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008502_resolving Lifes Key Issues[1]

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RESOLVING LIFE'S KEY ISSUES

Hebrews 11:23-27

 

Today we're going to look at the life of Moses. 

   Moses was the greatest leader in the Old Testament.

 He led the Hebrew slaves out of Egypt. 

He received the Ten Commandments from God. 

  He was a tremendous leader. 

   (He made a great movie!) 

    He wrote the first five books of the Bible –

     Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuterono. 

A little boy came back from Sunday school one morning and his father asked him:.

   “Well, what did you learn?”.

  The little boy replied:

“How the people of Israel were kept in Egypt

  and used as slaves by this guy called Pharaoh.”

“Oh?” said the father. “Then what happened?”

   The little boy went on……..

A guy named Moses

   tried all these special effects on them.

  It was really wicked.

     He turned the river to blood,

      he covered the Egyptians with frogs, and bugs,

     and boils.

He beat them down with hailstones, and locusts,

   and scared them with an eclipse of the sun.

    He started killing their cattle

and then finally killing their oldest kids.”

 

“And did it work?’ his Dad asked

   “Well, Pharaoh lets them go after the kids were killed,

      but then he sent his army after them.”

  “And then what?”

“Well . . . Moses calls in the Israeli air force.

   And they strafed the Egyptian tanks

   and destroyed them on the ground.

     They also gave cover while the engineers

lay down this pontoon bridge across the Red Sea.

And then the people of Israel crossed over

   without getting their feet wet.

     But when the Egyptian army

  got on the pontoon bridge,

    the air force came back and bombed it away,

and the Egyptians drown.”

“Is that what your teacher told you?” his father asked “Well, not exactly.

   But if I told it the way she did,

     you’d wouldn’t believe me!!!!!!!!

Why did God use Moses? 

The answer is that he settled life's 4 basic issues. 

They’re all in Hebrews 11. 

   Every one of us has to come to grips

with these four basic life issues. 

I don't care if you're a believer or you're an unbeliever,

if you believe in God or if you don't believe in God,

     you're going to have to come to grips

      with these four basic issues in life. 

They’ll determine the direction of your life.

    They will determine the significance

  and success of your life.

 They will determine the satisfaction of your life. 

If you're a parent one of the best things you can do,

   is help your children deal

with these 4 basic life issues. 

   You're going to deal with them inevitably –

if not now, later. 

1st YOU MUST DEFINE YOUR IDENTITY. 

You must clarify exactly who & what you are. 

In Moses' case this was a major issue. 

  Moses had an identity crises.

Although Moses was born a Hebrew slave

   he was raised an Egyptian in Pharaoh's court.

      Eventually he had to make a decision……..,

   Who am I really?   Am I a Hebrew slave? 

 Or Am I Egyptian royalty? 

There were major consequences to that decision. 

The two choices were,

    Do I pretend I'm really the son of Pharaoh's daughter?

     and if so that means I will have fame, money,

   pleasure, & status. 

Or, Do I admit my Jewish roots

   and return and live with slaves

and be humiliated, disgraced, and do hard labor

and possibly lose my own life? 

The reason why God used Moses

   was Moses was a man of integrity.

He refused to be somebody that he wasn't. 

He refused to live a lie. 

  He made a decision

   and that decision affected the rest of his life. 

The Bible says, "By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh's daughter." 

One of the major reasons

  why people have stress in their lives

is they often try to be somebody their not. 

 God made you to be you. 

    

Psalm 139 says "You saw my bones being formed as I took shape in my mother's body.  All the days planned for me were written in your book before I was one day old." 

The Bible says, before you were born

  God planned all your days. 

  You were already an entity….Before you were born.

   So what is success? 

     Success is being what God made you to be

         and not trying to be somebody you're not.

You don't have to have other people's approval

   to be happy. 

But you do have to be

 what God made you to be. 

  You do have to know your identity. 

Moses, in spite of what he was giving up said,

  "I know what I am.  I'm a Hebrew."

 

 

 

 

2.  I MUST ACCEPT MY RESPONSIBILITY

This means if I'm going to be

  what God wants me to be in life

I've got to stop making excuses. 

 I've got to stop blaming other people. 

  I've got to stop seeing myself

     as a victim of circumstances. 

There are now about

  3000 different kinds of victims identified in America.

Everybody is a victim of something.  Why?

  Because life isn't fair.  This isn’t heaven. 

We live in an imperfect world. 

So we start victimizing ourselves and saying,

   "Poor me.  It's all somebody else's fault." 

If God's really going to use you, you've got to accept

   responsibility for the direction of your life. 

v. 25 "Moses chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time ". 

The greatest freedom that you've been given in life

   is the freedom to choose. 

Your future is determined by your choices. 

And if you want God to bless you it's your choice.  

One of the marks of maturity

both emotional and spiritual maturity

  is you stop blaming other people for your problems.

    If you're still blaming other people

      there's a word for that -- immaturity. 

Moses didn't ask mom to put him in a basket in the Nile.

And he didn't ask the Pharaoh's daughter

 to pick him up. 

   These were situations beyond his control. 

  

You’ll go through life

  with many circumstances you can't control. 

       But one thing you always can control

        is your choice in how you respond to them.

You can always chose your response.

    And the mark of maturity

 is when you quit blaming other people

  and quit seeing yourself as a victim and say,

"Yes, there were bad things in my life

but I can control the future direction. 

I can determine where my feet are going." 

And part of maturity

is when you start developing

your own personal relationship to Jesus Christ. 

Notice two facts concerning the issue of responsibility:

  You can’t blame other people

    for the direction of your life. 

  and you need a personal relationship with God. 

If I were to ask you,

   "How many of you want to be closer to God?"

      most of you would raise your hand. 

   But if the truth were known

   You’re as close to God as you choose to be. 

Nobody's keeping you from having a warm, intimate,

  personal relationship where you talk to God every day

    and you see miracles in your life. 

 Nobody's stopping you. 

   You are as close to God as you choose to be. 

Romans 10:12 says,  "Each of us will give an account of himself to God."

If you want to be blessed by God in a great way

    and you want God to really use you,

      you have to settle these issues. 

        First, find my identity

and second, accept my responsibility.

And then finally,

3.  I MUST DETERMINE MY PRIORITIES.

That means I've got to settle the issue,

   What's really important in life? 

    Moses did that and that's one of the reasons

  why God used Moses. 

Hebrews 11:26 says, "He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt because he was looking ahead to his reward." 

Moses basically sat down and said,

   "What are going to be my values

      and what am I going to live on?"

If I asked you to give me a list of the values

   you base your life on,

 could you even identify them?  

    Have you ever sat down and said,

 "These are going to be the ten values

   that I build my life on." 

If you don't decide what really matters most to you in life,

  other people will do it for you. 

    Everybody else has a wonderful plan for your life.

 And they'll fill up your schedule. 

   You have to determine your priorities. 

What is the world's value system? 

   You can summarize the world's value system

 in four words:  power; prestige;

  pleasure; possessions.

 

If you’ll look at all the advertisements on T.V.

  they always appeal to one of those four.  Always

When Satan comes to tempt you

   those temptations will always come

    in three areas:  lust of the flesh,

  lust of the eyes, or pride of life. 

If you're going to say "yes"

   to what God wants to do in your life,

    you're going to have to say "no"

  to many other things. 

One of the biggest problems we have today

   are Christians who are unwilling to say no

to the world's standard. 

  Compromise only makes you miserable. 

Notice Moses' value system

 in opposition to the world. 

He had three basic values:

1, God's purpose is more valuable that popularity.  As Pharaoh's grandson, heir to the throne,

   he's a celebrity. 

He's in a position of great power. 

  But he says "No, it's not that big of deal." 

Fame isn’t all it's cracked up to be. 

  Today's superstars are tomorrow's has beens. 

   God's purpose is more valuable that popularity.

2   God's people are more valuable than pleasures.  Moses was on easy street. 

   He had a royal lifestyle. 

But it says "He chose to be mistreated with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasure of sin for a short time." 

If sin were a bummer, nobody would do it. 

   The Bible's honest!  It says

"There's pleasure in sin for a season"

  for a short time. 

You can blow your life and be totally irresponsible   

   but then you will pay the piper. 

 There’s always a payoff.        

  And that's what we don't believe. 

   That's what the devil doesn't want you to believe. 

Sometimes in order to be used by God

  you have to do something that's uncomfortable. 

     Our problem is we often just want to serve God

  when it's convenient. 

    3.  God's peace is more valuable than possessions.  "He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as greater value than the treasure of Egypt." 

He rejected the world's the world's pleasure

   and he rejected the world's treasure. 

    Moses gave up what some spend their lives

 trying to get.

  He had his values right. 

What motivated this guy? 

  v. 26 says, "He was looking ahead to his reward." 

    Your values are determined by your vision –

     what you're looking at. 

       Moses was a man of vision. 

  If you have your vision right, your values will be right. 

Are you looking at other people? 

   Are you looking at your bank account? 

    Or are you looking at Christ? That's the difference.

These are the basic issues of life

    that you have to settle.

         Identity, Responsibility, Priority. 

 

But there's one that's even more important than all those three.

4.  I MUST CHOOSE MY AUTHORITY.

Moses did and that's why God used him. 

   You’re going to have to decide

who's going to be in charge of your life. 

  You're going to have to serve somebody. 

   

You can’t have two masters in life. 

  So this issue is going to have to be dealt with

   or you're going to go through life

     with enormous stress and frustration.

Pharaoh was the supreme Lord

    and ruler of everything. 

 If the Pharaoh told you to do it, you did it. 

And if you didn't do it, you died. 

He had complete control. 

 He was the absolute ruler and Lord. 

  Except for Moses

Moses said, "I report to a higher authority." 

The Bible says, "He looked to Him who is invisible." 

  He lived his life for an audience of one.

    Are you doing that?

 

  What's number one in your life?

Whose approval are you living for? 

 In the final analysis it doesn't matter

  what anybody else is going to say about your life. 

What matters is what God's going to say. 

   One day you’ll stand before God

     and you’ll give an account of your life

  and He's going to say,

   "Who was in charge of your life? 

 Who was number one in your life? 

  I made you but I gave you the choice.”

One of the reasons God used Moses

   was because he never gave up. 

    He put up with Pharaoh

  and a couple of million spiritually immature babies

   whining in the desert for forty years. 

Incredible endurance. 

God said "I'm going to lead them into the promised land."

  First Moses waited 40 years in the desert by himself

    then he waited another 40 years

with two million babies following him. 

  He's waited eighty years

   for the promise to be fulfilled. 

Incredible endurance.

Who are you living for? 

What are you planning to do

  with the rest of your life? 

    Would you like to make your life count? 

Would you like to make an impact with your life? 

  It's your choice.  You're not waiting on God. 

    He's waiting on you. 

    He's waiting on you to settle these basic issues. 

The issue of identity; 

The issue of responsibility;

The issue of priority

   

"How long will you waver between two opinions?  If the Lord is God then follow Him." 

This morning may be a crossroads for some of you.

   You've been wavering

     and you've been sitting on the fence

   and God says, "Get off the fence!" 

If Moses had stayed in the Pharaoh's court,

   nobody would have even known of him today. 

 He'd be some dead mummy in a Pyramid. 

But because he made the right choice,

millions of people will be talking about him today.

Don't waiver between two opinions. 

Joshua said this, "You may choose for yourself this day

  whom you will serve

    but as for me and my household,

     we will serve the Lord." 

Have you said that about your home? 

  I don't care what the people next door do

     but for us, we're going to serve the Lord.

Prayer:

    Father, there is so much potential here today.              I look out on men and women -- some of them have the potential to be world class Christians. 

You've blessed us with such talent and abilities and

blessings and allowed us to live in this free country and

given us so many material and physical and spiritual and

emotional and relational blessings.  We need to be good stewards of those.  Would You help us be good stewards?  Would You help us settle these issues in life?  Would you pray, "Dear God, help me to be what You made me to be and not worry about what other people think. Help me not to try to copy others but to be the unique person You intended for me to be.  Father, help me to accept responsibility for the direction in my life.  Although I can't control all that happens to me, I do realize that I can control my response.  Help me settle the priorities, the values that are really important to me and take time to write them down.  Today I'm saying to You, Jesus Christ, "I want You to be the authority in my life.  I want You to be number one.  And I want to follow You.  In Your name I pray. Amen."

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