GOD'S ABUNDANCE (NO 2)
Reading: Isaiah 55:1-13
[a] This morning, we thought of the abundance of God to the Christian, in His provision to us, coming through the abundance of His Love.
[b] This evening we will consider the abundance of God in relation to the provision of Salvation to this old sin-sick world.
[c] We dealt with ABUNDANT LIFE on another occasion, when Jesus said, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)
POINT 1 FALSE PROMISES or ABUNDANT SATISFACTION
[a] The cheap tinsel of the world, with it's drink, drugs, sex, and pleasure, holds out such false promises, hiding the fact that sin in
any guise, has a sting of destruction in it's tale.
[b] People are led deeper and deeper into sin, falsely being led to believe that if they keep delving deeper and deeper, that surely there
must be satisfaction there somewhere - and all the time, it is just creating a deeper hunger and thirst, which is not being satisfied!
[c] Is it any wonder that so many come to the point of saying, "Is this all there is to life??" as they go headlong into a suicide's grave!!
[d] They are unaware of the truth of the Psalmist's words, in Psalm 36:8, when he says, of the people of God, "They shall be abundantly satisfied."
[e] But why is it that there are those we meet, who although professing Christ, do not seem to find this satisfaction?
[f] I can't imagine anyone saying they enjoyed a swim, if they only went for a paddle in the shallows!
There are many who are still paddling in the shallows of their Christian life, without realizing that they must dive right in to find
GOD CAN AND DOES GIVE THE SATISFACTION THE HEART OF MANKIND CRAVES FOR!
[g] Often it is said, that for the Christian who backslides, that they go much deeper into the world's 'pleasures' than they ever were before they were saved. I would suggest that the reason is that once you have tasted real satisfaction in Christ, the world could never even begin to satisfy, no matter how deep you try and go! But it doesn't stop many trying! But they always end up totally disappointed!
POINT 2 ABUNDANT GRACE
[a] Paul says to Timothy, "And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."
[b] Paul then goes on to state how he felt himself to be the very chief of sinners, and therefore if this grace could save him, then without
doubt it could save anyone!
[c] Grace, in this context, in the dictionary means "unmerited divine assistance."
We by nature feel unworthy of God's kindness and love - which indeed we are! But through His grace, God is saying, quite simply that it doesn't matter - we don't have to do anything to try and merit His grace.
[d] Even in all our sin, His grace has been poured out upon us! It was "while we were yet sinners that Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8)
[e] As the hymn says, "Grace there is my every debt to pay."
[f] God said to Paul, "My grace is sufficient for thee. " (2 Cor. 12:9)
[g] John Newton wrote the beautiful words, "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me."
[h] He looked back on his past life, as a cruel sea captain trading in slaves. He saw the mighty work of grace in his life, that had brought
him to salvation and even into the ministry, and was amazed at God's love and goodness.
[i] The work of grace in his life was so transforming, and complete, that he even became a strong support for his friend William
Wilberforce, in getting the bill before parliament which outlawed slavery.
POINT 3 ABUNDANT PARDON
Isaiah 55:7 says, "He will abundantly pardon."
1. It is abundant because it is complete!
2. It is abundant because it is free!
3. It is abundant because it is for all!
1. ABUNDANT - COMPLETE
It is complete pardon, because God is willing to FORGET that it ever happened (dependent on real repentance).
He says, in Hebrews 8:12 & 10:17, "Their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more."
Isaiah 43:25 He says, "I even I am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine Own sake, and will not remember thy
Jeremiah 31:34 says, "I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more."
1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
2. ABUNDANT - FREE
To you and me, it is an absolutely free pardon, but IT COST THE LORD JESUS EVERYTHING ON THE CROSS OF CALVARY IN ORDER TO PURCHASE IT FOR US. It cost a lot, but the price has been paid! It is offered as a FREE GIFT!
Romans 6:23 says, "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Ephesians 2:8 says, "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God."
John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life."
BUT A GIFT MUST BE ACCEPTED!!!
Many years ago, a convicted murderer, George Wilson, who was awaiting his execution, was brought a pardon, signed by the then American President Andrew Jackson. He refused to accept it, and no-one knew what to do. So it went to the supreme court, and the Chief Justice said, "A pardon is a paper, the value of which depends on it's acceptance by the person implicated. It is hardly to be supposed that one under sentence of death would refuse to accept a pardon, BUT IF IT IS REFUSED, IT IS NO PARDON. GEORGE WILSON MUST BE HANGED!"
Dear Friend, although Christ has purchased your pardon on the cross, IF YOU REFUSE TO ACCEPT IT, YOU CANCEL IT OUT!!
3. ABUNDANT - FOR ALL
Jesus said, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to EVERY creature." (Mark 16:15)
He also said, "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28)
"Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out." promises Jesus in John 6:37.
John the Baptist makes it very clear, when he saw Jesus coming to him, he said in John 1:29, "Behold the Lamb of God, which TAKETH AWAY THE SIN OF THE WORLD."
"God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved." (John 3:17)
"The Lord .... is longsuffering to us-ward not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." (2 Peter 3:9)
[a] Well, do you know this God of abundance in your life??
[b] Have you accepted His abundant provision of Salvation through a crucified and risen Christ??
[c] If you have, then you will have:
ABUNDANT PARDON AND ABUNDANT SATISFACTION, THROUGH HIS ABUNDANT GRACE!!
[d] If you haven't found Him yet, then why not?
Why make do with the devil's imitations - when you can have the real thing??
SALVATION ARMY SONG BOOK
SONG "Life, life, abundant life"
CHORUS "Life so rich and abundant"
CHORUS "Grace is flowing like a river"