Summary: The purpose of this sermon is to motivate the hearers to affirm to others that “obedience” to God’s instructions leads to “name” popularity with God.
8 June 2008
U.S. Army Chaplain (MAJ) Ken Harris
Ord Military Chapel
BIG IDEA: Christians with desires to become famous need to become more obedient to the Words of God.
REFERENCES: Genesis 12:1-9 (The Call of Abraham and his journey); Hebrews 11:9 (NIV) By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise; Hebrews 11:10 (Abraham “looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God”); Genesis 17:5,17 (Hebrew English Bible) Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for the father of a multitude of nations have I made thee; And God said unto Abraham: ’As for Sarai thy wife, thou shalt not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be; Acts 7:1-7 (NIV) Stephen speaks to the Sanhedrin about Abraham’s faith; Genesis 12:10-20 (Abram fears for his life because of Sarai’s beauty); Deuteronomy 28:1 (NIV) If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth.
I. ANNOUNCE THE PERICOPE: Genesis 12:1-9 (CEV)
II. READ THE PERICOPE: Genesis 12:1-9
III. READ THE TEXT: Genesis 12:2 (I will bless you and make your descendants into a great nation. You will become famous and be a blessing to others).
IV. PURPOSE: To motivate the hearers to affirm to others that “obedience” to God’s instructions leads to “name” popularity with God.
V. SERMONIC THEME: “So, You Want To Become Famous?”
VI. INTRODUCTION: I am both indeed grateful and honored to have been the recipient of so many kind words today. On behalf of my lovely wife, Dedra, of nearly 25 years and my sons: Kenny, Kendall, and Kendric – thank you. You have been quite kind. It has been my pleasure to have served alongside such wonderful people. You and yours will always be etched across the memory of my heart. Again, thank you!
As you know, those that have been called by God to do a work for Him are not conducting that work in order to receive GIFTS AND WORDS OF AFFIRMATION. We do what we have been CALLED TO DO FROM OUR HEARTS, AND OUT OF obedience to God; but it sure feel good to have served a community of people (here at Fort Ord and the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center in Monterey, California) that are grateful for having been served. Again, thank you!
So, You Want To Become Famous?
MOVE 1: First and foremost, allow me to make it emphatically clear that our scripture today provides a deeper note than a shallow religion of moralism.
a. We should not interpret Israel’s blessings to be primarily because of their moral goodness.
b. Christian Theology teaches us that Israel as a nation, as a social, political, and economic organism, exists in “spiritual” covenant with her Lord.
c. To deny or rebel against God is to break the covenant and violate that which has created, sustained, and composed the Nation of Israel.
d. Therefore, this morning, the Word of God says – through Moses - in Deuteronomy 28:1 (NIV) “If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth.”
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MOVE 2: ”So, You Want To Become Famous?”
a. Whatever happened to the old proverb or “Urban Legend” that “children should be seen and not heard”?
b. Social Networks such as MySpace, Facebook, and Friendster are …
c. … but a few of the Social Networks available today for our young people (and older people too) that have a need to be both SEEN AND HEARD.
d. Recently, while driving from home to work, I caught the last few minutes of a segment of the radio program dubbed, “Focus on The Family” with Dr. James Dobson.
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MOVE 3: In this particular segment he was interviewing a famed psychologist and author who momentarily spoke ….
a. … about the issue of our young people being vainer today than ever before.
b. Hence, she mentioned the creation of the social networks previously mentioned as an outlook for many, today, to fulfill their need to be seen by others.
c. In other words, the psychologist inferred that an unbelieverable number of our young people today want to become “famous” tomorrow.
d. Surprisingly, the Church isn’t immune or protected from this vain gesture.
e. As a result, many of our talented young Christian musicians and Gospel Rappers are constantly seeking auditions with American Idol ….