Sermon:† When God Calls

 

Summary:† God calls each of us to serve his purposes, which means there are no excuses to not do so.† Whether we, like Moses, think we are of no account, or that we really don't know what to say, or that we may not produce results of we try, or that we do not have the skill or the ability, what matters in the end is that we are faithful to God because he provides what we need to serve him.

 

Text:† Exodus 3-4

 

Scripture Reading:† Ps 121:1-8

 

Intro:

1.† What does it take to get your attention?

††††††††† a.† Sometimes we get pretty good at tuning things out

††††††††† b.† ILL:† One time Stacey was talking with me about making a dress

††††††††††††††††††† - I responding with, "uh-huh" & she suspected I not listening

††††††††††††††††††† - Said, "And I'll make the dress out of pickles and peanut butter"

††††††††††††††††††† - I said, "Uh-huh" - She said, "What did I just say?"†

††††††††††††††††††† - For some reason, that got my attention.

††††††††† c.† To get my attention, she now says, "pickles and peanut butter"

††††††††† d.† Sometimes God does something to get our attention

††††††††† e.† Sermon from Ken Davis the inspiration for this

2.† (Exod 3:1-3) - God getís Moses attention after he moved to Midian 40 years

††††††††† a.† Does so with a burning bush that doesn't burn.† A butane bush

††††††††† b.† We often get the wrong idea about Bible ďherosĒ

††††††††††††††††††† - What do you think of when you think of Moses?

††††††††††††††††††† - Depending on your age, Charlton Heston, or Prince of Egypt

††††††††††††††††††† - Stands above the people, robe, imposing, beard in the wind

††††††††† c.† We even think they speak differently

††††††††††††††††††† - In our minds, Moses would have said, "Behold, a bush burneth"

††††††††††††††††††† - They spoke "bible-eeze," because they were so spiritual

††††††††† d.† So we don't often identify with them

††††††††††††††††††† - But they were human like you and I

††††††††††††††††††† - Probably said, "Woa, freaketh me out!"

††††††††††††††††††† - Will find that we are not that different than Moses in a lot of ways

††††††††††††††††††† - Can be a source of encouragement to us

3.† So, God has Moses' attention, Ö waits till he gets really close, and speaks

††††††††† a.† (v.4-9) Wow, God is finally coming down

††††††††† b.† I don't know if Moses thought much about Israel after 40 years

††††††††† c.† But God never forgot, and it was a concern for God

††††††††††††††††††† - Many of you are facing various kinds of oppression

††††††††††††††††††† - Could be bondage to alcohol, a bad relationship, pornography, sin

††††††††††††††††††† - Wouldn't it be great if pulpit burst into flames & God comes down

††††††††††††††††††† - And God says, "I have come down to deliver you from bondage"

4.† Then God says, I am sending† . . .†† YOU (v.10)

††††††††† a.† Theme for this morning's sermon - "You are God's Answer"

††††††††† b.† God has always used regular, ordinary people for his purposes

††††††††† c.† God sending Moses WAS God coming down to deliver his people

††††††††††††††††††† - Ever thought about that?

††††††††††††††††††† - Every time you serve, minister, etc, it is God working through you!

††††††††† d.† Surely Moses said, "Verily shall I go, wherever thou sendest I will go,

††††††††† †††† for I am a bible guy"

††††††††††††††††††† - Let's take a look at what Moses says, and God's responses

††††††††††††††††††† - Anyone knows what Moses responds with?† EXCUSES

 

I.† (3:11) Excuse #1 - Iím Nobody

††††††††† A.† Have you ever used that excuse before?

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† I'm nobody, I'm joe average, I don't have looks, the skill, etc.

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† No one will take person like me seriously

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Tell me you haven't felt that before

††††††††† B.† What is God's response?† (3:12)

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Not - I will give you good looks, great athletic ability, etc.

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† He simply says - I will go with you

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† God does not call extraordinary people, but ordinary people

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Israel a bunch of slaves that God redeemed for his own

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† David a shepherd boy, Amos a farmer, Moses an old man

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Consider Jesus and his 12 apostles

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - fishermen, tax collector, zealot, carpenter

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - None were scholars, none were rabbis

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - They were ordinary people from all walks of life

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† What matters is not extraordinary people - but for ordinary

††††††††††††††††††† †††† people to believe in an extraordinary God!†

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Don't ever say, "I'm nobody" and let that stop you

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† What matters is that our God is "somebody"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c. (1 Cor 1:26-30) - "By his doing" you are in Christ Jesus

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - It is always "by his doing"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Doesnít matter if you are nobody

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.† He not asking you to do it alone - "I will be with you"

††††††††† C.† What if your nightstand/monitor/desk/workstation burst into flames?†

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† You get fire extinguisher, but notice it not burn up†

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Then, flame speaks your name, "this is God speaking"

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† What if he tells you to do something? †You be motivated to do it?

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† And if And if he says, ďIíll go with youĒ† Youíd be gone!

††††††††† D.† Surely our Bible guy Moses did right?†

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† "Okay God, I'm nobody, your somebody and will go with meÖ"

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† BUT . . .† and he comes up with another excuse

 

II.† (v.13) Excuse #2 - I donít know what to say

††††††††† A.† How about that one, have you ever used that one before?

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† I'm really not all that knowledgeable

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† I would get stuck, I wouldn't know what to say

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Maybe if I knew what to say and got it all down first . . .

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† President of a successful auto company said -

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† ďAnything worth doing is worth doing poorly the first time.Ē

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Donít wait till itís perfect to do it, or you will never do it

††††††††† B.† What is God's answer?† Paraphrase -† Iíll tell you what to say

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† He tells Moses what he should say to the people

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† v.15 - "Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel . . ."

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Not left to just make it up

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Think about it, God has given us his word!!!

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† You can read it, you can meditate on it, and in guide's us

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† God didn't leave us to try and make it up as we go

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† This book tells us all we need to know and do

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Where we came from, about origin of sin

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Tells us the solution, the Gospel

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Not a complicated message

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† But, "I'm not sure where to start, or how to start"

††††††††† C.† ILL:† Let me tell you about a couple of people

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† This is, -------- a teen who is a member in Arizona at campaign

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Wanted to serve, but not know what to say

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Found out she spoke Spanish, she jumped right in!!

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Not know what to say, but she brought someone to Christ

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.† Wound up motivating several other teens to reach out

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Needa Lomax, senior citizen who devotes time to reach people

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Every campaign, ask (How many people have you

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††† brought to Christ with your little soul winner's Bible?

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Last I know, she has brought over 200 people to Christ

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Didn't know where to start at first either

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Brethren at Grandbury

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Lot of needy people in community

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Started a food and clothing ministry

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† They have reached over 100 people with the Gospel

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.† They decided to do as Jesus did - serve and share

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† None of these people are extraordinary

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† None are bible scholars, theologians, bible degree

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Ordinary people who believe in extraordinary God

††††††††† D.† (1 Cor 2:1-4) Paul says what matters is the power of God

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Paul had the ability, skill, but deliberately not use them

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Means we don't have to have slick answers, methods

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† What matters is ordinary people believing in extraordinary God

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† Does Moses now say, "Verily shall I go where thou sendest?" no

 

III.† Excuse# 3 - What if they donít believe me? (4:1)

††††††††† A.† Have you ever used that one before?

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† It wouldn't do any good, he won't listen

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† This is perhaps the weakest of all of Moses' excuses

††††††††† B.† What is God's answer?† paraphrase:†† Itís not your job

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† This a freeing truth in our faith

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Not our job to twist arm, manipulate, slick marketing, etc.

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Our job is simply to be obedient, The rest is up to God

††††††††† C.† (4:2)† - Whatís that in your hand?† A staff

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Throw it on the ground, it became a snake!

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† What Moses say?† "Behold what straight is now crooked"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† No, he ran from it like any of us would

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Then God says - Come back and pick it up by the tail

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† (v.5) - This is so they may believe - Itís not your job

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† We are only responsible for what we do, not others

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† 1 Cor 3 - Paul says that we plant and water, but the

††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††† ††††† increase is not our job

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† God gives him two more things

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Put your hand in your coat and it became leprous

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† If they don't believe still, then take water from the Nile,

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††† pour it out and it will become blood

††††††††† D.† Don't let worry over results paralyze you - God gives what we need

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† He is asking same question - "What's That in Your Hand?"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Could be a pencil, car keys, sewing needle, a can of food,

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† God will use whatever is in your hand

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Don't bury it in ground because you are worried about results

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Our job is to be faithful, the rest is up to God

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† Is Moses ready to go now?†

 

IV.† Excuse#4 - I don't have the gift (4:10)

††††††††† A.† Have you ever used that excuse before?

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Oh, I see the opportunity, but itís not by gift

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† Too introverted, young, old, fat, skinny, uneducated, etc.

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† For Moses - It was "I am heavy of tongue"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Phrase, "heavy of Ö" often for something not work right

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Has been suggested Moses had speech impediment

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† Can you imagine what that might have been like?

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Maybe it was studdering - Yahweh s-s-s-says t-t-t-to

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† † let my people go to celebrate feast in the wilderness

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Maybe he had a hair lip

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Maybe he could't pwonounce his "r's"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.† Pharaoah going to take him seriously

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Pharaoh probably say, "what are you saying"

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Aaron, his brother who spoke fluently, who God sent

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† † with Moses, would have to tell him what Moses said

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† Just not my thing, it's not my gift.

††††††††† B.† What is God's Answer? (4:11) - paraphrase "I made you"

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† God created you for a purpose

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† God made you just the way you are to fulfill his purpose

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† He crafted vocal chords, ears, brain, hands, feet

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† He made you the way you are for a reason

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† So, when he has a job for you, your ability does not matter

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† He made you!

††††††††† C.† ILL:† My friend Keith Avery from Claremore Oklahoma

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Was about as Oklahoma as it gets

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Traveling, stayed with him and brother

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† Woke up in morning with a cow at my window

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† He just an ordinary, country bumpkin

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† Stared with me at Harding.† School was not his thing, struggle

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† Some did not feel he belong at place like Harding

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† At Belarus, he had two interpreters (each work half a day)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.† We joked one was for Okie, other for English

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.† Remember he was so loud, my interpreter couldn't think!

††††††††††††††††††† 4.† He dropped out of school, took family to Grodno as missionary

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.† School may not have been his thing

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.† But God used him any way

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c. †Not have to be a theologian or preacher with a degree

††††††††† D.† When God uses you, he uses you just as you are

††††††††††††††††††† 1.† Gift is good and great, but it not depend soley on your gift

††††††††††††††††††† 2.† God could use Moses, 80 yr man with speech impediment

††††††††††††††††††† 3.† He can use you as well - Don't every turn away from opportunity

††††††††††††††††††† ††††† to share, serve, minister

Concl

1.† So Now Moses is ready to go right?† (4:13-14)

††††††††† a.† Ran out of excuses, said to send however God wills

††††††††† b.† For the first time, God is angry

††††††††† c.† Whoever God wills?† That is you!† He has chosen you!

2.† God has chosen you, which means there are no excuses

††††††††† a.† I am nobody - God says Iíll go with you

††††††††† b.† Donít know what to say - God says - Iíll tell you

††††††††† c.† What if they donít believe me - That's not your job

††††††††† d. †I have no ability, just look at me - I know I made you

††††††††† e.† Send someone else - - - -

3.† No, not someone else - YOU are Godís answer

††††††††† a.† When God chooses you, it means that you are somebody

††††††††† b.† Say it with me, ďI am somebodyĒ†

††††††††† c.† Remember that next time you say, "Somebody ought to . . . "

††††††††† d.† YOU are God's somebody††

4.† Reminds me of the song, "God will Make a Way"

††††††††† a.† God will make a way, where there seems to be no way.† He works in ways we cannot see, he will make a way for me.††† He will be my guide, hold me closely to his side.† With love and strength for each new day, he will make a way.† He will make a way.

††††††††† b.† God provided a way through the cross (inv)

††††††††† c.† If you have already responded to the Gospel, what is God calling you to

††††††††††† †††† do?† What opportunities are there to serve, share, love people?†