (Gal 6:9) And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap if we faint not. (Test of a man’s character is what it takes to stop him.)
Ants always work diligently in the harvest
Ants teach us to look ahead. “Provides her supplies in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest” (Prov 6:8). In the summer and in the harvest, food is plentiful. Yet the ant refuses to take her ease, instead working harder, storing up against the coming time of scarcity. “The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their food in the summer” (Prov 30:25). One of our great failings is only looking at the few feet in front of our nose—not preparing for the future or considering the consequences of our action—and inaction.
The reason not more done is that Christians don’t see the harvest and the need to work to gather the seed into the garner.
Ants always care for their young.
Crops for carrying food back to the nest to feed workers by “trophallaxis” and to store in reserve in the honey pots. (2 Tim 2:2) And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
(Eph 4:28) Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needs.
Seeds broke down to a brown crumbly mass so food can be digested – (Neh 8:8) So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.
Fungus cultivating ants – “prepare” meat in summer.
Many workers care for the young – eggs pupa larva adult. That’s the way the ants grow to become workers.
This is why we must disciple our converts and teach them in Sunday school.
CONCLUSION: We must beware of the propensity we have to be lazy—both physically and spiritually. Go to the ant! “Consider her ways and be wise”! Think on these things!