Summary: This sermon is on trusting God to get your sermon back on track. After 6 years, our church had bypassed the Great Commission and we needed to admit where we were, where we failed, and cast a new vision for the future of our church as we sought to relaunch in 5 weeks.
Only Be Strong and Be Courageous
All of us have faced a challenge of some sort in life in which we wondered if we were capable of doing the job. It may have been trying out for a team, going away to school, getting a promotion on a job, enlisting in the military, getting married, having a child, surviving a divorce, or losing a life partner.
Sometimes we may choose what’s happening, but other times situations are thrown upon us. Some of us were nervous and afraid of what might go wrong. It’s in these circumstances that God comes to us with the message, only be strong and be courageous. God has our back.
I want to introduce you to a man name Moses. Moses was chosen by God to go and lead God’s people out of Egypt where they were all slaves. He was to lead them into a land that was both rich and fertile which would seem like a touch of heaven.
Moses didn’t want to go, but God left him with little choice after overcoming all of Moses excuses. Moses had to speak directly to Pharaoh, who was ruler of Egypt and didn’t care much for Moses or his God.
God allowed Moses to call forth all kinds of plagues upon the land of Egypt to get Pharaoh’s attention. There were gnats, flies, frogs, locusts, hailstorms, death of animals, darkness, and sores. Moses would announce these things were coming and they would come, and they would not leave until Moses asked God to stop them. The one thing that got Pharaoh’s attention was the death of the first born of his son, and all of the males in Egypt along with the animals. He then let the people go.
Once Moses led them out of Egypt, God used Moses to split the Red Sea to keep the Egyptians from backing them into the river. Moses closed the sea with his hands. This Moses asked God for food in the desert and God sent Manna from heaven. He asked for meat and God sent quail. He asked for water and God sent it out of a Rock.
In a major battle as long as His hands were up his people were winning, but when they came down the other side started winning. He spoke to God face to face upon a mountain to get the 10 commandments. He spoke to God in the tabernacle so that when he came out of the tent, his face was shining with the glory of God.
He put down all kinds of rebellion against his authority. He had led the people right up to the promise land God wanted to give them, but because they got a bad report of how strong the enemy was, they refused to go into it. They later blamed Moses for having to be in the desert for 40 years and at times wanted to get rid of him and go back to Egypt. There was never again a leader like Moses who did all kinds of miracles until Jesus came.
One person who was watching Moses go through all these mighty moments with God as well as watching him handle all the discouragement and abuse he was getting from the people was his aid Joshua. Moses was the pinnacle of a great leader in the eyes of Joshua. But now Moses has died, and people think Joshua is going to step into his shoes.
When Lebron James left Cleveland, could you imagine the Cavalier’s owner coming to you and saying, “we know you have been watching Lebron in all the games he played, and now that he’s gone, we want you to take his place.” How many of you know, Cleveland is about to be greatly disappointed if you say yes to the job. Ticket sales would most likely plunge.
Moses has died, because the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness is up, and its time to go into the promised land. God has called Joshua to lead the people into the promised land. He’s terrified because he knows that he is no Moses. The first thing that God has to do, before he can get the people to move forward, is to reveal the reality of what their situation is.
About six years ago, God called New Life At Calvary into existence, and we marched with the same kind of enthusiasm to become a people of God as the children of Israel did as they came out of Egypt. Like them, we have great testimonies of God doing things we could not have expected. They received manna from heaven. We received almost a half million dollars from the Nelson fund to feed us.
They recommitted themselves to the truth of God’s word with the 10 commandments, we recommitted ourselves with the essential tenets of beliefs by joining ECO. They saw God do some miraculous healings by looking up at the image of the pole. We have seen people healed by looking to Jesus.