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Hello, It's God
Scripture: Exodus 19:1-20; James 2:19; Exodus 20:20...
Track 10 of 14 in the Moses: A Man of Selfless Dedication series
Running time: 53 minutes, 29 seconds.

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Mike Nobis Speaker: Mike Nobis
Sunday School Teacher, Former Elder at Madison Park Christian Church. Mike is President of JK Creative Printers & Mailing in Quincy, IL. He is married to Pam and has three children, Tom, Tyler and Jennifer. Mike has three grandchildren: Ryne, Ivy and Alicia.

View all sermons by this speaker.

Hello, It’s God!

We live in a time in history when the word “investment” has a whole different meaning than it did 2-3 weeks ago. Three weeks ago America’s investors had 2 trillion more dollars than they have right now. I hope we all learned a lesson, what we invest in is important. So here is a question I want all of us to hear and consider carefully:

As a reflection of your daily actions, can you name the most important priority in life? Putting it another way, what is the single most important investment you will ever make in all your days on this earth?

If we were taking a test I bet most of us would know the right answer but; how does the right answer compare to what you actually invest your life in? Hopefully as we study Exodus 19, we will see urgency to another priority. Unfortunately, many Christians don’t understand what they have at their fingertips. What you and I have today is so awesome in comparison to what the Hebrews had when Moses lived. Yes, Moses got to talk with God and he got to meet God up on Mt. Sinai; but how much more awesome is that compared to what we have. Not only can we talk with God anytime we want, we actually have God personally living inside us.

Too many Christians don’t think that is a big deal at all. The number one area of improvement Christians admit is they don’t pray or they don’t pray enough. How many of you are totally satisfied with your prayer life? How many of you talk more with your pets than you do with God? Moses meeting with God can teach us much about our own meeting with God. We will discover that the time we spend with God as his Children must become priority #1.

Exodus 19 opens in the shadow of Mt. Sinai. Before the people could meet with God, Before Moses could climb the mountain to hear and receive God’s revelation, Israel had to be properly prepared. A significant part of that preparation had to do with where they met.

Exodus 19:1-2 In the third month after the Israelites left Egypt—on the very day—they came to the Desert of Sinai. After they set out from Rephidim, they entered the Desert of Sinai, and Israel camped there in the desert in front of the mountain.

3 months to the day they left Egypt, Israel arrived at the Sinai Mountains. I have never seen these mountains but everyone who has, almost all together say the same thing, “there is some sort of majesty about these mountains.” It is like God is raising his gigantic fist proclaiming, Here. Here. Here I am. Look upon my majesty. It is here at Sinai that God planned to call his people together in one place so God could claim them as His own.

Describe for me how you pray? What preparations do you make for your time with God? Is it well prepared? Is it an appointment you keep on a regular basis? Or is your prayer time more casual? When do you normally pray? Have you ever fell asleep praying to God? Are you the type that rush in and rush out of your time with God?

As we will see in our lesson today, God does not quickly run into someone’s presence – nor must we thoughtlessly barge into His presence. There is no place for a careless attitude in contacting and communing with the living God.

James 2:19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

When was the last time you trembled or shuttered at the name of Jesus? When you go to Jesus in prayer, are you prepared for it? What does it mean to be prepared to meet with God? What kind of preparation does God require?

In Exodus 19:3-15, we find 4 prerequisites God made for his people before they could meet with him. There were 4 things he required for them to do:

Be Willing to Obey

Exodus 19:3-6 Then Moses went up to God, and the LORD called to him from the mountain and said, “This is what you are to say to the house of Jacob and what you are to tell the people of Israel: ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”

How many of you saw the movie, The 10 Commandments? Describe for me the scene when God talked to Moses?

When we look at how God prepared the people, Moses actually climbed the mountain 7 times delivering important messages to the nation to prepare them for the big act. Moses took care of delivering God’s messages to the people before he ever had his 40 day vigil in God’s presence to receive God’s handwritten Word.

The first message from God to the people was, be willing to obey. Before you go to God in prayer, do you say to God, yes, I will obey whatever you tell be to do? If you don’t have the heart that is willing to obey God, don’t meet with him. Obedience is absolutely necessary.

Be Sensitive to Listen

Exodus 19:8-9 So Moses brought their answer back to the LORD. The LORD said to Moses, “I am going to come to you in a dense cloud, so that the people will hear me speaking with you and will always put their trust in you.” Then Moses told the LORD what the people had said.

When you approach God in prayer, who does most of the talking? Are you sensitive to listen to what God tells you? What role does listening play with obeying when it comes to communicating? Can one go without the other? How are they different if they are not attached?

Consecrate Your Heart

Exodus 19:10-11, 14 And the LORD said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow. Have them wash their clothes and be ready by the third day, because on that day the LORD will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. After Moses had gone down the mountain to the people, he consecrated them, and they washed their clothes.

What does the symbolism here in this verse mean? In order for us to be prepared to meet with him, what must be going on in our hearts, our inner man?

How do distractions affect a person’s ability to listen? What are some of the distractions we carry in with us to meet God that causes us not to hear what he has to say to us? How can you tell when someone is not at all listening to what you have to say? How does it make you feel? Do you think God feels that way at times?

Show a Deep Respect for God’s Presence

Exodus 19: 12, 20-22 Put limits for the people around the mountain and tell them, ‘Be careful that you do not go up the mountain or touch the foot of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death. The LORD descended to the top of Mount Sinai and called Moses to the top of the mountain. So Moses went up and the LORD said to him, “Go down and warn the people so they do not force their way through to see the LORD and many of them perish. Even the priests, who approach the LORD, must consecrate themselves, or the LORD will break out against them.”

Of course today God is different, right? Our God today is not like that, is he? The questions we have to ask ourselves, is our God today too small? This passage reminds us that we live in an era of pitifully shallow concepts of God. The face of Jesus definitely showed us a side of God many never knew until Jesus came to this earth. We now have a personal relationship with God but it is important to understand what that means and especially, what it doesn’t mean. All one has to do to fully understand who Jesus is needs to read Revelation and see how the creatures in heaven approach Jesus or act in his presence.

Is Jesus our buddy? Do we have a shallow concept of who Jesus is? Is it okay to refer to Jesus as our Big Daddy upstairs? One of the pop songs our kids listen to says this about God, “What if God were just a slob like us”? What is wrong with these descriptions of God?

These are not the biblical view of God. These are man’s feeble attempt to make God relevant. We are not permitted to diminish the beauty of God’s holiness. Because we have a great relationship with Jesus, we go too far in our understanding of that relationship. God wants to have relationship with us but he is God and we aren’t. There are boundaries we are not to cross.

Why do you think God instructed Moses to put up barriers preventing the people from coming up the mountain? All throughout scripture God is so insistent upon maintaining an elevated, exalted position. Even when he walked the earth as a man, Jesus always displayed that reverence toward God. He never displayed an attitude that God himself was on mans level. Man is never t cross that line. We are not to take God for granted and we are never to be frivolous in His presence.

Have we become too casual with God? What affect can a shallow view of God have on our life? If we cheapen God, will this lead to us living a cheap life? If God himself were to appear before you today, what would you do?

What is interesting, we come into the presence of God all the time. Whenever we pray, we communicate directly with Him. We enter into His presence.

True or false: The heaviest obligation upon the Christian church is to purify and elevate her concept of God until it is once more worthy of Him. In all her prayers and labors, this should be first place.

What is your concept of God? Who is your God? Be honest. Does he look anything like the God of Mt. Sinai?

Exodus 19:16-20 On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled. Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the LORD descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, the whole mountain£ trembled violently, and the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder. Then Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him. The LORD descended to the top of Mount Sinai and called Moses to the top of the mountain.

When reading this passage, there is one statement that jumps off the page. It is a principle found all throughout the Scriptures, “The LORD descended to the top of Mount Sinai”. God made the first move in our relationship. God descended and called Moses up to the top. But why did God want to meet with Moses? There were two good reasons, two good healthy reasons.

To establish a healthy fear of the Almighty

Exodus 20:20 Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.”

Does the church today have a healthy fear of God? How can you tell? When the fear is gone, what happens? We act as though we can do as we please. What about you? Do you fear God or do you do as you please? What is the danger?

To communicate written instructions for his people

Exodus 24:12-13 The LORD said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain and stay here, and I will give you the tablets of stone, with the law and commands I have written for their instruction.” Then Moses set out with Joshua his aide, and Moses went up on the mountain of God.

This is the first time in all history that God wrote down His Word. Before the time of Moses, the written Word of God did not exist. Now here it was. How awesome those tablets must have been. Moses actually held in his hands the written word of God, actually penned with God’s own hand. Moses possessed the autograph of Deity.

What do you think those tablets would be worth today if they were actually found?

What is really sad, you and I have the total and complete Word of God in our hands and many of us don’t even open them much and read them. The church is so messed up today that we even have to hold studies called the Truth Project to re-teach to Christians what the truth really is. We have been so conformed to the world we have a hard time distinguishing God’s viewpoint from the world’s. What is even scarier, we can’t get half of our church to be interested in studying God’s Word and yet, everyone in worship today calls themselves Christians.

In the word God gave to Moses, God displayed another revelation. The awesomeness of this revelation went far beyond possessing the Word of God. God revealed the design of the tabernacle.

Exodus 25:8-9 Then have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them. Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you.

Why did God give the Israelites the Word, so they would obey and listen to God. By obeying and listening to God, they discovered how to build the tabernacle so God would dwell with them. That is God’s ultimate intention, to dwell with man. His original intent was to create man to be in relationship with Him. When we obey and listen, our relationship with Jesus grows and grows and he shares Himself with us.