Summary: Differing situations highlight different characteristics of God; we need all. God is not the kind of God many people think He is. Seeing Him in action proves the point.
God in Action: Past, Present, Future
1. A lot of things look good or bad on paper, but are different when you experience.
2. Chicago White Sox team in 1973. Pizza in Nebraska.
3. You can look at an athlete’s statistics, but nothing like seeing him play; You can hear about a good soloist, but nothing like hearing her sing; You can read about a tremendous recipe, but nothing like tasting it on your plate.
We sometimes learn more about people in action that we do hearing descriptions of them. The same is true about God; the Bible describes what God is like, but when we see His attributes play themselves out in actual situations, our knowledge of God soars. Differing situations highlight different characteristics of God; we need all.
Main Idea: God is not the kind of God many people think He is. Seeing Him in action proves the point.
I. The Future Perspective: Warrior King Jesus Returning from ARMAGEDDON (1-6)
A. Edom is a sampling of Israel’s ENEMIES (1a)
B. The one SURFACING in this image is YAHWEH, we believe the SON (1b)
Revelation 19:11-13, “Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.”
C. He is coming from having crushed his enemies in the winepress of God’s WRATH (2-4)
Revelation14:18-20, passim… “…And another angel … called with a loud voice … ‘Put in your sickle and gather the clusters from the vine of the earth, for its grapes are ripe.’ So the angel swung his sickle across the earth and gathered the grape harvest of the earth and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress…”
D. God (the Son) HIMSELF executes this wrath (5-6)
Revelation 5:1-5 passim, “ Then I saw … a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?” And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it… no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. And one of the elders said to me, “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.”
E. Our Jesus is both the Lamb and the LION
1. This passage: God delivering Israel. To deliver Israel, God must destroy her enemies. So this is about salvation, but salvation requires warfare. For the Jews to possess the land of Canaan, they must first dispossess the Canaanites.
2. What God will do for Israel’s physically, God has done through the Lamb-Lion Messiah for our spiritual victories. On the cross, God provided groundwork to defeat sin, death, hell, Satan, and the world — all his and our enemies.
3. This is why we cannot love the world and love God. One displaces the other.
4. This is why a church cannot be good at every aspect of ministry. A strength in one area corresponds to a weakness in another. There is idealism, and there is realism. Idealists always disappointed. That’s why every church can be duly criticized, as can every Christian. But basic prerequisites for all…
II. The PAST Perspective: Israel’s Failings and God’s BLESSINGS (7-19)
A. They have a record of the great things God has DONE for them (7-9)
1. Delivered miraculously from Egypt
2. God became their Savior from bondage
B. Yet the people of Israel GRIEVED the Holy Spirit (10)
1. How did they do this? Rebellion
3. Consequence: God became their adversary
C. GRIEVING the Holy Spirit in the New Testament
1. Ephesians 4:30, “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”
2. What does it mean to “grieve”? Make sorry
3. Holy Spirit has feelings (emotions) as do all 3 Persons
4. When we rebel, we open ourselves up to God’s discipline
5. To obey is better than sacrifice; to rebel means to dig in and disobey
D. Israel repented and God blessed them with REST and peace (11-14)
• In the process, God received the glory
• There are two terms we should associate with God’s blessing: Rest and peace