April 17, 2016 Speaker: Kris Stire
Topic: Faith Passage: Deuteronomy 8:1–8:6
After miraculously rescuing the Israelites from bondage to Pharaoh and their Egyptian taskmasters (Exodus 1-15), God has chosen Moses to lead His people to the Promised Land. Throughout the journey, God tested Israel to see if they would truly trust Him, fear Him and humbly obey Him. From the Red Sea, they traveled through the wilderness to the Promised Land only to encounter its powerful, pagan inhabitants (Numbers 13). Rather than trust and obey the Lord, they responded in fear and rejected God and His faithful promises (Numbers 14). As part of God’s discipline, all of those who failed to trust and obey will die in the wilderness as they wander for the next 40 years. Deuteronomy 8 contains part of Moses’ final words from God to the nation of Israel after they had wandered in the Wilderness for 40 years and are now facing the reality of crossing into the Promised Land. Here in Deuteronomy 8:1-6, God tells this new generation of Israelites that if they want to possess this Promised Land, then they must trust and obey Him. And then He explains why God purposely disciplined them by bringing them through this 40 year trial in the desert.
This morning we will examine two of the purposes of testing found in Deuteronomy 8:2:
1. TO HUMBLE THEM: (v. 2a-b) - To put their dependence upon God
2. TO EXPOSE THE TRUE NATURE OF THEIR FAITH: (v. 2c) - To challenge them to put their faith into action through humble obedience.
“The trials of our faith are like God’s ironing. When the heat of trials are applied to our lives the wrinkles of spiritual immaturity begin to be smoothed out.” - M. P. Green