Those grafted into true vine bear fruit. Fools mock at sin and treat it as joke. But we are people of prayer and than word who understand just how great it is to come before the Lord. John 15:1-6; Proverbs 14:9
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11394
8:00 PM on 12/31/2017
They say 8% of the people keep their New Year’s goals. We understand that. It’s easy to say this is what I want to do or like to do but how resolved are we? When we make a determination in our hearts about the coming year and maybe change, many times we fail in the real motivation that is needed. It has to come from my heart.
In our new birth, in Jn 15 we read there in vs. 1. We would like to put in another word. I am the false vine, the artificial vine, the rope vine, the illusionary vine. I am the lying vine. We believe he is a lying vine and people are connected to a lie. But because of our new birth that Christ has come into our hearts and we have the H.S. then we have a new motivation and a new heart. I love the story about King David when he stole King Saul’s spear and he went across the valley and crept into the camp, stole the spear and said Abner, you have failed in your job. Whose spear is this but the king’s? Abner, you are a lousy bodyguard, security officer. David my son, is that you? David said these beautiful words.
1 Sam. 26:22-24 as your life was important to me before my eyes, so my life be much set by in the eyes of the Lord. That’s a beautiful twist. As your life was precious in my eyes, so let my life be precious in your eyes. But he didn’t say that. As I have treated you, so let God treat me. This is beautiful about David. He always brought God in the picture.
2 Sam 16. The true vine and the branches connected to the true vine, those branches, that new life, that new relationship, and I don’t want to make light of it. Ever thought to crush a bug and you say Lord, I’m not going to crush that bug so you’re not going to crush me. As I treat that bug, so crush me. We’re not talking about bugs but when it comes to the Lord’s anointed, it does mean something. You can’t go against God’s people. God wants us to be in our new heart having new kinds of resolutions in our hearts. God centered issues. Losing weight, getting healthy – that’s fine. Reading more. Those things are too small for us day by day, week by week, and year by year. We are called to something amazing.
This is Jn 15. We shared this morning about coverings. The devil was covered by stones, the attributes of God. The devil was to be God’s covering cherub. He was to be a covering for the angels in the government. A huge breakdown happened in God’s government in heaven. The guy to be in charge went badly, proud, iniquity found in him. He lied to the angels and spread it around. 1/3 fell and came here to planet Earth. It was here God made man in his image. We are so fearfully and wonderfully made. It’s fantastic who we are. We are here for a short time in a spiritual battle with resolve in our hearts. Webster says it’s what you think it is. It’s the same definition. To fix an opinion or purpose. To determine in the mind. To be resolved, to abandon his vicious course of life. The word fool has gotten my attention in the Scriptures. I have been reading the verses where that verse is there. The many different parts of what it means to be a fool. A fool can learn a lot and be smart and gifted but be so wrong. Adolf Hitler was a fool. He was so capable politically he rose to power and got rid of his enemies many ways, murder, lying, deceit. Another thing about a fool. This got my attention.
14:9 it says a fool makes a mock of sin. Here’s the diagram. God in heaven and what does he think about sin. Here is the earth where people are and here is hell. What does hell say about sin? On the earth what does a fool say about sin? Do you know what he says? He mocks it and calls it a joke. He mocks sin. Oh, sin, hah, hah. Who cares? It’s a part of life. Have a party. Come on. Sin. You can’t be so serious about it. Lying. It doesn’t matter. You get the idea? What does heaven say about sin? Heaven weeps. Heaven gave it’s only precious Son to die for our sin. When the spear went in and the nails and thorns it was not a joke. It was the most serious thing you could ever get ahold of. When sin strikes in a family, takes a life, a body is found behind a dumpster. A woman who was once a little baby in the arms of her mother and sin strikes. It’s not a joke. A fool says it’s a joke. What does hell say about sin? Hell is so serious about it. People are in hell because of sin.
Isaiah 5 it enlarges itself to receive the sinners that go to hell. It’s so real and powerful. A fool doesn’t know it. Probably everyone knows of someone overdosed in the last year from these wicked evil drugs. The drug dealers go free and not responsible. They cut their drugs and sell them. It’s a game. Those are real people being buried in the cemetery. Real mom’s daughters and sons. You don’t feel this way unless you are grafted into the vine. We become wise people, godly, loving, serving people. Alive people. Precious people. Humble people. Vigilant people. Serving people. Passionate people. Awake people. Alive people. New Year’s resolutions are your business and that can happen. The amazing reality is that I got some resolution in August, in July, June, and September. I got something on a Monday morning and a Tuesday night. It’s cutting a new pathway. That’s how we could enter into our New Year. God will lead us into a new pathway. Rise up Joshua. Moses is dead. Rise up. Take a shower. Change your clothes… follow the ark.
You have not been this way before in Josh 3. I love it. Lord, new habits. Let’s go to the text.
Jn 15:2. Who takes away? My father is the husbandman. An old English word for an agricultural person, a farmer. That old word became the word for a man married to a wife. The man is called a husband because a husbandman takes care of the fields and flocks and cattle. The same word for a man that gets married. Show up. Our heavenly Father is a husbandman who cuts off those branches and takes away the bad habit. He takes away the lie. He lops it off with a machete. He prunes it with pruning shears. I love it to think God is pruning us this year. He did it a great time these last 12 years. We’ve seen thousands come and many of them go also but our Father is the husbandman that takes care of the vine. If we abide in the vine, he will take care of us all the time. A fool delights himself in deceit. Another thing about a fool is wisdom is too high for a fool. Jesus is standing here talking and a fool is listening for five or ten minutes and is thinking I need to get a sandwich. I don’t understand him. Not so interested. It’s not too high for those that fear God. For those that fear God, it’s the beginning of wisdom. We get a diet. We start to pay attention. Our prayer is for the U.S. of America and all these men of God I’ve met through the years in Kansas City, David Jeremiah, Andy Stanley and Charles Swindoll. May God pour a blessing and also on the unknown men of God like us. We want to lead our people to abide in the vine. If we abide in the vine, the Spirit of God will lead us in things, ways of thinking and wisdom and loving it. I love wisdom. That’s what happens. When we are wise, we gain wisdom. When we are hearing we are hearing. Devil, where is your covering? You’re covered with iniquity and foolishness. You are independent of any covering. In your independence you are clever and very foolish. The ladder for your success is leaning on the wrong building. The food you are eating is taking away nourishment from your existence. You are a liar and the Father of lies and you make you bed in hell. You dig a pit and fall into it. Ask Haman. After World War II and Europe, there were revivals and the Jews went back to Israel. The thing Hitler tried to do through Satan, God promised Israel and it got its independence and became a nation, 1948. That was a worldwide decision made by nations in this world granting them their nation because the devil is a fool. Unfortunately, so are we. Get ahold of that in your heart and know how foolish you are. So stupid and so foolish. We cannot raise our families. We cannot husband our wives. We cannot teach our children. We cannot lead our country. We cannot help our community. We can’t reach out to our teens because we are so consumed with our self-centeredness.
In Isaiah 35 it says there is a highway of holiness and no lion or ravenous beast can go there. Though a fool, I will not err therein. I’m the guy who can’t tie his shoes or figure out how to speak or can’t love R or doesn’t know about forgiveness. I don’t know the way to God. Oh God, you are my God. You can do this. You gave your Son. There must be something serious here. God is saying I am broken over these stupid foolish lives of people that don’t know how to direct their footsteps. They run after women, steal money, lie into the nighttime, lay in bed devising mischievous plans to hurt and destroy. Even some can’t sleep until they devise some manipulative mechanism for the destruction of some other people. What is adultery? It’s the destruction of a family. Do you want to be part of that? What is an orphan? Without a mom and dad. Do we want to be part of that? What is a divided church? It may be rooted in the foolish hearts of leaders who have not sought God with all their heart, with all their focus and with all humility, asking God to heal the church, to forgive people, asking humility to ring in the hearts of God’s people who decided to abide in the true vine. Very silly philosophical discussions that some have had that are divisive and are rooted in pride. They may use the Bible and Jesus is privy to it. He says you do greatly err because you don’t know the Scripture or the power of God. I’m so happy we went to a Bible college and we were on our knees and if you can’t evangelize, how can you be in the ministry? How can you be in the ministry if you don’t care about lost people? You can read the Bible day and night but if you don’t have AGAPE love, it profits nothing. You can hear these things and in your hearts say amen. We have something good going on and the Spirit of God is leading us in all wisdom and application.
15:2-3, something cleansing in a prayer life. In the prayer life of the believer, I want you to get out of the negative feelings about prayer. The kind of feeling about some religious thing. That whole thing it’s a burden or I don’t pray enough or pray as I should. I want you to think of it this way. I feel honored that I can come before the living God. I feel honored I can get excited about it. Long before I pray I want to be thinking about the excitement the Lord can put in my heart. I’m rested and waiting on God and excited I can go before God. The angels can be jealous of us. We can go before God in a unique way. They can go before God also. For us, how exciting it can be if I can think about it and kind of hatch the idea. Warm it up. I am coming before him. And I’m listening. He loves me. He’s everywhere. He’s powerful. And he knows everything and is so holy and R. He’s for me. He’s for me. He gave Christ for us. We can live like this. In my hunger I can take a chapter. In my quietness I am excited about it in my heart. If I don’t have the excitement, Lord put it in my heart. Give me a hunger for your word. My prayer life is related to my hunger for this book. Something about reading the Bible Christians struggle with. I read it, not so excited about it, can’t concentrate on it. I don’t know what these guys are talking about but for me it’s not so much like that. I want to ask you something from this year. Because you are abiding in the vine and Christ promises he will trim the tree.
I am the true vine in vs. 5. Without me you can do nothing. You can’t read the Bible without me. You can’t pray without me or love yourself without me. Or get out of the swamp of your psychology or identity. Swamp of the foolishness of my own heart.
vs. 7. I want this year to be earthshaking in our lives. I want God to hear us and be moved by our prayers in such a way that every person in this room you ask what you will and it shall be done. I would say he has done it. In my life, he has done it. That’s why I’m excited about it. I have issues, we all have stuff whether our family, jobs, money, anxieties, future. That stuff is peanuts compared to what we are talking about. Whatever the troubles are, they are dwarfed in the presence of God. Let God arise and his enemies be scattered. Mt. Zion was shaken in the presence of God when he came down. Even the tomb could not hold him. He is above all principalities and powers and so are we. We are privileged to reign over principalities and powers and demons. When someone curses you, maybe it means God will shower you with a blessing. God, you look upon it and reward me and bless me. Without faith it’s impossible to please him. When we live by faith, we not only have the fruit off the vine but also practically and circumstantially God will shower us with blessings, materially, relationally and many other ways. Let’s not limit the Holy One of Israel. Would you pray this year that all our churches would multiply? God would raise up disciples and men of God. Particular people God would put his hand on them and they would not rest until they did his will. Let’s pray God would pour out a revival and blessing in our nation in ways we can’t know. Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think. What is the point?
vs. 8. I’m sorry to say it but the fool finds – he goes here and can’t get satisfaction. There is a proverb where it says the fool does find the satisfaction in his foolishness and he cannot really ever get the rest. There he is. Our prayer is Lord please make those people wake up and realize and come hear the Gospel. Come by faith. Come as you are. Please come. Be born again. May the Spirit of God dwell in you and satisfy you and the Spirit of God move in you and you be abiding in the vine. If this happens all the days of our life by God’s grace, we will know how to speak to our children and help our teens and husband our wives. Wives care and respect their husbands and their calling. I remember getting married and realized my wife was with me in my calling. My wife gave up her life before God and he did this. He made us a team. We found another way. We found a new way. That’s the way of the vine. We see it here in our church. It can be fragile. Things can be broken. I do have a tendency to be a fool. I have seen it. But that’s okay because I know where to go and how to think about it. I have an answer for my foolishness. I have found the cleansing of God, the prayer and the word. You get the Bible and get on your knees and say I want this thing. You need to put it in me. Help me in it. Maybe I can share it with others. Give me wisdom and help. The people around me may be laughing and having a good time but it’s nothing but foolishness in some cases. Partying but tinkling cymbals, thorns crackling under the pot. The laughter is hollow and empty like the hearts of men. Jesus came and gave us this ministry. In the evening we will pass the microphone around and have people say a word or two what God has done. You have anointed us as your people and you’ve been faithful to us and heard our cry. Deliver us from ourselves. Deliver us from our backgrounds and cultures and prejudices and biases and foolishness. Christ is the way, the truth, and the life. The Holy Spirit is the way of love. Forgiveness is the way of God. Prayer moves mountains. The Bible is a living book that resonates in our blood veins spiritually. We got a message. Hear it in Africa, in parts of the world, in Towson, and Glen Burnie, etc. Yes, we do need it. I’d like you to make a little group around you of prayer for a few minutes. Turn to your neighbor and say that message spoke to my heart and have a few minutes of prayer.
This is a proverb for this year, Prov. 14:9. That’s all you have to memorize. It’s a joke. Sin is a joke. Adultery is a joke. Taking drugs is a joke. It is sin. Lying is a sin. They mock it. But heaven does not. Heaven bleeds because of sin. Heaven weeps because of sin. Moms and dads bury their children are weeping and broken by sin. It is not a joke.
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