This past Sunday we celebrated Consecration Sunday and I preached a message entitled, “The Kingdom of God is Motion Activated.” Our scripture was Joshua 3:5, “Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”
Just like the doors at the grocery store, which open when they “see” motion, throughout scripture we see God moving in response to the obedient motion of his servants.
God said GO to Abraham, Moses and Joshua. When they moved, God moved in power. God told Abraham to go to the land that would be shown to him.
When Abraham obeyed, leaving his home and going to literally only-God-knows-where, God moved in power and made Abraham a father in his old age.
When Moses obeyed, leaving Midian and going to confront Pharaoh despite his fears, God moved in power and freed Israel from slavery in Egypt -- ultimately parting the Red Sea before them.
When Israel obeyed in Joshua chapter 3, God recreated the miracle of the parting of the Red Sea. That obedience involved very concrete actions. First, Israel was ordered to consecrate itself. After consecration, the Levites had to put their feet into the Waters of the Jordan before God stopped its flow.
God is a good father. He desires to reward his children. In order to reward us, we must have a choice. This is the same reason that there were two trees in the garden of Eden. (More on this aspect of God's character at another time.)
For Israel consecration involved bathing and washing their clothes. The use of water in the desert for these purposes was an extravagant way of demonstrating Israel's need for God's cleansing and holiness.
So what does that mean for us? How do we consecrate ourselves if we want to see God move in power?
I believe that we also have two responses. First, we must consecrate ourselves by asking to be washed in the blood of Jesus. This involves confessing our known sin and asking God to fill us with his Holy Spirit - making us clean and filling us with holiness. Second we are invited to move in response to God's command to go therefore and make disciples. A primary way we do that today is by giving time, talent and treasure to God's work.
If you have already prayerfully made a financial commitment to God's work in and through Media Presbyterian Church in 2019, THANK YOU! If you haven't made a commitment, I asked you to prayerfully consider it. I believe that God will move in even more powerful ways as we the people of God respond in obedience to God's voice.
Warmly, Pastor Jonathan