Getting Ahead of the Will of God
I’m going to describe some processes and some sad results and then ask you what possibly went wrong. Ladies, friends are on their way over latter tonight; you want to impress them so you decide bake a cake from scratch. You are in a hurry; you haven’t baked a cake from scratch in years so you have wing it. There’s only enough time to mix it, bake it and then serve it. The kitchen is a mess but the cake is in the oven ready to be done for the serving. But then to your surprise as you open the oven, and the cake that should have arose to your praise has not arose at all.
Instead of a cake it’s more of fancy pancake.
Why was it that you overlooked the ingredient that makes the cake rise?
You got ahead of yourself.
Men at the very last minute of the day, your presence is needed in another state or far off city. It can’t wait until Monday so you must leave within the hour You rush home pack a bag with what you need stock, ties, shirts, shaving kit, shoes, pants, belt, everything or least everything.
You think you have it all until after all that driving; you shower ready to sleep like a baby when you realize that you have forgotten the most important item of all; your fresh underwear.
Why was it that you overlooked the most basic item needed?
You got ahead of yourself.
Getting ahead of yourself can come back to bite you, can’t it? But imagine about getting ahead of God’s will in your life. It’s possible as we shall see tonight from the life of Moses. There are three passages of scripture that if you read each alone doesn’t make right sense. Even if you read only two of the three; you would still have more questions. But read together we find that they fit and present maybe something that you never knew about the man Moses. How Moses got ahead of God’s will.
Ø Ex 2:11-15
Ø Act 7:23-30
Ø Heb 11:24-25
These scriptures taken together make an interesting arrangement in the life of Moses. To get a correct idea of what Moses did you have to put these three passages together. The Jewish historian Josephus says that when a prince came to his 40th birthday he was to step up in line and take the throne. Apparently growing up in Pharaoh’s house helped Moses realize that he was not Egyptian after all; he was Jewish. Any glance in the mirror could tell him that! Moses must have come to his 40th birthday; refused the throne of Egypt believing that God was going to use him somehow as a deliver of his people! So Moses as these verses tell refused the crown. So the crown was passed to the other son of Pharaoh. That's where Heb 11:24-25 comes in. Moses refused to called the son of Pharoah; refusing the throne choosing rather to suffer with his people the Jews.
Why did Moses refuse such an honor as Pharaoh? Because he believed God was going to use him as the Jews’ deliverer. Think about it. Moses knew the promises made to the people of God, by being raised by his real mother. In his mind no one was more qualified for the job. He was schooled as an Egyptian; in their wisdom and warfare and he had the heritage and ancestry of the Jews! Surely Moses could work out the Jews release since being so close to Pharaoh.
That's what was working in his head as he stepped out for a walk and found an Egyptian beating a Hebrew. Moses slew the Egyptian and hid the body. The next time he went for a walk there was two Hebrews fighting and he presumed to break them up; assuming that they would realize him as their promised deliver. That's the incident in Act 7:23-30. Notice v 25; for he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not.
Guess what, they didn’t see things like he did. If fact that they rejected Moses as their deliver. That’s why Stephen even brings up the life of Moses here in the first place, because he was rejected as Israel’s deliver just as Jesus was rejected! They basically thought about Moses "who died and made your judge over us!"
Moses was shocked and feared for his life and so he left Egypt for the back side of the dessert to be schooled in the school of hard knocks for forty years! And there as an old man of 80 years God comes to him asking him to do what he attempted to do 40 years prior in his own way.
What was Moses’ problem? Wasn’t Moses right in thinking that God was going to use him to deliver his people? Yes, he was. So what was the problem?
The problem was his timing! Moses was trying to do the right thing at the wrong time! Moses got ahead of the will of God and became a murder which he probably regretted all his life. Now, it wasn't God's will for Moses to murder that Egyptian; but it happened because Moses felt at that time that he had to make it work and this Egyptian was in His way! That’s real typical when someone is outside of God’s will; whether they are lagging behind or rushing ahead. They force their hand and something that they will be ashamed of happens which will haunt them the rest of their lives!
“Well, I must do this,” we think to forcefully stay in God’s will.”
I bet that’s what went though Moses’ head right before he killed this man. I have seen some Christians do dumb things that they think they have to do! Later they wish they weren’t so forceful, but just wait on God!
That’s where most good natured Christians get themselves into trouble! They just can’t wait, so they force it and bam!
Some even think that this murder was Moses’ effort to start his deliverance of the people that very moment! If it was, no wonder God allowed Moses’ life to be endanger so as to get Moses to flee and get all these crazy ideas of deliverance out of his head! Moses had to be emptied of this pride; my deliverance, my people, mine, mine, mine!
So we read that Moses spent 40 more years on the back side of the desert just tending sheep! How humbling for someone taught in the best universities of the day! Some one rightly said; that Moses was a somebody as an Egyptian; but then had to learn how to be a nobody as a shepherd; to be moldable into a mighty one with God!
But before God would speak to Moses; he was there just tending his sheep minding his own business probably thinking where he had when wrong years before. Moses went wrong when he got ahead of God's will!
Getting ahead of God's will can take on different situations for us. We are not called to deliver a captive people like Moses was yet there are some areas where we can still get ahead of God.
I went to a school where the students were either in one of two groups;" the haves and have nots". if you had a wife you were in the haves group. I was in the have not group. I remember the verses that my single department at Sunday school had for each single boy and each single girl. For the boys it was; Gen 2:18 “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone..." and the verse for the girls was; Luk 9:23 “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him..." So marriage was on the fore front of everyone's mind.
I can remember alot of guys in my exact case; they were sure that God wanted them married as apart of his overall will, so they dated and courted. I remember man who studied to be an English professor who got saved and then called to preach. he was the most grammatically correct guy have ever heard when he preached; he defiantly was a scalp and not a chainsaw in God's hand.
He used to accompany us as we preached and passed out tracks in Sundance square, he was a great guy. But he was lonely and he wasn't getting any younger, so he married a girl that had just become saved at his church.
And guess what? That was the end of his perpetrations in his calling. He dropped out of school because now as a husband and father; he had a wife and three girls to care for. But the saddest thing is that I saw him three separate times since he dropped out and all three times he assured me he was making plans to finish school and preach. The last time I saw him though was about three or four years ago. So I don't know where he is today. He might be right where the Lord wants him or he may not!
I saw his case lived out time after time; the guy gets married while in school and that's the last of him. I'm not saying he shouldn't have married at all; but I can't help but wonder if he jumped the gun a bit; because being a husband and dad doesn't always harmonize at that time you are preparing and sacrificing to preach.
That's why most Doctors and lawyers start their families in their latter thirties or forty's because their preparations and sacrifices take much of their present time up!
It was hard enough just for me to balance work, church, and school together; much less a new family, a new wife, a new place to live, new this or new that. I saw guys that could preach circles around me fall to the side lines not in open, gross sin but to just other meaningful priorities but maybe just simply at the wrong time of life.
Marriage is just one of those things of life that you should never rush into. I believe what the bible says; Ecc 3:1 “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven..." That means there is a natural and proper God honoring season in life for everything you want to do and should do! God knows the right time for every thing in our lives. It would be wise to get in on this agenda for ourlives.
One wife said to another wife, “Yes, I married Mr. Right.” But it was after the wedding that I found out that his first name was “Always”.
That doesn’t even scratch the surface of the problems that could come from a rushed marriage. Time would fail us tonight if we brought before us all those that had married in a rush, who realized after the fact that they should had waited, should had asked more questions, or paid off more bills, or whatever, it is different in every case. They have realized this all but too late; they forever closed a door and opened a new one; and that's what they have to walk through. Whether they like it not. Whether it is easy or not.
I will give you one example of someone that we all know. The niece of Mrs. Venus comes to my mind. Venus told me that her niece is having a tuff time about here her recent divorce. The problem is you see, she's young enough to identify with her peers, which would be late 20's; but none of her peers that are that age want a ready made mommy with two kids hanging off of her. Rebecca realizes that she could go out and have "fun" and in the morning the guy would get up go his way and she would have to go back to wiping noses and behinds facing the fact that she has just too much responsibility as a mom to live the average American single life.
And what makes it worst is to realize that no one forced her into marriage but divorce was forced on her. Marriage is so important that you just can't leave it up to chance, or fate, or to blind love; you have to leave it up to God! If you believe that God has your best interests in mind; then that certainly includes marriage.
II. Financial Agreements
Another area where we can get ahead of God’s will is in our finances. The bible has a very specific word about obliging oneself rashly in financial matters.
The word is surety. Being someone’s Surety maens one who becomes responsible for another. This idea is applied to what Jesus is to us as Believers. Heb 7:22 By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.
But this word carries amore literal sense in the bible; especially when it comes to finances. SURETY was a pledge made to secure against default; one who contracts to assume the debts of another in the event of default. Being a cosigner on a debt is our equivalent of a person who’s a surety for another.
Notice what the bible says;
Pro 6:1-5 My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger,
Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth.
Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself, when thou art come into the hand of thy friend; go, humble thyself, and make sure thy friend.
Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids.
Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler.
I.e. your mouth is writing checks you can’t cash!
Pro 11:15 He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure.
Pro 17:18 A man void of understanding striketh hands, and becometh surety in the presence of his friend.
The bible doesn’t speak to encouraging about becoming a surety for a stranger, or friend. Why? Because they could up and leave and their you are, left with their debt that is now your debt. Notice that the bible said nothing about family though. If you must be a surety for someone, a good rule of thumb is to keep it in the family.
Let’s connect these ideas here of surety and running ahead of God’s will. Think of this; sometimes it just might be God’s will for you not to help in a person’s life as their surety, why? Because that lesson they were faced with; now it’s gone. If God brought that financial hardship into their lives, you can rest assured it had a purpose. And Guess what? You just took a chance away from them to get right or grow in the Lord.
Parents with older kids fall into this trap. Think of the father of the prodigal son. Remember him, he left home for the far country and was living it up in sin. There came time when the money ran out and he was forced to feed hogs and there in the hog pin God got a hold of his heart and he came to himself realizing that he had sinned and he got up and went home and got right with Dad and with God!
But wait, what if that father was like the typical fathers of today are by running ahead of God’s will. Imagine the prodigal son calling home saying, Dad I wrecked my car again, could you send another check. Dad, I fathered another child, could you send another check for the girl. Dad, I lost the other money you sent in Vegas with my friends. Most dads would just keep throwing money at the problem; and the problem is that the prodigal’s heart was not right with God!
If this father would have done that; he would have just delayed the trip to the hog pin and him getting right and ultimately having his son come back home with a right Heart!
Parents don’t run ahead of God’s Will. Before you come to the rescue ask yourself, “Is God trying to teach them a lesson with this?”
Now who do you help? If you are going to help someone, help those who are putting God first and doing all they possible can for God! Why is it that we just associate helping someone with bailing them out of sin?
Why not help someone serve God better! My cousin and her husband never have had a lot of money in their lives; their families don’t have a lot of their own money to begin with. They were serving God in Bible College; she cleaned the church, he was on staff for the youth, but they still never got rich. Guess what their used car they drove from Florida to Texas finally gave up the ghost and here they were facing the problem of getting to Bible College and such. Guess what someone did in the church for them? Someone out of the blue bought them a nice barely used van. Guess what they did with it? They finished Bible College, served in their church, were even more faithful and are now they are pastoring his first church in Alabama. Imagine having an good quality vehicle and not making one payment on it; because someone saw you living for God the best way you knew how and they deiced to help you serve God better! And they did!
III. Salvation of Others
Don’t you wish you could get saved for others? But the truth is that you can’t. God wants people saved; that’s his will for them: 2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
But we can’t force their salvation in the least. We can make ourselves and the truth known but the HS has to do his work. We should pick green fruit! The key is to be filled with the spirit so; that we follow his leading as we witness to our loved ones and friends.
Don’t forget them but don’t force them! Just be in touch with God enough to see when the Lord opens up a door to speak or to water the truth that’s already there.
Moses’ mistake was doing the right thing at the wrong time. Plan for the future, save for the future, but you can’t live in the future; because you would be forgetting about today! What does God want me to do today? What does God want me to master today?
What does God want me to be today?
What part of His will needs to be done today?
Don’t worry about what God wants you to do five years from now; worry about what God wants you to accomplish today, now! There’s enough of God’s will to keep you busy for today!