The message was brought by Jason Parks.
Moses was on the mountain 40 days getting the Ten Commandments. The people thought he was gone forever and went to Aaron. He put their gold together and made a golden calf. Moses was angry when he came off the mountain. He melted the calf and made them drink it. Many died that day.
Exodus 32: 30 And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses said unto the people, Ye have sinned a great sin: and now I will go up unto the Lord; peradventure I shall make an atonement for your sin.31 And Moses returned unto the Lord, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold.32 Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin—; and if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written.
Note the punctuation. There is a long dash in verse 32. What is it, a pause, careful contemplation, or fear of God’s response? It was all that and more. His heart pleaded for the people. He loved them. God had every right to do away with them. Moses stood between life and death for them. He pleaded for God to take his life and spare the people. In Romans Paul showed similar love for the people. The book of Acts says he went door to door in tears pleading with the people to be saved.
Certain events in life cause us to pause. Cancer will cause us to pause. The loss of a loved one will give us pause. Things have happened in our country that caused the entire nation to pause. Pearl Harbor, 911, and school shootings come to mind. We don’t pause as Christians over the state of our churches. We see those who don’t have the truth passionate about it going about spreading it. Christians have the truth but very few have passion. We get caught up in other things. I want us to look at our passion. This causes us to do self-examination.
We have a passion for stuff. There is nothing wrong with stuff if it doesn’t consume us. Where are we laying up our treasures? Matthew 6 says lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. I’ve been in several churches as I travel. Christians, even churches, are consumed with stuff. I read where one church gave its pastor a Mercedes Benz. There is nothing wrong with that, but a less expensive car would have worked and the money saved used for something else like missions. When the fires were going on in Colorado I was on pre-evacuation orders. That meant I had to be ready to go. Stuff can be replaced. I got photos and things that can’t be replaced together and was letting the rest of it go. When Queen Elizabeth was dying she said “all my possessions for one moment of time.” She had it all but it couldn’t buy her what she wanted. The only treasures we need should be laid up in heaven. Is our stuff taking priority?
Christians have a passion for the world. In Genesis 13 Abraham and Lot’s people fought over the land. Lot pitched his tent toward Sodom which was to the world. He lost his family. Too many Christians pitch their lives toward the world. We know more about Hollywood than the Bible. I believe everyone should be informed about politics, but there was a time I was consumed with it to the point that it got depressing to hear it. I had to stop watching it. We can get consumed and attached to the world. Christians are to be set apart. Satan is the prince and power of the world. We need the mindset to be in the world but not of it. We can’t isolate ourselves because we must show the light of Jesus. I’ll use myself as a way to demonstrate it. I have only one leg. That’s what we have to do spiritually. We can’t have one leg in the world and one in the church. It won’t work that way. We have to have the mindset to stay single footed toward God.
We have a passion for family. Family is important. Don’t take this the wrong way. Luke 14:26 says if any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. Hate is a strong word. Its common meaning is bitter dislike. Here it is choosing a preference of one thing over another. Are we willing to choose God over family? Families get wrapped up in their children and consumed by sports or other activities. They find themselves taking their children to these things instead of church. What is this teaching them? The passion for family is more important than God.
It’s easier to keep our passions, but our passion should be for sharing the gospel. We should have a passion for God’s Word, for prayer. One of the biggest problems in America is Christians who are content to stay as they are. If Christians would get committed and passionate for Christ we’d see changes in America. We don’t take pause anymore with what goes on around us. Our hearts are not broken for lost souls. Not sharing is not caring. We’ve not forsaken the world.
God is looking for Christians willing to forsake all. If asked, most everyone would say “Christ is first in my life.” Is he really? When is the last time we took inventory of our lives to make sure God is first and there is nothing between us and God? We are at ease while the world burns. Souls depend on God being our priority. It’s a constant thing to take spiritual inventory. The world needs us to do it.