The civil society around us is here because of love, the foundation of Christian thought and life. But golden calves — Idols — are being made and followers of Christ are seen in a different way. Abide in the true Vine, live by the Spirit is this dark world. (Exodus 32:1-25; John 15:17)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
Sermon # 11438
11:00 AM on 3/18/2018
Ex. 25-30. How many know what is in those chapters? This is about the building of the tabernacle in the wilderness. What is a tabernacle? The tent that they built in the wilderness. Their clothing and the furniture in the tabernacle. Court yard, about so high. Ten feet high. Inside you have the tent, the tabernacle with the curtain and inside it was about split in half and the holy place. It’s like three dimensions. The veil here that separated the holy place from the holy of holies. What is the meaning of it? Why was it built?
Nu. 1 you are in a Bible church. Our Bible, amen!
We got Nu. 1:1. He spoke in the tabernacle. Why did they build it? Cause God spoke there to the people. 150 feet long and so many feet wide. When you build Ikea furniture, you have the instructions and the dad and then the disaster!
Ex. 31, God knew to build the tabernacle it would take men who would be given the understanding.
Ex. 31:3 he gives the name of the man. He has filled him with the Spirit of God. He had to figure out how to build it. Part of it was to be covered with gold. How do you take a stick of wood and cover it with gold? This guy would know how to do it. How do take the priests clothes that are to be scarlet and blue – how do you make those clothes? This guy would know how to do it. The instruction and the guy and it was to be put altogether.
Ex. 31:4-5. Do we have any electricians here? How many don’t know anything about electricity? Electrician project and people like us and it doesn’t work. It takes some skill and some training and you have a tabernacle. In a way, Moses is here and given the instruction and there are two names given. Bezaleel and then another man Aholiab. This is their project. This is important because every group of people needs a foundation. We all need a foundation. We need something solid. If God is going to speak to us, we need a foundation. That foundation is Christ. This story is also got some instruction for every one of us. We are like these people. We need God to show himself to us. To lead us in what he is doing. He is doing something. It takes time. And it takes patience and it will happen. There is a plan and God is on time. He is. He’s going to build a tabernacle and it’s going to be at the center of this nation. How wide is this community? What is the name of the group? The Jews, Israel. From here to Belair, MD. This is 25 miles. We have a couple million people. This is the size of this group of people. Do they have indoor plumbing? They don’t have houses. They have tents. There isn’t any electricity. Do they have an army? No. Military equipment? No. They are to have in the center of their nation, God. God is in the tabernacle and is going to speak to them.
Nu. 1:1 wilderness is not a good place to live. He gives the date when he speaks to them. This is the foundation for these people is God who brought them out of Egypt. In a way it’s impossible but with God, all things are possible. It’s kind of different but God is in it. It’s written here for our edification and learning. We have the same thing going on in our lives. We could live without it. We can live without the tabernacle or the foundation. This is what they did.
Ex. 32:1 Where was he? Up Sinai and the people were down below. He went up there and was up there 40 days. They saw he didn’t come down. What do you read when you see the word “gods” there? Small g. They are saying let’s make gods. What happened to those people? Moses was gone. There’s too much time. We don’t have time. Where is he? He is not speaking to us. What should we do now? We are a bit lost, Aaron. Let’s make gods. Does it happen? God has a plan and now the people don’t have time so they make gods. This is the nature we have. I have to do it, we have to do it. We have to live our life, pay our bills, and educate our children. We don’t have time. Reminds me of a story of a short man who had to hang a picture for his wife. He got up and stood on the chair. They got a box and put it there and he got up on the box. Not high enough so got a stool. He’s tapping. His wife said hit it harder. He said I can’t because I’m unstable. I don’t dare. I’ll fall if I put all my heart into it. I can’t hit it hard. I can tap, tap, and tap. Underneath me – hit it harder! If I don’t have a foundation, how can I really drive it home? Reminds me of the battle for the freedom of people in this country when there was slavery in this country. The Quakers were Abolitionists. They said it’s not right. It’s not right that there would be slavery. So they did the Underground Railroad up to north and Canada. The Quakers said it’s not right. You can hit it hard when you got something underneath you. If it’s not right, it’s not right. You can hit it if you got a foundation. These Jewish people in the wilderness for some reason they just said we’re going to do it this way. That’s like us. We’re going to make gods.
Ex. 32:1-4. What happened to Aaron? Where did Aaron go? He checked out. Aaron and Moses were a great team. When Moses is gone, Aaron doesn’t have it. Aaron caves, agrees, goes with them. Just because a man of God is a man of God doesn’t mean he’ll aways be a man of God. We don’t know. We are called to follow God and know our Bible and have discernment. We are to recognize what God is doing and see the hand of God and not do the calves’ thing. Three reasons why the calves are not good. vs. 7-8. How fast did it take them? Quickly. They come out of Egypt. There is water on that side. A wall of water there and they are on dry ground and the Egyptians behind them. They come through following Moses through the night and get to the other side. The water comes together. The bodies of the Egyptian army are washing up on seashore and they are saying God brought us out of Egypt. Where were the golden calves? They weren’t even in the story. They are coming from in their memory in Egypt. They worshipped calves. They did not bring them out. The golden calves didn’t bring them out. God brought them out of Egypt. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob who you cannot see. You cannot see God. That’s who brought them out. Now they go to this idea quickly. How long does it take for me to go from one state of mind where you are saying praise you God to some other way of thinking? But the H.S. is here. We do have some men here. In our faith we do have some men of God that have understood what God has said. They are able to live and put it together so to speak and show us. We are able to see that God really does deliver us and speak to us.
About 1,000 gathered in Warsaw, Poland last week. It’s about 40 years of laboring in the faith in Europe, the Spirit doing it and we come together and we say J.C. is the way and the H.S. has given us a good foundation in Jn. 15. One other thing about these people.
They quickly turned out of the way and made a molten calf in vs. 8. They worshipped it and sacrificed and said these be thy gods, O Israel. I think they made one but believed there were many gods. Lord said I have seen this people. They are stiff necked and God is angry with them.
They took their clothes off in vs. 25. What happened to Aaron? He made them naked unto their shame. They are dancing and partying. The foundation is not good. The relationship with each other is not good. 3) They are living in the same value system as the world. My people are not any different from the people who are worshipping other gods. There is nothing there. They are the same. There is no difference.
Jn 15: We will see the good news of what has happened to you and me. We have a foundation. 1) The foundation of our life is Jn 15:1. Christ is speaking at the Last Supper. I am the true vine Christ said. You are the branches; I am the vine. The life of the vine goes to you. Have you felt it? Have you understood it, experience it, the Spirit of God in your life? Has it edified you? Have you found you are a new creation? Do you realize you are connected to the true vine? Put down the opposite, plastic. Ever been in someone’s house and reach for an apple and find its plastic? Flowers are artificial. This happens to people. It’s sad. I got cheated. It’s not real. I followed a religion but didn’t find God. I got addicted to getting high on some substance but it’s not real. It’s artificial. That’s how I live. I don’t have a foundation. When I’m in trouble I collapse. When I’m standing on top of the chair, I’m going to fall! I can’t do it. When you are standing on that foundation you can put all your weight into it. I believe this and this. I got it. I believe it. I embrace it. I understand it. It’s rock solid. It makes a difference. It’s the H.S. speaking. When men and women get a good foundation, they get rock solid in what they believe. I’m not touching that. God will give me peace. God will direct me. Yeah, but it takes too much time. I met someone who said I tried it but it didn’t work for me. I can imagine God saying I am here and I am able. You run so quickly to your golden calves. You run so quickly to your own life. You have a backup plan. When you follow me there is no backup plan. It’s only me. I am your plan A, B, and C. I am God and there is no other God. The second thing the Jewish people didn’t have in their lives when they made the golden calves is they couldn’t really love each other. This is how people will know that Christ is real. It’s how we love each other. In Nazi Germany, the Nazi government made a regulation all the churches had to be registered with the government. There were a group of churches called the Brethren. Half said we will register and the other half said no. Those that did not ended up in concentration camps and undoubtedly died or were persecuted for resisting the government. After the war, they all get together. You know what the Bible says? We are to love each other. But I have a problem because I was in a camp and my brother was not in a camp. God says we are to forgive, love, endeavor for unity, right? We are one. We are to love each other. Even if things are not perfect. Even when we have problems on the outside and the inside. We are to love because God is love and a forgiving God, a patient God. We are to learn how to love and be together.
vs. 17. Some of you folks are new in our church. We so welcome you. We are going to have the Footsteps graduation today. There are I think 12 folks gone through that. We’re so thankful for people coming and learning. The message today is for all of us. We are in difficult times and we need a good foundation for our lives and each other and for our families. We also have a slew of newborn babies.
Ge 1:27 be fruitful and multiply! We have no problem with that. We got to fill the earth with people like ourselves, but we must be born again for that to happen. We are happy for the families, single folks, young people, and the elderly. The foundation is the key. He is the true vine. We are able to love each other. And have a passionate love for the truth. Love the truth. Be careful. We are in an age. We won’t speak about it today. Tolerance is the key word on the street in the schools and in the government. The bad word is intolerance. You have to learn your church history and the basis of the church is tolerance. Western civilization is based on it. Someone is not a believer and they live next door to me and that’s okay with me. We live in a civil world and that civility is coming from our Christianity. Loving people different from us. People must have freedom to decide what they believe in and want to believe in. We have the free market place of ideas. Everyone can put their ideas down and make their decision what they believe in. That being said I have personal convictions in my heart that may be different than yours. I can live with that. You don’t have to believe like me. You are free to decide. I wouldn’t want you to believe what I believe because you are forced but because it makes sense to you. It’s the answer, the manifestation of God to your heart and mind. This is a whole subject we can’t get into it. The third point is very important. The golden calves did not bring us out of Egypt. Yes, they did. No, I was there. I know that’s not true. That’s your life but it’s not mine. It’s not mine. I don’t agree with that. It comes to the third part here.
vs. 18. What’s the world? Ask your neighbor what the definition is. In the gospel of God it’s a key word. The world. The world hates me. What does the word mean? We use it here in our church a lot. There is the spirit of the world. I used to live in Sweden. There was an elderly man in our Bible study. He made money doing business with Nazi Germany in the war. We said why? He said because it was in the air.
I know the verse in Eph. 2:2. The devil is the prince and power of the AIR. I don’t know what he meant by it. There is a German word in philosophy called Zeitgeist. It means the spirit of the age. 100 years ago homosexuality was not a subject of interest in our culture. It was considered illegal and a perversion and now it’s in the air. There is a lot of energy behind it. Killing the Jewish people and the Nazi’s doing it was in the air. Anti-Semitism which is demonic. That’s not God’s will. To slaughter innocent people, Jewish people. It’s in the air. The golden calves brought us out of Egypt. They did. I didn’t see any when we came out. They did. No, they didn’t. When Christ came it was a contest and he pointed out your error and they hated that. They killed him. If you ever point out the error, you go the nail there and a good foundation and hit it, you’re in trouble. If tap, tap, nobody will pay attention. If you say Christ is the resurrected Christ. The blood makes the atonement for our sin. The Spirit of God is in the Body of Christ. The lies of Hinduism and Buddhism and Islam and lies in Christianity also. There are worshippers of idols in the Christian church. I need someone to point out for me to realize I slid in making golden calves instead of worshiping the God that brought us out of Egypt. If the world hates you, it hated me first. He’s talking to 11 men. Judas left. He’s gone to betray him. It’s in the air to get ahold of this man and get rid of him. He’s telling us we don’t know God. We have to deal with him and we hate him. Judas is playing into it and he is deceived. He doesn’t realize what is happening in the big picture. I think it’s important for us to know before we get into the trouble. Tell me Lord what’s going to happen. He’s going to say you’re going to have some trouble not because you are wrong but because you are right.
You’re not perfect people. There is a Spirit who dwells in us and we’ll get in trouble somewhere. Maybe at work or our family. Or maybe like Daniel in the lion’s den just because he was praying. They organized a plan to get him in trouble because the world hated him. The world hates Daniel, the three Hebrew boys, hates Christ, and hates the church, you and I. It’s like a military leader saying we will go into a full operation the next few days and many of you are not coming back. We give you a chance to get out of it, but if you go into this operation, many of you will not return.
This is what Jesus said at the Last Supper. Not that you will not return but they will drag you before the magistrates and they will kill you and so on. I want to stir your hearts and say you are in a place where we have a good foundation. This is the true vine.
You have the Spirit of God that dwells in you. You have the Body of Christ and we help each other in what we are doing. We live in a dark world and you do your thing.
I live my life my way by God’s grace. I’m really enjoying it. I love the fellowship and the purpose.
Come to Christ and believe in him. Life with him is the best.
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