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Great Bible Invitations – Sermon # 4


Isaiah 55:1-3


Intro: Ill. Philip Parham tells the story of a rich industrialist who was disturbed to find a fisherman sitting lazily beside his boat. “Why aren’t you out there fishing?” he asked.

      “Because I’ve caught enough fish for today,” said the fisherman.

      “Why don’t you catch more fish than you need?” the rich man asked.

      “What would I do with them?”

      “You could earn more money,” came the impatient reply, “and buy a better boat so you could go deeper and catch more fish. You could purchase nylon nets, catch even more fish, and make more money. Soon you’d have a fleet of boats and be rich like me.”

      The fisherman asked, “Then what would I do?”

      “You could sit down and enjoy life,” said the industrialist.

      “What do you think I’m doing now?” the fisherman replied as he looked placidly out to sea.[1]

      Few people ever reach that level of contentment. In fact, one poet put it this way:

As a rule, man’s a fool

When it’s hot, he wants it cool.

And when it’s cool, he wants it hot,

Always wanting what is not.[2]


      Isn’t that the truth? We live in a world filled with discontented people. Everywhere you look, people are striving to get more stuff. They are laboring to have more things. Not many people in this world seem to be completely content and satisfied with their place in life. Why is that?

      I think the answer lies in the fact that people are looking for true contentment in places, people and things that can never provide contentment to them. Look at verse 2 of our text. It answers this question for us in clear language.

1. People Seek Satisfaction In Their Possessions – They think that their “things” will give them contentment. They spend their time making money so they can spend the money they make accumulating more “things”. People are looking for contentment in the “things” they possess.

            What people fail to realize is that possessions are temporary at best. They wear out and must be replaced. All those “things” that we hold in so high a regard are going to be left behind one of these days. You won’t take a house, a car, a gun, a bass boat, or whatever your “thing” is, into eternity with you. Every “thing” you and I possess will be left behind one day! And, if a person acquires too many possessions, they may find that the “things” they think they own will end up owning them! As a man by the name of Bill Earle once said, “If your outgo exceeds your income, your upkeep will be your downfall.” Possessions can never satisfy the deepest needs of the soul!

2. People Seek Satisfaction In Their Pursuits – According to this verse, they “labor for that which satisfieth not”. They spend all their time and energy pursuing “things” that can never give them satisfaction of soul. Work, hobbies, sports, and the pleasures of life will never satisfy the deepest needs of the soul. The more you invest you time and effort in these things, the more they will require from you. Regardless of what you pursue in life, you will find, in the end, that your pursuits will pursue you. Whether it is work or pleasure, it will consume your life if you let. If you seek satisfaction in these things, you will discover that it will take more and more of these things to bring contentment into your life. And, just like possessions, the pursuits of life will end when this earthly life ends.


      In these verses God reveals the true source of permanent satisfaction. He issues an ironclad guarantee of perfect, eternal contentment to all who will hear His voice and respond to His invitation. I want to take these verses and preach on The Invitation To Contentment. Let me show you where God says true contentment can be found. Notice some of the components of God’s gracious invitation to contentment.


  I.  v. 1                 THE OFFERS OF THIS INVITATION

(Ill. When God issues His invitation in these verses, He makes a couple of wonderful offers that are too good to pass up.)

A.  The Right Provisions – There are three basic substances that God offers in this verse. He offers these substances to all who will come to Him. Let’s examine these in a little detail.

1. He Offers Water – Water is one of the most important substances to us humans. Our bodies are comprised of 60-70% water and it takes a lot of it to keep us alive. The average human can live three days without water. We have to have water to live.

      Water in the Bible is often a picture of the new birth. When Jesus talked with Nicodemus in John 3:5, Jesus said, “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” It is a picture of the Gospel message; the very message that must be received by faith in order for a person to be saved.

      When Jesus spoke to the woman at the well in John 4:13-14, He said, “Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: 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 him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” The word “drinketh” in verse 13 is in the “present tense”. It refers to continual action. In other words, “Even if you drink continually from Jacob’s well, you will just get thirsty again.” The word “drinketh” in verse 14 is in the “aorist tense”. It refers to a one time for all time action. In other words, “If you take just one drink of the well I offer, you will never thirst again!”

      Jesus promises complete contentment to everyone who will drink of the water that He offers. Unlike physical water, which one must drink again and again, the spiritual water that Jesus offers will forever satisfy the soul who will take just one drink of it. Jesus makes this offer throughout the Bible, John 7:37; Rev. 22:17. His offer of soul-satisfying water still stands today.

2.  He Offers Wine – In biblical times, wine was just as important as water. Most of the water was not fit to drink, so wine was added to the water. The wine killed the bacteria and made the water drinkable.

      In the Bible, wine is often used as a picture of joy, Psalm 104:15. It was used at times of feasting and happy celebrations. Wine is also a picture of the Holy Spirit, Who enters a child of God at the moment of salvation and allows the redeemed one to experience “joy unspeakable and full of glory”, 1 Pet. 1:8. God doesn’t just save us; He also fills us with His joy. It is the presence of the Holy Spirit that gives us peace and comfort as we travel toward glory, John 14:16-18.

      On the Day of Pentecost, the Jews thought that the Spirit-filled disciples were drunk with new wine, Acts 2:13. Peter told the crowd that these men were not drunk with wine; they were under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Just as wine controls the drunkard, the Spirit controls the saints of God, Eph. 5:18.

      Ill. Jesus took six empty stone pots at the marriage in Cana of Galilee, commanded them to be filled with water and transformed that water into wine. That is just what He does with His children. He takes our old stony hearts, fills them with the saving, satisfying water of His Gospel and transforms us by His power. He places His Spirit within us and then He pours us out to His glory in the world.

3.  He Offers Milk – Milk is essential for healthy growth. Milk is the first substance newborn babies receive for their nourishment. Milk is the provision of the mother for the hungry baby. Milk contains all the essential nutrients needed to transform a baby into a healthy child.

      Milk in the Bible is a picture of the Word of God. Not only does God give us the water of life that saves us and the Spirit of God that gives us joy; He also gives us the Word of God that helps us grow up strong in the things of God. The Bible is referred to as milk, 1 Pet. 2:2; 1 Cor. 3:2; Heb. 5:12-13.

      There are many people in the family of God who have not had the benefit of a formal education. Some did not learn to read or write very well. The world looks at them as ignorant and unlearned people. In truth, they are far wiser in the things of God than this world will ever be. They know the way of salvation, righteousness and faith. They know this because they have been drinking deeply of the good milk of the Word of God.

B.  The Right Price – The world makes you pay for everything your get. Religion will make you labor for every blessing you think you will receive. Sin, the flesh and the world all make you pay dearly for any promise of contentment they may offer you.

      On the other hand, God places every offer He has on the table as a free gift. He offers salvation and contentment to all who will come to Him free of any charge. (Ill. Rev. 22:17; Rom. 3:24)

      Since God’s gifts are free, anyone can receive them. God doesn’t require money, righteousness, good works or any other resource. He wouldn’t accept those things even if they were offered to Him. The only currency God requires is the currency of faith! He will open the storehouse of His blessings to all those who will exercise simple faith in His offer and come to Him. That is an offer anyone can afford!

      How can God make such a free offer to people like us? He can do that because His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, went to Calvary, died on the cross and paid the whole price of redemption. As the song writer said, “Jesus paid it all; All to Him I owe; Sin had left a crimson stain; He washed it white as snow.”



(Ill. What does the person who accepts this free offer receive? These two verses reveal at least three opportunities that await those who receive the Lord’s free offer.)

A.  The Opportunity For Salvation – God promises those who come to Him that their “soul shall live.” This is a picture of salvation! The soul in its natural state is separated from God, Isa. 59:2, and in terrible danger, Eze. 18:4. Every soul born into this world is born with a sin-stained soul, Rom. 3:10-23. Every soul born into this world is headed to a place called Hell, Rom. 6:23, Psa. 9:17.

      When a person receives God’s free offer and drinks the “water of life”; when that person believes the Gospel of grace, that person is saved. We throw the word “saved” around a lot in church and it is a special word to every redeemed child of God. The word “saved” means “to rescue from all harm and danger.” That word is special to my heart!

      When God makes His offer to a lost soul and that person accepts Jesus as their Savior, they enter into a salvation relationship with God. At that moment, they are delivered from the condemnation of sin, Rom. 8:1. They are saved from the awful wrath of God, Rom. 5:9. They pass from spiritual death into spiritual life, John 5:24. They become a brand new creature, 2 Cor. 5:17. They are set free and they receive salvation. Thank God for salvation!

B.  The Opportunity For Satisfaction – Verse 2 tells us that those who receive God’s offer can let their “soul delight in fatness.” The word “fatness” means “abundance”. When God saves a soul, He gives that soul new life. He also gives that soul a far better life, John 10:10. He causes the saved soul to rest in what it has in Jesus. The saved one is no longer seeking satisfaction in the world. It is not longer looking for happiness and peace in pleasure, sex, drink and drugs. The redeemed soul finds everything it needs in Jesus to enjoy true peace and satisfaction.

            The list of blessings the saints enjoy is far too long for one sermon. Just to name a few: peace, joy, rest, acceptance, blessing, love, and salvation. No wonder those who know the Lord are a happy, satisfied people.

C.  The Opportunity For Security – God’s promise is that He will “make and everlasting covenant with you”. A covenant is an agreement God makes with His people. Some covenants are conditional. God promises He will bless His people if they will walk to a certain standard, etc. This covenant only has one requirement. When a person accepts God’s free offer and they drink the “water of life”, God makes an unconditional, everlasting covenant with them.

      Call it what you will, “eternal security”, “once saved always saved”, “eternal life”, etc. it all means the same thing. Thos who come to God and accept His offer experience salvation and are promised that their salvation will last for all eternity! This is the great promise of the New Testament! Thos who receive Jesus as their Savior need never fear that He will take their salvation away from them, John 6:37-40; John 10:28; 1 Pet. 1:5.



(Ill. This is a tremendous offer! All the things we need for our eternal salvation offered to us at the right price. So, what is required to accept this offer? There are three requirements mentioned in these verses. But, don’t worry; God’s requirements are not hard to meet.)

A.  There Is Something You Must Have – Verse one tells us who this offer is for. It is for “every one that thirsteth”. Thirst is a common human need. Every person on the planet experiences the desire to quench their physical thirst. However, the thirst we are talking about here is spiritual in nature. While everyone experiences physical thirst, not everyone experiences the same level of spiritual thirst. Some people have their thirst satisfied by the sins of the flesh and the world. That kind of person does not see their need. They have no desire for a new life and they have no reason to come to God.

      But, every now and then a person will develop a spiritual thirst. They will look at the life they are living and become unsatisfied. They will want more than they have. They will realize that something is missing. Those are the people who become candidates for God’s offer of salvation.

      You see, God’s offer is only for sinners. He did not come to this world to save people who think they are righteous, Mark 2:17; Luke 19:10. God cannot and will not save a person who does not see their need. He will, however, save all of those who see their need and who will come to Him.

      This desire and this thirst for God are not natural experiences. They are the result of the work of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life. When the Spirit of God begins to deal with a human heart, He will convict that person of their sin and of their need. He creates within them the thirst for more and the desire to come to God, John 16:7-11. (Ill. The one of the greatest days in your life is the day when the Spirit of God draws you to come to Jesus, John 6:44.)

B.  There Is Something You Must Hear – Four times in these verses God tells Israel that they need to hear His message, (Ill. "Ho"; "Hearken diligently"; "Incline your ear"; "Hear"). If they will hear Him calling they can come to Him and get what they need for their soul’s salvation. Four times in these verses, He calls them to “come” to Him. Once, He invites them to “eat”.

      If there is a thirst in your soul for a different life; if you are dissatisfied with the way you are living and with your prospects for eternity, it is the Lord speaking to you. If you will hear His voice, and come to Him, He will save you and give you eternal life. All it takes is a positive response to His call and salvation becomes a reality, Acts 16:31; Rom. 10:13; John 3:16. Is He calling you?


Conc: A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation. The traveler left rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

      But, a few days later, he came back to return the stone to the wise woman. “I've been thinking,” he said. “I know how valuable this stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me this stone.”

      That wise woman could let go of that precious stone because she knew true contentment in her heart. She didn’t need riches to give her joy. She had joy in her heart.

      What about you? Do you have true contentment today? Have you heard God’s call to your heart to come to Him for salvation? Has He given you contentment in your soul? If you He has, then you are truly blessed among men! You should thank Him and praise Him today!

      If you are not satisfied, and you hear His voice speaking to you, you need to come to Him and call on Him for salvation. Is He calling? Do you need the contentment that He offers? Wouldn’t you like to be able to enjoy true soul satisfaction? You can, if you will come to Jesus Christ today.

[1] Our Daily Bread, May 18, 1994

[2] Bits & Pieces, June 22, 1995, p. 5

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