Summary: 1. We must be aware of the battles we face (vs. 8-9). 2. We must be faithful to follow God (vs. 9-12). 3. We must be open to every opportunity for service (vs. 12-13). 4. We must look to the Lord for salvation (vs. 14-16).

What Can We Do for Our Country?

Exodus 17:8-15

Sermon by Rick Crandall

Grayson Baptist Church - Nov. 4, 2012

*Forty years ago I was a very skeptical young man, as well as an extremely liberal atheist. I was actually a card-carrying member of the ACLU, and I was cynical. Mostly I was cynical about God. I literally thought that God was a man-made crutch for weak people. So I was very cynical about God.

*But I was also cynical about our country. For several years, I wouldn’t even say the pledge to the American flag, because I couldn’t see anything good or special about America.

*Then, in 1975, by the grace of God Georgia Savoie invited me to church and I got saved! God had been at work in my heart for several years, and I gladly trusted in Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.

*By the way: Thank you so much to everyone who prayed, helped with food and invited people last week. Remember that there are people out there just waiting for you to invite them to church. And even if you have to invite 40 to get one to come, it would be worth it! -- Because you could see their life change for all eternity.

*After I got saved, God began to change my heart in many ways. For the first time in my adult life, I began to love and respect this great country of ours. I found out that President Lincoln was right when he said that our nation was “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” And the Declaration of Independence was right when it said, we have been “endowed by (our) Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

*I found out that with all our problems and imperfections, this nation is the best in the world, because it was founded on the Word of God. When the Pilgrims came over on the Mayflower, they would have thrown away all their food before they threw away this Book.

*Today I love this country more than ever before. And I am sure that most of you feel the same way. But today, America is at a great crossroads in history. I believe that this is the most important election since the Civil War. Which direction will we choose? The answer will affect our children, our grandchildren and the whole world.

*Now let me tell you this: From a Pastor’s point of view, it doesn’t matter to me if you have a “D” or an “R” by your name, or any other letter for that matter. I don’t want to know who you vote for. And I will love you and do my best to minister to you no matter who you vote for. But there are great Biblical issues at stake today, and we truly love our country. So, what can we do for America? -- Let’s look at this old battle in the Word of God and see.

1. First: We must become aware of the battles we face.

*God’s Word gives us an example in vs. 8&9:

8. Now Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim.

9. And Moses said to Joshua, "Choose us some men and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand.''

*Many of you know about the bitter rivalry between the twin brothers, Jacob and Esau: How Jacob tricked Esau and stole the family blessing, then how Esau swore to kill his brother, Jacob. Now, over 400 years later, the descendents of Esau were the pagan Amalekites. And they were on the warpath to destroy Jacob’s off-spring, the Children of Israel. This Scripture reminds us that as Christians, as God’s people, we are most certainly going to face battles in life.

[1] Speaking on these verses, the great preacher, Charles Spurgeon stressed that some of our greatest battles are internal.

*Spurgeon said: “Young Christian, do not dream that as soon as you are converted your struggle is over, but conclude that your conflict has but just begun. . . (Salvation and being born-again) “do not change the old nature. That remains still the same, but we have at our new birth infused into us a new nature, a new principle, and this new principle at once begins a contest with the old principle.” (1)

*That’s why the Apostle Paul speaks of the “old man” and the “new man.” In Galatians 5:17, Paul also tells us about the flesh lusting against the spirit, and the spirit striving against the flesh. 1 Peter 2:11 begs us to “abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.”

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