Reference Scriptuers: Habakkuk 2:18-20; Matthew 4:1-4; Psalms 34:15
Have you ever really considered What an honor and a privilege it is to serve a God that actually talks? A God who hears and patiently listens to every word that we speak. A God who is never too busy…one who is truly concerned about our welfare and our every issue. Oh what a blessing it is to sit in anticipation of His every word and to know that our very life depends upon hearing from Him. For the bible says, ” Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God!”. Job picked it up and said, ” Neither have I gone back from the commandment of His lips; I have esteemed the words of His mouth more than my necessary food!”
The very fact that God speaks to us is of the utmost importance. Where would we be if He was silent ? What would we do if He never spoke a word or gave us any instruction, comfort, or direction? We must remember that it is better to be a child of God walking in darkness (blind faith) rather than to be a child of darkness walking in light (walking in our own ways). I say this because, though God’s way is sometimes hidden from a saint; the saints way is never hidden from God. For he knows the way that we take and He is orchestrating our every move. That’s why His word tells us, ” The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous and His ears are open to their cry! He also tells us, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all of your ways, acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy path!”
On today, we should be ever so grateful that we serve the true and living God…a God that is unlike any other God. He is a God who is not made of stone or made with human hands. He is not a figment of the imagination or a ghostlike being. He lives and He is present with us even now. Yet, There is one fact that the Lord would have me to present to you on this morning. God has chosen to do something that He really doesn’t have to do….and That is “speak to us”! For have you ever considered the fact that as great and as mighty as the Lord is, God graciously condescends to talk with those of us who have entered into covenant relationship with Him? My friends, This is an honor bestowed upon all of the saints. He dwells with us and speaks to us by His Spirit…for His words are Spirit and they are life! He also talks to us through His Word, both written and spoken.
For the bible says, ” How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher and how shall they preach except they be sent?” The bible goes on to say, “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.”
So, my friends, we should be ever so grateful that we serve a “speaking” God who clearly speaks to us…a God who clearly demonstrates His great love and concern for all of those who are called by His name. I’m so grateful that God is real and that He is able and willing to move for us.
As I said earlier, He is not like other Gods. For I’m reminded of an occasion when Elijah met with the children of Isreal and the 450 prophets of Baal on Mt Carmel and challenged them there to build an alter to their God. He told the prophets and the people of Isreal, “Why halt ye between two opinions? ” If God be God, serve Him and if Baal be God, serve him. We will each build an alter of sacrifice and the god who answers by fire, let him be God!” The bible says that the prophets of Baal took their bullock and dressed it and laid it upon their alter but put no fire to it. The bible says that the prophets of Baal cried out to their God mightily all day until noon, but he would not hear. At noon, when there was no answer, they began to cut themselves. Wounded and bleeding, they continued crying out to their god but it was in vain. There was no answer nor did anyone regard their cries! The bible said that Elijah began to mock them and said to them, ” Cry louder! Maybe your god is musing or on a journey. He might even be asleep.” Yet, they continued to call upon Baal until the evening time of sacrifice, but there was no answer.
The bible says that Elijah then called the people near to him and gathered twelve stones representing the twelve tribes of Isreal. He rebuilt the alter of the Lord that Jezebel had torn down and placed the dressed bullock upon the alter and upon the wood. He then dug a trench around the alter and filled it with water. He also had them to pour water upon the sacrifice, thus drenching the bullock, the wood and the alter. This they did three times. Then, the bible says that Elijah began to call upon the name of the Lord asking Him to prove Himself….. that He in fact was the true and living God and that Elijah was His servant. It was Elijah’s hope that God’s people would return to the Lord and forsake the worshipping of idols. The bible says that the Lord answered by fire. Yes..the fire of the Lord came down and consumed the sacrifice, the wood, the stones, the dust and licked up the water! Upon seeing this, the people fell on their faces and began to shout, ” The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God!
My friend, this let’s me know that there is a posture that one must take when entering into the awesome presence of a Holy, moving, speaking God. For again, we must consider the magnitude of the sheer majesty, power and dominion of our God. His very essence supersedes the dew of the morning. Heaven is His throne and the earth is His footstool! The sheer terror and might of the Lord should cause us to truly be in awe of the Lord and we should reverently fear when communicating with Him. Those that are admitted into fellowship with Him must be very humble and reverent in their approaches to Him. Those that would expect to receive a word of comfort from God must first set themselves to give Him glory and to worship at His footstool.
Not long ago, when watching a preacher on television, as he was preaching, he began to talk about having a “due season”. He began to say that he had a quandary or a dilemma that he found himself in because all that God promised him was some “dew”. Yes, after he had gone through many trials and tests, he was concerned about the fact that he was only going to be rewarded with some “dew”. He told the Lord, “Is that all a brother is going to get is some dew?” I began to miss the whole point of his message because I was only focused on his apparent lack of respect and lack of fear of our God. First of all, we all need to understand that God doesn’t owe us anything! He’s already done more than enough. By sending His Son into this sin cursed world to bear the weight of all of our sins….that’s enough! The very fact that He who knew no sin literally became sin for us and gave His life that we might live…that’s enough! I was not pleased with His approach to God and I was offended by his arrogance as he expressed his desire for something greater.
Again, I say that we need to appreciate the fact that our God is not like any other God. He is omnipresent….He is omniscient……and He is omnipotent! All things were made by Him and through Him all things exist. I praise God that just as a mother lovingly rears her child and watches it grow and mature, so it is with God. Those of us who have a child, if you are honest, you looked forward to the day when you could hold a conversation with that child. Some of us even tried to educate our children while they were in the womb. We read to them and spoke softly to them…somehow hoping that even in the womb the child would somehow hear and understand what we were saying.
So, my friends, God is no different than we are. His first desire, after the creation was to form man from the dust of the ground…to breathe the breath of life into him causing him to live…then to commune with him. Yes, to have daily communion and fellowship with man has always been Gods desire. He has always wanted to speak to us, to lead us, to guide us, to nurture us until we become mature and Godlike. God truly wants to develop character in us and wants to see to it that we live abundant lives. Therefore, He speaks to us to warn us, to chasten us, to turn us, to educate us, and to strengthen and encourage us! We must then acquaint ourselves with His voice and know when He is speaking…for He speaks to us every day in various ways!
Therefore, today we celebrate the privilege of serving a God that speaks. The God that leads and guides, the God that rules and reigns, the God that is genuinely concerned about us. We celebrate the fact that despite all of our faults and shortcomings, He is still speaking! He is still ever present and He promised never to leave us alone!
So, in my closing, let us watch our posture when we come before our God! He tells us in His word, “Enter into my gates with thanksgiving and into my courts with praise…..be thankful unto Me and bless My name!”. Further, realize that I didn’t have to do it, but I did! I didn’t have to speak, but I did! I didn’t have to save, but I did! I didn’t have to give direction, but I did! And for this, you owe me praise!
I’m reminded of Abraham when the Lord began to enter into covenant with him. About thirteen years after the birth of Ishmael, the Lord spoke to Abraham and said, “Walk before me and be thou perfect.” It is said that Abraham immediately fell down and prostrated himself in reverence and respect to the voice and presence of the Lord….and so must we! For it is truly a privilege to hear from Him.
Yes, we have a blessed privilege of serving a God that speaks and we need to prostrate ourselves before Him and humble ourselves before His mighty hand so that He can lift us up! For when He speaks, all must be quiet…all must be still and know that He is God!
Worship Song for the Day
I come to the garden alone…..while the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear….falling on my ear….the Son of God discloses
And He walks with me and He talks with me
And He tells me I am His Own…..
And the joy we share….as we tarry there
None other….has ever known!
He speaks…and the sound of His voice
Is So sweet……the birds hush their singing
And the melody…..that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing
And He walks with me and He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share…… as we tarry there
Non other has ever known!