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Summary: This sermon is about taking New Ground - Spiritually, Physically, Mentally and Socially. The intent is to help others discover ways in which they can take New Ground through the Bible, Prayer, Spiritual Discipline and Having a Yes Heart!

Scripture: Genesis 13:14-18; Joshua 1:1-11; 1 Chronicles 4:10

Theme: Taking New Ground With God

INTRO:

Grace and peace this morning from God Our Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

Did you know that you can learn a lot and grow a lot from just reading, gleaning, meditating and studying the Bible? It is amazing how rich and how deep its words are and how much knowledge, insight, wisdom and power they bring life into our lives.

I want to talk to you today about “Taking New Ground”. In particular about taking New Ground with and for the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY. It is a subject matter that we find that is as old as humankind itself.

Listen to the words of Genesis 1:29 where the Lord blesses Adam and Eve and then gives them a mandate to take New Ground:

“Then God blessed them and said, ‘Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.”

This morning we serve a moving, momentum God. While the LORD does rest and wants us to rest (the Sabbath) He also wants us to move; to be active. He wants us to take New Ground. We see this not only in Genesis chapter 1 but later on listen to what the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY tells Abram:

“Go and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you.” – Genesis 13:17

And still much later in the book of Joshua chapter one we read a passage that in essence is a foreshadowing of the life of a disciple where the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY tells Joshua:

“In 3 days you will cross the Jordan River and take possession of the land the LORD you God is giving you.” – Joshua 1:11

There is so much symbolism, so much deep truth in that little verse in Joshua is almost overwhelming:

+In 3 days +Crossing the Jordan River

+Take possession +Land the Lord your God is giving you

The whole Gospel message is almost contained in that little verse thousands of years before it would become a reality through the life and mission of Jesus our Messiah and LORD. The crossing of the Jordan River has always stood as a symbol of leaving one’s old life and beginning a new life. Of coming out of the wilderness and beginning a new life in the Promise Land.

The Christian Life; the life of being a disciple of Jesus is a life of movement; of both movement and Sabbath. The Christian Life is one of putting one’s shoulder to the wheel and then bringing one’s burdens and laying them at the feet of Jesus for a time of rest and revival.

It is tempting in this life to try to coast. To say to one, “You know, I am quite comfortable right where I am. I like this season of my life and I want to crystallize it. I want to stay right where I am. I have worked hard to get here and I feel good. Please tell someone else about taking New Ground. I like the ground I have already taken so let me just check out. Others can take New Ground but for me where I am I am comfortable.”

However, the Bible reveals to us that the LORD wants us to take us to higher heights and deeper depths. He wants to take us to places that we have never gone before with Him. He wants us to continually grow in our walk with Him.

Still there may be those who this morning may want to raise their hands and say – “Look, I am already redeemed, born again and filled with the Holy Spirit. I am already saved, sanctified and have God’s power pouring in and through my life. What more do I really need? Isn’t that enough and isn’t it enough just to pause and wait for either the Second Coming or My Home going? I already have enough on my plate as it is!”

But growing deeper and rising higher in God is not as much a goal as it is a Life Adventure.

Even if we have been serving the LORD for years, the truth is the LORD invites all of us to move forward onto new ground. He calls all of us to follow Him and in following Him we find ourselves on the mission of taking new ground.

One of the great old hymns in our tradition reminds us to always be in the mindset of taking New Ground:

“Lord, lift me up and let me stand,

By faith on Heaven’s table land.

A higher plane than I have found

Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

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