02(Exodus 03) Burning Bush
INTRODUCTION: The Voice from the Mop Bucket.
§ Some of you here have waited a lifetime to hear from God.
§ Someone here has found their dreams shattered. You’re up against a struggle, only it’s against Satan, and you’ve determined sub-consciously to give in to the fears of this world.
§ What do we do when our hopes are shattered?
1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian. And he led the flock to the back of the desert, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God.
§ Interesting how when God calls people, they are busy doing something already. David was tending sheep; the disciples were fishing, or collecting taxes.
§ Don’t have to retreat or escape from world to hear from God.
§ God calls people who are already busy.
2 And the Angel of the LORD appeared to him in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush. So he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, but the bush was not consumed.
3 Then Moses said, "I will now turn aside and see this great sight, why the bush does not burn."
4 So when the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, "Moses, Moses!" And he said, "Here I am."
§ Moses turned aside when he saw the flame.
§ The Lord was looking for that. It was up to Moses to turn aside.
§ Don’t be too busy to draw aside!
5 Then He said, "Do not draw near this place. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground."
§ In the West we take off the hat, but the Eastern custom has more meaning. The open sandal would easily collect dust and rocks. Thus the custom of washing feet.
§ The Lord was teaching Moses that one cannot simply enter God’s presence wearing their sins like a dirty shoe.
§ What is Moses doing? He’s worshipping! He is offering praise, sacrificing his pride by hiding his face. Praise through being afraid, not of earthly fears, but of the awesome holiness of God!
§ When is the last time you praised Him? Not buddied up with Him, but fell in fear of Him, not afraid of fearing what others might think?
§ PRAISE – to extol or exalt; worship.
§ Prerequisite for praise – to remove the sins that dirty your worship of the Lord.
§ Then draw near, but not too near.
Ps 22:3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
§ Then praise Him, because our God inhabits praise.
§ The desert was a prison to Moses. He was chained by the events of his life.
§ Acts 16:25-26. Paul & Silas were chained. But they praised the Lord, chains fell off.
9 "Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel has come to Me, and I have also seen the oppression with which the Egyptians oppress them.
10 "Come now, therefore, and I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring My people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt."
§ Two separate events, separated by hundreds of miles. Yet, there is a connection. The cry of a hurting people goes up to God, and in His will he extends to a worshipping shepherd the call to go deliver them.
§ You are here this morning, worshipping. God is leading you to turn aside and follow him. Somewhere, in your home, at your job, there is someone crying to God for help. It may be a coincidence for you, but God never deals in coincidences.
§ What cry/need has prompted God to convict you today?
§ “God isn’t going to use me like that.” That’s Satan talking now. Not the voice of God. Satan wants you to think you are nothing, but you are a child of the king!
§ Moses knew the duty that goes with being the child of the king.
When you’re up against a struggle, that’s shatters all your dreams,
And your hopes have been cruelly crushed, by Satan’s manifested schemes,
When you feel the urge within you, to submit to earthly fears,
Don’t let the faith you’re standing in, seem to disappear.
Praise the Lord. He can work through those who praise Him.
Praise the Lord. Our God inhabits praise. Praise the Lord.
And the chains that seem to bind you, will serve only to remind you,
That they drop powerless behind you, when you praise Him.
Now Satan is a liar, and he wants to make us think
That we are paupers, when he knows himself, we’re children of the King.
So lift up the mighty shield of faith, for the battle must be won.
You know that Jesus Christ has risen, so the work’s already done.
Almighty God, the father of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Moses; forgive us for thinking we could wear our sins into this holy place.
Some of us were heading with our thoughts to the holiday weekend before us, but now we are turning aside to draw near the flame you present to us in our hearts.
With sandals of sin removed, and our faces hidden, we come to worship you now, and to hear your voice calling us to serve you.