Summary: Examines the reasons why people should seek the Lord.
THE GREAT INVITATION
It was a cold, winter day. A carcass, on an ice floe, floated slowly down the Niagra River. An Eagle, flying overhead, spied the easy prey below, and descended upon it. He began to eat. As he did, the water of the river began slowly pushing the flow toward the falls. But could not the eagle, stretch forth his great wings and fly? Could he not, at the very brink of the falls, leap the safety of the air? Had he not done so a thousand times before? So slowly, he continued to eat. As he waited, the water of the river began pushing the floe faster and faster and closer and closer to the falls, until the roar of the falls began to echo throughout the canyon. He waited until the very mists of the falls began rising above his head. Finally, he stretched forth his great wings to fly.
Unknown to him, his talents, sunk in the frozen flesh of his prey, and sunk in the ice of the floe, had frozen solid. His fait was sealed. He struggled and he struggled and he tried to get away, but he could not, until at last the floe went over the falls and unto the rocks below. He had waited too long. (Knight’s Master Book of New Illustrations).
I believe that’s what Isaiah was thinking of when he warned in Isaiah 55:6 “Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, and call ye upon Him while He is near.” Please open your Bibles this morning and turn with me to …
Look with me please as we discover together, why we should seek the Lord, How we should seek the Lord, and When we should seek the Lord. First, Why we should seek the Lord. As we look at this passage this morning, I believe we can discover four reasons why we should seek the Lord. First, Apart from God, there is no peace. Second, apart from God there is no pardon. Third, apart from God there is no hope, and forth, apart from God there is no fruit.
I. WHY WE SHOULD SEEK THE LORD
1. Apart from God, there is no _PEACE____
Several years ago, I worked for 10 weeks one summer, working to help start a church in North Illinois. For 10 weeks we went door-to-door, trying to tell people about Jesus. As the people opened their doors I would look into their eyes, and I could see such an emptiness, such a longing, such a void. They had tried many things to fill that void. They had tried marriage. They had tried sex. They had tried work. They had tried money. They had tried alcohol, and many had tried drugs, but nothing had filled that void. Nothing had given them peace.
Often I would say, “Please let me tell you about Jesus. Please let me tell you about God. Let me tell you how you can find that peace, how you can find that joy.” Time and time again the doors were closed in my face.
How many times I thought of Jesus, standing on a hill looking out over Jerusalem and crying, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how I have longed to draw you to my side, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not.”
Oh my friend, apart from God there is no peace. But not only is there no peace apart from God, but there is also no pardon apart from God.
2. Apart from God, there is no _PARDON___
Verse 7 says that not only will God pardon, but that He will pardon abundantly. Do you see that? God will pardon us abundantly. Much like the prodigal son, returning home, hoping to become a slave or a servant to his father. His father, seeing him coming up the road, runs to him, rushes to him. He grabs him, wraps his arms around him, and crushes him to His chest. He placed a ring upon his hand, clothes upon his body, shoes upon his feet, and slaughtered the fatted calf.
Even so, does our heavenly Father wait today to abundantly pardon you. Jesus says, “Come unto Me all ye who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.”
Oh my friend, apart from God there is no peace. Apart from God there is no pardon, and apart from God there is no hope.
3. Apart from God, there is no _HOPE_
Those of you who know me well, may know that before I was married, my closest and dearest friends were my parents and my brothers. As a result, some of the most painful times I have endured were when I went away to seminary. Living alone in a trailer in Arkansas, I can remember times when such waves of loneliness and homesickness would come that they would threaten to overwhelm me. Even so, does our soul suffer when it is separated from God.