Walking through the wilderness is never easy. It’s always challenging. But it’s the wilderness experience where we learn to depend on God’s promises. Wilderness teaches us that God is faithful and trustworthy.
Our God is a Holy God, creator of heaven and earth. There is no other God but Him. His Glory is magnificent. He is worthy of reverence. Moses couldn’t face the glory of God. In the sermon, Rev. Nadeem talks about the true identity of God. God tells Moses that God is Compassionate and gracious, loving and faithful, forgiving and just. The sermon aims to teach how to worship a Holy, compassionate, merciful and gracious God.
In the sermon Pastor Nadeem uncovers some interesting and importance facts about the golden calf that the Israelites made and worshipped, while Moses was on the mountain top. Moreover, Pastor Nadeem talks about the modern golden calves in our lives that have taken the place of God that we need to get rid of.
God told the Israelites to take the Sabbath serious and with reverence and do nothing else on this day but rest and worship God. Jesus continued the sanctity of the Sabbath. The sermon aims to encourage the congregation to put worship above everything else on Sunday.
God wanted the Israelites to learn to thank God for God’s goodness by giving back to God from what God gave them. From gold, silver, bronze, yarn, olive oil, etc. In the sermon, Rev. Nadeem says that our giving reflects our gratitude to God. In the gospel of Mark, chapter 12, Jesus appreciates the generosity of a widow who, despite she was poor, offered everything she had. The sermon aims to remind the importance of giving for our Christian faith. The giving not only includes money but our talent and time as well.
In this sermon Rev. Nadeem focuses the Exodus story and talks about the Israelites whom God declares His treasured possession, a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation become a lost nation. As you can imagine, the Israelites were very happy and in response they committed to obeying God. But it doesn’t take too long, and they go astray, and a holy nation becomes a lost nation. Being lost can be very dangerous, especially when people don’t know they are lost. What it means for Christians? What are the signs of being a lost? And what helps get us back on the right path to where we were supposed to be?
God delivered the Israelites from Egyptian slavery. They are on the way to the promised land and are faced with a serious problem. A journey through the desert is never easy. The scripture tells that they couldn’t find water for three days. Under those circumstances, their grumbling seems quite legitimate and reasonable. However, what if they had cried out to God for help instead of grumbling to Moses. God provided the water through a miracle. Like Israelites, many times in our lives we grumble against others and/or God when we should cry out for help.
This is the song of Moses and his older sister Miriam, and both of them testify to the great deeds that Yahweh did to deliver them from Egyptian slavery. They praise God and share this powerful testimony. Testimony is an important, part of Christian faith. The apostles were killed because of their testimony. Even today in many countries Christians are persecuted because of their testimony. Mainline protestant Christians, including Methodists need to be more willing and bolder in sharing their testimony.
In the beginning of Exodus, Pharaoh ordered the killing of Hebrew male children. God does not forget that, and judges Pharaoh for the evil that he brought to God’s people, about eighty years ago. This is the final plague that God brought to the Egyptians, and killed every first-born son in Egypt, including the first born of Pharaoh. But God showed mercy to the Israelites. God commanded Moses to remember this pass this story to the generations to come, so they know that God’s mercy and judgement, both are real. Today, a lot of Christians tend to think of Jesus a loving, submissive and merciful, son of God, and indeed that is who Jesus is. However, when Jesus returns, he will come to judge. Christians ought to balance the message of the cross; and proclaim God’s mercy without compromising God’s judgement.