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Who God Calls

Vision  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  35:31
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Vision: Who God Calls

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Last week we began talking about Vision. And really what we’re asking is what is God’s vision for me individually and what is God’s vision for us corporately. And God’s vision has to do with who is He is shaping us to be and where is He is asking us to go.
Here’s something we often miss with God’s vision – it’s never about me - only.
Whatever God is doing in my life always has a greater implication that expands into the lives of others.
In other words, whatever the Lord is doing in you personally should play a part in what He desires to do in your family, in your church, in your world –
There should be a connection between what God is doing in here (my heart) and what God is doing out there (my world).
And that connection has everything to do with the gospel - that people are separated from God and he desires that all people come to repentance and be saved - and we play a part in that.
Our key verse for vision is
Proverbs 29:18 ESV
Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.
- Where there is no prophetic vision (or divine revelation) the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law (ESV).
Prophetic vision really comes down to these two things: God saying, “This is what I want you to know and this is what I want you to do.”
Prophetic vision really comes down to these two things: God saying, “This is what I want you to know and this is what I want you to do.” And that’s what we want to discover over the next several months - what does God want us to know and what does He want us to do.
And that’s what we want to discover over the next several months - what does God want us to know and what does He want us to do.
God’s revelation = life! It equals what is best of individuals and what is best for society! Spiritually, physically, psychologically (mind, body, spirit)!
A lack of God’s revelation = death! It equals what is less than best -spiritually, physically, psychologically!
When there is a lack of God’s revelation or vision in your life, it leads to living a life that is less than God’s best.
Therefore, it is imperative that we who confess Jesus Christ as our Lord understand and obey God’s personal and corporate vision.
Ephesians 5:15–17 NIV
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.
Be very careful (pay close attention - do with precision), then, how you live (spiritually, physically, psychologically) - not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish (do not be senseless, frantic, stupid), but understand what the Lord’s will is.
Understand what the Lord desires for you to be and do. To live otherwise is senseless and foolish. We need to know His vision.
Understand what the Lord desires for you to be and do. To live otherwise is senseless and foolish. We need to know His vision.
I mentioned three things last week that God’s vision provides. I want to revisit them - just for a moment. You should notice they’re a little different this week …
1) God’s Vision Provides My and Our Best Purpose
When I believe what the Word of God says, that I am not some random cosmic accident, but rather designed in the image of God and created for a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, I gain purpose. When I pursue Jesus, I discover that I have a reason for being on this planet besides taking up time space and matter.
2) God’s Vision Provides My and Our Best Boundaries
God’s Word gives me the best boundaries for everything. God gives us boundaries so that we can best manage our finances, our relationships, even manage our society - so that we can be the best stewards of our bodies, our resources ….
3) God’s Vision Provides My and Our Best Perspective
When I pursue Jesus, and begin think like Jesus, I gain the best perspective of my circumstances; the best perspective of people, of current events, of life.
God’s vision provides the best possible way to live. Now, how many people do you think are living according to God’s vision for their lives – that they are living according to His best purpose, within His best boundaries and looking at life according to His best perspective? Not many. What about you? Me?
So, if God’s vision is what is best, and very few people are living according to God’s vision – what is God to do? I’ll tell you what He does. He invites people to enter His presence, through the blood of Jesus Christ to be remade in His image - to be the best that they can be, and then He sends them out to invite others to come into His presence so that they can be the best that they can be.
Isn’t that what Jesus did with the disciples? He said come follow me, hang out with me, be like the (the best) and I will make you fishers of men.
Now, if God’s vision is for us to be our best so that we can help others be their best (which always begins with a relationship with Jesus Christ), then we must ask the question – who does God really call to this task. Does God really call me to do this - or just special people?
I think one of the best places to answer that question is the Book of Exodus. And as we go through sections of this book, we will encounter a very real interaction between God and an ordinary man named Moses. And we will see that the events in Exodus are typical of how God invites people into His vision and mission.
I want to address at least three primary issues concerning vision: Who God Calls; How God Calls and Why. So, let’s start with the Who (not the band) - but Who God Calls?
If you don’t know the overall theme of Genesis, I encourage you to watch The Bible Project - a link in your notes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jH_aojNJM3E
Now a man of the tribe of Levi married a Levite woman, and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son. When she saw that he was a fine child, she hid him for three months.
Exodus 2:1–2 NIV
Now a man of the tribe of Levi married a Levite woman, and she became pregnant and gave birth to a son. When she saw that he was a fine child, she hid him for three months.
What was Moses’ background? The Israelites, including his parents, were slaves -meaning Moses was born on the wrong side of the tracks - the wrong part of town. According to the Egyptians, the Hebrews were scum, trash, worthless and no one from his people ever became anything significant. No one from his family ever went onto college or to be a CEO. This is his beginning.
What was Moses’ background? The Israelites, including his parents, were slaves -meaning Moses was born on the wrong side of the tracks - the wrong part of town. According to the Egyptians, the Hebrews were scum, trash, worthless and no one from his people ever became anything significant. No one from his family ever went onto college or to be a CEO. This is his beginning.
Can anyone relate?
Now, we know that Pharaoh attempted to exterminate all the male infants from Egypt, but Moses survived. Verse
Exodus 2:10 NIV
When the child grew older, she took him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. She named him Moses, saying, “I drew him out of the water.”
Around 3 or 4 years of age, Moses was removed from his bio family and given to a stranger to live in a stranger’s home, raised apart from his parents and his heritage. Probably never saw his parents again. Pharaoh’s daughter gave him an Egyptian name, Moses – meaning the legal rights of his parents were terminated and he was officially adopted as an Egyptian. New parents, new brothers, sisters, new dog, new way of life. That can be traumatic.
Around 3 or 4 years of age, Moses was removed from his bio family and given to a stranger to live in a stranger’s home, raised apart from his parents and his heritage. Probably never saw his parents again. Pharaoh’s daughter gave him an Egyptian name, Moses – meaning the legal rights of his parents were terminated and he was officially adopted as an Egyptian. New parents, new brothers, sisters, new dog, new way of life. That can be traumatic.
Can anyone relate?
Moses went from rags to riches overnight.
Exodus 2:11–12 NIV
One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. Looking this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
One day, after Moses had grown up (he’s around 40 now - over the hill), he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. Looking this way and that and seeing no one (meaning this was premeditated), he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
So now Moses is guilty of one of the most heinous things a person can do to a fellow human – intentionally take their life. Moses is now a murderer and everything else that accompanies that. Can anyone relate? Just look at your neighbor and smile.
So now Moses is guilty of one of the most heinous things a person can do to a fellow human – intentionally take their life. Moses is now a murderer and everything else that accompanies that. Can anyone relate? Just look at your neighbor and smile.
But Moses isn’t a bad citizen for parking his chariot in the wrong spot. He is now a serious lawbreaker. Can anyone relate? Verse ...
Exodus 2:15 NIV
When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian, where he sat down by a well.
Verse
What do we have now? A fugitive – someone on the run from the law. He’s not just running from the law, but he’s running from what? His past. Can anyone relate?
What do we have now? A fugitive – someone on the run from the law. He’s not just running from the law, but he’s running from what? His past. Can anyone relate?
Moses stays in Midian, settles down with the family of Jethro, marries his daughter and has a son - trying to make a new life. So, he’s been in Midian for about 40 years.
Lastly, look at
Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian ….
Exodus 3:1 NIV
Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God.
So he’s a shepherd - no big deal, right? Kind of. If you recall in Genesis when Jacob moved his family to Egypt because of his son Joseph - Joseph warned them “Be careful how you approach Pharaoh because to the Egyptians, shepherds are detestable, they’re an abomination - they are offensive. Shepherds are at the bottom of the food chain - perhaps even lower than slaves.
So he’s a shepherd - no big deal, right? Kind of. If you recall in Genesis when Jacob moved his family to Egypt because of his son Joseph - Joseph warned them “Be careful how you approach Pharaoh because to the Egyptians, shepherds are detestable, they’re an abomination - they are offensive. Shepherds are at the bottom of the food chain - perhaps even lower than slaves.
This may have weighed on his ego a little bit. “Out of all the jobs in the world, I’ve got one of the lowest.”
But also, pay attention to the text - who’s flock is it? Not his. These are Jethro’s. Meaning, at 80-years-old, Moses is still working for his father-in-law. He has yet to gain financial independence. From rags, to riches to rags. From the palaces of Egypt to the wastelands of Midian - Moses had it all and then lost it all - can anyone relate?
Now from here, God reaches out to Moses and invites him into His vision to lead the rescue of Israel. Now this is only part one - we’ll finish this next week, but let me end with this -
Are you getting the picture of who God invites to be a part of His vision? So far, one of the greatest leaders in all of history was a loser when God called him. He lost his family, bio and adopted; he lost his honor (became a murderer and fugitive), lost his status as a prince - he lost it all. Moses was loser with a past.
So
Who does God call: Losers with a past.
And we will see next week, that losers with a past are the only people God ever calls to do great things in His Kingdom. And here’s the beauty of it all -
God can take any loser with a past and make them a winner with a victorious future.
We’ll talk more about that next week, but my friends know this - it all starts with a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. If you have never acknowledged that you are a sinner separated from God and that you need His forgiveness to have new life, now and for eternity, I encourage you to do so.
If you feel like all you’ve been doing is losing - maybe it’s time to give your life (all of it) to Jesus Christ. For anyone who believes on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, who confesses their sins to Him, and repents (turns from a life of sin) will be saved and have new and abundant life in Christ.
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