【Bible Study】Exodus 09: Worship the Lord or Worship money?

Pastor Samuel Sharing

Brother William Sharing

Bible Study: Exodus

Worship God or worship Money

Let's look at Exodus chapter 9. I realized that Exodus chapter 9 is about whether you choose the Lord or money. In more professional terms, Lord or economy. We start to ask this question: What is the problem stopping Pharaoh from letting the Israelites leave? If I were some normal person, I would let them go! Go! No big deal! No, Pharaoh has a problem; the problem is the economy. That is why Jesus taught us: either you worship the Lord, or money. That is examining what is in our hearts. Many times, we look at things from an economic point of view.

For example, one country invaded another and sent their troops over there, and they used economic weapons to do sanctions, this and that. So the economy is one of the major considerations. That is a subject in university: they talk about politics and economics. Political and economic issues are the fundamental issues of the World. But the problem is this: either you choose to worship the Lord or money. Money is real. Gold, silver, oil, daily living; it is a very real issue. So in this chapter, you see what the Lord is doing. He kills the animals, the livestock belonging to the Egyptians. The livestock is part of the economy of the Egyptians. Do you know what happened? If the animals are gone, then the money is gone. The value is gone. The economy will be strained because the Lord has killed them.

Economic Weapons

Why is the Lord using economic weapons to strike the Egyptians? Simply because it is the main consideration of the Egyptian king: To run the country. If you and I are not ordinary people and have to lead a country, your main consideration is still the economy, for example. If the economy gets worse, political issues will surface. They are correlated to each other. Israelites are the main part of the issue in Pharaoh's heart. Not just the livestock, but in the fields, a lot of things have already started to grow. And then, God sent a hailstorm. The lighting and hail will strike Egyptians, and not only livestock but all the farms were destroyed. And those who worked in the fields were killed by the hail. That is interesting. And Pharaoh was thinking this. "If I keep these people, what is going to happen to my economy, my GDP? But if I keep these people, I will lose by these plagues." Plague of hail, a plague of boils, livestock, all fell on the Egyptians. I am not going to tell these stories, but I want to dig out the underlying principles. We need to reflect on it.

If we make a decision, do we behave like Pharaoh? If we stand from the economic point of view; rentals, daily living, the installments on your house, loans, power, electricity, water, telephone, and every day, you are dealing with this. It seems like a real issue we are facing. Why do we work? Not because we enjoy it, but we have to make money, to make a living. It is very real. But if you look at things from purely an economic point of view, you will have problems worshipping the Lord. If the money is in the centrepiece of your heart, God will send a plague; and somehow, you will lose money here and there.

Examine your heart

God wants us to choose between Him and money. Every time we hear from people: "I don't have time to read Bible." What do you have time for? "I have to go to work!" "I don't have time to go to Bible study!" What do you have time for? "I have to look after my baby daughters." "I don't have time to go for Sunday service!" Why? "I have something in my house to tidy up." A lot of the time, you will find what the underlying fact is. Where do you put the Lord in your heart? If worshipping the Lord is just one of the matters in our lives, and your centrepiece in your heart is still daily living and making money. A lot of the time, making money is very important. But why do people lose it? Because they put it in a very important position, going against God! Why is the heart so hardened? Not just the heart of Pharaoh, but also Christians. Why> Because they do not know that our Lord is more than the economy, more than money.

But the Lord, sometimes, has no mercy on people. Many people say, what a merciful Lord! Yes, but to his people; the Israelites. In the family of the Egyptians, the livestock is killed. But in the family of the Israelites, not a single animal died. You hear this: If the Lord is merciful, the Lord should make the economy of the Egyptians better! But no, the year the Israelites came out of Egypt was probably the worst year in the history of the Egyptians, ever since they became a nation. The GDP dropped significantly. You send a hailstorm, and all the farms are destroyed. Barley, flax, all of these are destroyed! What are the people going to eat? Do you think God is concerned about that? What are they going to eat? You eat anything you want. If you ask what they are going to eat, the centrepiece in your heart is not worshipping the Lord but the economy.

Understand God's intention to bring us out

The whole World is fighting because of the economy. They formed free trade alliances, and even if they compete with other countries, it's because of money. But it is very common. The same thing happens in our hearts. If we put money in the centrepiece of our heart, our heart will be hardened. Either you worship the Lord or money. That's the problem. It is very difficult to make a choice. Very often, the hearts of many brothers and sisters are hardened. If you are the people of God and still think in the same logic as Pharaoh, do you know what will happen? Your economy will suffer. God wants to bring you out! God wants to bring people out of Egypt, out of a worldly mentality and logic!

Everything on the Earth belongs to God

Why? You may be wondering why? Look at verse 16 "But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth." God is God. Everything belongs to God. We are deceived daily by what we see. Our eyes are fixed on money as real gold and silver. We see money as the real treasure. We are measuring and calculating what is worth more. We are always talking about value, and we fall into the trap without looking. We are not looking from the same perspective as what the Lord is looking at.

Do you have God's mindset or Pharaoh's mindset?

If you are suffering from losing a large amount of money, you must understand your heart is hardened. If you worship the Lord, will you have a shortage of money? If you are using a human perspective of calculations, you will have a problem understanding. Let me tell you. People have a problem understanding based on their human logic.

For example, Israelites went into the desert for 40 years and had never cultivated the land. They had never harvested and never had any seeds for harvesting. How did they manage to make a living there? There was no factory, no manufacturing, no economy, and no money-making machine. Right? What are they living for? They were living on the Lord. The Lord is our provider, and all our provisions come from Him. It is so difficult for us to understand. It seems so illogical. It is not logical at all because we have the same mindset as the Pharaoh.

God could send a plague easily to destroy the economy. Did God help Israelites to live by the power of the Almighty God? If we understand the power of the Almighty and God, we will live in the power of the Almighty God. Our God is reliable, trustworthy, and faithful.

Paradigm shift from a human's perspective to God's perspectives

The big problem is that faith in the Lord is not common. The faith in the Lord is not common. There are many stories and testimonies to be shared among us. If we trust in the Lord, we put down our work. Let me explain about shifting our logic from one paradigm to another paradigm when we shift our paradigm of the World to the paradigm of the mighty power of the Lord. You might be wondering what a paradigm is? Paradigm is the underlying logic.

The Pharaoh had the paradigm of the World, and we should get out of this logic. We have to escape from this paradigm and shift our paradigm to the paradigm of the Lord. Look carefully at Abraham and ask yourself this question; "If you are Abraham, will you be living in poverty?" No. If you are like Abraham, you carry the destiny of life., the destiny of the Lord. Are you going to be poor? No.

When we were studying Genesis, it had shown us people like Lot, the nephew of Abraham, lost everything because he carried the economic logic in his mind. He wanted to make a good living. He wanted to live a good and comfortable life. In the end, tragically, he lost everything. Indeed, this is a good reminder for all of us. If a plague happened, came upon us, and it would destroy our money. We would be living in poverty and sickness. We would be living in a curse. God wants to raise us up for this purpose so that we know the power of the Almighty God. We know the name of the Lord, and His name will be proclaimed not only on the Earth but also in your heart.

What is your priority in your life?

Now is the time to shift our paradigm, and I want to tell you a story based on my past experiences running a church. Many years ago, I was a very demanding pastor when I was running the church. I was conducting the Bible study every Friday and running the Sunday service. If your Sunday service and Friday bible study had full attendance, you would celebrate. As a pastor, you would be celebrating for a full house attendance. This meant you were running the church very well, and that was what I did. If there were hardly anyone attending, you would be wondering what was going on?

At that time, many of the church members had part-time jobs, full-time jobs, going to school for their part-time degree studying as well as attending the church and bible study. I was wondering if they would still attend the church.

Would they take too much of their time doing church things? Incredibly, they continued to attend. Later, I started a bible study for leaders every Wednesday, and many of them attended. It was an almost full attendance. I was like, "Oh my God, what am I going to do?" I was afraid I was taking too much of their time, and they could not study well or be unable to do their job well. I worried too much and was an over thinker. Do you know what happened in the end? They were blessed with passing their degree with flying colors. Trust me, and I am telling the real thing. They were also blessed in their job with no hindrance but performed very well. God is so amazing. Gradually, I started prayers meeting on Tuesday, Saturday, and other weekdays. My worries and concerns diminished as time passed by because I know our Lord is the mighty Lord.

Previously, our church members had many problems. They had many problems such as problems with their landlords, problems in their workplaces, and had problems with their money. In the end, they spent their money and time on so-called "Church things", all their problems vanished with God's blessings. They spent their time worshipping God not because the Lord needed them to come and worship Him. They knew they needed God to bless them and their problems would be resolved.

A couple of days ago, one of my coworkers had a lunch meeting with a friend who had lost her job. This friend is facing a tough situation as her daily living is becoming a problem. Trust in The Lord. The Lord is the Lord of all the Earth. The Lord is worthier than the economy and money. If you worship the Lord, you cannot worship the money. If you cannot worship the Lord and you worship the money, then you better work hard and struggle more. You work hard, you play hard, and you do not have to worship the Lord so hard. By using human logic, it is difficult to understand. If you are not in God's logic, you have a problem understanding. I used to have a problem understanding it, but now I have overcome it.

Do you know why over time, our church is getting more and more demanding? It is not because we demand your time. We demand your heart to turn to the Lord. Your heart should be filled with the paradigm of the mighty God. You should be looking at things from the perspective of the mighty power of the Lord. If you carry the same mind as the Pharaoh, then you have a problem understanding the Lord. Though you might have the same mind as the Pharaoh, it will not stop the Lord from proclaiming his name on the Earth.

Let me tell you the trend when you see people in the nation and no matter how powerful the nation is. Especially the Christians in the nation turned away from the paradigm of God, and their power will go down. No matter how powerful and blessed they were in the past, the power will go down. The problem is once the trend is going down, it will be quite difficult to reverse it. It is the same as a property when the price went down. It is quite hard to reverse it. Probably, it will take several years to bounce back. If the economy is the World's major concern and that is the problem. Whether it is an individual or a nation, that trend can show how much our hearts belong to the Lord. They work in the same way.

If you live in a country that is going into a downward trend, right? You don't have to worry because you only need to worry about one thing. What is in your heart? What is in your heart? Even if you are living in the country. The whole country worships money, but you still believe you still trust in the Lord. Let me tell you, the Lord can do wonders in your life. You don't have to worry about daily living. You don't have to worry about your job, about your business. God can create that one for you, especially for you, because God is God of all the Earth. A God will demonstrate His mighty power among the people. It is very encouraging.

Hardened heart and result in plagues

But if our heart is hardened, that will be a problem, and you will see more plagues. You will see hail come down from heaven. You may see the boils come to your skin. You may see the livestock, the animal, the World, and the value of money somehow die. And God! You will be able to figure out the reason only from the perspective of the mighty God. I had done this experiment today—many people in our church. Experience the blessing. Yes, you say I don't have time, but you have time for what? I don't have time for the Lord, but what do you have time for?

For plague, like Pharaoh. It is not the approach. It is not an option at all. After my experiments, I strongly believe that. I strongly believe we need God to live. We need blessing. We need to get away from the curse. Even we may run the business like the whole of Egypt. It would be best to shift away from your paradigm from the economic logic to the logic of our Almighty God.

Worship the Lord or worship the money.

So what is the main topic today? You worship the Lord or worship the money. Think about that. And do some experiments yourself. You might conclude the thing like what I have done. It works! The mighty power of the Lord works. He is my healer. He is my treasure. He is my economy. He is my life. That's why I call it a doctrine of destiny; The Church of Destiny is What we live for and what we die for. And He is my eternal blessing. And I look forward. I look forward not just in this life. I look forward in the Eternal, standing in front of Almighty God. I would really hope to hear that God say: "You are my faithful servant, come share my glory and be part of the glory." I belong to part of the glory of Almighty God. The portion of the glory of Almighty God belongs to me. How great is that? It's a wonderful thing. It's a wonderful thing in our life. It is a wonderful choice in our hearts. And from now on, I no longer say to the Lord: "Oh, I have no time for you." And I would say to the Lord: "Everything. Every time, all the time, all my time, all my money and all my mind, all my soul, all my heart; All my strength belongs to you. I am yours, Oh, my Lord." I'm sure you will lead a colorful and exciting life.

May the Lord bless you. Thank you for listening to my Bible study. I encourage you to give a little bit more thought to that. Money or the Lord? Thank you very much.

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