Enjoying God Again
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03-03-19 : Bad Exchange
Welcome to a New Series called, “Enjoying God Again”. Last year, we looked at the early life of Moses and his great calling to lead the Israelites out of Egypt. This series will focus on his latter life as they get closer to the Promised Land. As we go through the journey of life, let’s remember that God’s plan and purpose is far greater than the world’s trials and temptations.
- Don’t Exchange God’s Calling for our Convenience
Verse: 2 Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings that your wives, your sons and your daughters are wearing, and bring them to me.” 3 So all the people took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron.
- Don’t Exchange our Identity for Impurity
Verse: 5 When Aaron saw this, he built an altar in front of the calf and announced, “Tomorrow there will be a festival to the Lord.” 6 So the next day the people rose early and sacrificed burnt offerings and
presented fellowship offerings. Afterward they sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry.
- Don’t Exchange His Saving Grace for our Selfish Gains
Verse: 7 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt, have become corrupt… 9 “I have seen these people,” the Lord said to Moses, “and they are a stiff-necked people.
10-03-19 : Putting God in First Priority
PUT GOD IN FIRST PRIORITY!
P. Narry Santos
Part 1 of our “Enjoying God” series in Exodus last Fall 2018 focused on learning to enjoy God. Part 2, which starts today, will focus on living to enjoy God. When we live to enjoy God, we get to enjoy God much more. The 1st way to enjoy God so much more is to put Him in 1st priority. Using the 1st 4 commands of the Decalogue (or “10 Commandments”) in Exodus 20:1-11 (cf. Deuteronomy 5:6-15), how do we put God first?
I. HARBOR NO OTHER GODS BUT OUR GOD (20:1-3)
The 1st commandment says, “You shall have no other gods before me” (or lit. “in opposition to me or in my presence”) (20:3). It means that God’s people are not to prefer other gods to Him. God wants no rival but always desires the top & unique place in our lives. Let’s reserve 1st place to God in everything!
II. HAVE NO IDOLS IN PLACE OF GOD (20:4-6)
The 2nd commandment says, “You shall not make for yourself an idol. . .” (20:4a). It means that God’s people are not to make real or imagined pictorial representations of God (carved from wood, stone, or metal [cf. 20:23; 34:17]). God, who is jealous (i.e., zealous to demand exclusive devotion), hates idolatry (or spiritual adultery). Let’s be faithful to God!
III. HONOR THE HOLY NAME OF GOD (20:7)
The 3rd commandment says, “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God” (or not to lift it up or attach it to emptiness) (20:7a). It means to honor (or treat God as holy), protect, & respect God’s revealed character. Let’s be careful not to disrespect God or speak His name insincerely or inappropriately (cf. Leviticus 19:12; 22:31-33)!
IV. HOLD ON TO A REGULAR WORSHIP OF GOD (20:8-11)
The 4th commandment says, “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy” (20:8). It means that a day of solemn rest & worship of God must be kept weekly. This command is based on the creation account, when God worked for 6 days & rested on the 7th day (20:13-14). The rest is to be used for spiritual service. Let’s regularly rest & worship God!
17-03-19 : I Want To Really Love My God
I WANT TO REALLY LOVE MY GOD
(Exodus 33:12-23 )
The Moses experience we can learn from
– What is asked of you
– Why it is difficult (Heb 13:5)
– What you should ask for
God will respond
– He gives His Word (2 Chron. 7:14)
– He gives a where to go (1 Cor. 10:4)
– He gives Himself
Results we can expect
– We will be humble (James 4:10)
– We will worship (John 4:24)
– We will change
1 John 4:19
2 Tim 3:2
24-03-19 : Being A Friend of God
BEING A FRIEND OF GOD
In living to enjoy God, we have learned that we need to put Him in first priority & that we can please Him with prayer & purity. Today, we learn that enjoying God involves becoming friends with Him. In relation to God & Moses, they were “best friends.” In fact, “The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend” (33:11). What steps can we take (which Moses took) to nurture friendship with God?
I. TAKE THE TIME TO BE CLOSE WITH GOD (33:7-10)
Moses took the initiative to meet regularly with God (33:8a). Though God did not command it, Moses would pitch a tent called the “tent of meeting” (33:7) to inquire of the Lord. God showed pleasure over Moses’ effort by revealing His glory through the “pillar of cloud” (33:9-10; cf. 13:21-22; 40:34-35). It also led to the people’s worship of God (33:10). As Moses took the time to be with God (cf. 24:15-18; 34:28), let’s do the same with God.
II. TREASURE THE TIME TO COMMUNICATE WITH GOD (33:11)
Moses enjoyed a “face-to-face” (i.e., complete, confident, & committed communion) friendship with God, as seen in the occurrence 3x of “speaking” (33:9, 11 [2x]) intimately. From connection, we see communication happen: “as a man speaks with his friend” (33:11). It shows the clarity of God’s will, the certainty of God’s guidance, & the confidence of God’s counsel. As Moses communed & communicated with God consistently & consistently (cf. 34:29, 34-35), let’s do it, too.
III. TREAT TODAY AS THE TIME TO CLING TO GOD (33:12-17)
Moses insisted on asking God in prayer to stay with him & the people, despite their sin (through the golden calf in ch. 32). He asked God to make him know Him & to show His favor upon him (33:12-13) through God’s presence (33:14-16), though the people were “stiff-necked” (33:5). God’s presence shows His pleasure, favor, & special relationship with His people. As Moses kept clinging to God, so must we.
31-03-19 : God’s Help is on its way
GOD’S HELP IS ON ITS WAY!
Today we move from enjoying God much more to enjoying God for life. The 1st way to enjoy Him for life is to realize that God’s help is on its way. When God reveals His person, plan, & purpose for us, He also provides for us what we need to fulfill His plan & purpose in a personal way. In Exodus, how did God provide for what Moses & Israel needed in order to construct the Tabernacle?
I. GOD COMMANDS THE WHOLE COMMUNITY TO HELP (35:4-19)
Moses presented to the whole Israelite community God’s command: “This is what the Lord has commanded: ‘From what you have, take an offering for the Lord” (35:4-5a). From a list of 14 choices (35:5b-9; cf. 25:1-7), items were to be given for the Tabernacle (i.e., the place where God dwelt among His people; cf. 25:8-9). The Tabernacle’s furnishing & furniture were according to God’s specs (35:11-19), so they knew that God dwelt among them & the Lord was their God (29:45-46). Let’s heed the command from God to help!
II. GOD COMMENDS WILLING CONTRIBUTORS FROM THE HEART (35:20-29)
Helping happens not just because it’s commanded but because it’s from the heart. Willing help is important to God (35:5, 21, 22, 26, 29; 36:2). The “offering” is a contribution set apart for a sacred purpose, as a gift to the Lord. It’s a special gift (Deut. 12:6, 11, 17) or voluntary gift (Exod. 35:5; cf. 25:2). In Israel’s case, the people were so willing that they had to be stopped in their giving (36:3b-7). Let’s give willingly from the heart!
III. GOD CHOOSES WORKERS TO CRAFT WITH THE HANDS (35:30-36:7)
As God provides the resources for the ministry, He also prepares the ministers. For the Tabernacle ministry, God chose 2 capable & competent men to do & finish the job: (1) Bezalel (i.e., “in the shadow of God’s [protection]); & (2) Oholiab (i.e., “tent of the father” or [divine] father is my tent”; 35:30-36:1). They did not only have skill, ability, & knowledge (35:31b), but they were also filled with the Spirit of God (35:31a). They also had the ability to teach others (35:34) & to “engage all kinds of artistic craftsmanship” (i.e., to engage in every work of thought & implement them). Let’s do the work God empowers us to do!
4-7-19 : Moses: The Man Who Enjoyed God
FUN FAITH: THE ACT OF ENJOYING GOD
Moses is known as someone who enjoyed God whole heartedly. His faith enabled him to know and love God, as he trusted and obey His commands. God allows us to enjoy His presence, and our response should be an act of faith.
I. God Set Him Up for His Purpose
Even before Moses was born, God has already paved the way for His grand purpose. God’s will for His creation is to live a purposeful life. Are we aware of God’s provisions in our lives?
II. God Strengthened Him for His Plan
It wasn’t easy for Moses to follow God. It was a life with hardships and trials, but his eyes were fixed on the eternal reward. In return, God helped him along the way and gave Him the assurance of His presence. Are we able to surrender to God in the midst of troubles?
III. God Showed Him His Power
Moses witnessed the power of God firsthand; He experienced His authority all throughout his journey. His sovereignty was in full display the moment God called him to lead the Israelites. Are we aware of His power in our lives?
4-14-19 : God Finishes What He Begins (Palm Sunday)
GOD FINISHES WHAT HE BEGINS!
We now come to the end of our “Enjoying God” series. Moving from enjoying God much more to enjoying God for life demands the understanding of this truth: God’s help is on its way. The 2nd truth we need to understand is this: God finishes what He begins (cf. Phil. 1:6). God is committed to make us worship Him, walk with Him, & work for Him. So He does whatever it takes to make sure that we worship, walk, & work well until the end. What does God do to ensure that He finishes what He begins in us?
I. GOD COMPLETES HIS WORK IN US, AS WE OBEY COMPLETELY (40:33; cf. 39:1-40:32)
“And so Moses finished the work” (40:33b). One expression occurred 18x in chs. 39-40 to show how the work was completed: “just as the Lord commanded Moses” (39:1, 5, 7, 21, 26, 29, 31, 32, 42, 43; 40:16, 19, 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 32). For example, the ephod was made just as God instructed (28:6-8; 39:2-5). The point is clear: obedience to God enables us to fulfill His will. Let’s obey until the end!
II. GOD FULFILLS HIS WILL IN US, AS HIS GLORY FILLS US (40:34-35)
After Moses finished setting up the Tabernacle & the courtyard (40:1-33a), God covered the place with His cloud of glory (40:34). This final expression of God’s glory is prefaced by other visits of His cloud & glory. In the midst of Israel’s hard-heartedness (14:4, 17-20, 24-25), God fought for His people (14:14). In the midst of Israel’s grumbling (15:24; 16:2, 6-8a, 10-11), God gave generously. In the midst of Moses’ waiting on God (24:15-18), God showed His presence. In the midst of Moses’ intense prayer (33:18, 22; 34:5-7), God revealed His character. May God’s glory fill us!
III. GOD LEADS HIS WAY FOR US, AS HE GUIDES ALL THE WAY (40:36-38)
The cloud of God’s presence guided & led Israel in all its travels (40:36, 38; cf. 13:21-22). The people’s staying or moving was determined whether the cloud stayed or moved (40:37). The guidance of the cloud (of the angel of the Lord) was evident before all Israel (40:38a; cf. 23:20, 23; 32:34; 33:2). Moses even kept asking God to go with them (33:15-16). May we allow God to lead us always!
4-21-19 : Experiencing Resurrection : Pastor Narry Santos
EXPERIENCING RESURRECTION POWER
(1 Corinthians 15:50-58)
Preacher: Pastor Narry Santos
As we celebrate Easter today, we are reminded of the message of Christ’s resurrection power: We can be changed! Because of His death on the cross & His being raised from the dead, we can confidently say, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” (1 Cor. 15:55). But as a result of Christ’s resurrection power, how shall we then be clothed in our daily lives, so that our lives reflect the touch of Jesus?
I. HOPE FIRMLY TO OUR SURE VICTORY OVER DEATH (15:50-57)
As a result of Christ’s resurrection (15:20), Paul reveals a “mystery” (i.e., what was not revealed in the O.T. is now revealed in the N.T.): we will be instantaneously transformed & be clothed with what is eternal & perfect, when Jesus returns in glory (15:51-53). That time will be when death’s power would finally be removed (15:54-56). This future victory is assured, because of Christ’s victory over death (15:57). Just as Christ was clothed with resurrection glory, we too will be (15:20-26). Thus, even when we are discouraged by our inability to change or by our own weaknesses, let’s put our hope daily on our Crucified Christ & Resurrected Redeemer!
II. HOLD FAST TO GOD’S SERVICE THAT IS NOT IN VAIN (15:58)
As a result of our sure victory in the future, Paul reiterates his command that we “stand firm” (or hold fast to the teaching of the gospel of grace; cf. 15:1-10) in the present. Hope also leads us to help, knowing that doing so is honourable. We are called to always give ourselves fully to the Lord’s work (15:58a), because of one reason: our labour in the Lord is “not in vain” (15:58b). Whatever be our circumstances or crises, let’s continue to serve Jesus!