Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: A church with a God-sized vision is a church/people who will join in fulfilling His plans for the church.

About 350 years ago a shipload of travelers landed on the northeast coast of America. The first year they established a town site. The next year they elected a town government. The third year the town government planned to build a road five miles westward into the wilderness.

In the fourth year the people tried to impeach their town government because they thought it was a waste of public funds to build a road five miles westward into a wilderness. Who needed to go there anyway?

Here were people who had the vision to see three thousand miles across an ocean and overcome great hardships to get there. But in just a few years they were not able to see even five miles out of town. They had lost their pioneering vision. With a clear vision of what we can become in Christ, no ocean of difficulty is too great. Without it, we rarely move beyond our current boundaries.

Lynn Anderson.

For many years this proverb has been misinterpreted, probably because the KJV translates it “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Other translations say:

Proverbs 29:18 (NIV) New International Version

Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint;

but blessed is he who keeps the law.

Proverbs 29:18 (NASB) New American Standard Bible

Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained,

But happy is he who keeps the law.

Proverbs 29:18 (NRSV) New Revised Standard Bible

Where there is no prophecy, the people cast off restraint,

but happy are those who keep the law.

Proverbs 29:18 (Living)

Where there is ignorance of God, crime runs wild; but what a wonderful thing it is for a nation to know and keep his laws.

Proverbs 29:18 (Msg) The Message

If people can’t see what God is doing,

they stumble all over themselves;

But when they attend to what he reveals,

they are most blessed.

Proverbs 29:18 (GW) God’s Word

Without prophetic vision people run wild,

but blessed are those who follow {God’s} teachings.

Proverbs 29:18 (YLT) Young’s Literal Translation

Without a Vision is a people made naked, And whoso is keeping the law, O his happiness!

Proverbs 29:18 (LBLA) La Biblia de las Americas

Donde no hay visión, el pueblo se desenfrena,

pero bienaventurado es el que guarda la ley.

One can infer from these translations that wise groups must have a five-, ten- or twenty-year plan for the future if they do not wish to become defunct as an organization. And many have taken just that meaning from this text.

With all of the plans we make for numeric, spiritual, physical, emotional, and financial plans. We cannot forget about God. As a matter of fact God should never at the end of plans for the church. In other words, we come with future plans for church and then that God will bless our plans for His church. No! We must seek God for the plans of His church.

I believe the reason many churches lack effectiveness and vision is because they have not sought out God’s plans for His church. I believe the reason why many people fight against the plans of God’s church is because they has members have not sought out God’s plans for His church or their lives. And I believe the reason why many people are living life without purpose is because they have not sought out God’s plan’s for His people.

And let me say that while I use the phrase “God’s plan” I’m really speaking of God’s will. A church with a God-sized vision is a church who will join God in fulfilling His plans for His church.

How do we join God’s plans for the future of our church and membership? This text offers for us Three (3) Important Principles to help regulate the future of our church as we develop a God-sized vision.

I. Vision Comes From God – v. 29a

As stated in my introduction, this passage of scripture has been misinterpreted because we take it at face value without searching the meaning of the text. In other words, for some us in past, present, and future times, we have viewed this text to think that in order to receive vision from God that we need to fall into a deep sleep, have the heavens open, and a still small voice come through the clouds to tell us what we need to hear.

However, to fully understand the meaning of the text we must look at it’s proper usage from it’s proper context and ask the question what does the text mean when it says; “Where there is no vision the people perish?

The word "vision" is appears in 34 times before First Samuel, and most of them are in the prophetic books. And the Hebrew language almost always signifies a means of divine revelation.

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