Saturday, December 15, 2018

God Is Love

Scripture:  John 13:34-35 (King James Version)
"A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.  By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another".
1 John 4: 7-13 (King James Version)
"Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.
10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
12 No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
13 Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit."
The ancient Greeks whose way of life revolved around architecture and decorative arts said, "God is beauty".  The Romans led by the Caesars who boasted in great military success said, "God is strength".  The Jews looking to Moses, the great law giver said, "God is law". 
But, John having laid his head upon the bosom of Jesus, our Savior and communed with Him says, "God is love".    The very nature of God is LOVE.  His Spirit is a Spirit of LOVE...a loving Spirit.  Note carefully the scripture (verses 12-13) above; in particular, "No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dweller in us, and his love is perfected in us.  Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit".

If we had to make God love us we would finally give up in despair.  
But, it is the fact that God does love us, even though we are unworthy and undeserving.  This fact gives us hope!  God does not love us because we are good or because we merit His love...He loves us whether we are good or bad.  God can't help loving us...because...God is LOVE.  When our lives please Him and we are doing right, He loves us with a love that makes Him glad.  When our lives do not please Him, He loves us with a love that makes Him sad.  Our disobedience, rejection and refusal, break His heart...but, He loves us with a broken heart.  He longs for us to turn to Him.

The Bible also says that "God is Light".  The sun can not shine upon the just and not upon the unjust.  The sun is light and it can not hep but shine.  God can not love one and withhold His love from another.  God is LOVE.  He can not help loving; His very nature, Spirit and disposition are LOVE.  So...if anyone goes to eternal damnation...they will go there in spite of God's LOVE for them, refusing to be affected and moved by it.

The apostle John, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit tells us very clearly that is was God's LOVE that gave Jesus to be our Savior and die on the cross in our stead.  He died for us.  There is no greater manifestation of LOVE than that which was demonstrated at the Cross of Calvary.  It was there God laid your sins and mine; the sins of the whole world upon His Son - the pure and spotless one.  He laid upon Him the iniquity of us all.  The scripture in Romans 5:8 says, "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us".  

"If that isn't LOVE, the oceans are dry,
If that isn't LOVE there's no stars in the sky".
Dottie Rambo

There is no way to preach the LOVE of God without preaching about Christ on the cross, the substitute for sinners...your sins and mine.  As God proved His love to us by dying on the cross in our place, so, in return, the greatest proof that we love God is when we manifest love for one another.  Please note again the scriptures that were referenced at the beginning...
*"for he that liveth not knowers not God".
*"for love is of God".
*"if we love one another God dweller in us".
*"and His love is perfected in us".
*"if God so loved us we ought also to love one another".
*"beloved let us love one another".
*"ye are my disciples if ye have love one to another".

Are you going your own way; hardening your heart against God's LOVE?
If you are...but, now you desire to come God's want to open your heart to His great want to put your life into His hands and receive forgiveness and salvation...then, Jesus is standing with arms outstretched, ready to welcome you into His LOVE, and give you eternal life.

Monday, October 29, 2018

We'll Soon Be Through

Scripture Text:  
Psalm 23:4  (King James Version)

Psalm 23 

"The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever".

I am sure that you will recognize these words of my favorite Psalm of David,
the sweet singer of Israel.

I see two pictures here.  One of David in a dark valley and the other one of David, safe on the
other side of the valley.
There are three words in the text that I want to draw your attention to.  These three words will form the basis for my message.

The first word is THOUGH.   It should be rendered EVEN THOUGH.
It speaks of God's plan for His children.  
It means "allowing" or "permitting".
Verse 4 - Yea, even though, God permits me to walk through the valleys.


God allows or permits all of His children to go into the valley every now and then.
In fact, all of life is a valley experience and becoming a Christian does not change this.

Salvation changes us.....not the valleys!

David often led his sheep through dark ravines with lions, bears, scorpions (and more)
that were on the prowl.  Today, we are in a valley characterized by depression
and danger.  The Psalmist David calls it here, in verse 4, "the valley of the shadow of death".

Perhaps some of you today are experiencing a dark valley.  It may be trouble in your home, poor health, financial difficulty, trails and problems of various nature.  All through the Bible we find that
trials and testing are the experiences of every one of God's children.
 Understand that God is well aware of your current situation!  
1Peter 4:12-13 says, "Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happed unto you; but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ;s sufferings; that, when  his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy".   Then Peter said in 1 Peter 5:10, "But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.

The second word is THROUGH.  It means to pass from beginning to end.
It speaks of the purpose of God with His children.
Why does God allow valley experiences for His children?
First of all, I believe He allows us to experience the valleys so that we learn to walk with Him day by day, as we pass through the valley.

The Christian life is a walk of faith.....not of sight!
God's purpose is to train us.  He desires that we learn to lean upon Him and trust Him.
He seeks to bring about our growth in grace.
But, note this....though God's plan for His children is that we experience valley experiences, 
His plan is that we NOT remain in the valley. He is NOT going to leave us in the valley.
Verse 6 tells us that Goodness and Mercy are right at our heels. 
God intends for us to come through! 
His purpose is that we pass through the valley and come out on the other side.
"Many are the afflictions of the righteous but the Lord deliverers them all".  (Psalm 34:19)        
The word "through" lets us know that there is something on the other side os the valley.
Verse 6 tells us what it is....."that we dwell in the house of the Lord forever".

The third word is THOU.
The word thou speaks to us of the promise of God to His children.
What is the promise to us while we are yet in the valley?
"I AM WITH YOU"  Verse 4 - our text - David said, "Thou art with me".

The Lord Our with us!

The promise of God to His children repeatedly is:
                                           through the waters...
                                                         the rivers...
                                                         the wilderness
                                                         the fire and the valleys of life.
through that trial...
              that test...
              that temptation and that trouble.

Jesus says,  "Be NOT afraid for I am with thee"!

Verse 4 - David says that The Presence of God - Banishes Fear.  "I will fear no evil". 
David says that The Presence of The Lord - Protects From The Enemy. "Thy rod comforts me".
This rod was a club with spikes in it that enabled the Shepherd to deal a death blow to wild animals.
God's Presence not only banishes fear 
but, guarantees our protection!
David tells us that the Shepherd not only had a rod but a staff......a crook.  With this staff he would lead the sheep and when they would wander he would pull them back
David also says "Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me".
God has promised to keep us safe while in the valley and He promises to bring us safely through the valley.  What a comfort to the children of God!

Child of God, the Good Shepherd is with you in the valley today.
Be Not Afraid!
Trust Him!
He will bring you through!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

I Am The Alphabet

Scripture: (King James Version)
Revelation 1:8
"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."

God is all sufficient.
He is enough.
He is all we need!

The Greek does give the article.  It is "I am THE Alpha TO the Omega".......which signifies "completeness".  From beginning to end.......Jesus is not only Alpha and Omega....BUT, everything in between.  He is and was and is to come......The Almighty!

Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last letter.  In English we say, "from A to Z".  In our language Jesus is saying, "I am A to Z.  I am the alphabet."  Four times He boldly declares this in The Book of Revelation.  He is the "Author and He is the Finisher".  Then He says, "I am the Way, I am the Truth, I am the Life".  He said, "I am the Door....I am the Bread of Life....I am the Water of Life....I am the Vine....I am the Shepherd....I am the Resurrection".  He is the Alpha and the Omega but over 115 times God speaks to us - He is everything in between.  Emmanuel (God with us)....the wonderful Counselor.  All of these speak to us about Gods ability to meet ALL of our needs.  He is the Prince of Peace....the everlasting Father....the Mighty God.

Let us dwell now upon these words where He in essence is saying, I AM THE ALPHABET.  As important as the alphabet is to our way of living, so vital is Jesus to our lives.  What would we do without the alphabet?  What would we do without Jesus?  Without the 26 letters of our alphabet there wold be no literature and very limited communication of any kind.  Think of the volume and volumes of literature; the thousands and thousands of tons of print that roll from our presses every day.  Think about it....without the alphabet we would not have the precious Word of God.  It is vital to our way of life.  Jesus is vital to our way of life.  "He that hath the Son hath life, He that hath not the Son hath not life." Praise God that the elder men of God, inspired of the Holy Spirit and with the use of the alphabet, were able to impart to us Gods message; Gods thinking and Gods love.

Why is Jesus the alphabet?  Because He embodies the speech and the expressions of God. By Him we know what God is like.  By His lips and His life we know the heart and the thinking of God our Heavenly Father.  The Bible is the written word of God.  Jesus is the living word of God.  He says, "I am the alphabet".  He is supreme!  He is the Alpha TO the Omega  Nothing was before Him, nothing will supersede Him.  Nothing can take His place.  He is ALL in ALL! In Him we live and move and have our being! One could never form words enough to fully describe His greatness.
"Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised".

There are only 26 letters in the alphabet, yet their combinations are inexhaustible.  The alphabet is inexhaustible in that it speaks of Christ.  Our Lord is a limitless fountain of wisdom and knowledge.  Love, power, truth, grace, mercy.....on and on we could go.  All that Jesus is to us and all that He provided for us is limitless and inexhaustible!

The alphabet is the key to all interchange of thought.          The same can be said of Jesus. Because of Him alone there is a two way communication between God and us.  God speaks to us through His Son.  Jesus said, "No man cometh to the Father but by me". 
Jesus also said, 

   "And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it."  John 14: 13-14 

Thank God for sending Jesus.  Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift.  It only takes 5 letters of the alphabet to spell out J-E-S-U-S.  But, oh the volumes and volumes of meanings in that wonderful name.  There is POWER in that name.  What does Jesus mean to you?

There is no tool in all the universe as versatile and adaptable as the alphabet.  Could anything better depict our Lord and His perfect adaptability in meeting our needs?  He says, "I am the alphabet".  There is enormous meaning in this.  Jesus is the beginning and the ending and everything in between!
Whenever there is a vacuum, He steps in to fill the void.
Only "HE" can do this.  We are a people with many many needs.  Praise be to God we have a Lord who is more than adequate to meet our every need.

Our Lord not only HAS the answer, He IS the answer!

He WAS...He IS...He is TO COME...the Almighty.

Yesterday He died for me
               Today He lives for me
                        Tomorrow He is coming for me.

He is not only King of the Jews and King of the Saints, He is the King of Kings!

Even so come Lord Jesus!

Are you ready for "His" coming?

Friday, August 10, 2018

Child-Like Faith

Mark 10:13-16 King James Version (KJV)

"And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them.  But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.  Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.  And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them."


"We see in this portion of scripture the very heart of our Lord.  We see a Lord who is willing and wanting ALL to come to Him for His blessing.  Let me at the very beginning give you the "heart" of this passage.....from the youngest person represented to the oldest person represented....... 
Jesus encourages loving hearts to bring to Him those who can not bring themselves, that they in some way might receive His blessing.
If you are reading this today and at some point, in some way, there are other people that have been instrumental in your desire to know Christ, be very thankful, because Jesus wants to bless YOU, this very day.

Now that you have the "heart" of this passage, let me open it up to you further. 
First of all, this scripture nor this message has absolutely nothing to do with infant baptism in any form...sprinkling, christening, or whatever!  The reason, those who believe in such ceremonies have to use scripture such as this is because the Bible does not teach infant baptism....and certainly not baptismal regeneration.  
Only those old enough to make a profession of faith were baptized in the Bible.  
The Baptism spoken of in the Bible is never by sprinkling or christening (so called)
but, by immersion in water, only.

The Bible does teach that children were brought to Jesus 
to be presented to the Lord, dedicated to Him.  
But understand - that even this in no way assures the child of Salvation.  

Rather, it is the parents (or other responsible person for the child) coming to Christ with the child, thanking God for the child.  This parent pledges or promises to raise the child, God's gift, according to the Word of God and publicly are asking God's blessing upon that child.

The real significance of the Dedication of Children is much more for the parents or guardian.  These individuals feel their deep responsibility in raising the child, to teach them God's Word and lead them to Christ for salvation.

There is no hint of being baptized here in the above scripture. 
 No hint of "godfathers" or "godmothers".  
No sign of The Cross, etc. 
In fact, the Bible says that Jesus baptized not.....but, His disciples... baptized in His name. (John 4:2)  So, if they brought the children to Jesus to be baptized they brought them to the wrong person.  The disciples were not accustomed to baptizing babies/young children or they would not have rebuked the parents for bringing them.
These children were not brought to a sprinkling or christening reception.  In fact, there was not a drop of so-called "holy water" mentioned anywhere.  
These children were brought to Jesus!  
The Fountain of Living Water, Himself simply "took them up in His arms, put His hands on them and blessed them."

Jesus was displeased with His disciples because they discouraged those individuals for bringing others to Him....for discouraging those who themselves were anxious to come to Him.
Let me tell is a sin that brings displeasure from God when someone hinders ANYONE, no matter how young or how mature in years, from receiving the blessings of Jesus!
People better be mighty careful leading others to some meaningless ceremony or gathering rather that to The Living Christ, Himself and His anointed presence and power!!

"Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away."   2 Timothy 3:5-7                                                                                                       

"But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven."   Matthew 19:14  
Later Jesus said, Verily I say unto YOU.....
Yes friends,  He's talking to YOU now.  He's talking to those of you who are not in the Kingdom of God.   He is instructing You how You can enter the Kingdom of You can be saved.
(Matthew 19:13- 30)Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.  But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.And he laid his hands on them, and departed thence.  And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?  And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness,  Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.  But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions. Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved?  But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.  And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.
How can you be "born again"....."be saved"? 

By simple having child-like Faith.

A child doesn't understand mysteries and controversies.  A child doesn't see all the hypocrisies and prejudices.  They believe what is told to them about God and what is in the Bible.  Children believe without much doubt and not too many questions.  When they pray they believe that Jesus hears them and forgives them.  They believe He will answer their prayers.
When a child talks to Jesus, He is a person and He is near at hand.  Children are quick to forgive and forget.  They are cheerful and love to rejoice.  It makes them so happy when God blesses them and saves their soul. 
 Simple - child-like Faith and Trust.  
If you ask them about asking Jesus in to their hearts they won't say, "I think so" or "I hope so".  They believe and now they are full of joy.

So it is for everyone - just the way a child receives Christ.   

Unfortunately, so many people know so much that they know too much.  
Those individuals who have over active brains are always thinking, often leading them to criticism and skepticism.  But, they along with everyone else must come to Christ and receive His gospel as a little child.  They must come simply believing and trusting in Jesus.

"All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."  John 6:37

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Wednesday, May 30, 2018

(2 Part) Recovering The Lost/Locating The Ax Head

2 Kings 6:1-7
 King James Version (KJV)
"And the sons of the prophets said unto Elisha, Behold now, the place where we dwell with thee is too strait for us. Let us go, we pray thee, unto Jordan, and take thence every man a beam, and let us make us a place there, where we may dwell. And he answered, Go ye. And one said, Be content, I pray thee, and go with thy servants. And he answered, I will go. So he went with them. And when they came to Jordan, they cut down wood. But as one was felling a beam, the axe head fell into the water: and he cried, and said, Alas, master! for it was borrowed. And the man of God said, Where fell it? And he shewed him the place. And he cut down a stick, and cast it in thither; and the iron did swim. Therefore said he, Take it up to thee. And he put out his hand, and took it."

"The Prophet Elisha had gathered around him a school of prophets.  The present quarters had become over crowded.  So, Elisha took some of the students down to Jordan to build a new school by the river.  They set out with their axes, every man taking a beam.  
We know from the above scripture that at least one of them had a "borrowed" ax. It is this young man and his borrowed ax that we want to center our attention on this morning.  I would like to speak on the subject:  
Recovering The Lost.

It is the cutting edge of the ax head that especially demands our attention.  The ax head speaks of the anointing of the Holy Spirit upon our lives; the penetrating power of God, the effectiveness of a a spirit filled life, testimony and service.  It speaks of lively worship and witness.
When you lose the ax head - the cutting edge of the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit you don't have much left! 
When you lose the power and the anointing you lose the joy of salvation.   Friends, your education, your personality, your enthusiasm and zeal can never substitute for the anointing of the Holy Spirit.  When you lose the power and the anointing ....the cutting edge, you are not cutting or trimming but just scratching up the bush.

You may say "it is just a handle."  It is just a stick of wood. 
Sadly, today there are many ministers of the Gospel preaching with just a handle.  They are whittling away with just an old dry stick.  The Bible says that it's the anointing that breaketh the yoke...the anointing power of the Holy Spirit.  "It is not by might and it's not by power but by my spirit says the Lord."  (Zechariah 4:6)  

Notice with me the "Loaning" of the ax head.  We read that it was "borrowed."  It was owned and loaned by another person.  This meant that this man using it had to give an account of it.  We are not our own.  Everything we are and everything we have is loaned to us from God.  One day we must give account to God for those things.  Those gifts and tools He has placed in our hands.  What are we doing with the time, talents, treasures, things and tools that God has blessed us with?  We are responsible!  We must give account!

Next, notice the "Losing" of the ax head.
But, before we consider that.....let's think for a moment of the "Loosening" of the ax head.  
Because you see....before you can lose the ax head and before it can "fly off the handle" it has to become loose.   
I don't have to tell you or remind you that "loose living" will rob you of the Holy Spirits anointing.  You may shake yourself like a shorn Samson and swing away with just a handle and not even realize that the Holy Spirit has departed.

                 The ax head always gets loose before you lose it!

No Christian backslides all at once.  They get loose little by little.  Somebody says they committed "such and such" sin and backslide.  No - they backslid and then went out and did "such and such".  It gets in your head, in your heart and then in to your hands.

The ax head first gets loose and dull.  
Because of neglect.  

Out there in this world we come in contact with all sorts of things.  We hit hard knots of persecution, discontentment, and discouragement.  There are old nails of fear, doubt...and much more.  
Unless we keep that cutting edge honed and sharpened on the grindstone and whetstone of prayer and The Word of God, it will get dull!  
Some ax heads get loose and are lost simply 
                                                      because they "dry out".  
They shrink and slip right off.  Some just dry up because they won't worship and praise the Lord.  I don't mean just some dry Amens now and then.  I mean some good ole juicy Healleluyahs, Glory to Gods and Thank you Jesus!

When I was growing up we used to burn a lot of wood.  And, yes, we had to cut our own wood.  My Dad was real particular about our axes.  Every now and then he would have us soak the ax head in oil or water.  That ax handle would swell up and get good and tight.  Let me remind you that oil and water are types of the Holy Spirit.  
So - you want to know the remedy for dry or loose ax heads?  A good old soaking in the Holy Spirit.....a fresh refilling and a fresh anointing of the Holy Spirit!

It is easy to get dull.  It is easy to get dry.  It is easy to get loose.  The Bible says, "be ye filled with the Spirit".  Be ye "being" filled.  It is not, " I was filled 15 years ago or even 1 year ago.  
But, are you filled and full right now?  Otherwise, we get loose.

And, then comes the "Losing" of the ax head.
The man in the scripture above was feeling a beam and that ax head had gotten dull, dry ad loose.  It flew off and into the water.  
Oh, the tragedy of lost power, 
 A lost anointing..... 
A lost effectiveness for God.
This is the picture of many churches and many christians.  Even in the midst of a diligent work for God we can lose the cutting edge anointing if we don't pray and stay in The Word.  If we don't worship, witness and keep the ax head in good shape.....keeping the Holy Spirits power in our lives.

Do we have the dynamite of God or are we just lighting off fire crackers?  
Why should we be content with fire crackers when God has given us dynamite?

Have we gotten a little dull?
A little dry?
A little loose?

Perhaps what we all need is a good soaking in the oil and water of the Holy Spirit!
Perhaps we need a good tightening and sharpening so we can go out and feel some more beams for Jesus.  Amen?

Tonight we will conclude with 
The Locating of The Ax Head 
or Steps to Recovery.

Scripture:  2 Kings 6: 1-7
This morning we saw how the ax head was "Loaned", how it was "Loosened" and how it was "Lost".  Tonight we want to preach on -
Locating The Lost

Power restored
The Anointing Renewed

Praise God the story does not end with LOSS.  
There is Recovery!
There is power lost but praise God there is power regained.

We have likened the ax head to the anointing of the Holy Spirit.  The effectiveness of a Spirit filled life and testimony.
The penetrating power of God, lively worship and witness.

The man in the scripture was a man in the midst of diligent service to God lost his ax head.  But, before he lost it, it became loose.  Loose living robs us of the anointing of God.  
One doesn't backslide all at once.  It begins with neglect.  
Neglect in prayer, in worship, in witness and in reading and studying The Word of God.

Locating the ax head......
Notice that first of all, when the man lost his ax head he confessed it.  He said "Alas Master it was borrowed".  
We said this morning that the ax was owned and loaned by another person which meant that made this man responsible.  He must give an account.  
What are we doing with those things God has entrusted to our hands?
But, he confessed his loss.  We will never regain our loss regardless what it is unless we are honest with God and confess our need and our loss.
We can keep on whittling away with just a handle...going through the motions..just skinning the bark..with no penetration and no power.
Thankfully, this man had sense enough to stop swinging until the ax head was recovered.

When we are willing to cry out to God and confess that we have lost it, then we are on our way to recovery.

#1 Step to recovery is Confession.

Elisha, the man of God said to this young man who lost his ax head, "where did you lose it"?  The man said, "right there".  
He showed him the place.  
He knew where he lost it .....and so do you.  
People who lose out know when and where they lost it!  
You know when you gave up praying and seeking God and His Word.....when you quit being faithful to the house of God.  You know when you stopped your time of worship.... where and when you allowed the matters of this world to lead you astray.

Confess it!

Go back there and show God the place. 
Restore that altar.  Give up that habit.  
Get back in to His Word again.  Be faithful to worship.  
Praise God again.  Get right with your earthly relationships.  
You know where you lost it.  
Confess it and tell God you want your ax head back.

Step #2 is Intercession.

He appealed to his master.  "Alas Master".   He was confident his master could help him.  Thank God we have our master whom we can call on!  We are confident He can help us!  We can confess our need to Him and He will hear us.

When we intercede He intervenes!

Step #3 is Supernatural Intervention.

The man of God cut down a stick and threw it in the water over the spot where the ax head fell and the iron did swim. 

The "recovery" wasn't affected by natural means but by      Divine Intervention.  
The iron did swim.  It did not just float.  It swam.  It swam over to where the man could pick it up.  It defied the laws of gravity. It overcame the current.  Let me tell you......God knows how to defy the laws of nature and overcome the currents to bring us deliverance!

Step #4 is Appropriation (to take possession of)

And the man of God said, "pick it up - take it up to thee - reach out and get it".

God has promised you.....It's yours - claim it - take it - thank and praise God for it!

And he put out his hand and took it.  He confessed his loss. He prayed and interceded and the Master intervened.  A miracle was wrought.  He appropriated the promise and recovered what he had lost.

  You can do the same!