Okay, I’m going to sound like a faith preacher.
Hey, maybe we need a little more faith. I think that sometimes we settle in and fail to ask God for great things. Today I want to talk about INCREASE. (Did you hear how I shouted “Increase-ah”? Excuse me, I have to mop my forehead with my hanky). Let’s ask the God of increase for more. For his glory. Listen to what he says in Ezekiel 36:37-38:
“Thus says the Lord God: This also I will let the house of Israel ask me to do for them: to increase their people like a flock. Like the flock for sacrifices, like the flock at Jerusalem during her appointed feasts, so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of people. Then they will know that I am the LORD.”
God told his people to ask him to increase them like the flocks in Jerusalem during feast days – the city would’ve been one noisy crazy place packed with bleating sheep and goats and mooing cows for the sacrifices. God said ask me to increase your population like this.
And when the cities were jammed with people like flocks they would know that he was the Lord. They’d realize it was God’s hand that had increased them.
God is a God of blessing. The first blessing God pronounced was a blessing of increase.
“And God blessed them, saying, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.’” Genesis 1:22
Immediately after forming the first man and woman he blessed them also:
“And God blessed them. And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth…’”
In the Lord’s prayer God commanded us to pray “Your kingdom come”. God’s kingdom is his rule. To pray that his kingdom would come is to pray that he will bring more and more people under his rule – in other words, to increase his flock.
Let’s ask God to save more and more people throughout the earth and to increase our churches. And as we see more and more people saved we’ll know that the increase came from the Lord.
Let’s invite people to church and preach the gospel and use our gifts and use technology and work hard and reach out and greet people and welcome them. But above all let’s pray. Let’s ask the Lord to increase us.
I’m encouraged by the book of Acts:
Acts 6:7 And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.
Acts 12:24 But the word of God increased and multiplied.
Acts 16:5 So the churches were strengthened in the faith, and they increased in numbers daily.
Acts 19:20 So the word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily.
Notice, God not only increased, he multiplied! I believe the Lord wants to save multitudes around the world and in your city or town.
O Lord Jesus, do this again! Please grant your people to increase throughout the earth for your glory. And please add to our numbers so that more and more thanks will rise to your name. Increase us like a flock so we’ll know that you are the Lord!
Are you ready for the sound of bleating? Sheep can get awful messy. And have you ever smelled them? But it’s going to be fun watching God bring them in and transform them.