Summary: We’ll never be able to serve the Lord in an effective manner until we do it in His power alone.
How to Recover the Cutting Edge
March 1, 2009 FBC, Chester Dr. Mike Fogerson, Speaker
Now the sons of the prophets said to Elisha, "Behold now, the place before you where we are living is too limited for us.2 "Please let us go to the Jordan and each of us take from there a beam, and let us make a place there for ourselves where we may live." So he said, "Go."3 Then one said, "Please be willing to go with your servants." And he answered , "I shall go."4 So he went with them; and when they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees.5 But as one was felling a beam, the axe head fell into the water; and he cried out and said, "Alas, my master! For it was borrowed."6 Then the man of God said, "Where did it fall?" And when he showed him the place, he cut off a stick and threw it in there, and made the iron float.7 He said, "Take it up for yourself." So he put out his hand and took it. 2 Kings 6:1-7 (NASB)
A In the Old Testament, there was a school for young men who had been called to the prophetic ministry.
1 Elisha was the dean of the school.
a So many were coming, the school grew out of the space & needed more room.
b Elisha took young men out to cut logs for building materials.
aa While swinging, one man’s axe head pops off & it cast into the Jordan.
bb Big deal for many reasons: hard to come by, this one was borrowed, the work will stop, somebody will be hurt!
2 Elisha performs a great miracle, & the axe head floats up! The young prophet goes and picks it up.
B We’re not going to blame this young man too much.
1 He’s busy! (Flurry of activity)
a Busy-but not watching
b Didn’t notice the play in the axe head, vibration, sound...
aa Thinking of a new place
bb Thinking of a new ministry
c He lost his cutting edge
2 I believe there is plenty for us to learn.
a I believe the Holy Spirit is our cutting edge (church/individual)
b There is so much in the life of modern church/believers we do without the Spirit.
aa We don’t need power, programs, & plans
bb We don’t need more of God, methods
cc We don’t need the Spirit/staff
C We’ll never be able to serve the Lord in an effective manner until we do it all in His power alone.
1 There are some valuable lessons we/the church can learn from how that situation was handled. God can help us recover the cutting edge (transitional sentence).
I It involves concern
A As soon as the man feels the axe head fly off, he cries out in despair.
1 He can’t do another thing until he recovers the axe head.
2 He’s lost his edge, & he cries out!
B If we’re going to recover our edge, we must first come to the place where we realize we no longer have it.
1 Many Christians walk through life filled with the Spirit, when they’ve lost His power & don’t even know it.
a Live in defeat, deflation, depression
b Trying to live for God in our flesh/power...as long as we’re operating in our flesh/power, God will let you.
2 Once you experience the power of the Spirit, nothing else will do.
a Presence-manifest presence
b Not just expect God to show up-show out.
II It involves confession
A When the man lost the edge, he had to tell Elisha what had happened.
1 He confessed the fact he’s lost the cutting edge.
a “I should’ve noticed the head was loose...paid more attention...tightened it up.”
b He told his master, “I lost it.”
B If we’ve lost our edge (want it back), we must honestly come to God & say, “I just don’t have the fire I used to! I’m not as close to the Lord as I used to be! I need the power of the Lord operating through me to get the job done.”
1 We must come clean to God.
a God already knows...
b He wants me to know
2 We need to relearn the path to the actor.
C To get our cutting edge back, we must admit to God we need Him, His power & presence (then we’ll see souls saved, delivered, set free, experience God, supernatural).
III It involves comprehension
A One of the reasons the man was so upset was that the axe head didn’t belong to him (borrowed).
1 The man trusted the young prophet, & so he lent him his axe.
a We’d go buy him a new one today...much more difficult then.