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As we enter the New Year, consider the message of Proverbs 29:18: “Without a vision a people perish.”
What is Your Vision?
Before Isaiah could have a vision of God, he had to experience a vision of the evil that people do (Isaiah 5:8 - 6:8).
Do You Have a Vision of the World’s Need?
The Apostle Paul’s vision of the Lord included a vision of what the world outside of Christ really is – lost, blind, in darkness, under the power of satan, bound, unforgiven, condemned and guilty (Acts 26:18).
Do You Have a Vision of Hell?
The great cricketer turned pioneer missionary, C.T. Studd, had a vision of hell. That is why he declared: “Some like to live within sound of church or chapel bell – I’d like to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell!”
Do You Have a Vision of the World’s Problems?
Do you have any conception of the devastation caused by drugs and crime, terrorism and communism, materialism and corruption, deception and apostasy, immorality and alcohol abuse, selfishness, cowardice, greed, malice, bitterness and hatred? (2 Timothy 3:1-5). Sin and satan are cruel masters.
“Without a vision a people perish.” We need a clear vision of the reality of a world in rebellion to God … rushing to eternal destruction.
Do You Have a Vision of God?
Isaiah declared: “I saw the Lord … high and lifted up … Holy! Holy! Holy is the Lord of Hosts! The whole earth is full of His glory!” Isaiah 6:1-3
Do You See the Lord?
There are three directions we can look:
Inwards – at ourselves – which is selfish.
Outwards – at others – which could be critical or compassionate.
Or, Upwards – to God – in worship.
We need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus on Whom our Faith depends from beginning to end. “Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our Faith, who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the Cross, despising the shame and has sat down at the right hand of the Throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2
Do You Have a Vision of Who God is?
He is Glorious and Infinite – without limitation. He is Eternal – without beginning and without end. He is Holy and Righteous, Just and Merciful, All Powerful, All Knowing and Everywhere Present. Perfect. Creator of the Universe. Sovereign Judge of us all. Wonderful. Awesome in Majesty.
What comes into our minds when we think of God is the most important thing about us. No person is greater than his religion and no religion is greater than its God. God is greater than anyone of us have ever imagined or realised. We need to study the Word of God more to realise how Great and Mighty is the God we worship. “For He is the Living God and steadfast forever. His Kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed and His dominion shall endure to the end. He delivers and rescues and He works signs and wonders in Heaven and on earth.” Daniel 6:26-27
Do You Have a Vision of What God Can Do?
He can do the impossible. He created all things, seen and unseen. He can do a lot with a little. He fed an entire nation in the desert for 40 years. He fed many thousands with just 5 loaves and 2 fish. He controls nature. He parted the Red Sea for His people to pass through. He calmed the storm with a Word. He raised the dead. He heals the sick. He forgives sinners. He changes lives. He answers prayer.
Do you have a Vision of What God Can Do Through Your Church?
The Church at Antioch sent out Paul and Barnabas (Acts 13:1-3). Through these two missionaries the Gospel was taken to Europe, many churches were planted in Asia and Greece and much of the New Testament was written.
Napoleon once said, as he looked over the vast expanse of China: “There lies a sleeping giant – let him sleep, for if he wakes, he will shake the world!” Could not satan be saying about your church: “There lies a sleeping giant – let her sleep … if she wakes, she will shake the world!”
The Gospel is powerful. The Church has been given the power to limit the forces of evil and to extend the Kingdom of God (Matthew 18:18-20). Can we truly be praying against wickedness, standing up for the Lord and fighting the forces of evil – when we see evil increasing? Do you have a vision of what God can do through your church?
Do You Have a Vision of What God Can Do Through a Prayer Fellowship?
Count Nicolaus Von Zinzendorf started the prayer chain in the Moravian Fellowship which lasted for 150 years! During those generations of unbroken intercession, that congregation sent out 2,500 missionaries to every corner of the world.
Do You Have a Vision of What God Can Do Through a Person?
When D.L. Moody heard the challenge: “The world has yet to see what God can do with a man completely surrendered to Him.” He ran forward shouting: “I will be that man! I will be that man!”
When General William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, was asked by Queen Victoria about the secret of his success, he replied simply: “God had all of me that there was to have.”
John Wesley’s challenge rings out to us today: “Give me one hundred men who fear no-one but God and hate nothing but sin, and I will change the world.”
The Scriptures promise: “Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honour, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.” 2 Timothy 2:21
Do you have a vision of what God can do through you?
Do You Have a Vision of What God Wants Done?
As we approach this New Year, you have the opportunity for new beginnings. A new life to start and a new start in life. New Hope. New vision. New initiatives. New energy. New zeal. New duties. New responsibilities.
Redeem the time. Determine to read through the whole Bible this coming year. If you read just four chapters of the Bible each day, you will read through the whole Bible in one year. Do a thorough job of restitution. Make right with those with whom you are at odds. Work for reconciliation. Work for Reformation. Start a Bible study and Prayer Fellowship in your home, school, campus, work place or church. Pray for Revival. These could all be good resolutions for the New Year.
“Without a vision a people perish.” What is your vision? Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus on Whom your Faith depends from beginning to end. The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. Make Christ’s Great Commission your Supreme Ambition. Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.”