Summary: A sermon examining the high cost of sin.
The Chronicle Of The Costly Vineyard
It was only a little comma, but it cost the Lockheed corporation millions of dollars! An error was made in a contract with an international customer. There was a misplaced comma in a crucial number. The purchasing company insisted that Lockheed honor the contract as written. Unfortunately for Lockheed, the error was made in an equation that adjusted the sales price, and it cost them 70 million dollars.
That's the way it is with sin. Those things that seem small and insignificant... in the end have a high cost. Seemingly harmless transgressions can end up doing great damage.
"The price of sin is very high"
"Though now it may seem low"
"And if we let it go unchecked"
"It's crippling power will grow"
The Bible says in - James 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. 15 Then when lust hath conceived, it brings forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, brings forth death. - Hebrews 11:25 indicates that there pleasure in sin for a season. But when that season is over... pleasure turns to misery. You may be living your life as you see fit. You refuse to turn to Jesus but one day you will stand before Him and it will be too late. You will reap what you have sown.
Maybe you are here and you are born again, but sin has crept back into your life. You think that you are "getting away" with your disobedience, but there will come a day when you will answer for your rebellion. You have heard the old saying "The chickens will come home to roost". The Bible says in Numbers 32:23 “…be sure your sin will find you out”. As sure as those chickens head back to the roost in the evening, you can be sure that your sins will come home to you too.
One of the greatest examples of the high cost of sin is the story recorded in I Kings 21-22.We find a detailed description of the horrific acts of Ahab and Jezebel against Naboth. We are also told of the great judgment that they encountered as a result of their wickedness. There is a great lesson to be learned in these few chapters of God's Word. It is a lesson about a man that went after his heart's desire, and the price was far greater than he ever expected. I ask you to settle in and join me as we examine "The Chronicle Of A Costly Vineyard" As we survey the first half of I Kings 21, I ask you to:
I. Consider The Wickedness - I Kings 21
There was a man named Naboth who owned a vineyard in Jezreel. This vineyard was located beside the summer palace of the King of Israel. This king's name was Ahab. Ahab was the 7th King of Israel. He coveted Naboth's vineyard. He desired to make it into a vegetable garden. So he went to Naboth and offered to purchase it. He offered him money or a better vineyard in exchange for it.
Notice Naboth's reply in verse 3 Naboth said to Ahab, The LORD forbid it me, that I should give the inheritance of my fathers unto thee. - This response gives us a glimpse into the character of Naboth. In refusing to sell this land, Naboth did not decline an offer from just any neighbor. This man was the king! But this vineyard was a cherished inheritance from his forefathers.
It is apparent by his reaction that Ahab was used to getting his way. It was uncommon for him to hear the word no! When he returned to the palace he was angry and sulking because he did not get what he wanted. He went into his room, laid down, faced the wall and refused to eat. This mighty king began to act like a spoiled child.
Now enters the story one of the most wicked characters in the history of the world. A woman who makes Delilah look like Mother Teresa! Here name....JEZEBEL! Jezebel was Ahab's wife. Ahab was the first King of Israel to marry a heathen woman. And the results were disastrous. Jezebel was devious, malicious, vengeful, cruel and violent. She was greatly involved in Baal worship. Her life was consumed with idolatry.
As Ahab lie in his room pouting, she enters and notices that something is amiss. She asked Ahab "what is wrong, why are you not eating?" Ahab, with his lip pooched out and face red from anger began to explain his demeanor. "I went by Naboth's house today and asked him to sell me his vineyard or trade for it, but he won't let me have it!!"