Dear friends may the Lord bless you and keep you. I trust that the Holy Spirit has been prospering your spirit and self. We’ve all had different experiences with God. But I’m certain that we’ll agree on one thing, which is that there is a certain wildness or rawness in God’s call. God’s call evokes the “animal spirits” in us. There is something wild and inexplicable about God’s call to fellowship. God stokes a fire in our soul that would make us take risks that were previously unthinkable, an act of faith if you please. Those of us who like the outdoors feel the call of the mountains, the ocean, the woods and the sky. God’s call awakens the God like nature in us (Ecclesiastes 3:11).
I’d like for us to turn today to Exodus 3:1-22. This is the story of Moses’s first encounter with God Almighty. I’ve always wondered why “El Shaddai (also God Almighty)” chose to speak to Moses from a burning bush. Firstly, Moses was a mountain man. Being a shepherd he was used to taking his flock to the wilderness in search of green pasture (Gen 3:1). I feel that’s probably why God met Moses on a mountain and not in a prayer meeting, because God usually meets us in familiar surroundings. Then the second question is why did God appear to Moses in a bush that didn’t burn up (Gen 3:3)? Moses had initially thought that He was meant to save his people in Egypt (Exodus 2:11-15) and tried to intervene with devastating consequences (Exodus 2:15). He was indeed God’s deliverer, but not at that time. After fleeing Egypt Moses settled comfortably in Midian with his wife and child (Exodus 2:21-22) and forgot all about his people or their God. Moses probably thought that he was going to die of old age. The only way God could capture Moses’ attention was by demonstrating that the Lord is a Fire that never dies out – a Power much superior to natural human strength. Moses had to be reminded about God’s mission which he had botched up previously and also had to witness God’s Power that empowers the weakest among us. The old Moses (he was about 80 at that time – Exodus 7:7) was fascinated by that demonstration of God’s Power – a burning bush that never burnt up (Exodus 3:3). That Nature of God was what appealed to Moses.
Let’s turn to another example – the Apostle Paul. Paul was a zealous Pharisee who was actively persecuting the Church (Acts 8:3, 9:1) and had a penchant for bravado. He probably considered himself to be one of those who advanced God’s kingdom forcefully (Matthew 11:12). So the only way God could get his attention was by doing something dramatic – the resurrected Christ appeared in a blinding flash from heaven and spoke with a thunderous voice (Acts 9:3). Paul had to be pinned down and struck with blindness before he heeded God. The result was an immediate and absolute obedience to the risen Christ (Acts 9:5)?
Let me end with one final example: the life of the Prophetess Deborah (Judges Chaps. 4-5). Judges 4:4 tells that Deborah was a judge and prophetess. The Prophetess Deborah had a leadership spark and fire within her and God’s call resonated in her spirit. Ironically, although she commanded Barak son of Abinoam to deliver the Israelites from the Canaanite king Jabin (Judges 4:6), God’s Providence would have it that Barak was only willing to play second fiddle to her (Judges 4:8). Her determination and pioneering spirit are obvious in Judges 4:9 where she not only accepted the responsibility, but even dominated Barak. Here again we see God meeting a woman and granting her success on the battlefield (The song of Deborah: Judges chap. 5). This may seem odd but if we think about it Deborah had leadership qualities in her and that’s the best way God could reveal Himself and His will to her , i.e., in combat. Contrast this with how the Lord Jesus spoke to Mary Magdalene (John 20:16), and we can begin to appreciate that God’s methods of reaching out to us are different. A woman as gentle and fragile as Mary Magdalene was still courageous enough to go to the tomb alone on the resurrection morning (John 20:1). God spoke to her nature which was one of fearless and absolute devotion (John 20:16), and till this day Mary Magdalene remains the first person to witness the resurrected Christ (the resurrection narratives in the other gospels seem to dispute this assumption).
God’s call to fellowship can only be received and understood when we have God’s nature within us, i.e., when we’re born of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:11). It’s a primitive nature that can’t be understood logically, or philosophically, but can only be perceived as a gut feeling or instinct – an instinct imparted by the Holy Spirit (There are several versions of Christian theology. But one can never understand Christ by studying theology (John 5:39-40). On the contrary, Christian Theology is written and studied by born again saints). The modern world which insists on reasoning, debating, theorizing, etc, can never understand this primeval call of God to fellowship and subsequent blessing – “Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me…….(Matthew 10:37, Mark 10:29)”. I know and pray that we’re all receptive to that primeval call of the Holy Spirit to oneness with God. Amen.
Dear friends, I'm sure that all of you are sanctified, Holy Ghost baptized saints. Should there be any among you that don’t know the Lord yet, I pray that the Lord of the Universe will set you free from sin and disobedience into His glorious light and freedom. Amen.