An aged Indian wandered into one of our Western settlements, begging for food to keep him from starving. A bright colored ribbon, from which was suspended a small dirty pouch was seen around his neck. On being questioned, he said it was a charm given him in his younger days; and opening it, displayed a faded greasy paper, which he handed to the interrogator for inspection. It proved to be a regular discharge from the federal army, entitling him to a pension for life, and signed by General Washington himself. Here was a name that would be honored almost anywhere, and which, if presented in the right place, would have insured him support and plenty for the remainder of his days; and yet he wandered about hungry helpless and forlorn, begging of the charitable bread to keep him from famishing. What a picture of men with all the promises of Jesus Christ in their hands – and of Christians, as well, with the character of their inheritance in full possession – yet starving in the wilderness!
I want to preach a sermon I have entitled “Biting the hand”.
4 "Yet I am the LORD your God Ever since the land of Egypt, And you shall know no God but Me; For there is no Savior besides Me. 5 I knew you in the wilderness, In the land of great drought. 6 When they had pasture, they were filled; They were filled and their heart was exalted; Therefore they forgot Me. 7 "So I will be to them like a lion; Like a leopard by the road I will lurk; 8 I will meet them like a bear deprived of her cubs; I will tear open their rib cage, And there I will devour them like a lion. The wild beast shall tear them.
1st Point: The help of God
1. Recounting the history of the children of God out of Egypt
a. Egypt when referred to in our lives is considered slavery to sin, a type of sin (our lives have notably been enslaved by)
2. God helped them like he helped us
a. Through salvation in Jesus (we have a Savior, salvation is something God does) When removed from Egypt it was something God did
b. Setting someone free to make you safe, set free from addiction, habits, etc.
3. The testimonies of some here this morning
a. Being saved from emotional breakdowns, anger, bitterness
b. V.5 our scripture speaks of the wilderness (beloved barrenness)
c. Simply speaking of the seasons of life (we simply forget that we can come across some negative circumstances, a season of drought/famine/struggles/differences. We come to God that way and we are in our wilderness yet we forget that in our scripture that God’s people were originally in the will of God while in the wilderness. In bringing it to the church this morning our wilderness can be from bad decisions. In that we could complain and murmur, and forget what God did for us in the first place.
They did not keep the covenant of God; They refused to walk in His law,
And they tested God in their heart By asking for the food of their fancy.
4. “The consequence of bad decisions”
(V.5) Hosea 13:5
I knew you in the wilderness, In the land of great drought.
a. Beloved in the land of great drought things do not work out
b. Even in all this we can see the hand of God
c. God stepped into their lives and helped them, 6 When they had pasture, they were filled;
d. We read here of God supplying their needs, food, water, direction, the bible says that not even their shoes wore out (40 years) De 32:10 "He found him in a desert land And in the wasteland, a howling wilderness; He encircled him, He instructed him, He kept him as the apple of His eye. They obtained houses they didn’t build, crops they didn’t plant.
e. The truth is when God enters our lives things do get better. We have two types of blessing the first one is the gradual blessing/redemption and lift
1. God raises us from our former state
2. We begin to have a right mind/we could actually keep a job.
A. Sudden blessing
1. Gift inheritance
2. Miracle intervention
2nd Point “Human tendency”
History goes on to record some dangerous human tendency.
1. Blessing has potential to change your viewpoint (V.6) 6 When they had pasture, they were filled; They were filled and their heart was exalted; Therefore they forgot Me. The bible describes the arena of pride, this gives us an incorrect view of ourselves.
"Who fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do you good in the end- 17 "then you say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.'