Sermons

Summary: Deliverance. We talk about it. We ask for it. We demand it. We know we need it. However, deliverance is often accompanied by dilemmas! Are we willing to hold on for freedom?

Deliverance Dilemmas

Pt. 2 - Deliverers

I. Introduction

The load had become too heavy. 430 years of harsh slavery has culminated in the desperate cry for deliverance. An old-time preacher by the name of Vance Havner may have said it best when he said, “The tragedy of our time is that the situation is desperate, but the saints are not.” And so I challenged you last week that we must once again allow desperation, not despair, not disappointment, not delinquency, not despondency but desperation rise up in our soul again so that we too cry out for freedom and change. Why is that important? In the account in Exodus we are told in chapter 2 that this cry of desperation catches God's attention. Their cry for help ascended to God. And He was moved to take action. I want us to become desperate because I have learned that the one cry that God always responds to is the cry for help! But it is this response that produces another dilemma that we must address. In order for us to find the freedom from self-sabotage, depression, financial chains, prejudice, gluttony anger or any other imprisoning force that we may face we must learn to deal with this dilemma. Of the dilemmas we will address this may be one of the two hardest to navigate. However, it is essential to put this one to rest if we are going to be free. It is the dilemma of deliverers.

The fact is in order for most people to be free they must be led to that freedom. Left to our own preferences and devices we will settle comfortably into slavery. We will make short forays into desperation when the pain of our slavery rises to the surface, but then apathy, distraction, unwillingness to pay the price or a boat load of other things will push us back into compliance and ultimately complacency. That is why in the Hebrews 10:24-25 we are told that we would need to . . . consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. The writer knew that on our own freedom is a fantasy. We must be spurred. We must be pushed. We must be drug out of despair. We must be kicked out of comfort!

So, let me state this clearly before we dive into the dilemma this created for the Children of Israel and now for us.

Deliverers are divinely appointed individuals who are unwilling to settle in anything less than the fullness of the promise God has for us. These individuals are willing to pay any price to get us to freedom.

So, back to the well-known story.

TEXT: Exodus 3:1-4, 7-10 (NIV)

Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. So, Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.” When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.”

The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them.

So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”

Let me point out some things quickly. You will remember that Moses sees one of the Egyptians beating an Israelite slave and he intervenes and kills the Egyptian. However, the Israelites reject Moses because, although an Israelite, he grew up in the Pharaoh's palace. So, Moses unwanted by either side flees to the desert where he begins to shepherd the flocks of his future Father-In-Law's sheep. It is on the back side of this desert that God calls Moses to be the deliverer for the Children of Israel in what we know as the "burning bush" account.

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