People in Prayer. Moses – Exodus 33:7 to 23
Sermon Notes: People in Prayer. Moses – Exodus 33:7 to 23
When we read the Chapter before this, Chapter 32, you’ll see that it’s frightening just how quickly the people of GOD forget the Lord and all He has done for them. They had experienced so much of GOD’S amazing goodness, so much of GOD’S saving goodness in their lives, delivering them, rescuing them from a life of slavery and hardship in Egypt. And here they are, just 6 weeks later, Moses has been up this mountain in God’s presence, and they’re thinking to themselves, will he ever come out of there, alive? Will he ever come back down to lead us again, and so they start saying to each other, we need someone to lead us. We need a god we can SEE and TOUCH, Aaron you make us that god that we can follow. It’s a frightening thing how quickly and how easily they could forget GOD’S amazing grace and goodness to them.
Psalm 106 is actually an account of what they say: ‘At Horeb they made a calf, and worshipped an idol cast of metal. They exchanged their Glorious God for an image of a bull, which eats grass. They forgot the God who saved them, who had done great things in Egypt, and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.’
When Moses discovers what has been happening he is angry, but he is also passionate enough to pray and plead and intercede on behalf of the people, out of a heart of LOVE and AFFECTION.
GOD is about to disown them as His own people, but Moses has a heart of an intercessor, to pray on behalf of his people. And as Moses does that he cries out to God, v11, ‘Lord there not my people, there’s yours. Why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt?’** v12, ‘It’s not my reputation LORD, that’s at stake amongst the people, it’s YOURS!’
The Egyptians are going to say that YOU brought YOUR people this far and now YOU are going to destroy them.
Psalm 106:23, ‘So God said he would destroy them, had not Moses, his chosen one, stood in the breach before him to keep his wrath from destroying them.’
Moses is pointing us forward to JESUS, our Saviour, our Intercessor, our Mediator who pleads and shows mercy and compassion to us.
In Exodus 33, we see Moses’ passion for the Presence of GOD to be with him and the people, v15, ‘If your presence doesn’t go with us, then please don’t send us up from here.’ ‘If you don’t go with us personally, don’t let us move a step from this place.’
We don’t want to journey without YOU. We don’t want to live without YOU, without YOUR Presence. That’s a massive difference from what we have just read from the previous Chapter.
V16, ‘How else would people know that You love us, are pleased with us?’
Unless – you go with us LORD. What else will distinguish us from everybody else around us?
Q: What are people meant to see in us from St. Paul’s? God’s Church? God’s family? That they don’t see in any other group or organisation that they’re part of?
The distinguishing mark of the Church of GOD, the ONE thing that marks us as different to every other group is the presence of GOD. That GOD is powerfully present and wonderfully working and speaking amongst us, touching our lives and in our gatherings.
Our goal should be to delight GOD’S heart – enjoy GOD’S presence and glorify GOD’S Name in everything we do. Like perfume – aftershave – we should be a fragrance that other people will smell and taste JESUS from our lives. carrying something of His Presence – His Love – His mercy – His kindness – His gentles – His Grace. And touching people’s lives with His Presence wherever we go and whatever we do.
Q: Do You long to carry the Presence of JESUS so contagiously with You this week?
Someone has described revival in these terms: ‘A community saturated in the Presence of God.’ That GOD’S Presence is felt everywhere in this city and beyond. I would love you to pray this prayer daily:
‘MORE LORD, More of a fresh new awakening in our souls, our church, our city, our land.’ LORD we long for YOUR Presence – Your Glory. Won’t YOU come down and do a fresh work of Your Holy Spirit in us. MORE LORD. Have all there is to have of ME!