Text: Zechariah 10:8-12

Title: "When God Whistles"

Subject: Will you come when God calls?

Intro: The Bible says, "And He will lift up an Ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly:" Isaiah 5:26

How many of you have ever seen a dog? How many of you have ever owned a dog? How many of you have been bitten by a dog? How many of you have ever bitten a dog?

How many of you have ever used a dog whistle, or at least seen someone else use one? Because dogs can hear sounds beyond the pitch of the human ear, a dog whistle, that sounds silent to us, can be heard by a dog. And if the dog has been trained correctly, he will respond to the whistle. In fact, many breeds of "working dogs" like collies and spaniels are trained to follow the commands of their owners entirely by the various sounds of the whistle. Now notice I said that the dog must be trained to obey the whistle. Just blowing a whistle will not fill your backyard up with dogs!

The Bible says, "And He will lift up an Ensign to the nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the end of the earth: and, behold, they shall come with speed swiftly:"

I wonder if you will be surprised when I tell you that God has a whistle that only the obedient can hear. It is tuned to the pitch of the heart that longs to obey God. It is tuned to the pitch of the ears of those who long to hear from God. It is tuned so that those that hear it instantly obey its call. It is a supernatural whistle that touches the heart and directs the path of those trained to serve God.

And some day you will find yourself in a "field trial" and God will blow His whistle, and you will either be obedient or disobedient to its high pitched call. You will either respond or ignore the call of God on your life.

Some in this room have already heard the call of God's whistle deep in your heart, and now you must determine to be obedient no matter the cost. For those who have not heard the silent whistle of God, I trust you desire to be used of God in a special way, and that you are training your ear for the day of God's sure calling.

Zechariah 10:8-12 -- "When God Whistles" -- prayer

I. GOD'S WHISTLE IS SURE TO SOUND (v8)

Note: Although this passage speaks of the Messianic blessings for the N of I, we can apply its truths to ourselves. Picture yourself as a working dog, far out in the field, and connected to your master only by the sound of his whistle. You would want your master's whistle to be loud enough to hear; to give a clear call, and to be precise in its directions.

A. God's Whistle ("hiss")

1. It is God's Whistle ("I will")

a. God's promise that He will whistle (God whistles to all men)

1) Lost, He calls to be saved.

2) Saved, He calls to serve (different way, times, purposes)

Note: There are many whistles calling to you today and trying to direct your life. You need spiritual ears to hear the voice of God and you need silence to recognize the voice of God. You will have no trouble recognizing God's whistle if you are faithful to prayer, Bible study, church attendance, and obedience.

2. God's whistle is for your benefit ("gather ["assemble, collect"] them")

a. To put your life together, to make it whole, give it meaning

Note: This shows we have a need for God's direction to counter our direction..

B. God's Whistle Calls the Redeemed

1. "Redeemed" = ransomed, bought back

Note: Some of you have gotten dogs or cats at the Humane Soc. You have redeemed or bought back an animal that was destined to die. You have paid the necessary ransom. That is what God did!

2. It is God's redemption ("I have")

a. Ears to hear

C. God's Whistle is for the Redeemed's Benefit (master/dog)

1. "Increase" = to become great, many, much

a. Shall (future)

b. Have (past)

Note: Obedience to God's call means increase. Disobedience means decrease.

God whistles and God redeems, but you get the increase!

II. GOD'S WHISTLE LEADS (v9)

A. God does the Placing ("I will sow" ["scatter"]) (master places dog)

1. Among the people

a. Own people

b. Strangers in foreign lands

Note: Both are places of service for God. You let God place you because God has the best view of the field.

B. God Does the Encouraging (dog remembers master)

1. They shall "remember" Me = recall, call to mind.

a. In far countries

Note: It is the thought of God, the remembering of His power and provision that satisfies here or in a foreign land. There is something more important than your circumstances, your comfort, your possessions, it is the knowledge that you are walking in obedience to God.

2. Sure assurance of God's leading

C. God Gives the Living (master's care of dog)

Note: You can be physically alive, but you might not have A life!

1. "Life" =

a. Physical life ("remain alive, be sustained, be restored")

b. Spiritual life ("be quickened, be alive")

"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." John 10:10

2. With their families

3. With a promise ("they will return")

III. GOD'S WHISTLE CALLS THROUGH PERSECUTION AND AFFLICTION (v10-11) (master sends dog through rough terrain)

A. God Brings Out and God Brings In (v10)

1. Out of Egypt and Assyria (lands of oppression, captivity, worldliness)

2. Into Gilead ("mountainous, rocky region") and Lebanon ("wooded mountains"), yet not the promised land.

"For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God." Hebrews 11:10

Note: It doesn't matter where you "live" on earth, this is not your home.

B. God is Present in Affliction (master doesn't leave dog)

1. No place is found for you in this world (but God's place!)

2. You will pass through affliction ("trouble, distress, affliction")

3. God will smite ("punish, destroy") the waves, dry the waters, bring down the pride, and remove the mark of authority. Just so you can do His will!

IV. OBEYING GOD'S WHISTLE DETERMINES YOUR WALK (v12)

A. God Strengthens ("make strong, mighty, great") (obedient dog gets the masters time)

1. His own ("them")

a. In Himself ("in the Lord")

B. God Gives Purpose & Direction ("they shall walk up and down") (master gives dog purpose)

C. God Gives Authority ("in His Name")

1. "Name" = represents all that God is, the totality of His person

a. The privilege of representing & being rightly related to the one true God.

D. God Gives Assurance (master assures dog)

"God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?" Numbers 23:19

Concl: God has whistled to you to be saved; and He is whistling right now. Will you do it? God has also whistled to some of you for full time service. If you have not been obedient to God's call, settle that today. If you have been obedient, determine a fresh and anew to follow God's whistle wherever it may lead.
 

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