Text: Isaiah 55:1-9 June 9, 2013.
1) A foolish bird: In
2) All foolish men: This kind of foolishness is
not limited to birds. Mankind throughout human history had been working very
hard to find satisfaction of his inner thirsts in wrong places for many
centuries. During the exile in
REASONS OF INNER THIRSTS: Why are we thirsty in our soul?
1) Man is thirsty of self-worth: While the objects may be different, the purpose is the same: Man needs to feel he is important, he is worthy. This is for self-satisfaction and value of his existence.
2) Man is thirst of recognition: Different people have different things to earn his recognition but we all have that inner thirst to be recognized. We want to be somebody special.
3) Man is thirsty of security: Security is one of the primitive survival needs man was born to have. It is more obvious in today¡¯s world than ever before from personal level to national level. While means of security may be different from person to person, we all are aware of the importance of being secured.
4) Man is thirst of meaning: Meaning of life is the core of fulfillment once the basics of life are met. Man wants to feel meaningful of his life to feel worthy of his existence. That is why some highly successful people took their own lives when they didn¡¯t feel their lives had any meaning. No wonder Jesus said, ¡°Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.¡± (Matt 4:4) Man can only find meaning of his life in the word of God.
HUMAN MEANS TO QUENCH INNER THIRSTS:
1) Money is number one: In every culture, every age, among all people of all age groups, everyone loves money and believes that money will quench that most inner thirst of life. Great majority of people believe that if they have money, lots of money, their life will be very different for the better. Today someone sent me a picture of a man in India who spent US$2,100,000 to make a shirt of gold with a gold belt and all the ornaments weighing about 20 pounds on his neck and both arms and 8 of his 10 fingers. He believed that even few ladies would be drawn to him by his look, but all would by his gold shirt. Historically, money does play a role in making some people feel good about themselves.
2) Love is number two: Love is a universal symbol of meaning of life, particularly to those who are more inclined to emotional needs. Love is very important to all people in all ages in history. Many stories of love inspired beautiful writing of poems, books, drama and movies. So many people take love as the whole focus of their life: love from family and friends, people around them in school and at work. Sometimes, they misinterpret friendship as love relationship and get into many troubles. But we all agree love makes life sweet and adds some glitters in our mind and things we do. We all long for love from others and we want to love them in return.
3) Fame is number three: Fame is the same as name, reputation and popularity. It was said that before Charles de Gaulle, former French president, died, he asked that on his tombstone, there won¡¯t be anything else except his name, Charles de Gaulle. He insisted this because he believed that his name is more than enough for his countrymen to recognize him and his legacy. Lots of people, mostly the rich and famous, hade done so much to build fame on their name by unusual ways such as memorial and statues, buildings, land marks or even towns and cities. These and others believe that name or fame is what they deserve and they wanted people of generations to come to continue remember their name and their legacy. The world learns to cater to this people by created Hall of Fames to honor heroes of sports, music and others. That is why we have presidential libraries of U S presidents in recent history to keep their name and glory last longer. But hungry for fame led to punishment from God very early in human history. (Genesis 11:1-9)
4) The next number is power: The most obvious hunger for power is in political arena: those who had been in high positions still dream for higher or the highest position of power. Most of these people campaigned for political positions not because of their love for their country, but for their own position of power. We witness many of these political leader are not the best people or the most talented, qualified people the country needs, but people most greedy and hungry for power and position. That is why we see so much corruption and chaos in politics everywhere including our nation. Hungry for power is not limited to politics, it is also in business world and many other levels of society. The desire of power to control is another way to quench inner thirst.
BETTER WAYS TO QUENCH YOUR THIRSTS: (Isaiah 55:1-9)
1) You need to know where to go: ¡°Come, all you who are thirsty. Come to the waters, come buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.¡± (55:1) To quench any and all inner thirsts, you need to know where to get help. In 55:1, God extended his invitation four times when he used the word ¡°come¡±. If you are serious in looking for true and long-term satisfaction of your soul, you need to come to God, for he is the one who created your soul and knows how to meet its thirsts. Don¡¯t go to anyone else or any other place to seek help because they can¡¯t help you like God can.
2) You need to know whom to listen: ¡°Listen, listen to me and eat what is good and your soul will delight in the riches of fare. Give ear and come to me; hear me that your soul may live.¡± (5:2-3) Four times God asked those who have inner thirsts to listen to him or to give him their ears. But in fact, most people turn to listen to social media and secular philosophy. Many of the soul hungry spent millions of dollars buy books written by men and spent millions of hours listen to so called experts for a happy life. In fact all we need to do is listen to the word of God, the Holy Bible, expounded by servants of God, or study it with men and women who fear God and follow his steps.
3) You need to know who can help: ¡°Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near.¡± (55:6) Most people will seek help from those they believe capable of helping them when they have needs. Instead of seeking help from human, God calls us to seek him and he promises us we will find him. God is never far away, he is very close to your heart. Jesus invites you ¡°Come, whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life. (Rev. 22:17)
4) You need to know the best wisdom: ¡°As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways; and my thoughts than your thoughts.¡± (55:9)This is about our faith in the almighty God: he knows better, his plans are better than our plans, he knows what he is doing and he always has our best interest in mind. God¡¯s way of providing what we need to quench our inner thirsts may not exactly what we like or prefer, but we need to trust his wisdom, power and intention: he will always do right for our needs much better than anyone can. He can¡¯t do his work if we don¡¯t trust him.
APPLICATION OF TRUTH:
1) Only God can quench your thirst: Man was created with a soul in him. He created man as the crown jewel of all his creation. (Genesis 2:7) Man will never feel complete when his soul is disconnected with God. No amount of anything of this world may fill that spiritual vacuum until it is filled with the spirit giver, God. So, it is normal for man to feel hungry and thirsty without God. The only solution to this spiritual problem is for man to get back to God, to believe in him, to know God¡¯s love, grace and forgiveness of his sins. If you are feeling empty and meaningless on the inside, now you know where you can get relief.
2) Only Jesus is the living water: ¡°Jesus answered: Everyone drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give will never thirst. Indeed the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.¡± (John 4:13-14) No one needs any explanation on this Bible verse. Jesus pointed out the useless way man tries to satisfy his inner thirst with water of the world. He offers the only way to quench the inner thirst in man that is to receive the spiritual water he gives and that water he gives will become a living spring that will never run dried. If you are hungry and thirsty or you know someone is, come to Jesus and ask for that living water from him to quench your thirsty soul without delay.