Summary: The church must have travail before we will see new babes in Christ.
Travail before Birth
7Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child. 8Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children.
1. The prophet made a bold, clear statement that we need to heed.
2. We are not going to see births happen until we see travail.
16Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children;
1. There has never been a natural birth without pain!
2. You would not be here today if your mother had not gone through pain, discomfort, and sorrow.
3. My wife went through 30 hours of labor for both of our children. At about hour 24 for our first child the nurse asked if I was hungry and brought me in a steak. They wouldn’t allow Sister Rhodes to eat. TRUE TRAVAIL MAY REQUIRE FASTING. Sister Rhodes is still mad that I ate in front of her. We need to be sensitive in the church to those who are fasting.
4. There has never been a person born into the kingdom of God that it didn’t cost someone some pain, discomfort, and sorrow - through prayer, fasting, worry, and witness to bring them forth.
21A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world.
1. We need to look beyond the pain and sacrifice to see the joy of new babes in Christ.
2. Gary and Linda Reed spent months carrying me spiritually. I am convinced my spiritual birth caused them a lot of inconvenience, sorrow and pain.
3. Hopefully they don’t remember all of the sorrow I brought them as I was being born.
5They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. 6He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
1. We are hoping to see new life spring up in this church.
2. WE HAVE TO FIRST PLANT THE SEED. The Word of God has got to be spread throughout this community. We have to witness.
3. THE WORD HAS TO BE SOWN WITH TEARS. We need to show some emotion – some caring – some concern.
4. THERE HAS GOT TO BE SOME TRAVAIL BEFORE THE JOY OF BIRTH.
9For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God. 10Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe:
1. The birth of a congregation is going to take a lot of labor and travail.
2. At times we are going to cry.
At times we are going to have pain and sorrow.
At times we will have to push to bring forth.
3. There’s going to be travail before birth.
1There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 2The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. 3Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?
1. Jesus likened the New Birth to the natural birth.
2. There must first be a seed planted.
2For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
1. The seed in itself doesn’t bring forth life.
2. The church will be INFERTILE if she does not have FAITH to mix with the gospel.
5Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
1. The new babe must pass through the water on the way to the first breath of life.