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Don't Talk Back to God!

The Gospel in Romans  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  23:58
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Don’t Talk Back to God!

I don’t know about you, but when I was growing up, sometimes I got a little sassy with one of my parents. That’s when I got stopped in mid-sentence with a sharp “Don’t you talk back to me!” and if those words didn’t settle the issue, well, my parents had other ways to settle for me who was really in charge.
Incredibly, we can be the same way with God. The Bible says God created everything that there is. We see the incredible majesty of creation, and we set aside God’s designs to use our puny scientific skills to make God unnecessary.
Well aren’t we just so smart! We can find out so much about God’s creation because of the minds he has given us, that we decide we know better than God how it happened. If I would have said that to my parents, I would have heard “Don’t talk back to me!”
We question why things happen to us. So many times, it’s just the consequences of our own actions, but we claim God isn’t being fair. I would have heard, “Don’t talk back to me!”
We see our world turned upside down by a single infection caused by a virus, one of the tiniest things that can mess with our cells, and instead of trying to find out what God is doing, we call on God to fix it like he had not idea what has been happening to us. God may be telling us “Don’t talk back to me! You have a lesson to learn about who is in charge here!”
Our Stubborn Selfishness gets in the way of letting God be God.
We have trouble releasing our will to the God of the Universe.
This is really what is at the core of questioning God. We let our God-given free will overrule God’s right to run things how he sees fit.
When we hear of God’s election of one people, or one person, over another, we bristle at our own ideas that God is playing favorites.
We trust in our Free Will, and we don’t know what to do with God’s Sovereignty
I’ll begin and end with the believe that God is the present and active ruler of the universe. But I also believe that God created us with a free will.
So think about this: don’t get stuck on God’s election; just pay attention to His selection.

We Don’t Get to Decide for God

Romans 9:14–16 ESV
14 What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.
Paul had just brought up God’s right to choose his way over our way, showing first, the child of the promise, Isaac, over the child of the flesh, Ishmael, and then the heel-grabber, Jacob, over the firstborn Esau. Later, Joseph will be the son that all his older brothers and his father Jacob will bow down to.
The story of God’s people always has the example of God’s decisions overruling ours.
Instead of bristling against God’s choices, must remember this:

God’s Selection Flows From His Being

After the Israelites had decided that they needed to see God, so cast a golden calf as a stand-in while Moses was on Mt Sinai, and the first tablets of the Law were broken, Moses was pleading with God to go with them into the promised land instead of setting them free from his presence. Wanting to be sure of God,
Exodus 33:18–19 ESV
18 Moses said, “Please show me your glory.” 19 And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The Lord.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.
That is the quote Paul uses to remind us that God is in charge of his own mercy. God is in control of his own compassion. Not because of us, but because of God. It is in God’s nature that he will show us that he favors one over the other, and only later lets us know his purpose.

God’s Selection for God’s Purposes

Romans 9:17–18 ESV
17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.
The line of the Pharoahs was a line of self-made “gods” with absolute authority over their people. The huge monuments of themselves that towered over their people who made them showed just how proud of themselves they were. But then God reminds them he was the one in control all along.
It took this millennia-old dynasty of man’s rule, that made it seem like they were in charge, to give the backdrop to the God of the Universe that is really the one to be worshiped.
In the Exodus, God’s power to rescue his people put the Pharoahs of Egypt on their knees. God’s power was shown so that the name of Yahweh may be proclaimed over all the earth.
Do you see God’s purposes here? Paul certainly does. But we again say God isn’t being fair to everyone. We find ourselves...

Questioning God’s Rights

Romans 9:19–21 ESV
19 You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?” 20 But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use?

Selected to Show God’s Mercy

Romans 9:22–24 ESV
22 What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, 23 in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— 24 even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles?

Sinners Selected in Christ Jesus

Romans 9:25–26 ESV
25 As indeed he says in Hosea, “Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’ and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’ ” 26 “And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ ”
John 1:11 ESV
11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.
John 1:12 ESV
12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,
John 1:13 ESV
13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
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