Summary: This sermon deal with the need for Christians to be spiritualy pure, and show the love of God to all people.
John 13:34-35, Gal 6:10
October 2, 2004
(Deu 7:1-5 NIV) When the LORD your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations--the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites, seven nations larger and stronger than you--and when the LORD your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, for they will turn your sons away from following me to serve other gods, and the Lord’s anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you. This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire.
I. Those verses seem harsh. How could a God of love tell His people to show no mercy, and kill a whole nation of people.
A. How could God tell them to wipe out men, women and children?
B. The answer is simple. Purity! God did not want his people to be drug away from their commitment to Him by people who worshiped false Gods, and did not worship the true God.
C. God knew that if those people were allowed to live among his people that they would corrupt the purity of his nation.
D. God had a plan for the world and His plan was, that his people be holy and separated from the rest of the world, and devoted completely to Him.
E. There have been people through the years who have abused this in many ways.
F. There are people who still try to live in the Old Testament instead of living in the New Testament.
G. Now, when I say that, I don’t mean that the main principles that God laid down in the Old Testament are not true, and should not be followed, but we should pay close attention to the changes that Jesus’ death on the Cross made where those principles are concerned.
II. Before I go into that I want to make sure that I cover a couple of the ways that well meaning people have misrepresented God’s intentions.
A. The first way is people have used those verses that I read wrongly to belittle other races and promote bigotry.
B. When God told His people to destroy the other nations and not intermarry with them it had nothing to do with racial purity, and everything to do spiritual purity.
C. God did not have anything against people with a different skin color. God wanted his people to live in spiritual purity, in their relationship with Him.
D. He did not want the people of other nations mixing with His people not because of race, but because of spiritual issues.
E. God knew that the people who lived in the land worshiped other Gods and that they would drag his people into the worship of other God’s.
F. And the New Testament also lets us see that the idea of a relationship with God being only for one nation or race is no longer valid.
(John 17:1-2 NIV) After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: "Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over ALL people that he might give eternal life to ALL those you have given him.
(Acts 2:17 NIV) "’In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on ALL people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.
(Gal 6:10 NIV) Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to ALL people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
G. When Jesus died on the Cross things changed, God’s people were no longer just a particular nation, they were all people who would separate themselves to Him regardless of what race they were.
H. The grace of God that was shown at the Cross was shown to all people and ALL those who believe were are of the family of God, and anyone who says that they have the right to look as someone differently because of there race, and attempt to justly it by God’s command to the Children of Israel is just plain wrong.
I. God did not tell his people not to associate with people of other nations because of racial purity, but because of spiritual purity.
(Titus 1:13 - 16 NIV) This testimony is true. Therefore, rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith and will pay no attention to JEWISH MYTHS or to the commands of those who reject the truth. To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted. They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.