Thursday, June 26, 2008

I AM so you don't have to be Lesson 14

I AM so you don't have to be Lesson 14

Focal Text

"Say therefore to the sons of Israel, 'I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from their bondage. I will also redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgements. Then I will take you for My people, and I will be your God; who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. I will bring you to the land which I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and I will give it to you for a possession; I am the LORD'." Exodus 6:6-8

"In Your lovingkindness You have led the people whom You have redeemed; in Your strength You have guided them to Your holy habitation." Exodus 15:13

"But He brought us out from there to bring us in and give us the land that He promised on oath to our forefathers." Deuteronomy 6:23

Lisa writes:

We introduced this last chapter by considering four purposes for the Promise based on Leviticus 26. They were: A sense of self-worth, security, provision, and finally and perhaps most importantly, an assurance of love.

Let's set up today's Lesson. In Exodus 6, Moses has gone to Pharaoh to ask for the Israelite's release. Instead of freedom, Pharaoh increased their labor unmercifully.

Moses' doubt soon turned to determination when God unleashed all the plagues upon Egypt. Pharaoh, under compulsion (Exodus 6:1), finally let the Israelites leave the country.

Moses sang. For the first time noted in Scripture, Moses opened his mouth - the one unskilled in speech - and belted out a tune to the Highly Exalted, Warrior God. A big change from the Moses at the end of Exodus 6!

The words of Moses' song in Exodus 15 mark an important shift in his ministry.

When the Israelites saw the great power God displayed against Egypt, they not only believed in Jehovah, but in Moses also. Hear me on this one, girls. We hold an amazing amount of power in our words. It is our duty as women of God to build one another up in the Lord lest our sister lose heart in the individual mission God has laid before her. The Israelites' complaining at the end of Chapter 6 caused Moses to return to an old place of unbelief in regard to his stammering lips. However, the realization of the people that God indeed positioned Moses as a Judge and Deliverer in turn gave Moses the courage to shout praises to the Lord in front of the whole assembly. We don't dare ever be the reason one of our girlfriends stutters! Instead, try an 'I believe in you'. You have no idea how brave you'll make her!

Perhaps the most fascinating part of Moses' worship is seeing him transcend before our very eyes beyond Egypt and the desert to spiritually inhabit the Promise.

Which begs the question: What is the difference in living the abundant life within Spiritual Promise and remaining yet outside it? Based on the experience of Israel, I think we can fairly evaluate our own position by the following:

1. Living Outside the Promise - The purpose of the desert was to humble and test the Israelites to see if they would obey God. God caused the Hebrews to hunger so He could fill them with manna they had not known. Though He was not obligated to such extravagances, God wanted to prove He would provide every single physical and spiritual need. God was building trust between His people and Himself, therefore; the ongoing fight was against unbelief and distrust. (Deuteronomy 8)

2. Living Inside the Promise - The unbelief of the Israelites cost forty long years in the desert until a new generation raised up who believed God enough to allow Him to go ahead of them and overtake the inhabiting nations. Joshua and Caleb were the only two scouts in the first generation who believed their Warrior God would bring them victory. When it was time to once again attempt a conquest, the greatest issue was no longer unbelief but the internal effect of Satan's schemes in the specific area of idolatry. The fight would also continue externally on behalf of the brethren. Many battles would ensue in which a group of Israelite tribes would fight alongside one another in order to clear out their inheritance from the Canaanites.

Burning Questions:

1. We talked of the importance of encouragement when God has called us to task. Has a lack of encouragement or even ridicule ever taken you back to a place of insufficiency you thought you had conquered?
Yes, any negative words spoken can bring me to a standstill. I have not discovered who I am in Christ yet, working on it.

2. Is there someone you know right now who is attempting a new ministry that could use a world of encouragement from you? Why do you think this thing may be scary for her? Will you commit to write a note, make a call, or send an email with a dose of courage inside?
No, but I have several friends both blog based and local based that I try to keep encouraged in their daily walk.

3. Read Moses' song in Exodus 15:3-18 What line speaks to you most? Why does it touch you?
Verse 2 which was not included but states "The LORD is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation; He is my God, and I will praise Him;
My father’s God, and I will exalt Him." This verse shows who Moses knew God is. His salvation, it is very personal and possesive. I want to be this way with my Father.

4. Based on the applications of living either inside or outside the Promise, where would you now say you currently reside? (As I read your answers, if this one point seems to have been confusing, I'll elaborate in a separate post. Again remember I am asking this question in terms of abundant living and not in determining salvation.;))
I am living outside the promise, but can see it and am moving toward it.

5. If you are 'Somewhere in the Middle' between the girl you were and the one you want to be, how do you plan on changing that? Is there a barrier you feel you can't climb? Knowing God is for you and this study group is for you, is there a way we can help?
By giving over to God, opening my hand and letting stuff fall away, not clinging to tightly to the plantings that God is pulling up.

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