Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church Lexington, KY. Pastor JOE H. HEAD
Pleasant Ridge Baptist ChurchLexington, KY. Pastor JOE H. HEAD 


Text: Isaiah 55:6-11 Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."

Intro: the bible does not contain the word of God; the bible IS THE WORD OF GOD. God has sent HIS WORD into all the world for the attention of humankind. Has it been effective? Absolutely, He said by Isaiah that it will prosper in the thing for which he has sent it. Does his word ever return unto Him void? No. God’s Word is a huge success, all atheists not withstanding.

Bible examples abundantly prove its effectiveness, and it is proven by our own experiences. It was effective in YOU and in ME!

It has been effective in the founding of our nation. What was it that the father of our country said, something like, "it is impossible to govern without the Bible and God."

In what respects does it please God to accomplish and prosper the sending forth of His word into the world?


Who dares to explain the make up of the one true almighty supreme God? Who is sufficient to define Him? Or to describe Him? It cannot be done. There must be a revelation of him from himself. If we were to make it up, the God we would construe would be more like unto us, than like unto what he really is. Man has always been bent on forming a God patterned after his own image. The God the average person would describe falls short of reality due to human carnality. We would define his being according to our fallen and depraved flesh.

1. Therefore, human reason is insufficient to understand Him or to describe Him.

Solomon got it right, Eccl 3:11 He (God) hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end."

Scientific study cannot find God unless first the scientist finds Him in life. Once this is done, God can be found in the depths of the microscope and the infinitude of the telescope. He can be discovered everywhere once the mind is open to the possibility of discovery. And God must open that up to us.

2. Human logic fails to comprehend the infinite because we are finite. People see the obvious of God’s handiwork everyday, but try to live in the denial of His existence. 1 Cor 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." They see it, but don’t see it.

This is from, Isaiah 64:4 For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him."

Romans 11:33-35 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counseller? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? (3 who’s and a how!)

3. Human searching will not find Him. I believe Job’s friend Zophar got it right when he stated, Job 11:7 Canst thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection?" The implied understanding is, NO!

Most people, especially the educated ones, don’t want to find God because they know that if they do, it makes them accountable to God.

4. And so, a divine revelation is necessary. 1 Cor 1:18-25 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men."

Hebrews 1:1-2 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;"

2 Peter 1:19-21 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."

2 Tim 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:" "...rightly dividing the word of truth," 2 Tim 2:11.

It is true that God has spoken and His word is final. People have an obligation to listen to it.

Hey young people. Why do you get fidgety in church and think you have to go to the rest room or to get a drink of water or whisper to one another, or write notes. That is rudeness to the preacher and an insult to God above. I know why you do it. How? I remember why I did that when I was young. You get bored with the preaching. Why bored? You haven’t been listening! Or your don’t want to hear it. So why are you here then? You best pay attention. In a sense, your life may depend upon what you hear!

Psalms 33:4 For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth." People, when God speaks, let all the earth be silent.


God’s plan to that men should believe the gospel and be saved.

Acts 13:46-48 Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed."

The Jews fumbled, and the Gentiles received the ball and run with it and have been running with it ever since. For a time the early Jewish church kept offering the gospel to none but the Jews, Acts 11:19 Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen traveled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only." Then came the turning point in Paul’s ministry to them. We now live in what has been called the Gentile dispensation. We have been grafted into the Jewish vine and they, the natural branches, have been cut off, but God is able and will one day graft them back in again.

Romans 11:11-12 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?"

The USA has fumble the ball of moral leadership! And has been on the fast track to no longer being the only super power in the world as it has been in the past. We are crumbling, decaying, and falling apart at the seams. Patriotism is all but gone, morality sinks to new lows every day, and people just don’t care. People are like the citizens of that Nobleman’s country who do not want to be ruled over by righteousness.

How simple a solution to the sin problem, the moral problem, the complex world in which we live, but men will not have God to rule over them.

The power of evangelism is not in the evangelist, it is in the Word of God. The power in a church is not in its program it is in the Word of God. The power is not in a churches 3 point plan to succeed, it is in the skillful use of the word of God. The power is not in the number of people involved, it is in the constant use of the Bible. The power is not in the preacher or his prowess, it is in the powerful use of the Scriptures.

The Word of God is like a lion set loose, it is king in the jungles of the world. Just set it free and it will show how powerful it is. Some churches have so many plans and schemes to make the word effective that it is actually bound and held back, rather that set free.

The churches in the New Testament didn’t have anything but the word. But that was enough to conquer evil where it was heard. It was enough to inform people of God’s will for them. It was with power and not human strength.

On the day of Pentecost, it was the WORD that God used to bring 3,000 conversion to Christ. It was the word that they scattered all over the land once they were driven from Jerusalem by persecution, Acts 16:6 Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia," Paul told young Timothy, to preach the word. 2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine." What better for a young preacher to do if he wants to please God who called him to minister.

Peter tells give the right agenda for ministers, 1 Peter 4:11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."

Use the ability God giveth to speak the WORD because, Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:" Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."

The word spread and the results of it were told all around.

1 Thess 1:5-10 For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing. For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come."

Sadly, some churches began to leave off the word and substituted the traditions of men for the "thus saith the Lord"

As the centuries have passed, churches are very religious, but they are not fundamentally grounded in the Word of God. They must get back to it if they wish to be recognized as authentic and rewarded for service. Recall the words of Paul, Romans 10:8-10 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation."

There was a time when men turned from idols to serve God. 1 Thess 1:9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God;" but low and behold what has happened is that many Americans have turned back to idol worship. The worship of sin, Satan, and self. And the wrath of God will fall upon this nation of evil doers, soon, I think. Yet not on us only, but the other corrupt nations as well. America, judgment day is coming so you better get ready to reap what you’ve sown.

There is one way out. 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." Under God’s wrath you do not want to be. Amen!

I believe God requires of us what he did in Deuteronomy 10:12-13 And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?" Our rebellion will reap God’s wrath.

What God has written is the final record for us to follow. Deuteronomy 12:32 What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." The Apostle John closed out the final book of revealed truth in Revelation 22:18-19 mentioning the consequences of adding to or taking away from God’s word. The bible is sufficient as is! It is God’s complete revelation of himself. He used holy men to jot it down. 2 Peter 1:20-21 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."


We cannot respond to something about which we know nothing.

God’s word will either melt or harden the hearers. The same sun that melts wax, also hardens clay. Examples:

Acts 17:32-34 And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter. So Paul departed from among them. Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areopagite, and a woman named Damaris, and others with them."

Paul on the road to Damascus fell to his knees under the blinding melting light from heaven and said, "Lord what wilt thou have me to do?"

At the departure of many followers, Peter melted by the power of Jesus’ word said, " to whom shall we go, thou hast the words of eternal life."

Our nation has become much like the parable of the nobleman in Luke 19:12-14. "He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come. But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us."


Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."

God’s word is reasonable. Men may argue with it, but will fail to make it irrelevant. His word is relevant to every life situation. The reason society is so messed up and confused is because it has turned it back on the relevancy of the bible to every day life.

The only psychiatrist one needs is Jesus and He says the truth will make us free.

What is the matter with marriages in turmoil, governments in collapse, societies in crisis, people in distress?

It is that they have forsaken the one who is the fountain of life for a broken, shattered existence in the world that has left God out. Jeremiah 2:13 For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water."

The Lord says, come to the conference table and lets talk! Jesus came unto his own, but to their harm, his own received him not. To them Jesus stated their problem being one of lack of will, "ye will not come unto me that ye might have life." Now that is being unreasonable that they will NOT even come to the conference table for discussion. Some do come drawn by their Sovereign God to reason together and before the conversation is done their sins are made white as snow. Cleansed!


2 Cor 5:18-21 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

What a great deal reconciliation is, amen! It means to unite, to bring into harmony with; agreement with God. He is the reconciler. We become the reconciled. Why is that such a good deal? Because we are by nature enemies, strangers and aliens. Rom 5:6-10 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life."

Ephesians 2:12-13 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ."


To whom shall we go? Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."


2 Thess 2:13-14 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ." That includes heaven, the kingdom of God, rewards, a new body, a new mansion, a new life, a whole new world. Rev 21:5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful."

Glory is ahead for us folks. Bask in the beauty of it right now, glory awaits us on the other side. We have obtained it, we just have gotten to where it is yet.


1. How is his word effective? It changes lives and destinies.

2. Why is it effective? It is the sword of the Spirit. It goes where nothing else can.

3. When is it effective? When it is read, heard and believed! 1 Thess 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe."


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Revelation 11:17 "Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned." 




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