The Ax – An Illustrated Sermon | Pastor Chuck Salvo | 1.28.24 | Sunday AM | On Fire Christian Church

The Ax

  1. The intent of the Living God is that all men would repent and turn to Him! God began an assignment to communicate to the world this salvation. It is for everyone but God started this through a man. He chose Abraham. Through him God would raise the children of Israel and display His wonders through a people.
    1. The Jews, God’s people, would declare to the Gentiles so all were actually invited
    2. Today God speaks to the world through His people the church!
    3. ”To the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,“ Ephesians‬ ‭3‬:‭10‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    4. ”That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.“ Ephesians‬ ‭5‬:‭27‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
  1. The focus of the Lord in these last days is upon His Church which is the lighthouse for the world
    1. ”Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.” Malachi‬ ‭4‬:‭5‬-‭6‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    2. This was An end time prophecy, as John was sent prior to Jesus’ coming and was a type of Elijah so prior to the Judgment of God on the earth there will be a harvest of souls through a John the Baptist anointing.
  1. The message of John the Baptist
    1. ”In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” Matthew‬ ‭3‬:‭1‬-‭2‬ ‭‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    2. ”The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. As it is written in the Prophets: “Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.” “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord; Make His paths straight.’” Mark‬ ‭1‬:‭1‬-‭3‬ ‭‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    3. ”While Annas and Caiaphas were high priests, the word of God came to John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, saying: “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord; Make His paths straight. Every valley shall be filled And every mountain and hill brought low; The crooked places shall be made straight And the rough ways smooth;“ Luke‬ ‭3‬:‭2‬-‭5‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    4. ”He said: “I am ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: “Make straight the way of the Lord,”’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” John‬ ‭1‬:‭23‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
  1. John called out hypocrites/pretenders
    1. ”But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?“ Matthew‬ ‭3‬:‭7‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
    2. ”Then he said to the multitudes that came out to be baptized by him, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?“ Luke‬ ‭3‬:‭7‬ ‬‬‬‬
  1. John the Baptist was warning people to prepare and calling religious leaders snakes
    1. The pure seed of God’s DNA had been polluted and a great distortion of God’s way of doing things had been attacked
  1. Demons always attack God’s moral code and the Pharisees were no different
    1. Satan in the garden attacked Eve
    2. Cain attacked Abel over God’s approval of Abel
    3. Korah stood up against Moses and Aaron
    4. 3 Hebrews thrown into a fiery oven
    5. Daniel thrown into a lion’s den
    6. Jesus the author of life hung on a tree
    7. 11 of the apostles killed
    8. John tortured and thrown on the island Patmos
    9. There has always since the beginning been an attack against God’s moral code and against the righteous
  1. The mind of man is an evil place that must be harnessed. If not, it is open to the most hideous of thought
    1. ”Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.“ Genesis‬ ‭6‬:‭5‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
    2. ”For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts” Mark‬ ‭7‬:‭21‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
    3. ”The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked” Jeremiah‬ ‭17‬:‭9‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
    4. ”bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,“ 2 Corinthians‬ ‭10‬:‭5‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
  1. The modern day blasphemy of religion is nothing new in America. The wickedness of man’s thought permeated men even in the beginning of our independence from Britain
    1. An example is Thomas Paine!
    2. He authored Common Sense (1776) and The American Crisis (1776–1783), two of the most influential pamphlets at the start of the American Revolution, and he helped to inspire the Patriots in 1776 to declare independence from Great Britain.
    3. Although such great fruit on this tree and he being used to bring such deliverance to many the tree was attacked
    4. Thomas Paine then wrote a book called “The Age of Reason” advocated Deism, promoted reason and freethought, and argued against religion in general and Christian doctrine in particular.
    5. He disdained virtually all organized religion, proclaiming that his only church was his own mind.
      1. The study of theology, as it stands in the Christian churches, is the study of nothing; it is founded on nothing; it rests on no principles; it proceeds by no authority; it has no data; it can demonstrate nothing, and it admits of no conclusion.
      2. One good schoolmaster is of more use than a hundred priests
      3. . . .apostle- Thomas did not believe the resurrection [John 20:25], and, as they say, would not believe without having manual demonstration himself. So neither will I, and the reason is equally as good for me, and for every other person, as for Thomas.
    1. America so sooner had its independence and like the children of Israel in the wilderness forgot the God who delivered them. Bible colleges like Harvard, Princeton and Yale had become center of skepticism and atheism! The age of reason by Thomas Paine was required reading! Christianity was persecuted on campus and students literally had to meet secretly
    2. God sent a revival in 1802 to Yale where 1/3 of the students were converted
    3. People today within the church are attacking the moral absolutes of scripture
  1. Back to John the Baptist
    1. Matt 3:8. Bear fruit worthy of repentance
    2. Matt 3:9 We have Abraham as our father
    3. He was taking to Jews
  1. The enemy attacks trees of righteousness
    1. John 10:10 steal,kill and destroy
    2. After your faith
    3. He will do whatever he can do to destroy the life of that tree
    4. Matt 3:10 even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees
    5. The adversary consistently striving to destroy to rob us of fruit.
      1. Cares of life-idols-passions all seeking a throne
  1. The ax is laid at the root of the tree and every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down!
    1. why did I not feel the pain of the ax upon the brow of my conscience?
    2. The trees of the so called confessors of faith surely not the unbelievers for they are still dead in sin
      1. Who is swinging the ax?
      2. Do we not feel any more conviction? Are we like a drunkard?
    1. ”They have struck me, but I was not hurt; They have beaten me, but I did not feel it. When shall I awake, that I may seek another drink?” Proverbs‬ ‭23‬:‭35‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬
    1. Vs 10 every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire
    2. ”He also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down.’” Luke‬ ‭13‬:‭6‬-‭9‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬‬
      1. Will they sense the conviction upon their brow for the swinging of this ax?
    1. Cut it down!
    2. And throw it into the fire!
      1. ”His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” Matthew‬ ‭3‬:‭12‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
  1. John preaches to them a hope for all that would come to the Lord in repentance!
    1. ”I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.“ Matthew‬ ‭3‬:‭11‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬‬
    2. TODAY! The John the Baptist message is screaming “Repent church and prepare for the coming of the Lord!” Jesus is coming and even now is baptizing people with the Holy Spirit and Fire!

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