Summary: This sermon looks out how Moses wanting the Isrealites to learn from thier past mistakes before they entered the Promised Land. I then led into a discussion about some of the mistakes our church had made, namely a lack of a sense of duty and an elitist a
This past week I got a phone call from a person from the Wayne County News about providing some information to them for an upcoming article in their paper about our little church here in Winchester. The article is to focus primarily upon the history of our church, from its beginnings all the way to the current day. Everything sounded great until she asked for me to submit a picture of myself along with the article, I said, “Mam’, We want people to come to this church, not scare them away.” But I guess gruesome pictures do sell papers, so we’ll see.
But the conversation got me thinking about the history of not only Winchester but also Clara as well and there is such an amazingly rich heritage at both churches. Both were founded by men and women who were simply put…people who were on fire for God. Christians who struggled against all odds to see these two churches come to life. And as I looked at the pictures from the past, and the history of each church, I realized how much God had blessed each church, but also how that in this day and time our church now stand at a crossroads. We are at a point where we have this rich wonderful heritage in our past but at the same time we have a somewhat uncertain future ahead. We can see where we’ve been and now we stand gazing forward to where we want to be, and by all accounts it will be an uphill battle. We stand at a crossroads needing to decide how to get to where we want to be.
In our text, Moses and the children of Israel were also standing at a crossroads. Moses, the spiritual leader of these people stands talking to a new generation of Israelites who are on the east bank of the Jordan anxiously awaiting to crossover into the promised land. It had been a long hard journey and God had saw them though it, but now there lay ahead many new and equally difficult challenges. Now the question on the mind of Moses is Are they prepared to go into the promised land? Have they learned anything from their forty years of wandering in the desert or did they forget every lesson from their wilderness 101?
It’s sad when a person repeats the same mistake over and over again. A while back I was sitting at my desk at the house and I heard a loud thumping noise…I looked around and couldn’t see anything. Then Thump! I realized it was coming from the window, so I looked out side and there was this bird, flying head first into the window. A third time, full steam. Thump. And you could tell that this time the bird was a little dazed, and I thought, Surely this time the bird would realize that there is a window there but Thump! And for the next 5 minutes that’s all I heard. Not the smartest thing in the world you know. A real bird brain (sorry! couldn’t resist.)
You see, it’s one thing not to know something because of ignorance, but it’s another think to have experienced something and still not learn from it. So as they stand on the banks of the promised land waiting to go in, Moses wants to ensure that they don’t repeat the same mistakes they had made before, so Moses tells them to remember their past and learn from it.