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What is holding us back to serve the LORD our GOD (Exodus 9:1)

Sermon on 3 March 2024 by Sis Hui Ling

Exodus 9:7

[7] Pharaoh sent his officials to investigate, and they discovered that the Israelites had not lost a single animal! But even so, Pharaoh’s heart remained stubborn, and he still refused to let the people go.


Exodus 9:11-12

[11] Even the magicians were unable to stand before Moses, because the boils had broken out on them and all the Egyptians. [12] But the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and just as the Lord had predicted to Moses, Pharaoh refused to listen.


Exodus 9:20-22

[20] Some of Pharaoh’s officials were afraid because of what the Lord had said. They quickly brought their servants and livestock in from the fields. [21] But those who paid no attention to the word of the Lord left theirs out in the open. [22] Then the Lord said to Moses, “Lift your hand toward the sky so hail may fall on the people, the livestock, and all the plants throughout the land of Egypt.”


Exodus 9:27-30

[27] Then Pharaoh quickly summoned Moses and Aaron. “This time I have sinned,” he confessed. “The Lord is the righteous one, and my people and I are wrong. [28] Please beg the Lord to end this terrifying thunder and hail. We’ve had enough. I will let you go; you don’t need to stay any longer.” [29] “All right,” Moses replied. “As soon as I leave the city, I will lift my hands and pray to the Lord. Then the thunder and hail will stop, and you will know that the earth belongs to the Lord. [30] But I know that you and your officials still do not fear the Lord God.”


Exodus 9:33-35

[33] So Moses left Pharaoh’s court and went out of the city. When he lifted his hands to the Lord, the thunder and hail stopped, and the downpour ceased. [34] But when Pharaoh saw that the rain, hail, and thunder had stopped, he and his officials sinned again, and Pharaoh again became stubborn. [35] Because his heart was hard, Pharaoh refused to let the people leave, just as the Lord had predicted through Moses.


[ 1 ] The process of a hardened heart ------


. Stubborn

. Refuse to listen

. Paid no attention

. Still do not fear the Lord our God

. Again, became stubborn, hardened heart


What does God do with a hardened heart ?

Psalms 81:12

[12] So I let them follow their own stubborn desires, living according to their own ideas.


Read the entire bible carefully, understand God's heart


[ 2 ] God's heart -----------------------------------


Psalms 81:8

[8] “Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings. O Israel, if you would only listen to me!

[10] For it was I, the Lord your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it with good things.

[13] Oh, that my people would listen to me! Oh, that Israel would follow me, walking in my paths!


[ 3 ] How to reverse a hardened heart ? ----


2 Timothy 3:16-17

[16] All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. [17] God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.


Hebrews 3:7-8

[7] That is why the Holy Spirit says, “Today when you hear his voice, [8] don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled, when they tested me in the wilderness.

[15] Remember what it says: “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled.”


[ 4 ] Circumcised heart --------------------------


Romans 2:29

[29] No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.


Painful ? Of course !

Hebrews 12:11

[11] No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.


Don't turn bitter when experiencing advices or chastisement from the holy spirit or godly people. Domt turn a deaf ear.


[ 5 ] Choose for yourself ---------------------


> What pain are you willing to go through to

   get what you want ?

. Pride of life

. Money

. Praises from people


> Do these cause a hardened heart ?


> Aren't these insignificant compared to

   peaceful harvest of right living ?

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