Sermon Focus: Our God, named Yahweh, has initiated a personal relationship with his people by delivering us from bondage, providing for us, and giving us his name that we can serve his name.
Sermon Purpose: To inspire trusting service to Yahweh as a God who cares and acts on behalf of his people.
Text: Exodus 3
Move 1 1. Text background leading up to the text 2. 2:23-25 is the turning point, God is no longer absent 3. Text: 3:1-6 - Some ideas about God are introduced a. Is this the “angel of the LORD” or the LORD? (v.4) b. Holy ground in the desert? Where is the temple? c. Moses is afraid to look at God? Why? Move 2 1. Many of these elements appear throughout scripture 2. Some examples of the angel of the Lord a. Gen 16:13 - Hagar marvels she has lived b. Jud 6:22-23 - Gideon thought he would die 3. Some examples of God appearing to others a. Gen 15:12ff - Abraham is in terror (fire again) b. Gen 32:30 - Jacob wrestles with God and lives! c. Ex 14:19,24 - Pillar of cloud/smoke and fire! Later at Sinai --- FEAR d. Isaiah 6 - Woe is me! 4. Meeting the Lord face to face isa tramautic experience that at times defies adequate description. 5. This attests to God’s “holiness” Move 3 1. Holiness is mentioned in Exodus 3 as well. This is holy ground. 2. What is holiness? 3. Sense of fear or Danger when encounter his holiness a. Fear was involved, but the experience of his holiness was always a positive one b. God manifested himself in fire, lighting, smoke, etc. ILL: When I worked around electricity. Respected it. ILL: Child’s reaction to fire, attraction and repels. But must respect it. 4. Reason for this fear is that God is separate, or different. (Just like lightning is to us) a. This is what makes God’s interevention into our world so remarkable b. Ps 8 - “What is man that you take thought of him, and the son of man that you care for him” 5. Moses seems to ask the same question. Who am I? Move 4. 1. v. 7-12 - Who am I? I will be with you. 3. v.13-15 - Okay, Who are you? a. God already told him in verse 6! b. Moses wants a name. Why? - So Israel will know that God actually sent him - Name give “power” over a deity - Name was important, (it was more than just a label) 4. God’s Name a. I am who I am - Evasion? Is he saying that his name is not important? b. I will be who I will be. - God is free to be who he wants to be, to choose his course of action - Ex 33:19 - I will show compassion on whom I will show compassion c. “I am” or “I will be” - Connection w. v.12 - I will be with you - 1st person singular of hayah (to be) d. The LORD (Yahweh) - 3rd person singular of hayah - As a causitive: He who causes to be - WHAT DOES HE CAUSE TO BE? Wait around and find out 5. Perhaps more significant than the definition of the name is the fact that the LORD even gives his people his name Move 5 1. God could have answered the way he did to Jacob in Gen 32 and not give it. 2. Why would anyone tell another his name? a. He wants something in exchange b. Many times it we do so to initiate some type of relationship 3. ILL: Years ago, I gave out my name to a young girl named Stacey a. Risk of getting hurt b. Risk of abuse of my name c. Become susceptible to her wants, needs, desires, and manipulation d. But look at the reward ------ She is now my wife 5. What is amazing is that this God takes the same risks and gives his name 6. He did so because he is about to initiate a relationship with “his” people. Move 6 1. But a relationship is a 2 way street. 2. On our part, knowing his name is both a priviledge and a responsiblity a. We are to honor his name - more on that will come b. We are not to abuse his name - more on that will come 3. Abusing or honoring a name have to do with actions, not JUST speech 4. ILL: A famlily who I knew growing up. Name was associated with trouble/lying in town because of one son. He brought shame upon the name 5. That’s not what I want to do to Yahweh, my God. 6. He has stuck his neck out for me, and you. Don’t you want to be with him and make him happy?