Summary: First message in a series on spiritual vision

(material taken from Andy Stanley, John Maxwell, and Jeffrey Richards)




OPEN: A. In the late morning of Dec. 17, 1903 – 10:35 A.M. to be precise – Orville Wright executed the

first powered and sustained flight from level ground. He was in the air for a whole 12 seconds and

flew 120 feet along the dunes situated in the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

It was an historic event that represents the beginning of aviation. But it was actually the end of

a long hard journey for Orville and Wilbur Wright. The journey started with the dream to fly.

Most children abandon their fantasies as they grow older but the brothers grabbed onto the potential

of their dream. They believed they could fly. They believed they should fly.

In the September 1908 issue of Century magazine, Wilbur described the birth of their vision:

Our personal interest in it [aviation] dates from our childhood days. Late in the autumn of

1878, our father came into the house one evening with some object partly concealed in his

hands, and before we could see what it was, he tossed it into the air.

Instead of falling to the floor, as we expected, it flew across the room till it struck the ceiling,

where it fluttered awhile, and finally sank to the floor. It was a little toy, known to scientists as

a “helicoptere,” but which we, with sublime disregard for science, at once dubbed a “bat”.

It was a light frame of cork and bamboo, covered with paper, which formed two screws,

driven in opposite directions by rubber bands under torsion. A toy so delicate lasted only a short

time in the hands of small boys, but its memory was abiding.

It was this childhood experience that sparked Orville and Wilbur’s insatiable desire to fly. All

they lacked was the means. It was then that they began to tear down every obstacle that stood

between them and their dream.

They began building their own helicopters. While doing so, they stumbled upon the principles

of physics that would lead them to their firs successful manned flight. What that means is – they

began to build their vision. They did what needed to b e done to ensure what they believed could

be, would be.

B. This morning we start a new series

1. It’s probably not the best time to start a new series

a. I’ll be on vacation next Sunday

b. David Bean from Camp Illiana will be here to talk about the camp and its ministry during

Sunday School and will then preach for the morning worship service

2. But it’s the only way I can fit in all of the material I wanted to cover under the “Discover” theme

for this year

--the preaching schedule is full through to the New Year

3. The new series is: “Discover Vision:: Seeing What God Wants You to See”

a. As we walk in this world, sometimes we are spiritually blind

--Our eyes are focused on earthly things while God is pointing us to spiritual things

b. Helen Keller: “The most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight, but has no


C. The first message in the series is: “Eyes Wide Open”

--Prov. 29:18 – “Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; but blessed is he who

keeps the law.”

1. Other translations

a. KJV – “Where there is no vision, the people perish…”

b. NASB – “Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained…”

c. AMP – “Where there is no vision [no redemptive revelation of God], the people perish…”

2. What is the meaning of the verse?

a. Vision does not come from man but from God

b. “Vision” can be translated as “revelation; foresight; discernment; insight”

--But the vision comes not from our own minds but from the mind of God

c. When the people of God operate without God’s vision for things, they lose perspective and


--They operate from the way they see things as opposed to how God sees things

3. Basically, this verse is saying that it comes down to cause and effect

a. The vision a person has is the cause, and the effect is the way he then conducts his life.

b. Where there is a true vision, or revelation of God, it motivates those who have reverence for it

to conduct their lives in a way that produces good fruit.

c. If the vision that guides is not from God, the people are motivated to “run wild” or “cast off


--That is, they will not discipline themselves to take proper responsibility, and the result is

that they perish spiritually

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