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What To Do When Your Eyes Are On Canaan, But Your Mind Is In Egypt

(75)

Sermon shared by Wm. Darryl Scott Sr D.d.

August 2001
Summary: We often miss the real message in the trials of this life, because we are too busy focusing and thinking about the negative. But the real battlefield is in our minds! Where is your focus?
Tags: Peace (add tag)
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
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PATH OF TRUTH AND GOODNESS.
AS IN THE CASE OF THE HISTORICAL EXODUS, THE SPIRITUAL LIBERATION FROM CONTROL OF OUR IRRATIONAL DESIRES CANNOT BE ACCOMPLISHED IN A SINGLE MOMENT. THE CONTRADICTORY DIRECTIONS OF THE MIXED MULTITUDE CAN KEEP US WANDERING IN A CONFUSED WILDERNESS INSTEAD OF TRAVELING THE SIMPLE AND DIRECT ROUTE ON A GODLY ITINERARY TOWARDS OUR SPIRITUAL DESTINATION AND GOD-PURPOSED FULFILMENT. ACCORDING TO PHILO THE VERY NAME "PASSOVER" SIGNIFIES THAT THE TRUE LOVER OF WISDOM IS ALWAYS PRACTICING "PASSING OVER FROM THE BODY AND PASSIONS" IN A QUEST TO PURIFY HIS SOUL.
THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL BECAME DISCOURAGED BEFORE THEY HAD HARDLY GOTTEN STARTED. THEY HAD BEEN ON THE ROAD ONLY A FEW DAYS, AND BUT A FEW MILES FROM SINAI, BUT YET, BECAUSE THEY BECAME HUNGRY, THEY WANTED TO GO BACK TO THE FLESHPOTS AND THE SLAVE CAMPS OF EGYPT.
GOD HAD BROKEN THEIR CHAINS, HE HAD REMOVED THE TEMPORARY BUT HARSH RULE OF A TYRANT PHAROAH FROM THEIR LIVES; GOD HAD PULLED A LIQUID GAP OUT OF A BELCHING SEA FOR THE RIGHT OF WAY, AND CAUSED THE WIND TO BLOW IT DRY. GOD HAD EXCHANGED THAT SLUSHY MUD FOR DRIFTING DUST ACROSS A DIVINELY CREATED SUPERHIGHWAY. AND YET, THEY WANTED TO GO BACK TO MAKING BRICKS FROM MUD BALLS, JUST TO EAT AGAIN FROM FLESH POTS. THEY WERE WILLING TO SELL THEIR PROMISING FUTURE FOR A BITE FROM THEIR PITIFUL PAST. FREEDOM WAS SEEMINGLY TOO COSTLY A VENTURE, SO THEY FEARFULLY BALKED AT THE PRICE THEY HAD TO PAY. THEY HAD THEIR EYES ON CANAAN, BUT THEIR MINDS WERE STILL IN EGYPT. THEY WERE LOOKING ONE WAY, BUT THINKING ANOTHER WAY. THEY TALKED FREEDOM, BUT THOUGHT SLAVERY. THEY STARTED OUT WATCHING GOD AS HE BECKONED THEM THROUGH THE CLOUDS BY DAY, AND THE FIRE BY NIGHT. BUT THEY STILL HAD THEIR MINDS ON A LESSER GOD BY THE NAME OF PHAROAH. CANAAN AND EGYPT WERE IN THE SAME GEOGRAPHICAL AREA, BUT EVEN GEOGRAPHICALLY THEY WERE IN EXTREME OPPOSITE DIRECTIONS. TO REACH ONE, YOU HAD TO TURN YOUR BACK ON THE OTHER. TO THINK ABOUT EGYPT, THEIR MINDS WOULD HAVE TO TREK ACROSS THE BURNING DESERT SANDS WHERE THE JACKALS HIDE AND BARK, BACK ACROSS THE SEA, WHERE SLIME, SLAVERY AND THE SEDUCTION OF FALSE SECURITY HELD SWAY. BUT TO EVEN THINK OF CANAAN, THEIR MINDS WOULD HAVE TO BE ELEVATED, ABOVE THE HILLS, AMONGST THE CEDARS AND THE WHISPERING PINES. CANAAN OR EGYPT. ONE WAS CONSIDERED TO BE THE CRADLE OF THE RACE, AND THE OTHER WAS THE HOPE OF THEIR FUTURE. SHACKLES IN ONE, SONGS IN THE OTHER. SLAVERY IN EGYPT, FREEDOM IN CANAAN. THEY WERE HALTED BETWEEN THEIR CHAINS AND THEIR WINGS. WHETHER TO CLING TO CHAINS TO HOLD THEM TO THEIR PAST, OR TO ALLOW WINGS TO LIFT THEM TO NEW HEIGHTS. CHAINS OF SLAVERY OR WINGS OF FREEDOM. WHAT WAS THEIR RESPONSE? THEY WOULD RATHER GO BACK INTO BONDAGE RATHER THAN RUN THE RACE FOR VICTORY. THEY WERE WILLING TO SETTLE FOR THE MUCK AND THE MIRE OF MEDIOCRITY, RATHER THAN TO STRIVE FOR HE PURSUIT OF THE PROMISED LAND. SO OFTEN, WE CANNOT REACH OUR CANAANS, BECAUSE WE ARE TOO BUSY
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