Summary: Israel turned an 11 day journey to the promised land into a 40 year process of meandering in circles, going nowhere. HOW TO BREAK THE CYCLE! Link included to formatted text, handout, and PowerPoint Presentation.
From Generation To Generation
For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.
A Biblical generation is 40 years.
That sums up what today is all about…on this the 40th anniversary of GBC, we celebrate a Generation of Grace! We praise God for all He has done and for all those He has done it thru, inc. those remaining here today. You paved the way, you paid for that pavement, and these facilities, and ministries all these years, and you continue to serve the Lord faithfully! And now, a new generation is on the scene, and we must join this race, receive the baton…the torch is being passed. Will we, too, become a generation of Grace? How about our children?
The number 40 in the Bible speaks of a generation, but it also symbolizes earthly trials and tribulations:
It rained on Noah 40 days and nights
How long did Ninevah have to repent? 40 days.
Jesus fasting in wilderness? 40 days
And there’s many other examples we could go into…but for now, check out this verse we finished with on Sunday night:
And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the Lord, nor yet the works which he had done…
We cannot let that happen! The Bible says,
One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh…
But what will become of the next generation?
If we do it correctly…then this is what could be said,
I will make thy name to be remembered in all generations: therefore shall the people praise thee for ever and ever.
If this is to happen, then it’s up to us gathered here this morning, by God’s grace, to see it thru! It’s time to claim responsibility…to lay aside the ‘consumer mentality’ that asks ‘what can this church do for me?’, and have a ‘contributor mentality’, asking, ‘what can I do for the church God has led me to?’
"Contributor Mentality"--This person looks for a place where they are needed. Their main question is "where is a local church that I can serve God thru?" They believe God’s perfect will includes more than just "what’s in it for me." Matter of fact, they firmly believe that they will receive the most when they are giving of their time, talents, and treasures, believing that they cannot outgive God.
God would seem to agree...
Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.
Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation.
You can be blessed by going to a church where others have sacrificed and built something good...but you can be "double-blessed" by going to a church with needs and problems to solve, and then becoming a part of the solution!
The Bible has quite a lot to say about generations, and the younger generation stepping up to the plate and dedicating to the task at hand!
Consider these verses:
Thou, O Lord, remainest for ever; thy throne from generation to generation.
How great are his signs! and how mighty are his wonders! his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion is from generation to generation.
…his hand hath divided it unto them…they shall possess it for ever, from generation to generation shall they dwell therein.
…upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
But ye are a chosen generation…that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
Yes, the Bible has much to say about generations, and our responsibility for the next 40 years is clear! But, there’s also a major warning for us in scripture, in the form of the children of Israel. This is a huge story, a major illustration, but summed up succinctly in Psalm 78…please turn…
Let’s read the first 8 verses responsively…
And the rest of Psalm 78 sums up 6 books of the Bible…Exodus-Judges. What would take 3 months to read if you spent 15 min. per day is summed up for us here in a brief, 3 minute overview.