Sermons

Summary: Learning how we waste God’s grace by sitting idle and not bearing fruit.

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THE PARABLE OF THE PROCRASTINATOR HAS BEEN TOLD THAT THERE WERE THREE DEMONS TRYING TO FIND WAYS TO CONQUER THE WORLD.

THE FIRST DEMONS WENT AROUND PROCLAIMING THE MESSAGE, ’THERE IS NO GOD!’ BUT EVEN THOUGH FEW PEOPLE ACTED AS IF THERE WAS A GOD, THEY KNEW IN THEIR HEARTS THAT THIS MESSAGE WAS NOT TRUE.

THE SECOND DEMON ANNOUNCED ’THERE IS NO SIN!’ AND AGAIN, ALTHOUGH MANY PEOPLE ACTED AS IF THE MESSAGE WERE TRUE, THEY KNEW DEEP DOWN THAT IT WASN’T.

THE THIRD DEMON WAS SMARTER THAN THE OTHER TWO. HE DIDN’T ATTEMPT TO CHANGE PEOPLE’S BELIEFS. HE MADE NO ATTEMPT TO ARGUE AGAINST THEIR DEEPEST CONVICTIONS. HE SIMPLY SAID, "THERE IS NO HURRY!"

NO HURRY AND NO NEED TO WORRY BECAUSE THERE’S PLENTY OF TIME. COULD THERE BE A MORE DANGEROUS WAY TO LIVE OUR LIVES?

WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO BREEZE THROUGH LIFE AS IF GOD OWES THEM AT LEAST "THREE SCORE AND TEN" YEARS WORTH OF LIFE (PSALM 90:10)?

YET, WE DO! TOWERS OF SILOAM FALL AROUND US AS DROUGHTS DRY UP OUR HOPES OF A FRUITFUL HARVEST, AS EARTHQUAKES STING THE LANDSCAPE WORLDWIDE AND AS VIRUSES BECOME MORE COMBATIVE THAN CURED. YET, WE DON’T SEE IT AS GOD CALLING US TO REPENTANCE.

WE CONTINUE TO LET PILATE MINGLE BLOOD WITH OUR SACRIFICES BY ALLOWING THE A.C.L.U. TO STRIP GOD FROM EVERY FACET OF OUR LIVES.

BY CONTINUING TO LET THE WORLD BUILD OTHER GODS FOR US TO WORSHIP SUCH AS SPORTS, JOBS, MONEY, AND SOCIAL STATUS AND SECULAR PROGRAMS FOR OUR CHILDREN.

BUT WE STAND STILL AND DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, BECAUSE, AFTER ALL, THERE’S PLENTY OF TIME.

WE DON’T PROTEST, WE DON’T WRITE OUR GOVERNMENT LEADERS, WE DON’T STAY UP ON CURRENT EVENTS, AND WORST OF ALL, WE’VE STOPPED TAKING OUR SPIRITUAL RESPONSIBILITIES SERIOUSLY. SADLY, A LOT DUE TO LACK OF LOVE FOR GOD.

CHRISTIAN’S LIVING THEIR LIVES DAY AFTER DAY IN A SPIRITUAL HAZE AS THE UNGODLY CHISEL AWAY AT THE FOUNDATIONS OF OUR FAITH. WHY? BECAUSE WE THINK THERE IS PLENTY OF TIME!

LIKE THE FIG TREE WE ALLOW OUR CHURCHES AND OUR LIVES TO GO BY YEAR AFTER YEAR WITHOUT BEARING ANY FRUIT. YET, AS THE YEARS GO BY, WE DON’T SEEM TO BE ALL THAT CONCERNED THAT THE OWNER OF THE VINEYARD IS DEMANDING, "CUT DOWN THE TREE!"

IT IS A SAD STORY OF A SIMPLE TREE THAT HAS BEEN GIVEN THREE YEARS TO BEAR ITS FRUIT. THREE YEARS IT WAS GIVEN SOIL, GIVEN FOOD AND NOURISHMENT, GIVEN CARE AND ATTENTION, BUT IN RETURN, IT NEVER GAVE ANYTHING BACK.

TAKE, TAKE, TAKE...GIVE ME, GIVE ME, GIVE ME! HOW SELFISH AND SELF-CENTERED TO SIT IDLE FOR SO MANY YEARS AND TO BE GIVEN SO MUCH WHILE CONTINUING TO SIT BACK LEISURELY EXPECTING EVEN MORE FROM GOD.

SERVE ME! AMUSE ME! ENTERTAIN ME! EDUCATE ME! PROVIDE FOR MY CHILDREN! ACCEPT ME WITHOUT CHANGING ME! DON’T CORRECT ME! DON’T CHALLENGE ME!

WE ARE NOT ONLY BECOMING MORE SELFISH, BUT WE’VE BECOME A ONE-SIDED PEOPLE. NO WONDER OUR CHURCHES, LIKE THE FIG TREE, ARE ON THE VERGE OF BEING CUT DOWN.

WE HAVE WASTED GOD’S GRACE AND HAVE BECOME USELESS.

WE WASTE GOD’S GRACE BY TAKING ADVANTAGE OF GOD’S UNDESERVED, UNMERITED, LOVING ACTION TOWARDS US THROUGH HIS EVER-PRESENT HOLY SPIRIT.

HOW DO WE WASTE GOD’S GRACE? WHEN WE DON’T SHARE CHRIST. IF WE REFUSE TO SPIRITUALLY GROW. WHEN WE REFUSE TO DEAL WITH SIN. WHEN WE SHUT OUR HEARTS TO THE WIDOWS, ORPHANS AND POOR.

IN OTHER WORDS, WE FALL INTO A STATE OF JUST EXISTING. IF WE ARE "JUST" EXISTING THEN WE RISK THE CHANCE THAT THE OWNER OF THE VINEYARD, AFTER REVIEWING THE PAST YEARS OF OUR LIVES, WILL HAVE TO EVENTUALLY SAY, "CUT THIS TREE DOWN!"

ARE WE, AS GOD’S CHURCH, IN NEED OF A GOOD "CHOPPING?" SOME CHURCHES NEED TO BE "CHOPPED" BY BEING CLOSED BECAUSE THEY ARE ALREADY "CLOSED" TO THOSE CONSIDERED "OUTSIDERS."

SOME CHURCHES NEED TO BE CHOPPED DOWN, BECAUSE THEY STAND ON THEIR TAX-EXEMPT PROPERTY TAKING IN THE TITHES AND OFFERINGS OF HER PEOPLE WITHOUT AS MUCH AS A PENNY GOING BACK OUT INTO THE COMMUNITY IN MISSIONS.

IT’S TIME FOR ALL CHURCHES AND ALL CHRISTIANS TO HEAR THE WORDS OF JOHN THE BAPTIST IN LUKE 3:9, "EVEN NOW THE AX OF GOD’S JUDGMENT IS POISED, READY TO SEVER YOUR ROOTS. YES, EVERY TREE THAT DOES NOT PRODUCE GOOD FRUIT WILL BE CHOPPED DOWN AND THROWN INTO THE FIRE."

ALTHOUGH THE WARNING IS CLEAR AND THE OUTCOME IS FRIGHTENING, THERE IS STILL THE SOUND OF GOOD NEWS!

THE OWNER OF THE VINEYARD CALLS FOR THE CHOPPING, BUT THE GARDENER CRIES FOR MERCY FOR "ONE MORE YEAR."

THE GARDENER’S PLEA FOR ONE MORE YEAR SHOWS US THAT GOD’S FORGIVENESS AND RESTORATION, AS WELL AS HIS GIVING OF A SECOND CHANCE IS STILL AVAILABLE TO US.

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