TITLE: The Yoke
OBJECT: An ox yoke
STORY WITH THE OBJECT
(I put the yoke on two volunteers) When plowing a field, the farmer puts a stronger ox with a weaker one, an experienced animal with a novice. The weak one is obligated to do what the stronger one dictates because he is YOKED.
TRANSITION TO THE SPIRITUAL
This is a lot like our lives. People live yoked to things they cannot free themselves from. They are tied to something stronger than themselves.
THE PROBLEM (LAW)
Ex) Alcoholism, drugs, unforgiveness, self-hate, bitterness, sexual sins. You see, God showed us a good way to live; a way to live free from all yokes and bondage; a way to always be in friendship with Him by following His 10 commandments. But when we decided to live our own way and ignore his commandments, we became enslaved to something stronger than ourselves - sin.
THE CONSEQUENCES (ETERNITY)
There are a couple of problems with living like this. One, you live yoked all your life to something that is destroying you. Two, on Judgement Day your yoke of sin will take you away from God forever. It was never God's plan. So what hope is there? Is there anyone that can free us from this bondage, anyone that can break the yoke?
THE SOLUTION (CROSS)
Thank God there is! Jesus came to earth and took our sins. (Remove the yoke and put it on yourself.) He got on a cross and took the punishment for all our disobedience and died for it. When he rose from the dead, he received the power to break your yoke, set you free, and forgive you.
THE CALL (REPENTANCE AND FAITH)
So what needs to happen? For you to be free, you must repent. That means to turn you back on what is enslaving you and turn to Christ for forgiveness and deliverance. Ask him to forgive you and make him the Lord of your life. He will break your yoke, set you free, forgive your sin, and accept you as his own.