ABIDE IN THE VINE

ABIDE IN THE VINE
FRUSTRATED WITH YOUR WALK WITH GOD? (Click this Picture) "And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold." Matthew 24:12

Sunday, 3 January 2010

“Come to me”





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Come unto me, ALL YE that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.


As the Holiday period has drawn past and we find ourselves in another decade and year; with so many people haven already broken New Year resolutions made 48 hours ago; one cannot help but think about the inability of man to live a morally just life by himself.

Just before the holiday we saw in Copenhagen, the plotting and scheming of men in another phase of their quest to make us believe that man can exist without God; that instead of man worshipping God (The Creator), he should instead (indirectly) worship the earth (the creation); thus in the process hand over more reign (in this case sovereignty of nations and peoples) to the enemy of God; the serpent as Adam and Eve did in the beginning.

“Worshiping the earth” not necessarily just in the sense of worsening climate conditions and decimation of natural resources (all which need to be addressed as we even have to account for our stewardship of these gifts): But also the ever worsening rat race of self centred aggrandisement; "me myself and I" – The ever increasingly deadly pursuit of wealth, fame, knowledge, power and position that is dangerously wearing man out.

I just want to briefly say something about man’s deviation from the lofty and free provision of the Master planner as evidenced from the invitation made by our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ in Matthew 11:28 - “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” - much needed rest from the rat race so many in our world today are trapped in; rat race that makes the people that are supposed to be led and even more worrying those that are supposed to lead the people engage in a perpetual shadow chasing of wealth, fame, knowledge, power and position that is or in most cases stripped them of every pinch of personal convictions.

Our world today is in dire need of a prompt acceptance of this straight forward invitation like Charles Spurgeon puts it in the sermon Powerful Persuasives (No. 3502) {Click here to read sermon}:

So sweet an invitation demands a spontaneous acceptance. Come just as you are. "Come unto me," saith Christ. He does not say, "Come when you have washed and cleansed yourself." Rather should you come to be cleansed. He does not say, "Come when you have clothed yourself and made yourself beautiful with good works." Come to be made beautiful in a better righteousness than you can wear. Come naked, and let him gird thee with fine linen, cover thee with silk, and deck thee with jewels. He does not say, "Come when your conscience is tender, come when your heart is penitent, when your soul is full of loathing for sin, and your mind is enlightened with knowledge and enlivened with joy. But ye that labour, ye that are heavy laden, he bids you to come as you are. Come oppressed with your burdens, begrimed with your labours, dispirited with your toils. If the load that bends you double to the earth be upon your shoulders? just come as you are. Take no plea in your mouth but this—he bids you come. That shall suffice as a warrant for your coming, and a security for your welcome. If Jesus Christ bids you, who shall say you nay?

Charles Spurgeon in further went on to say:

This must be your cry if you are to be accepted at all. Come, then, ye that labour, ye horny-handed sons of toil. Come ye to Jesus. He invites you. Ye that stew and toil for wealth, ye merchants, with your many cares, labourers ye are. He bids you come. Ye students, anxious for knowledge, chary of sleep, burning out the midnight oil. Ye labour with exhausted brains; therefore, come. Come from struggling after fame. Ye pleasure—seekers, come; perhaps there is no harder toil than the toil of the man who courts recreation and thinks he is taking his ease. Come, ye that labour in any form or fashion; come to Jesus—to Jesus alone. And ye that are heavy laden; ye whose official duties are a burden; ye whose domestic cares are a burden; ye whose daily toils are a burden; ye whose shame and degradation are a burden, all ye that are heavy laden, come and welcome. If I attach no exclusive spiritual signification to these terms, it is because there is nothing in the chapter that would warrant such a restriction. Had Christ said, "Some of you that labour and are heavy laden may come," I would have said "some" too. Howbeit he has not said "some," but "all" "that labour and are heavy laden." It is wonderful how people twist this text about.

It not surprising that someone could say “what makes Him think he can give anyone rest?” or even “who is He to give anyone rest?” These Questions, as they could be asked by the morally deficient individual, or even the morally astute person; can also be asked by those who want to please God by their own works.

For the believer who want to please God by their own works Spurgeon says point them to Christ and nothing else; he went on to say:

To trust in a crucified Saviour is the way of salvation. Let him leave everything else and fly away to Christ, and look at his dear wounds as he hangs upon the cross. I am afraid many people are detained from Christ by becoming entangled in the meshes of doctrine. Some with heterodox doctrine, others with orthodox doctrine, content themselves. They think that they have advanced far enough They flatter their souls that they have ascertained the truth! But the fact is, it is not the truth as a letter which, saves anybody. It is the truth as a person—it is Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth, and the life, whom we need to apprehend.



Spurgeon answers these questions with these points:

1. HE IS THE APPOINTED MEDIATOR.


The Father hath delivered all things into his keeping. He is the authorised Saviour

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. Matthew 11:27

And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth. Rev. 3:7

This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Acts 4:11-12

2. A WELL-FURNISHED MEDIATOR


Sum up all that the sinner wants, and you will find him able to supply you with all. pardon; change of heart; be purged from the love of sin; wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. It is all in Christ.

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John 1:14

3. HE IS AN INCONCEIVABLY GREAT MEDIATOR.

He is too excellent for our puny understanding to estimate his worth. None but the infinite God can comprehend his value as a Saviour

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. Matthew 11:27

4. HE IS AN INFINITELY WISE MEDIATOR.

He is a mediator who understands both persons on whose behalf he mediates: He understands you And He knows God's requirements.

He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. John 3:36

Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. Romans 7:12

5. HE IS AN INDISPENSABLE MEDIATOR.


Christ knows the Father; no one else knows him, save the Son. There is none other that can approach unto God. It is Christ for your Saviour, or no Saviour at all. Salvation is in no other; and if you will not have Christ, neither can you have salvation.

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. John 14:6


Meanwhile, seek to be set free trap of the rat race today and seek the righteousness then the REST that really counts:


The Spirit of God is working; in all the devastation we see before us, the love of Christ remains a constant tangible presence of compassion and love. He sends His angels to comfort us, a gift from the Father above. So rest in the comforting knowledge in the promise that always rings true: That God the Father is ever present, protecting and ministering to you.

You might say – "Why do I have to know and experience this Father you are going on about" Here is why, when and how you can be ready by getting to know Him.

Admit your spiritual need.

We all are sinners: nobody likes that title “SINNER”, but the bible says in Romans 3:23 that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”.

What is the result of sin?

In Romans 6:23 we read “The wages of sin is death…” in other words, every sin is another step towards death. One thing that we need to remember is that God never sends anyone to hell; one can send himself there by rejecting the truth.

Since we can never measure up to God’s standards by our own strength; God has reached out to mankind.

John 3:16-17. In Romans 5:8 we read, “God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”. It is Jesus, after all, who is the source of life’s greatest high.

What must a person do to accept this gift?

Simply receive it! Matthew 11:28 states –“come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me…for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.

Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks, seeking entrance into your life to give you peace, change you for the best. John 1:12 says: “For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God”.

If you haven't already received Christ as your Saviour, don't put it off another day! Take time right now to invite Him into your life. Confess your sins. Receive His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. You might pray something like this:

Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner in need of a Savior. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank You for giving me eternal life. Help me to live my life in a way that pleases You, for whatever time You give me here on earth. I look forward to living forever in Heaven with You. Amen.

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