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3-minute Sermon
 
Official Service Sermon > Official Service
Official Service
Title
   Goodness(12) - Moses(2)    
Speaker
   Rev. Jaerock Lee
Bible
   Nu 12:3, 7
Date
   2005-08-21



[Reading passage]

Numbers 12:3, 7
Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth.)
But this is not true of my servant Moses; he is faithful in all my house.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

This service is the 12th session of "Goodness", and I will be continuing to preach about the goodness of Moses from the last session.
In last session I explained that Moses was raised as a son of the daughter of Pharaoh, but he chose to suffer inflictions with the people of Israel rather then to enjoy the pleasure of sin, and he did it all while suffering through the trials of the Midian desert for 40 years.
He desperately felt he was nothing and had nothing while he was suffering trials in the Midian desert. He experienced that he could do nothing on his own.
But he was neither frustrated nor disheartened. He did not give up.
His faith in God became more certain, so he realized he could not survive without the holding hands of God, and he was thankful in everything.
He lived a life full of toils and pains of a shepherd tending the flock of his father-in-law. But he was thankful because he did not starve, but instead he ate every meal and was able to lie himself down for a rest. He was thankful to God in everything.
When he passed all trials with gratitude, his heart became thoroughly humble before God and his faith stood absolutely firm. God called him.
He called Moses so that He could lead the Israelites, who cried out to God in pain, out of Egypt.
Moses, because he had fully emptied himself and humbled himself for 40 years, hesitated to accept the God-given task when He first commanded him.
So, God revealed wonders and promised him to be with him, and then Moses obeyed His call and marched forward to Egypt.
He sent the word of God to the Israelites and through his obedience to God's direction he led them from the 400 years of bondage in Egypt.
Now I will explain with what kind of goodness he embraced the Israelites, and in guiding them into the Promised Land as their leader.
Dear all brothers and sisters, and all workers, compare the size and depth of the vessel of your heart with that of Moses. Make this lesson your grace and strength so that you may come forth as the better vessels in the sight of God. In the name of the Lord I pray!

Dear brothers and sisters, the third goodness of Moses acceptable to God, as said in Numbers 12:3, was that he was more humble than anyone else on the earth.
Spiritual humbleness that is indicated in the Word of God means the tender and kind heart accompanied with virtue.
This humble heart accepts everybody and lets as many people rest in it as it can in the same way a large tree supports many people who come into its shading for them on a hot summer day.
And this humbleness is a tender and comfortable heart that is soft like cotton. If we throw a stone at a piece of metal, it bounces off making a noisy sound. If we throw a stone through a windowpane, it breaks with a noisy sound.
An arrogant and selfish person gives a noisy and rough response when the situation disagrees with his desire.
But when we throw a stone onto a bundle of cotton or thrust it through with a sharp rod, it never makes any noise but just accepts and enfolds the object.
A meek person accomplishes a tender heart similar to cotton, so he does not quarrel with anybody in any situation. Instead, he can have peace with everybody.
He can embrace those who have different thoughts and education from his own. He does not judge or condemn anything with wickedness in all his ways. He can accept, understand and serve others in a humble manner.
He neither has ill feelings toward others nor lets them feel uneasy. No matter how wicked they are, and no matter how feeble their faith is, he does not forsake them but waits for them to change.
He finds the way for them to be improved, and leads and helps them to go that way.
Moses was more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth. He led the Israelites out of Egypt into the land of Canaan, and suffered numerous difficulties and hardships during that 40-year way in the desert.
In a Mission or a Parish there are many kinds of personalities among the members who have not changed by the truth and hold to various other things.
Those who complain, offend, slander and speak ill of others, separate themselves. They disobey, make and spread false rumors, and so on.
When the Israelites came out of Egypt, there were about six hundred thousand men, and a total of two million people followed Moses including women and children. How many hardships had Moses suffered while he led such a great multitude of people through the tough desert travel?
They saw many wonders and miraculous signs that God had performed through Moses, but they hurled various complaints and groaned against him whenever they met with difficulties.

When Moses obeyed with faith, the Red Sea was parted and they walked across it as though they were on the dry land. But, as they walked through the desert three days later, they found no water at all and began to complain about Moses.
They had actually experienced God's wondrous miracles such as Ten Plagues and the parting of the Red Sea. If they had had even a little faith, they would not have complained against Moses but asked him to give them drinking water by faith.
But they did not believe God's presence though they had witnessed the great power of God.
Moses tolerated them in all this at that time, and he cried out to God for them and performed a miracle by changing the bitter water of Marah into sweet water to drink.
At Marah they drank water and continued their walking. It was not long before they began to complain because there was no food for them to eat.
Their words of complaint are written in Exodus 16:3, "And the children of Israel said to them, "Oh, that we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger."
They were like a drowning man who has been saved and asked the one who saved them to throw them back into the water!
For these ungrateful people, Moses prayed to God to fulfill their petition.
Through his prayer, Moses was able to provide them with bread to eat in the morning and be filled with meat in the evening.
The people of Israel ate food coming from above every day, and then did they obey and closely follow Moses?
Never. When they set out on their journey from the Wilderness of Sin, and camped in Rephidim, there was no water for them to drink.
So they quarreled with Moses and were about to stone him. They said, "Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?"
It may have left Moses speechless. It was absurd. How could they say anything like that though they had eaten Manna every day that came from God?
Their action and behavior were not forgivable or acceptable at all in human thinking, but Moses went before God and prayed for them. He cried out and received the answer.
He struck the rock with his staff before the eyes of elders of the people, and then water came out of it.
The Israelites complained and grumbled at even small things and doubted whether God was among them.
Moses cried out to God to give them their desires, and received His answers.
They, however, committed a great sin before God and fell into a crisis for which all of them would be destroyed.
Moses climbed Mount Sinai to communicate with God over a long period of time.
During his absence, they became too unrestrained in heart and molded a calf. And they proclaimed it as their god that had led them out of Egypt.
God became furious and said to Moses, "I have seen this people, and indeed it is a stiff-necked people! [10] "Now therefore, let Me alone, that My wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them. And I will make of you a great nation."
How did Moses answer God? Did he say, "Yes, they have been unforgivable. Let them be treated by Your will?" No. He did not say anything at all like that.

In Exodus 32:11-13, he earnestly petitioned to God, saying, ""LORD, why does Your wrath burn hot against Your people whom You have brought out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? [12] "Why should the Egyptians speak, and say, 'He brought them out to harm them, to kill them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth'? Turn from Your fierce wrath, and relent from this harm to Your people. [13] "Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants, to whom You swore by Your own self, and said to them, 'I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven; and all this land that I have spoken of I give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.'"
God turned His will and did not pour out His wrath upon them.
When Moses came down from the mountain, he saw them committing a great sin before God.
In Exodus 32:31-32 it says that he knelt down before God and prayed, ""Oh, these people have committed a great sin, and have made for themselves a god of gold! [32] "Yet now, if You will forgive their sin--but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written."
The people committed such a great sin before God, but still he could not see the nation being destroyed. So, he asked God to forgive them to the point of laying down his life for them.
They did not believe God had been with Moses. Neither did they obey and follow Moses.
They were not thankful to Moses for his sacrificial pains for them but rather complained and groaned against him for leading them out of Egypt into the path of deserts.
When they sinned greatly before God and were on the point of destruction, Moses did not hesitate to lay down his life for their salvation.
Moses accomplished the highest level of goodness in which he could give his life to his enemy and fully embraced the sin filled people with that perfect goodness. That's why God the Father said he was more humble than anyone else on the earth.
Then, how many people can you spiritually embrace? Have you ever quarreled with your children you gave birth to because you would not embrace them?
Have you done the same thing toward your brothers, sisters or your spouse? Have you quarreled and been in confrontation because you could not, or would not, spiritually accept and embrace them?
All leaders who tend the souls as a parish pastor, group leader, mission leader, or cell leader, must look back on your life to see if you have taken care of them with humbleness.
If you truly understand the goodness of Moses, you could not blame the actions of others saying that they have just done too much wrong to be embraced."
Because you have obstacle within you and unbroken frameworks of your thought has remained in you, you cannot embrace them but make a noise.
Therefore, I pray in the name of the Lord that all of you all church workers and all brothers and sisters follow the example of the goodness of Moses, and come forth as great vessels that can embrace many more souls.

Dear brothers and sisters,
The fourth goodness of Moses was that he was faithful to all God's house as indicated in Verse 7.
Being faithful is when you have fully carried out the God-given duties and accomplish more than your personal duties require.
Being faithful in all God's house means faithful in every kind of work.
To be faithful to all God's house, you must be able to sacrifice yourself without sparing your heart, your sincerity and your time. Hebrews 3:5 says, "And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which would be spoken afterward,"
A servant indicates one that performs duties for the person or home of a master or personal employer, so the word "a servant" tells us how much Moses lowered himself and how fully he was faithful to his God-given duties.
His task, commissioned by God, was to lead the Israelites out of Egypt into the land of Canaan.
Moses did not become the leader for them because he wanted the position.
He was chosen and called by the will of God.
By the way, the Israelites did not listen to his words carefully, nor did they obey him.
They complained and even quarreled with Moses over small difficulties and inconveniences. It was Moses' task to lead these stubborn people into the land of Canaan as promised by God.
A leader of the people has burdens to carry.
Sometimes he feels burdened and heavy laden by his task.
In the world, when people see their company meet with difficulties, some key workers hide themselves for their own benefits.
Some leaders are unable to overcome the humility, despising attitudes, and complaints of their staff members and they killed themselves.
It was not easy for a leader to carry all the burdens for his people and the weak-hearted people might feel so much grief and discomfort because of their responsibilities to the point of literally giving up on life..
But Moses never shirked his responsibility nor delegated his responsibility for his people to anybody else. He never abandoned his task at all. He passed through every kind of hardship by faith.
He did not think he would simply lead them out of Egypt and take them to the land of Canaan.
He cared for them with the heart of a father and put them in his heart day and night as if he had given birth to them. He carefully considered how he would awaken them and how he would help them to become the kind of people that God desired them to be.
But because their faith was so weak and they were far from the standard God wanted, he always had to mourn and petition to God for them.
His heart was always filled with pain and sorrow because of them. He also felt sorry for them.
He did not feel comfortable due to worries and anxieties about the people. He never rested, even for a moment from the day he led them out of Egypt until the day when God called his soul.
He shed immeasurable tears for them. His tearful prayers and mourning petitions for them are beyond description.
Why do you think he prayed so earnestly to God for them all the time? He prayed that God would not give up on them but continue to lead them in His will.
Because Moses had this kind of heart, God trusted Moses too. And God let him have deep fellowship with God and perform great works of power.
So, it did not just happen that he received the Ten Commandments, and the many decrees and statutes in his communication with God.
He went up to a desolate mountain and prayed and fasted 40 days there. Was it easy?
When he prayed to God with 40-day fasting, he did not pray quietly. He cried out with all his sincerity and might and made every effort to increasingly read the heart of God.
Through this prayer, he was given the Five Books of Moses.
In addition to the Five Books, he received many revelations from God and had close fellowship with Him.
He never spoke anything to the people without the consent and approval of God, and he thoroughly kept what God had said.
Because Moses had this kind of inner heart, God spoke to Moses face to face as a man speaks to his friend, and he enjoyed deep fellowship with him.
Was Moses courageous and pompous before God because he was fully faithful to all God's house? No, he never was.
Among the first generation of the Israelites who were over 20 years old and escaped from Egypt, only two people entered the land of Canaan.
And it was the second generation who conquered the Promised Land.
The second generation of the Israelites could conquer it because Moses led and taught them in faith. Nonetheless, he was always sorry before God for not reaping much more fruit.
He felt sorry because he did not bear greater and more perfect fruits although God gave him many powers and confirmed many works of his.
Moses was humbler than the unworthy servant who might say," I have finished my duty." after he had fulfilled only what was commanded of him.
How about you? Have you ever thought your duty was too heavy and laborious and wanted to abandon it and rest?
Please be reminded of the heart of Moses who had never rested peacefully because of worries about the people, from the moment he led them out of Egypt until the moment he was lifted up into heaven by God.
Remember the heart of Moses who had been faithful to all God's house, but was sorry to God because he did not reap more fruits and urged himself to continue his race.


[concluding remarks]

Dear brothers and sisters,
Today we have learned about two new kinds of goodness of Moses – he was more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth, and he was faithful to all God's house.
I think you can now fully feel how great Moses' vessel was as a person who was chosen by God to fulfill His will.
A proverb says, "Wind never stops blowing against a tree having many branches."
The taller and bigger a tree the more problems it faces.
But a big tree has a strong root planted deep in the ground and it stands firm in the face of storms, even if the crown of its branches is tossed by the wind.
And it can become a shelter for many birds and supplies them with cool shade.
I hope you will become such a great tree of faith.
You can do it if you take after Moses and resemble his goodness and plant your faith deep into the word of God.
Jeremiah 17:7-8 say, "Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, And whose hope is the LORD. [8] For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river, And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green, And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit."
I pray in the name of the Lord all of you become such a great tree in faith so that you can be used as a precious tool for the kingdom of God.

[Amen]

 
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