I want you to know how to move into God’s house. Living in God’s house won’t be like living in any other house in this world. We won’t be the same once we decide to move to God’s house. For when we decide to accept what God has for us, then we will change. We need directions for moving to God’s house. It will be good for us to know how to live in God’s house.
We know the Lord our God told the Israelites that they would have an inheritance. This inheritance is a land. The Israelites were to take possession of the land and settle in it. Since the time of Jesus, God has extended the promise of an inheritance to us. Now we know this inheritance is more than land. It is the kingdom of God we get to possess. We get to settle in the kingdom of God. In other words, we get to move into God’s house.
God doesn’t just let anyone move into his house. He gives us specific directions to move into his house. The people of Israel recognized these directions. They reminded each other of the directions to move into God’s house. We get to enter God’s house by the same way the Israelites do. It is a matter of faith.
A. We receive the promise (261-4)
1. God promised Abraham the land, and many other blessings
2. Abraham had to believe God to receive these promises
3. When Israel entered Canaan, they were to recognize what God had done
4. When we find that God delivers us from our captivity, then we do the same
a. God has promised eternal life to those who believe in Jesus (Romans 10:13)
b. When we say Jesus is Lord, we are saved (Romans 10:8)
5. God has promises for us. We may not feel that we are worthy. We may feel that we are not good enough for God’s promises. Yet, God still extends his promises to us! God knows we sometimes feel small. God still promises his kingdom to us! What do we do in response to this promise?
B. We confess our faith in God (26:5-10)
1. The Israelites declared their ancestry and what had happened to them
2. The Israelites realized God delivered them “great terror and with signs and wonders.”
3. Knowing what God had done for them, the Israelites brought their first fruits to God
4. When we recognize our situation, we do something similar to what the Israelites did
a. We declare how we have been sinners, like our parents before us
b. We realize God delivered us from sin by the great terror of Jesus dying on the cross
c. We turn to God and thank him for what he has done to us by giving the tithe, literally the first fruits of our increase
5. Tied directly to our speaking of our faith is our worship of God. By faith in God we are delivered from sin. By faith in God we are given a new life, literally a new place to live. I want us to know we can move into God’s house. This is the move that you will want to make. Not every time that we move do we like our new place. And we Americans move a lot. The average American moves once every 5 years.(http://www.mymovingreviews.com/move/how-often-and-why-americans-move) As we trust God, this move to God’s house is one we will like. When we realize how faithful God has been to us, we worship him with part of what He has given us.
C. We worship God (26:10-11)
1. The Israelites placed their offering of first fruits before the Lord God (belief and action go hand in hand)
2. The Israelites, along with the Levites and foreigners, rejoiced in the good things God had given to them
3. We followers of Jesus also do these same actions
a. We thank God by giving him the tithe
b. We rejoice when we tithe – it is our faith being lived out!
4. No longer do we keep everything for ourselves. No longer are we captive to greed, or any other sin. We are free from those things. We can give offerings to God because of the good things we have received from God. Where we used to live in captivity to sin, things were scarce or we had to hoard what we had. Now, as people released from sins we trust God to provide for us. We are full of joy because we know God will give us what we need.
I want you to know how to move into God’s house. It is by believing in God that we receive the good things he has for us. It is trusting God to get us out of captivity to sin that we know we can move into God’s house. This is something we want to do, receive what God has for us.
Won’t we move into God’s house? God can help us escape from the bad things in your life. God has good things for us. He has given Jesus so that we can believe. God has given Jesus so that we could be in the Kingdom of God. Isn’t about time we take possession and settle in God’s house?