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Summary: The Word of God makes it clear that when we as His people do not get a fresh vision from Him it is because we do not seek Him in what He wants to do through us.

Proverbs 29:18 (KJV) says, “Without vision the people perish.”

- Vision according to John Maxwell is

- Awareness- the ability to see

- Attitude- the faith to believe

- Action- the courage to do

- George Barna says “vision for ministry is a reflection of what God wants to accomplish through us to build His kingdom”

- Vision here is the Hebrew word

- Which means divine revelation

- Or direction, insight from God

- Without God showing us, we are bound to perish

- The Hebrew word for perish means to loosen, be without restraint. Let loose as well as perish

- The NIV puts this verse this way. “Where there is no revelation the people cast off restraint.”

- Another place where this word is used is in 2 Chronicles 28:19

“ For the LORD humbled Judah because of Ahaz king of Israel, for he had brought about a lack of restraint in Judah and was very unfaithful to the LORD. “

NASU

- The term is translated brought about a lack of restraint”

- One could paraphrase this to express the meaning of this verse by saying, “Ahaz loosened or led Judah to sin by being unfaithful to the Lord.”

- Ahaz turned Israel away from the Lord and by his example led the people to cast off the restraint of the Law

- What was the result of their unrestrained living?

- Captivity

- They perished and their country and land were destroyed

I think this proverb has a profound message for us

The Word of God makes it clear that when we as His people do not get a fresh vision from Him

- When we fail to seek Him on what He wants to do through us,

- Then countless people around us will perish

- Because they will not have heard what God is offering to them through us

- We must keep our focus on heaven and what God desires

- To do through us

- Or we can become selfish and lazy

- The church takes on the pursuit of “me”

- “I’m okay and this is my church”

- You cannot go from coast to coast

- Without finding churches that are dying

- Closing up shop or simply maintaining the flock

- Looking only to serve themselves

- Saying, “I like things the way they have always been”

- Such a church needs a fresh vision

- Needs to be fired up by the Lord

I don’t think God is pleased with such thinking

- It probably grieves Him

- I believe God calls His people to be a people

- Who hear Him and understand what He wants them to be and to do

- A church with vision is a church

- That is impacting the natural and supernatural for the kingdom of God

- And accomplishing His will

- If we do not seek to see what God is doing

- If we fail to seek to have our eyes opened and our ears unstopped

- We will miss God’s vision- His unique purpose and work for us

- And we will perish

- We may go on for years doing whatever we choose

- But we will miss joining God

- And we will miss the opportunity to see Him do great things in our midst

- We will perish

- We will be caught up in a captivity of our own making

- We will find ourselves wondering where the Lord is

- And we will find ourselves wandering around looking for the reason we are here

- You see the problem with human institutions is that they can go on for years

- Long after their purpose for existing has ceased to be

- People in their own strength and power will sustain an institution well beyond its usefulness

- (British Artillery tradition for crew drill)

- The church is not supposed to be an institution

- It is the living Body of Christ

- But any time people are involved

- Things tend to get institutionalized

- Those things that God used in the past

- Become the standard for things forever

- Even if people change, culture and times change

- Even if our needs and the Lord’s direction change

- We try to carry on the same old way

- We call it custom, tradition or the “way we have always done it”

If God is not in it

- If He is not leading us to do something

- Whether we have never done it that way before

- Or if we have always done it that way before

- If He is asking us to do something

- And is moving in our midst to accomplish His purpose

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