The positive experience
Chaplain Bertram Bobb
It is a privilege and joy to be in a Christian ministry on Sunday as a part of the 2011 Choctaw Nation Labor Day Festival weekend at Tushka Homma. Pray for the personal testimonies and fellowship.
Today many people associate Christianity with restrictions with the do’s and don’ts – don’t do this, and don’t do that.
We Christians have talked so much of the negative side of Christian experiance that we have forgotten to emphasize the positive, joyous, thrilling and victorious experience of daily fellowship with Jesus Christ.
For our Bible text today we turn to the book of Isaiah in the Old Testament. The prophet Isaiah looked out on a people who longed for happiness and security but were looking for it in the wrong places. They were running to the places of amusement, spending their money for things which brought them no permanent satisfaction.
Isaiah stood before them one day and gave them the Word of God. We read in Isaiah 55:1-2: “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.
“Wherefore do you spend money for that which is not bread and your labour for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto me, and ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.”
Notice that Isaiah didn’t speak negatively and berate them for their sins. He didn’t grab the bottle from the drunkard’s hand, he didn’t shame them for their immoral practices. He left all that for the moment.
He simply asked them, “Are you getting what you want out of life?” Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread and your labor for that which satisfieth not?”
If Isaiah were living today, he would probably stand here and simply ask, “Are you getting what you want? Are you finding satisfaction?”
He would say to the successful businessman, “Are you getting what you want?” He would say to the labourers, “Are you getting what you want?” He would say to the young people, “Are you getting what you want?” He would say to those who have the best homes and the smoothest, powerful automobiles, “Are you getting what you want?”
Isaiah did not leave them with an unanswered question. He went on to tell them that there is a satisfying way of life, if they wish to seek it. He exhorted them to abandon the vain searching for pots of gold at the end of the rainbow, and to start searching for happiness where it is really found.
Jesus said to the thirsty, unsatisfied Samaritan woman in John 4:14: “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst, but the water that I shall give him shall be in a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”
Just as the body of man cannot live without water, the spirit cannot be satisfied apart from God. He alone can satisfy our spiritual thirst.
David said in Psalms 107:8-9: “Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
“For he satisfieth the longing soul and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.”
Now, as then, listen to God’s Word in Isaiah 55:2, God says: “Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.”
This is the secret of soul-satisfaction: let your soul delight itself in fatness. Remove the obstructions, and let your soul find the fulfillment of its deepest longings in the fellowship with God.
God said another significant thing in our text. He said in Isaiah 55:1: Salvation is “free!” God puts no price tag on the gifts. It is free! It is as Isaiah said, “without money and without price.”
God is not a bargaining God. You cannot bargain with him. You must do business with Him on His terms. He holds in His hands the priceless, precious, eternal gift of salvation, and He bids you to take it without money and without price.
So, you who have spent your money for that which is not bread and your labor that with satisfieth not, come and receive this life-giving soul-satisfying life from the hand of God – Salvation through Jesus Christ our Savior!
One last thing. This offer is for everyone: “Everyone that thirsteth come ye to the water” (Isaiah 55:1). He can meet the need of all of us. I ask you: “Are you getting out of life what you want? Have you found peace and satisfaction?”
God has given to us His wonderful plan for salvation. He gave His only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for sin, which is death, on the cross (John 3:16). Trust Jesus Christ as your personal Savior by faith so that you can have peace and reconciliation.
The apostle Paul said in 1st Corinthians 15:3-4: “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.”
Jesus Christ is alive. Trust Him as your Savior. Pray for America, and pray for our men and women in our armed service.