by Christopher Harbin

This content is part of a series.

NOTE: This sermon is part 27 and 28 of a 40 part devotional series. Two sermons outlines are included in this download.


Twenty-Seventh Day (27 of 40)
Series: Lenten Devotion
Christopher Harbin
Isaiah 35:5-7

‘‘The blind will see, and the ears of the deaf will be healed. Those who were lame will leap around like deer; tongues once silent will begin to shout. Water will rush through the desert, scorching sand will turn into a lake, and thirsty ground will flow with fountains. Grass will grow in wetlands, where packs of wild dogs once made their home.’’ Isaiah 35:5-7

Sounds great! We like passages pointing to a happy reversal of fortunes for God’s suffering people. We gladly sing songs filled with their refrain, joyfully belting out words that comfort us and give security at the picture of a better future, of pie in the sky, of an ending to suffering, pain, want, and discomfort. At least, we like such passages as long as we consider them as speaking to our fortune and material welfare. What we may miss, however, is that they point to God’s interests in reversal of fortune for those in despair more than comfort for those doing well.


Twenty-Eighth Day (28 of 40)
Series: Lenten Devotion
Christopher Harbin
John 15:4-5

‘‘Stay joined to me, and I will stay joined to you. Just as a branch cannot produce fruit unless it stays joined to the vine, you cannot produce fruit unless you stay joined to me. I am the vine, and you are the branches. If you stay joined to me, and I stay joined to you, then you will produce lots of fruit. But you cannot do anything without me.’’ John 15:4-5

We want Jesus alongside us as we travel life’s uncertainties. We want a strong helper on our side to get us through our conflicts. We crave the comfort of knowing we are not alone, not forgotten, not overlooked, not helpless. In the process, we overlook that the purpose of being joined to Jesus is that we might live according to his example, bearing the same kind of results we see in his own life.
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