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TITLE: Split Hairs
Isaiah 5:1-7; 20-21
We split hairs, redefine words, and look for loopholes.
Isaiah 5:1-4


  1. President Clinton “It depends on what “is” is.”

  2. Splitting hairs is a common problem today.

  3. We bend the rules, redefine words, and look for loopholes.

Many in our society believe there are no absolutes.

  1. Nothing is ALWAYS right or wrong. (Situation ethics)

  2. Nothing is absolutely true or false.

  3. Nothing is absolutely right or wrong.

  4. George Barna poll – 70% of people 18-33 “absolute truth does not exist”

  5. SPLIT HAIR: Between right and wrong

They have a new concept of personal responsibility

  1. What I do in my private life is not your business.

  2. Private character and public character are not related.

  3. Unless the behavior is not politically correct.

  4. Character and integrity have nothing to do with my private life.

  5. SPLIT HAIR: Between private and public life.

Many live by the rule of pragmatism.

  1. If I do good work, provide leadership, produce good results, do my job well ---

  2. If I help others, benefit society --- nothing else matters.

  3. If I can do my job – how I live is irrelevant.

  4. SPLIT HAIR: Between behavior and results

This thinking has drifted into the church

  1. Argued about one cup vs. many cups, classes, visual aids

  2. We are contentious about translations, eating in the building

  3. BUT: Lying, stealing, gossip, adultery, hypocrisy, ungodly lifestyles, and other moral wrongs, go without reproach.

  4. SPLIT HAIR: Between doctrine and personal ethics


Study our text – Isaiah 5

  1. God’s question – Plant a vineyard, right soil, protected, watered – useless grapes

  2. What else could I have done? (4) What more could have been done to My vineyard That I have not done in it? Why then, when I expected it to bring forth good grapes, Did it bring forth wild grapes?

  3. Israel and Judah – You are the vineyard; tear down fence; let weeds grow (5-7) 5And now, please let Me tell you what I will do to My vineyard: I will take away its hedge, and it shall be burned; And break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down. 6I will lay it waste; It shall not be pruned or dug, But there shall come up briers and thorns. I will also command the clouds That they rain no rain on it.” 7For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, And the men of Judah are His pleasant plant. He looked for justice, but behold, oppression; For righteousness, but behold, a cry for help.


Application for today

  1. God expects us to be righteous, godly, not splitting hairs

  2. Study – Isaiah 5:20-23 – Redefined the words, found a loophole, split hairs

  3. Isaiah 5:20-23 20Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! 21Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, And prudent in their own sight! 22Woe to men mighty at drinking wine, Woe to men valiant for mixing intoxicating drink, 23Who justify the wicked for a bribe, And take away justice from the righteous man!

  4. God can remove the fence, let lay in waste, allow the thorns and briers to grow

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