Pro 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Hosea 4:6 says, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.” This week I would like to look into the subject of vision and responsibility. As individual Christians, and as local bodies of believers; we must have and we must know the vision for our lives. We must also know our personal responsibilities to The Lord, as well as to our church. When we know and understand these things, we will then be able to be used effectively by God to carry out the work He has for us. All believers have a calling and a purpose, and need to be about our Father’s business. Let’s get into God’s Word.
We learn from the above mentioned verses, that having vision is directly related to keeping God’s Word. Of course, keeping God’s Word is directly related to first knowing God’s Word. If you don’t meditate in the Scriptures on a regular basis, then you won’t know God’s Word. If you don’t know it, you won’t keep it. If you don’t keep it, you will perish. This is the problem with many Christians today. They claim to be Christian, but they think and act like the world. Why? Because they don’t spend any real time in the Bible, so they are ignorant.
This leads us to the second scripture. God’s people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. No knowledge of God’s Word, no understanding. No understanding, no wisdom. They forsake God’s Word, and it brings destruction. This is not God’s will, but simply the fruit of not knowing God’s Word. We must take personal responsibility in letting God’s Word change us. It’s not God’s Word that is the problem; it’s God’s people who do not take the time to read His Word. There is nothing wrong with His Word! (Mk 4:14-20) We must read it, study it, obey it, live it, speak it, honor it, and believe it. This is our primary vision as individual Christians.
Now, when it comes to local church bodies, God gives the specific vision and direction for that body to it’s Pastor. That is why Jesus addressed His comments to the pastors of the seven churches in Revelation 2&3. The pastor then communicates that to the church. If it does not agree with your vision, you have three choices - only two of which are positive. 1. Stay at the church and support it, but on your own time pursue your individual interest. 2. Leave that church, and go to one that shares your vision. 3. Stay and bring your agenda into the church and cause dissention and division. The third one is an abomination to God (Prv 6:19, 22:10, 26:20), so I don’t suggest that route. If you can’t support your pastor and his vision, then leave peaceably. That is honorable, good and Godly.
A productive church does not spread itself thin and get involved in everything it possibly can. Different churches are called to different things. It’s better to do one or two things well, than ten things half way. Unity in a body of believers is very important. When each member of a church is behind the vision, and their hearts are knit together in love, and they strive for a united cause - then nothing is impossible for them. They will prosper in the work God has set before them.
Our responsibility as members of our church may vary from place to place, but here are what I believe are some universal ones: 1. Show up! It’s not only good for your growth, it’s a command (Heb 10:24-25). Jesus didn’t make excuses to not go to the cross for you ; you shouldn’t make excuses to not go to church. 2. Invite somebody to church. If you believe in your church, then you should want other people coming to it. 3. Get on board with your church’s vision. Are there classes your encouraged to take? Are there things your encouraged to do? Start doing it. 4. Give. If you have a passion for God and His work, then you will support it. If you don’t, you give nothing but lip service to Jesus (Mt 6:21) 5. Long to know God’s Word (Ps 119:12). Become a dedicated disciple of Jesus Christ yourself, that you may make disciples of others (Mt 7:3-5). Don’t be one that forever needs milk - start eating meat (Heb 5:12-14).
I pray you would consider these things, and that you would live your life with clarity, purpose, and vision. We are here but for a moment. Let’s be about our Father’s business, for only things done unto Him will have eternal value. Until next time, rejoice in The Lord!