Cultivate the Garden

God is so good. I’ve heard so many awesome testimonies from what God is doing in our church and city. Twelve people were saved last week at an outreach at the Kearney Center, and I’ve heard testimonies all week of how Jesus is changing hearts. We finished a message series last Sunday called A Firm Foundation, and we talked about the importance of building our relationship with God. I’ve heard great feedback from people on how the Holy Spirit used this series to wake them up to the transforming work of Jesus. It has been an exciting few weeks. As we enter into March, we are going to fix our eyes on Christ. He is the author and finisher of our faith, and we should be hungry to know Him deeply. 

We are going to fix our eyes on Christ

When God created Adam and placed him in the Garden of Eden these were God’s instructions: 

The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Now out of the ground the Lord God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him.

Genesis 2:15-20

Adam was asked to tend the garden where God would meet with Him. While faithfully serving God in the garden, Adam received the assignment to name every animal in the world. While he was naming the animals it became obvious that everything in the world had a companion but him. This created a desire in Adam to want companionship and love. God gave Adam a wife, named Eve. This relationship was the first marriage and it laid the groundwork for God communicating His love to man when it was time to send Christ to redeem His people. Adam cultivated the garden, and God used the garden to reveal His love for man. When we focus on a healthy relationship with God everything else falls in place. Things aren’t always easy, but they do have purpose.

Since we are descendants of Adam, we have this requirement from God also. We don’t have a physical garden, but we do have a spiritual garden. This garden is where God still meets His people and we are called to cultivate it; make sure things are cared for. When we cultivate this relationship with God we discover our deep need for Jesus. We discover a sense of purpose for our lives. Just like Adam, when we focus on growing our relationship with God everything else falls in place.

When we cultivate this relationship with God we discover our deep need for Jesus 

Also, just like Adam we fight the sin of ditching God and doing things our own way. We like being king over our garden; we like calling the shots. However, the truth is Jesus will always be a better king than you. He has always existed, he saw the fall of sin, and is responsible for the redemption of mankind. Nobody knows how to tend a garden like Jesus and He wants to be the king over your heart. This is the premise for our March sermon series, The Excellent King. We will be studying the preexistence, the atoning work, and the character of Jesus as we lead up to Easter Sunday. 

Jesus will always be a better king than you

If you would like to read ahead for this Sunday check out Genesis 2:15-17, Matthew 24:1-35, John 1:9-14, Genesis 22:11-12, and Proverbs 8:27-31. We will be covering Jesus in the Old Testament, the Trinity, and why Jesus was sent from heaven to earth.

 

- Marshall Ochs

 

A few things to pray for

As you spend time in prayer this week, join with us by praying for these things:

  • Pray for a desire to study Jesus.
  • Pray for clear eyes to see Jesus working in your everyday life. 
  • Pray for opportunities to tell people about Jesus.