Sabbath 10/18/14 Daytona Beach SDB Pastor Wray sermon Have You Lost Your Cutting Edge For The Lord?

Sabbath 10/18/14 Daytona Beach SDB Pastor Wray sermon Have You Lost Your Cutting Edge For The Lord? II Kings 6:1-7

The two main characters in this scripture text is the prophet Elisha and the unnamed prophet. Remember that Elisha had been Elijah’s student until Elijah was taken up into Heaven by God. Elisha became God’s chosen prophet and God blessed his ministry. This ministry lasted 50 years and he performed many miracles through the power of God. In our text, the building that the young seminary students lived in and where they were taught by Elisha, was too small. The students asked Elisha could they go chop down trees to build a bigger building. This is the first college dormitory that the bible speaks of to my knowledge. Elisha said they had a good idea and when asked, he said he would go with them. They went to the Jordan River to cut down trees. One student was cutting a tree and the axe head from the axe he had borrowed, flew off into the river and sunk to the bottom. This student had lost his axe head. He had lost his cutting edge and lost his effectiveness for doing his work.

Each of us, who have done work for the Lord, know that there is no greater work. But I ask you, have you lost your cutting edge in serving and working for the Lord? Have you lost your effectiveness in doing the Lord’s work? Were you at one time working with great strength, chips flying everywhere in the air, chopping down trees and building up the kingdom of God? If we have lost our cutting edge, we need to ask God to help us get it back. This passage teaches us some things that will help us get back our cutting edge for the Lord.
  1. We must admit we have lost our cutting edge:
The seminary student first had to admit that he lost his cutting edge, the axe head. He had to admit that it fell into the river and sank to the bottom. He was busy doing important work for God and suddenly his cutting edge was gone. The admitting of this is the hardest part. Admitting that one has a problem is the first step in the healing process. This is true with the Alcohol Anonymous program .The first step is admitting you have an alcohol problem. The young seminary student could have reacted in different ways. He could have used the loss of the axe head as an excuse to stop working for God all together. He could have found a nice cool shady tree to sit under, had a glass of iced tea while watching his fellow students do all the work. Or….he could have refused to admit that he lost his axe head. He could have said “what problem?”, “I have no problem”. He could have kept on swinging the wooden stick with no axe head on the end to chop. He could have been going through the motions of cutting down trees. Making a lot of noise but accomplishing absolutely nothing! Our talents, our abilities and our resources are borrowed from God. Just like the axe was borrowed. God has not given us permission to stop working for Him until we enter into His Rest in Heaven.
  1. We need to determine the exact spot where we lost our cutting edge:
Have you ever had a problem with misplacing things? My wife says I would lose the nose on my face if it wasn’t fastened to my face. Many of us at the Seventh Day Baptist church have lost our car keys after worship service. The first thing I ask them is do they remember where they were the last time they had them. Elisha asked a similar question when he asked where did the axe head fall. The seminary student did not plan to lose his cutting edge, it just happened. That’s the way it is with many of us. It just happens along the way. Something similar happened to Apostle Peter in the New Testament. He denied Jesus three times after he had told Jesus he would always follow him and never stop.

When we lose our cutting edge in doing God’s work, we need to remember where we last had our cutting edge. We need to ask “why did we lose our cutting edge?” Was is because we dropped out of Sabbath school? Was is because we stopped going to church worship services on a regular basis? Was it because we became angry or jealous of someone? Was it because we stopped praying or reading the Bible? Did you lose your cutting edge because of some personal sins that have entangled your life? If you have the courage to take a look at your personal spiritual life, you can discover where and why you lost your cutting edge of service to the Lord.
  1. We must do our part in recovering our cutting edge:
Elisha got his miracle power from God. When he helped the student with his axe head, it showed Elisha’s concern and God’s concern for the student’s problem. God has concern for us and our problems too. The miracle of the floating axe head shows that God is deeply concerned about each of us as an individual. We see this in Jesus’s teaching of the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost son. You and I are very valuable to God! He cares about each one of us and with God there is no problem too small to tell him about. The Bible says to cast all your cares upon Him. God cares about you and your problem. God will help you solve your problem so that it brings honor and glory to Him. Losing an axe head may seem a small problem, but like the axe head, God will cause the solution to your problem to float to the surface! The young seminary student did his part. For him to get back his cutting edge, the student reached out his hand to get the axe head himself. God wanted the student to be involved in getting back his cutting edge. God wanted him to be involved in his own recovery, to reach out his hand and recover the axe head himself.

We need to look at our cutting edge in doing’s God’s kingdom work. Have we adopted the motto of the world and say “what can the church do for me? “ It should be “what can we do for the church?” Far too many Christians look at the local church as a place to be served rather than a place to serve. This young student could have avoided all these problems if he had just checked his axe head occasionally to see if it was loose. He could have tightened it and kept on cutting down trees. I suggest that we all need to check our spiritual tools on a regular basis. When you check your spiritual inventory on a regular basis, you can make minor adjustments and keep on serving the Lord. The devil would prefer that you never look at your spiritual life until the repair is too costly and so much damage has been done. But it is not too late for you to make the necessary repair. If you are a Christian, God wants you to be an effective servant in His Kingdom. If you are not a Christian, I invite you to accept Jesus Christ today.