Summary: Egypt-the place of slavery, Desert-place of indecision, Promise land--place of abundance the decision is up to you
Intro: in this church we have people who live in different communities. As a matter of fact, some of you in this room today are rivals of each other in high school sports. This fall you might even sit on opposite sides of a field screaming for your team to beat the tar out of the other team. Community pride runs deep, even to the point of wearing team colors, and standing and singing the school fight song. But no matter what local community we live in, there are only three spiritual communities represented in any congregation. Our example of these communities are found in the lives of Israel. Today, we will examine life in these three communities and find out where each of us has chosen to live.
The Three Communities
background: The story of God’s covenant people is the story of all of our spiritual lives. We meet this community in Egypt, which represents slavery. We see their journey in the desert, which represents indecision. We see their victories in the Promise Land, which represents abundance. It is my observation, that spiritually people choose to live in one of these three communities. Today, this message is an encouragement on how to move toward spiritual abundance in God.
I. Egypt–Exodus 2:23-25 here we see the covenant people of God in a place of slavery. They are beaten, burdened and bound by cruel taskmasters. Today, we find people who are trying to serve God who are still living in Egypt. They want to serve God, they want to be what God would have them to be, but they have chains that won’t be broken, they are in prisons where they can’t get set free, and they carry burdens they just can’t lay down. Today, I would like to release you from Egypt.
a. Cry out to God–instead of accepting that the situation will never change, cry out to the one who can change your situation. So many people have struggled to win in areas of their lives only to repeat failure. But with God nothing is impossible. There is no chain He cannot break, there is no mountain He cannot move.
b. Get Sick of Egypt–you will never leave Egypt until you get fed up with it. When the people began to cry out to God, when they said, we can’t stand this place, God was moved with compassion on them. Until you get sick of Egypt you are doomed to live there.
c. Follow Spiritual Leadership–you will need a Spiritual Moses to lead you out of Egypt. You may say, I have tried over and over to get out of Egypt but have failed. Today, let me lead you out of Egypt. God places Spiritual leaders in your life to free you from slavery to sin. I encourage you,
1. Cry out to God–prayer will change things. First of all it will change us. Many times before God changes your situation, He first changes you.
2. Stand on the Promise–God made a covenant with Abraham that He was going to keep. Realize God’s Word in your life. Stand on the promises of God. Don’t take no for an answer.
3. Follow—find people heading in spiritual directions and follow them. Not many people just find their way out of Egypt on their own, God places others in our lives to help us find His promises for our lives.
II. Desert–Deuteronomy 8:2–place of indecision, place of spiritual dryness, place of death. Forty years of going in circles, forty years on the wrong side of Jordan, forty years till a generation was lost. If we don’t choose to obey God in faith, we will spend our lives going in circles. God can help us out of Egypt, but He will require faith to enter promise.
In our spiritual lives, we all have at times been in the desert places. It always seems there is a desert between Egypt and Promise. Today, it isn’t God’s will for you to go in circles.
Indecision–many times it isn’t a terrible act of sin that keeps people from their blessings, but a lack of faith.
Israel didn’t miss Canaan because of the Golden calf rebellion, but because they told God it was impossible for them to get what He was giving.
Dryness–instead of milk and honey we many times choose sand. Sure God has big blessings for others, but for me and my house, we will go in circles. The saddest thing about the desert, is you can see the blessings but you don’t experience them.
Death–forty years, a lost generation. Today, I want to encourage you, God has more for your life than spiritual dirt. You don’t have to keep saying, here we go again. Same song, second verse. God can give you a new path, He can give you life over death.