Title: When everything is working against you

Focus: As God promised Moses that he would be with him, God promises to be with those whom he has chosen

Function: To encourage the hearers to gain strength and encouragment in God’s promise to be with his people

Text: Exodus 4:1-17

I.  Sometimes the task we face is so great that we are just not equal to the task
	1.  Illustrations abound
	2.  Take for instance some “Creative Theories”
	3.  There are some wild theories, but this takes the cake
	4.  We all know that these did not come from serious scientists
	5.  Things go a little better for biologists and scientists - Solved many problems
II.  You would think that things would work out for Moses as he likely had both
	1.  Irony of his rescue as a baby
	2.  Grew as a Hebrew in Pharoah’s house (Ivy League education, multiple PhD’s)
	3.  Goes out to his people to do something
	4.  It didn’t go well
	5.  40 years later, God shows up and NOW wants Moses to go!
	6.  But we tried this before God, something went wrong!!   What?  Text will tell us.

III.  Text  Exodus 4:1
	1.  Moses 3rd “question”  -  What if they don’t listen?
		a.  Reasonable - They didn’t listen to him before, and now he is an old man
		b.  God’s answer
			- (v.2-5)What’s that in your hand?  ---  Becomes serpent
				-- Cobra an Egyptian Deity
				-- Pharoah’s rod a stylized Cobra, symbolized his claim to divinity
			- (v.6-7)  Hand Leper  (Hand=power)
			- (v.8-9)  Water to blood (Nile considered deity)
			- NOTE:  v.8 - God not get angry,  Notice word “IF”, God agress with and 
			   takes Moses’ question seriously, they might not listen.
	2.  Moses 4th “question” is now sounding like an objection  (v.10-12)
	3.  Moses finally just refuses and God get’s angry and switches to plan B
	4.  Notice how many times “I will be with your mouth”  echoing 3:12 - I will be with you
	5.  What does this phrase “I will be with you” mean?

IV.  This used to be a common phrase to say “The Lord be with you”
	1.  We sing it “God be with you till we meet again”?  Usually mean health and prosperity
	2.  But this is not a typical Jewish greeting or benediction - “Peace by with you” is
	3.  Survey of O.T. passages reveal that this phrase almost always used of
	      Leaders of clans, Kings, Generals, 2 priests, and 1 prophet
	4.  Josh 1:1-9;  Jer 1:1-10;  Jud 6:1,11-23 - Notice parallels.  
	5.  This phrase “The Lord will be with you” ----
		a.  Occurs often in a calling
		b.  Can be accompanied by a sign
		c.  Is often paired with “do not fear”
		d.  Is usually connected with a time of crisis (military)
		e.  Is used of Kings, leaders and generals
	6.  I LIKE PSALM 23 - Military Context "presence of my enemies"
	7.  It was important that God was “with” the leader.  If God with him, the people will do 
	     well.  Notice the “reform” kings
	8.  But we don’t have a King, is this for us today?

V.  There is a very good answer to this question
	1.  Is. 7:10-16 - Isaiah makes a “name” from this phrase “Immanu-El”
		a.  Ahaz was to trust in God, not Tiglath Pileser
		b.  God will take care of Pekah and Rezin
		c.  Even though he get’s the sign, “Immanuel” he does not rely on God
	2.  Matthew takes up this verse to describe how God is with us (Mt 1:23)
		a.  “God is with us” in a new and profound way
		b.  He is our King.  Is God with our King?  YES -- God IS our King!
	3.  Demonic action most heavy during Jesus time on earth
	4.  Satan falls from Heaven like lighting
	5.  Jesus said the ruler of this world is about to be cast out
	6.  Jesus did battle with the enemy and WON
	7.  Rom 8:31 - If God is for us, who is against us?

VI.  So what does this mean for you and me?
	1.  God is on your side, he will come and save you!
	2.  2 Pet 3:8-12  -  When?  How long?  Becomes .... ‘Is God with/for us?”
	3.  2 Pet 3:15 - Regard HIS patience to be salvation
	4.  When the Lord delays, it is for good.  He delays for a reason
	5.  Things just may not be working out, but don’t give up, God is with you.
		a.  May feel like spend 40 years in the wilderness in a strange land
		b.  May feel like everything has worked against you, so you want to give in
		c.  It’s not over
		d.  God will come through.  He is on your side!