New Year Needs

Title: New Year Needs

Bible Book: Ephesians 4 : 10-13

Author: Donnie L. Martin

Subject: New Year Needs



I’m not sure why but every year when New Year’s Day rolls around I find myself experiencing a certain excitement and expectancy. Perhaps it’s just the sense of starting over. Or maybe it’s the thought of a new beginning coupled with the prospect of things somehow being better. Whatever it may be, the beginning of a new year seems to elicit a kind of renewed hopefulness. Unfortunately, that excitement and expectancy usually doesn’t last past March, when my thoughts begin to turn toward April and tax time.

However, even though we have to pay taxes, we Christians have more cause for hope than anyone. Jesus has promised us His presence (Matt.28: 20b), His peace (John 14: 27), His provision (Matt.6: 33; Phil.4: 19), and His power (Acts 1: 8a). We of all people, ought to look forward to this new year, knowing that our heavenly Father means us good, not evil.

New Year’s Day is traditionally a day of making resolutions. These resolutions usually pertain to things that will better us in some way. We all have good intentions in making these resolutions, but we often fail to follow through. However, the things that I want to suggest to us today are far more vital and serious than the usual self-help resolutions we see so much of this time of year. To be quite honest, they are humanly unobtainable if one depends on willpower alone.

Though there are many admirable spiritual goals that could be mentioned today, I believe those I will mention in this message are greatly needed.

I. Passion For Lost Souls

A. Because Many Don’t Know The Savior.

Matthew 7:13-14, “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

1 John 5:19, “And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.”

The word “wickedness,” as used in 1 John 5: 19, does not refer to a moral condition, but to a malicious character—Satan himself. The meaning of this word is “wicked one.”1

It was J.O. Sanders who offered this summary of the strategies of Satan:

Strategies of Satan with unbelievers:

Blinding the minds of the unregenerate (2 Cor.4: 4).

Snatching away the good seed of the word (Matthew 13: 19).

Lulling the unbeliever into a false sense of security (Luke 11: 21).

Laying snares for the unwary (2 Timothy 2: 25-26).

Masquerading as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11: 13-14).

Deceiving those whose minds are not subject to the Word of truth (Rev.12: 9).

Mixing truth with error (Matthew 13: 25-28).2

B. Because The Penalty Of Sin Is Serious.

John 3:36, “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”

Revelation 20:15, “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”

In the early hours of Saturday morning, a couple of years ago, while watching the coverage of the execution of Saddam Hussein, I found it very disconcerting to be looking into the eyes of a man who was only moments away from waking up in Hell. To his last breath, Saddam Hussein remained spiritually blind, defiant and unrepentant, relying on a false sense of religious security (December 30, 2006).

C. Because God Loves Every Sinner.

Romans 5:8, “But God commendeth (“proved” or “established”) his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

We need to ask God to give us a burning desire to see the lost come to know Christ.

It is easy to determine when something is aflame. It ignites other material. Any fire that does not spread will eventually go out. A church without evangelism is a contradiction in terms, just as a fire that does not burn is a contradiction.3

We have been given a most wonderful, life-saving message. If we don’t share it with the world, who will?

Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962), the world-famous violinist, earned a fortune with his concerts and compositions, but he generously gave most of it away. So, when he discovered an exquisite violin on one of his trips, he wasn’t able to buy it.

Later, having raised enough money to meet the asking price, he returned to the seller, hoping to purchase that beautiful instrument. But to his great dismay it had been sold to a collector. Kreisler made his way to the new owner’s home and offered to buy the violin. The collector said it had become his prized possession and he would not sell it.

Keenly disappointed, Kreisler was about to leave when he had an idea. “Could I play the instrument once more before it is consigned to silence?” he asked. Permission was granted, and the great virtuoso filled the room with such heart-moving music that the collector’s emotions were deeply stirred.

“I have no right to keep that to myself,” he exclaimed. “It’s yours, Mr. Kreisler. Take it into the world, and let people hear it.”4

D. Because Time Is Short.

John 9:4, “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”

2 Corinthians 6:2b, “…behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”

II. Proclivity For The Scriptures

“Proclivity” means “a natural or habitual tendency or inclination” toward something.5

A. We Need To Love God’s Word.

Psalm 119:97, 140, “O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day. 140 Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.”

1 Peter 2:2, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:”

If you were to lose your eyesight and could not read God’s Word, would it matter to you?

A man in Kansas City was severely injured in an explosion. Evangelist Robert L. Sumner tells about him in his book The Wonders of the Word of God. The victim’s face was badly disfigured, and he lost his eyesight as well as both hands. He was just a new Christian, and one of his greatest disappointments was that he could no longer read the Bible. Then he heard about a lady in England who read Braille with her lips. Hoping to do the same, he sent for some books of the Bible in Braille. Much to his dismay, however, he discovered that the nerve endings in his lips had been destroyed by the explosion.

One day, as he brought one of the Braille pages to his lips, his tongue happened to touch a few of the raised characters and he could feel them. Like a flash he thought, I can read the Bible using my tongue. At the time Robert Sumner wrote his book, the man had “read” through the entire Bible four times.6

B. We Need To Learn God’s Word.

Colossians 3:16a, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom…”

2 Timothy 2:15, “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

C. We Need To Live God’s Word.

Luke 6:46, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?”

John 14:15, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.”

James 1:22, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.”

III. Progress In Our Spirituality

A. We Need To Be More Christlike As People.

Romans 8:29a, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son…”

Colossians 3:10, “And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:”

B. We Need To Be More Christlike In Our Practice.

John 5:30b, “…I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.”

Acts 10:38, “How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.”

Colossians 1:10, “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;”

A life patterned after anyone other than Christ is flawed at best.

When the wife of missionary Adoniram Judson told him that a newspaper article likened him to some of the apostles, Judson replied, “I do not want to be like a Paul...or any mere man. I want to be like Christ...I want to follow Him only, copy His teachings, drink in His Spirit, and place my feet in His footprints...Oh, to be more like Christ!”7

C. We Need To Be More Christlike In Our Perspective.

Colossians 3:1-2, “If (since) ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. 2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”

1 Kenneth S. Wuest, Wuest’s Word Studies, Vol. II: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan; The Exegesis Of I John, pg. 183.

2 J.O. Sanders, Satan Is No Myth, Moody, 1975, p. 72ff.

3 Christian Theology in Plain Language, p. 162.

4 Our Daily Bread, February 4, 1994.

5 Victoria Neufeldt, Editor in Chief, and David B. Guralnik, Editor in Chief Emeritus, Webster’s New World Dictionary, Third College Edition: Webster’s New World Dictionaries, New York, New York; pg. 1073.

6 Robert L. Sumner, The Wonders of the Work of God.

7 Source unknown. Acquired from

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