Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: This message deals with the blessings and curses of God as given from Mt. Ebal & Mt. Gerizim. Beware of God’s CURSES ... Be ready to receive God’s BLESSINGS.

“Blessings & Curses – I”

INTRODUCTION: Read Deut. 11:26-28

I like to have things spelled out for me if someone ask me to do a job … what is the RIGHT WAY, WRONG WAY. Have you ever had a job to do, and no one told you WHAT to do, or HOW to do it? There are 2 ways it can turn out … a BLESSING or a CURSE!

We see these options every day … even in our homes:

“Clean up your room!” … You will receiver either a BLESSING or a CURSE.

“Do your homework.” … BLESSING or a CURSE.

“Be in by 11:00 PM!” … BLESSING or a CURSE.

CHILDREN like to know what is EXPECTED of them. They appreciate it when things are clearly spelled out for them.

With GOD, it’s very much the same … WE are His CHILDREN! There are BLESSINGS if we do His will … and CURSES if we don’t! You don’t REALLY WANT to be CURSED by God … DO YOU? I’ve been cursed by the best! BUT … I sure don’t want to be cursed by GOD!

In Deut. 27:9-13 we see the SITUATION … all turn.

Moses is giving the people God’s rules & regulations. He takes the people to Mt. Gerizim & Mt. Ebal … AND ENCOURAGES them in 27:10.

There are 2 GROUPS:

o 6 tribes on Mt. Ebal to shout “Amen” to God’s CURSES … (those on my left).

o 6 tribes on Mt. Gerizim to shout “Amen” to God’s BLESSINGS … (those on my right).

In the valley was the Ark Of The Covenant & the Priests … the Tribe of Levi (that will be ME!).

In Deut. Chapter 27, Moses is preparing them for what will actually take place in Joshua 8:30-35.

NOTICE … only the CURSES are listed here … (27:15-26). NO BLESSINGS are listed … WHY? What is the last word of the O.T.? “curse” - Malachi 4:6 – “And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” The O.T. ends with a CURSE.

Blessings come in the N.T. … in Christ. It is in HIM that we find the BLESSINGS. Ephes. 1:3 – “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:”

We have 2 SIDES here this morning. On the RIGHT, we have Mt. Gerizim … the side of the BLESSINGS. On the LEFT, we have Mt. Ebal … the side of the CURSES.

I. CURSE #1 – 27:15 – Those on Mt. Ebal (LEFT side), say “Amen”.

This is the 2nd of the 10 Commandments – “Thou shalt not make thee any graven image.” BUT … this goes a little further … there’s a CURSE attached! What’s the DIFFERENCE? “and putteth it in a secret place”

You & I probably don’t have a problem with the 2nd Commandment. You probably don’t have any carved idols in your house … on a shelf … on your mantle. You don’t bow down to a carved image … DO YOU?

There’s a story of a group of Archeologists 1000 yr. from now, digging up an ancient civilization known as “Bell”, in a place called “Florida”. They wanted to get an idea of the culture … their way of life … their religion.

LISTEN to what they write: “We think we have found their object of worship, although we don’t exactly understand the nature of their god. It is interesting to note that in all their houses, there contains a strange box, which we are sure must have housed their god. Everything centers around this box. All the furniture is placed to that everyone in the room can see this box.

“Some god-boxes have wired & cables attached to the wall. Some have wires attached to a pole, that looks like a strange tree. From what we can gather, a great deal of time was spent in front of these god-boxes. Some of them even ate their meals in front of it. Some of them have these god-boxes in their bedrooms, kitchen, and some of the more religious of this ancient civilization even have them in their bathrooms. These god-boxes seem to be the center-point of their life.”

NOW … Who says that we don’t bow down to “images”?

This curse goes DEEPER than “carved images” … it goes to the HEART … “and putteth it in a secret place”. The Lord looks into your HEART. He is a discerner of the thoughts & intents of your heart.

WHAT IS an “idol”, anyhow? It’s something you SACRIFICE to. It doesn’t have to be on a shelf … it can be in the “secret place” of your heart. An “idol” is ANYTHING that takes the place of God in your life.

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