Summary: Without Christ providing us with our strength and ability we are no more than sputtering, stuttering, shuddering Christians.
SPUTTERING, STUTTERING, AND SHUDDERING
JOHN 15:4-5 “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
Introduction: In John 15, Christ presents Himself as the True Vine and the disciples as branches of that Vine deriving their strength and energy from the Vine. He further points out that without Him they could do nothing; “nothing that is spiritually good; no, not anything at all, be it little or great, easy or difficult to be performed. They cannot think a good thought, speak a good word, or do a good action; can neither begin one, nor, when it is begun, perfect it. Nothing is to be done "without Christ"; without his Spirit, grace, strength, and presence.” (Gill) Without Christ providing us with our strength and ability we are no more than sputtering, stuttering, shuddering Christians.
A. A man in North Carolina bought a new car with a voice-warning system. ... At first he was amused to hear the soft female voice gently remind him that his seat belt wasn’t fastened. ... Edwin affectionately called this voice the "little woman." He soon discovered his little woman was programmed to warn him about his gasoline. "Your fuel level is low," she said one time in her sweet voice. Edwin nodded his head and thanked her. He figured he still had enough to go another fifty miles, so he kept on driving. But a few minutes later, her voice interrupted again with the same warning. And so it went over and over. Although he knew it was the same recording, Edwin thought her voice sounded harsher each time. Finally, he stopped his car and crawled under the dashboard. After a quick search, he found the appropriate wires and gave them a good yank. So much for the little woman! He was still smiling to himself a few miles later when his car began sputtering and coughing. He ran out of gas! Somewhere inside the dashboard, Edwin was sure he could hear the little woman laughing. People like Edwin learn before long that the little voice inside, although ignored or even disconnected, often tells them exactly what they need to know. – copied
B. Sputter is defined as to spit or throw out (bits or drops) in an explosive manner. Synonyms for sputtering are stumbling, stuttering, faltering
C. Matthew 25:1-10 “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut.”
D. Many Christians are sputtering along and about to burn out. They are running with the fuel gauge on empty wondering why they are ineffective and how they are ever going to make it. Their batteries are not charged up and their tanks are empty.
E. If we are going to do anything for God in 2009 we must be charged up, tuned up, and fueled up.
F. Ephesians 5:18 “And do not be drunk with wine, in which is debauchery; but be filled with the Spirit”
G. Romans 15:1 “Those of us who are strong and able in the faith need to step in and lend a hand to those who falter, and not just do what is most convenient for us. Strength is for service, not status.”
A. A enormously muscular guy with a bad stutter goes to a counter in a department store and asks, "W-w-w-where’s the m-m-m-men’s dep-p-p-partment?" The clerk behind the counter just looks at him and says nothing. The man repeats himself: "W-w-w-where’s the m-m-m-men’s dep-p-p-partment?" Again, the clerk doesn’t answer him. The guy asks several more times: "W-w-w-where’s the m-m-m-men’s dep-p-p-partment?" And the clerk just seems to ignore him. Finally, the guy is angry and storms off. The customer who was waiting in line behind the guy asks the clerk, "why wouldn’t you answer that guy’s question?" The clerk answers, "D-d-d-do you th-th-th-think I w-w-w-want to get b-b-b-beat up?!" - copied