Foundations – Exodus The Paradox(es) of Faith Exodus 19:1-25 October 28, 2018
I. WALKING in the wrong DIRECTION. (v.1-2)
A. FARTHER away than BEFORE. (v.1-2)
B. More DIFFICULT and DESOLATE. (v.1-2)
C. Yet that is WHERE God MEETS them. (v.9)
One of the things we see in the story of the Exodus are some parallels to the spiritual journey that you and I are on today as we follow Jesus. Hindsight is often 20/20 and there is much that we can see in their experiences to help us come to terms with our own.
1. Have you ever made a decision to follow God and felt like he led you somewhere you did not want to go? What was that like for you?
2. How do you sense God “leading” you? What is your own personal experience in this type of thing?
II. An “UNKEEPABLE” COVENANT. (v.3-8)
A. Past SALVATION. (v.4)
B. Present OBEDIENCE. (v.5)
C. Future BLESSING. (v.5-6)
Once again we see the people saying, “Yes, we believe! We are all in!” And once again we will see them fail time after time. God seems to keep up His end of the bargain, but the people are consistently dropping the ball on their end.
3. When have you made a promise to God (and really meant it) only to fail in keeping it? What was that like for you? How has that experience impacted you?
4. God will not bless you unless you obey. Do you believe that is true? Why or why not?
III. CLOSE yet DISTANT. (v.9-25)
A. Clear LINES of AUTHORITY. (v.9-11)
B. FEAR of DEATH. (v. 12-13,21; 20:18-19)
This story of God meeting them on the mountain is full of imagery and mystery. He is a God who is theirs, and He comes to them in order to draw them to Himself. Yet He is dangerous for them in their present state. He is a God you cannot take lightly.
5. Kid’s Question: What are some things you are afraid of? Have you ever felt afraid of God?
6. What stands out to you from verse 9-25? Why?
IV. Jesus REVERSES the REALITY. (Col. 2:9-10)
A. The DISTANT God comes CLOSE. (Jn 1:14; Col. 1:19-20)
B. A DIFFERENT kind of COVENANT. (Lk. 22:20; Heb 8:6-10; 9:15)
C. A COUNTER-INTUITIVE journey. (Matt. 5:3; Jn 21:18-19)
The beauty of having 3000+ years and the life of Jesus in between us and that time at Mt Sinai is that we can see the events through a totally different lens. While there are still paradoxes to the walk of faith, we can rest in them, knowing that in Jesus we see a God who is powerful and majestic, yet loving and present to us.
7. Have you experienced a “paradox” in your own spiritual journey? Describe that and what it was like.
8. In what ways has following Jesus been what you expected? In what ways has it been different?