BECOMING A NEW SHARP INSTRUMENT
Text: Isa.41:15; Jer.51:20 with Eccl.10:10
The above Bible references show God’s intention in raising us up. We are His weapons of war, the instrument to break down all opposing forces and Kingdoms and establish His kingdom everywhere until the Kingdom of this world becomes the Kingdom of Christ. Right now, Satan, the usurper is in control of many places. Our Father’s territory has been encroached upon; we must rise up, fight, and recover it back to God.
This generation of Christians is only interested in results but not in the cost or paying the price.
- CAUSES OF BLUNTNESS: 10:10; 2 Kg.6:1-5; Mk.6:30-32.
After a long time of working, the instrument will get blunt. There is a need for sharpening. This is why a retreat is needed. After we have been laboring for long, we can become blunt, weak, tired, and ineffective. One of the servants of Elisha was very honest. They were doing the work of God when the iron head fell inside water. He could pretend if he wanted to be hypocritical and be making noise – wood knocking wood, but there will be no progress. Some of us have lost our axe head. We are no longer cutting.
What then are the causes?
- Prayerlessness can cause it.
- Being busy here and there (Song.1:4-7; I Kg.20:39-43).
- Failure in the place of personal devotion/quiet time. When it is becoming mechanical, no more interesting or enriching like before
- Personal pursuit and family care in view of economic problems in the country (Ruth 1:1-5, 19-21) at the expense of spiritual life.
- Loss of vision for heaven and lost souls (Prov.29:18; Acts 26:19).
- Absence from fellowship/meetings (Heb.10:24-25).
- Backsliding in the heart, even though we look good outwardly (Rev.2:1-4).
- Life of ease (at ease in Zion) (Amos 6:1).
- Wrong association – the people you move with can make or mar your Christian life and affect your convictions (I Cor.15:33; Hos.7:8-9).
- Secret sin or deceitfulness of sin (Heb.3:12-13).
- Lack of passion for God (Psa.42:1-2).
- Self-indulgence – e.g. Samson – until he lost his eyes and ministry and eventually perished with the enemies.
- Lack of hunger and thirst for deeper experiences and higher ground experiences in the faith.
- Pride and lack of personal growth.
- CONSEQUENCES OF BLUNTINESS: 10:10; I Sam.13:19-22.
When we are blunt, the evidence will be visible in our lives and ministries:
- Failure in soul-wining and evangelistic outreaches.
- Ineffective and unanswered prayers.
- Struggling to survive spiritually.
- Frustration in the work we are doing.
- Fear, worry, and anxiety will set in.
- Oppression from the enemy as it happened to Samson (check your dreams these days).
- Lack of confidence in our prayers and ourselves.
- Much work but little or no result.
- Lack of progress in Christian service.
- Closed heavens and earth like brass.
- The people who once respect our Christian lives and testimonies will lose their respect for us.
- We will be running here and there for solutions to problems and prayers.
- The Christian life becomes uninteresting; we live in old testimonies, no current happenings.
- Our presence will no longer command respect from believers.
- We will become dull spiritually.
- CONDITION FOR SHARPNESS: 10:10; Psa.51:1-5; Isa.52:1-7; I Cor.15:34.
The simple truth is that we need revival and renewal. Some who have lost their experiences need a renewal of salvation, sanctification, consecration, commitment, Holy Ghost baptism, prayer life, etc.
There is a need for repentance and restitution to God and men. We must rededicate our lives and service to God again. We need a new beginning. We must pray until our fallow ground is broken and God begins to rain righteousness upon us – Hosea 10:12.
When we are sharpened, what shall we become?
- A loyal obedient soldier of Christ who hates sin and ready to destroy sin anywhere.
- A single-minded disciple of Christ whose goal is to conquer his territory for Christ.
- A mighty warrior and a fearless fighter; fighting the good fight of faith – 21st century or end-time Christian apologetics.
- A tireless fighter who battles for souls until they are won for Christ.
- A serious, sober believer, fervent in the spirit, with burning conviction.
- One who is steadfast in commitment – no jesting, idleness, and frivolity.
- A faithful, daring, dedicated Christian ready to die for his/her Master – Jesus Christ.
- A yielded, surrendered servant ready to give up anything to finish the unfinished task.
- A disciplined Christian who denies himself/herself of legitimate needs of life to serve the Lord.
- A bold, courageous soldier of Christ, not terrified by the threat of opposing forces.
- A warrior who can endure, who overlooks wounds and afflictions while doing the Master’s will.
- An orderly soldier, keeping to divine order even at the heat of the battle.
- A united soldier keeping his/her unity at all cost even in the midst of lies and insinuations of enemy strategies waiting to cause disunity and defeat.
- A militant guard who jealously guard the faith once delivered unto the saints more than his or her very blood.
- A soldier on the offensive and not on the defensive side only.
How then can we sharpen our blunt instrument? – Through prayer. Using the acronym for the word prayer, let us see how to sharpen our blunt instruments.
- P – rayer
- R – ighteousness
- A – ltar (raise a new altar or repair broken altar).
- Y - ield to God to work in you
- E – xcerise (spiritual exercise – fasting, prayer, evangelism, reading anointed books, and listening to anointed tapes, audios or CDs.
- R – efuel (retreat often).