April 19, 2020 AM
Pastor Craig Ledbetter
Bible Baptist Church, Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland
I. Introduction and Background (Isaiah 40:31)
A. Waiting is a Hard Thing To Do!
1. Most of us are Impatient – won’t admit it, but we are:
a. Impulsive, Anxious, Hasty in our actions
b. AND angry when things don’t work out like we want right then and there
2. But Biblical waiting is more like:
d. Long patience
3. One is a sin, and the other is just fine
a. Like looking forward to the rapture of us Christians
b. Looking forward to seeing my grandkids
c. Eager to gather together with other believers again and have proper church!
B. What It Means to Wait on God – waiting on the Lord
1. Does not mean be idle – to just sit around and do nothing
a. Mat 20:1 For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers [WORKERS] into his vineyard.
b. Mat 20:2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard.
c. Mat 20:3 And he went out about the third hour [9AM] , and saw others standing idle in the marketplace,
d. Mat 20:4 And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way.
e. Mat 20:5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour [NOON AND 3PM], and did likewise.
f. Mat 20:6 And about the eleventh hour [5PM] he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?
g. Mat 20:7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive.
h. THAT IS NOT THE CHRISTIAN LIFE - JUST STANDING AROUND IDLE WAITING FOR SOMEONE TO PAY YOU TO DO SOMETHING!
1) If you have to be PAID to be doing something, then you should starve!
2) Especially in Christian work!
3) Christians ought to be the best workers in the world, even as volunteers!
2. Waiting means…
a. Having your attention on God and not on your circumstances
1) I am not worried about the coronavirus, or the chip implant that is soon coming
2) I am watching GOD moving everything into place for the rapture
3) I am watching GOD causing men’s hearts to fail in fear and desperation
4) And it is only the beginning!
5) You can keep your eyes on the news all day – I will keep my eyes on Jesus!
b. Waiting means, To be ready to serve when called for
c. Waiting means, To allow God to take all the time He thinks is necessary
d. Waiting means, To rest in expectation – never panicking, but ready to act when called
3. Compare it to a Waiter or Waitress
a. If they are doing their job…
b. They are waiting to BE called by a customer
c. They are busy working in the background WHILE waiting to be called
d. They are predicting what may be needed WHEN they are called: so always preparing
e. THAT’S WHAT CHRISTIANS ARE! Good waiters on God!
C. Loads of Scriptures on WAITING on the Lord – a great word to thoroughly learn
1. Psalm 25:5 Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day.
a. And that is a good thing!
b. Not waiting on God like you do your kids, your wife, your husband
c. But waiting upon GOD to direct your steps! To tell you what to do
2. Psalm 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
a. Both a command – to patiently WAIT on the Lord – let Him be in charge
b. And a promise! He will strengthen thine heart!
3. Psalm 37:7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
a. Two amazing words, REST and WAIT
b. We only know how to be frustrated while waiting
4. Psalm 130:5,6 I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning. [AT SUNRISE THERE IS RETURNED SAFETY]
5. Lamentation 3:25 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.
D. Why is it so hard to wait? David wrote in Psalm 69:3, I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. BECAUSE IT IS HARD WAITING
1. It is hard because, We have limited time in our lives – you can’t wait until you are 70 before thinking of getting married
2. Others are in competition with us – if there is just one box of toilet paper on a shelf, there will be some rush to get it on some days!
3. We have an old nature that does not easily trust God.
a. We don’t like waiting on God.
b. We would rather just go and get what we want then and there!
c. Isaiah compares us to GREEDY dogs that have not been taught to wait for their master’s permission (Isaiah 56:11) Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough
4. So, Waiting is Not Easy for ANY of us
5. But ‘waiting’ is one of the fundamental fruits of the Christian’s life - longsuffering
II. Waiting is a Big Part of Biblical Faith (not just GETTING, but learning to be patient)
A. Specifically, ‘Waiting on God’
1. You cannot put God on your schedule!
2. Yet, there are people who believe that you should be able to just command something to happen, and it happen… THAT is blasphemy! Only GOD can do that.
3. People believe God should just give them whatever they pray for, and do it right away!
4. Those are spoiled brats in Christianity, and will leave, and quit, and curse the Gospel when they don’t get what they want, when they want it. Shame!
B. A farmer ploughs, and then waits for the fruit to come – 1 month, 2 months, years later
1. Banana Trees take 2 years from seed, to start producing
2. Lemon trees take 3 years from seed, to start producing
3. Olive trees need FIVE years before they start producing edible olives
4. Mango trees also take FIVE years from planting to fruit
5. Apple trees take up to 10 years before they start to produce good apples
6. And it takes between 50-80 years for a mighty Oak tree to mature enough to start producing acorns!
7. So it is, that a Christian prays, and then has to wait for God to bring it to pass
a. We know the promises about prayer – but we hate the delay in getting them answered
b. Not because God is slow, or weak, or stupid
c. But because God takes all the time that’s needed so things are just right
d. Have you ever tried to eat an unripe banana?
e. Well, quit trying to RUSH God to answer all your prayers before His time!
f. Ecclesiastes 3:11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time. EVERYTHING!
8. So, When a Christian gives out a Gospel tract, and explains the Gospel to people, he/she then has to wait for someone to understand it, and then wait for them to actually received the gift of eternal life! You and I cannot believe FOR them (which is what some people try and do all too often). We have to wait a lot sometimes!
9. When a Christian sacrifices their pride and honours their enemy above themselves, and then has to endure abuse for a little while longer, they are learning to wait for God to work everything out in the end for good. He will. They just have to wait!
10. In simple words, there is always a delay, a wait, a measure of patience, in faith!
11. Only the devil wants everything now!
C. God Causes His People to Wait, to Develop real Trust
1. Young Joseph – had to wait 13 long hard years for the fulfilment of his dreams – from teenager, to slave, to servant, to prisoner, until finally a prince in Egypt. Amazingly he was not impatient or bitter at the delays – He waited and God brought his dreams to pass!
2. King David. Even though he was anointed to be king right away, David had to wait 7 long hard years before becoming king
3. When the angel Michael appeared to Mary, she was a virgin, waiting for a husband – and because she waited, God gave her a good man - Joseph! And gave her a job being the mother of Jesus! I know she was glad SHE waited!
4. God was not being cruel making any of those people wait
5. And He is not cruel when He makes you or me wait for things to happen
6. Waiting is part of DOING the will of God, and trusting the promises of God
D. So, How Does Waiting Help Us Keep Going?
1. Delays usually make us want to quit, or change direction
2. But God calls us to Press on… And finish well as Christians!
3. Let’s start to learn how!
III. Message – Waiting on The Lord… (Isaiah 40:28-31)
A. Truth #1 God Does Not Tire, or Faint (40:28)
1. God is not like us – He doesn’t get tired or weary or worn out
2. He is omnipotent – all powerful
3. You have got to believe that
4. To have created this entire universe and keep it running, could not have happened by some big bang on its own – an ALMIGHTY God did it
5. Isaiah 45:12 I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded. Every galaxy, star, planet
6. He didn’t break a sweat when He created everything that there is!
a. THAT is the God of this Bible
b. THAT is the God of heaven and earth
c. THAT is the God who became a Man and lived the perfect life for us, died the substitutionary death for us on the cross, and got up again 3 days later, for our sins!
d. THAT is the God we worship and love and look forward to meeting soon!
e. Do you even KNOW Him?
B. Truth #2 God Holds Everything Together – literally
1. God didn’t just create everything – He is holding everything together!
2. Colossians 1:16,17 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
3. He holds the protons neutrons electrons together in the atoms that form everything we see
4. Scientists call it the STRONG nuclear force – it is an “unknown” force that holds everything together
C. Truth #3 He has Infinite Understanding of all that is going on in the universe
1. Not just in your life and situations
2. But in every corner of the world, throughout the Solar System, and the universe
3. There is no reaching the limit of His understanding and wisdom!
D. Truth #4 God has plenty of ability – power, strength to spare
E. And He gives such strength away! (40:29)
F. None of us are exempt from needing God’s help to finish well (40:30)
IV.This is our need at the moment…
A. To personally KNOW the Creator of all things – He is a Person
B. To TRUST that He is holding everything together – including you
C. To TRUST that He knows what He is doing
D. And BELIEVE that He has strength for us to spare!
V. Examples of God Giving Strength in Nature (Isaiah 40:31)
A. The Eagle
1. One of the most majestic birds in the world – 7’ wingspan
2. Yet, every one of them goes through a time of moulting
3. Gets discouraged, starts actually running out of any desire to fly
4. Loses appetite, loses its ability to fly
5. Just bangs its beak against a rock, for weeks
6. Scratches it talons down to nubs
7. Watches as its feathers fall out, or pulls them out itself
8. And then doesn’t move. Just limp for weeks on end
9. Until a breeze catches its wings, and it gets briefly pulled up in the air
10. New feathers have grown across both wings
11. All the banging of that beak cleared off a lot of built up calcium deposits that hinder it opening and closing
12. Its talons have grown back, stronger and sharper than ever
13. And it mounts up on the edge of the most dangerous part of a hillside and leaps out into that air, and flies like it has not ever flown before!
14. THAT’S God renewing the eagles
B. The Runner
1. No runner just runs any long distance without getting exhausted and wanting to quit
2. Yet only the mature, prepared runner knows that even though they will become exhausted, that it is then that they will get a second wind
3. God designed that into us
C. The Walker
1. Maybe he or she is not flying, or running
2. But he walks!
3. Sometimes fast, and sometimes slow
4. But he keeps going!
D. Every one of these are examples of God promising to give US, HIS followers, His WAITERS the strength we need for every day, to press on!
VI.But, How Does Someone GET that Strength? Get spiritually recharged?
A. Next Week I will Show You!
A. Dear Christian, if YOU are tired, and yearn for renewal of inner strength and joy…
B. God offers guaranteed strength – a constant recharge! Guaranteed!
1. Not for people to drink or do drugs or to fight or to sin against God and each other
2. And NOT for those that barely put out any effort living for God
C. He gives such strength away to the weary waiter!
1. Only those that WAIT upon the Lord, get His great help
a. Those who get tired/weary of doing right
b. For those who have run out of joy and excitement in the Christian life
c. For those who are just worn out by life
d. But only those who will take the time to learn how to WAIT on the Lord
e. THOSE are Christians that God recharges!
2. Do YOU know the Creator of all things? He is a Person, not a creed
3. Do YOU trust that He is holding everything together – including you?
4. Do YOU trust that He knows what He is doing?
5. Will you believe that He has strength for you to spare?
6. Read through Psalm 37 this week and see what God says about waiting
7. And about what God promises those that learn to wait!
8. I just hope you WANT to learn to wait on the Lord
9. Become like David in Psalm 130:6 My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.
D. Some of you are still hesitant - Doing the WRONG kind of waiting
1. Waiting until God almost MAKES you believe - until ALL your questions are settled
2. You probably will be waiting too long
3. Just know this… your life will not last forever
a. 2Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
b. Heb 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment
c. 2Corin 6:2 …behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
4. The Lord is Actually Waiting on YOU
a. Knocking on the door of your heart waiting for you to answer it and open your heart
b. Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
c. Waiting on YOU to repent and believe that His Son took YOUR place in death so you could receive the life changing gift of eternal LIFE!
Don’t wait any longer to get saved!