(Elderly ministry 15 Jan 2010)
The Lord has asked us to have a blueprint before we start with anything. A blueprint is invisible, just like God. If we have the photograph of God to draw His given blueprint for us out, the darkness we see is not limited to the darkness that we always think that we are in, but what is actually affecting the whole world, all believers, and even the leaders of the church. With this image of the blueprint stamped on our hearts, we will only realize that the light of the gospel that has descended on us is the complete opposite of the darkness. Yet, are we sure that this light have already come on our lives? If so, all nations are going to be attracted to us, and not the other way round. God’s zeal will accomplish this. We just need to see, arise and shine in our spirits, and do continuous relay prayer that reflects this very light to the people around us.
For this, let us focus on the format of the word that the Lord has given us. Through this format, our life will flow and have movement. Through the word movement, the Lord’s word will naturally be sent out.
1. Israel who is in Egypt (Chapter 1-4): The problem before salvation (born again)
It is very important to know what is before “born again”. This is because without understanding the root of the real problem, we will only hear the blessings from the pastor as flesh, encouragement, or making one feel better only. By understanding our real “need”, we shall hear the content of the promise.
1) The People of the Covenant <1:1-7>
No matter what, for the people of the covenant, God never leaves them. This is the promise of Emmanuel. A size of 70 will grow to 3.2 million strong.
2) Sufferings <1:8>
A new king who does not know Joseph has arisen. This means that the culture, thinking of that era has lost the promise, and this is because Israel had no strength to influence already. This means that Israel had suffered greatly in the background, belittled by Egypt, which represents the world.
(1) Lose promise (Emmanuel, vision and power)
What does it mean by losing the covenant? This means that there is no meaning, no direction and no vision in the life. Man cannot be happy without a purpose in life. If a person just wants peace and “nothing to happen” to go by, it has already meant that something great is bothering him. Without a purpose in life, materialistic things, great or small, will make them easily happy. Finally, there is no opportunity for him to counteract because they are totally eclipsed in the ways of the world. Diseases, finance problems, children’s problems result all from here.
(2) Slavery (Egypt = World)
The reason of being in problems and no happiness is because people do not know the reason of losing their freedom. When the bible tells us not to love the world, God meant a deeper meaning. The earthly things (world) actually bind us up and make us a slave to it. The things that we think will bring us happiness and security (even things like health, children’s success, peace on earth) will chase after us in the end to make us a bondage to it.
(3) Pharaoh’s Dominion (Satan’s Dominion)
The “personality of bondage” is a deeply-etched ideology that continues to give hints to the affected person, so that it is not that we “do not want”, but “cannot come out of the state”. Do we know the state where we are in?
There is only one way to stop Satan’s bondage.
When man is born to earth, he has lost Emmanuel. He lives in an environment without the knowledge that God is alive and His sovereignty. This is the arena or state of suffering. From here, he thinks that peace, money, health, children will solve every problem.
Only that we receive a contrite spirit will we be able to move and touch God. We must totally recognize the need for Christ. The problem is not any other problems, but the problem IN BETWEEN man and God.
Christ is the link and bridge between man and God.
This is why we continue to talk about the assurance of being born again. This is not because it is good for the ears, or because the age is dark so that we need to comfort the people of God. The reason is so that we can hear the voice of God. When we restore a true standard in prayer, we pray, “Lord, You HAVE ALREADY provided and given me every conditions, for every of my conditions have become the conditions of Yours. These conditions are there to bless and love me. May You open my eyes to see that I have possessed the answer of Christ already in my life.” We do not give out, sacrifice, or give something to God. The “big me” is not about sacrificing for the greater. Something is greater and this is our own spirit. We sacrifice for the greater Body of Christ, because the real Body of Christ is in our spirit, and this is the temple of God, where the Holy Spirit dwells.
3) “Saviour” = Moses = prefigured Messiah (Dt 18:15) = Prefigured Today’s Commissioned Worker
Moses represents the remnant, or the blessed one Messiah, or can be called a commissioned worker. Do you know why we have no much programs in our church? We do not do much, because we aim to seek for commissioned workers. Firstly ourselves, then the ones that we love, etc. We do not continue to do small things faithfully because we cannot do big things, or because we are in the process of learning. The Lord tells us to be faithful because the faithful that does not look down on serving and shepherding of sheeps AND training to hear the Holy Spirit’s voice to us for each and every image that comes to us every moment, will accumulate the anointing in him. We aim for smallness and details, because there is a vision. We find a small number, but we find those with vision.
There is a timetable as we wait and do our best in blessing people and equipping ourselves. The process is called “gospelization already”.
Let us see the life of Moses, and let us confirm that we are the Moses of this era, because we went through the same preparation work of God in our whole living.
(1) A Levites Couple
The Levite couple kept the promise close to their hearts. The Lord is their inheritance. Someone has prayed for us, and set us apart for God. Have we confirmed who they are? Christ is One of them, so that we are born in such a place, etc.
(2) Hidden – Babies were killed
Yet, in a time of darkness, where babies were killed, the commissioned worker Moses was born. He was hidden for 3 months, in a time of darkness. We are born in an age where the environment does not know God’s promise and where Christ’s full gospel against practicality of the world.
(3) Grew up in the Palace: Condition <2:10>
Do we grow up like Moses, learning the philosophy, ethics, culture, custom and religion of the world? This is so that Moses can grow up powerful in speech and action. This is so that he can understand the world.
(4) Man-driven – Flee <2:15>
Yet, we will surely go into man-driven state. God gave him the seed to Moses, so that he hated non-uprightness. With that, he used his own zeal and humanism to protect the people of God. Problems definitely come, because we cannot use our own strength to serve God. If we must be used by God, all our words, thinking methods, articulation must all change. We may have mercy because we have been through much, but if we do not receive the compassion of God, that compassion cannot be used by God.
(5) 80 years old, God appeared, vision – Restore Emmanuel promise (3:1-18) Exodus, go into wilderness, worship the living God
Out of Egypt, go into wilderness and serve the true and living God = born again, sanctified and bear fruits. Only when we are weak will God call us.
(6) God-driven: Power, Plan, Timetable
Moses was turned from man-driven to God-driven through understanding that we cannot rely any condition that we have, but must totally rely on God, hearing the instructions of God “They will treat you as god. Aaron will come to help you, elders will listen to you”.
When it is God-driven, we become not a beggar to beg people to come. We see the timetable of God. “I do the things that the Lord tells me to do.” There is authority and power: “staff in hand” to have the power to turn the deception of the snake (Satan) to nothingness, and the power to “heal” a “leprous hand”.
This is because you see a blueprint that the Lord has for you, and for your loved ones, not because you garner courage to have power, but because you hear what the Lord has told you about the era: God wants to break the head of Satan and install the precious blood of the lamb.
And you are calm because you know that it is better to be slow (for God to be moved, pleased and work), than to be anxious yourself. Yet, Because you see a timetable, you are never lazy to train your spirit by flowing in and out the spirit and the word of God.
(7) Kill Moses: Renewal, Circumcision (Covenant – Sealed on his heart) <4:24-26>
Why must God kill Moses at the end? When we already know that we must be God-driven, many times, we fall because we do not know how to view. Anxiousness and laziness are of the same class. They are a result of not having fixed perspective. This is why God wants to circumcise Moses and seal the covenant in his heart. Only with a fixed perspective can we (Moses) follow through the commission.
The need for preparation for today’s “saviour”
The book of Exodus is about systematic theology. Without the above 7 points, we will not hear the voice of God and be assured about our life. Paul had a major operation in his life so that he had a great shock. This is why he exclaimed, “What a wretched man I am”, “I rejoice when I am weak”, “I have learned to be contented in every situation (because I have full answers)”. Do not be afraid when God wants to deal with your weaknesses, or something that comes upon you so that it troubles you. When you have the blueprint already, the darkness that you face are the training that God wants you to face your own spirit: assurance and perspective.