#GodsStory ft. Mums Growth Group: To Be His Holy People
Posted on 8 Jun 2020 by CERC
#GodsStory ft. Mums Growth Group: To Be His Holy People
CERC launched its biblical theological series entitled “God’s Story” in January this year. We got some mothers from the Mums Growth Group to share their reflections in Part 2 below. Check out Part 1 here!
Learning from the first 4 books of the Old Testament has been humbling and mind-blowing. Mind-blowing because I see God’s consistent faithfulness & steadfast love as well as His holiness and judgment on sin. God kept His promises by creating a holy people for Himself and choosing sinful and weak people to fulfil His purposes. He also provided the means by which a sinful people could dwell in His Holy presence through sacrifices, temple cult and priesthood. In the end, God fulfilled all of that in Jesus Christ — who became our great high priest and once for all sacrifice of atonement — whom I’m extremely grateful to God for. The book of Numbers revealed how sinful people were despite being saved from Egypt and shown God’s providence. I kept on thinking to myself, “God, you don’t deserve such wicked people… I don’t deserve to be part of your people”. That God would still be faithful and merciful by sending His only Son despite our evilness, is mind-blowing.
Learning God’s story has also been humbling because, just like the Israelites, my heart is prone to being hardened, disobedient and going astray. I’ve been reminded how God does deserve all worship and honour and glory because He is worthy. I am praying that I would not have an idolatrous heart or a grumbling ungratefulness to His mercy and salvation. The only way to do so is to keep allowing God’s Word to be the double-edged sword that leads me to repentance each day, asking God’s Spirit to do the work of transformation, and to seek the encouragement and rebuke of God’s people so that together we would keep persevering till the end. May He keep us faithful even as He is faithful in all of His purposes and will.
Some reflections of mine in point form:
- I am truly grateful and thankful for God’s story being revealed with Christ anticipated in the Old Testament and Christ fulfilled in the New Testament. It’s all according to God’s plan.
- It was a good reminder of the goal of creation, Eden and man being created in the image of God. Love God’s redemption story.
- Finding the path of my life — it is in the presence of God, to choose to remember what God has said, and to joyfully obey and trust His plan (Ephesians 2:22 – In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit). I am reminded of my calling to choose a lifetime of glorifying God instead of a lifetime wasted on pleasing myself.
- I am reminded to conform to the image of Christ on a daily basis, rather than of this world. As Romans 12:2 states, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Learning God’s story from the book of Genesis has taught me so much about who God is, who His Son is, and how I ought to live my life. The book begins with God creating the earth out of nothing (how marvelous is this God!) and making the first man and woman, Adam and Eve. He places them in the garden and they enjoy their relationship with God. But this perfection soon ends when Adam and Eve disobey God and choose to give in to temptation when Satan tempts them. They damage their relationship with God, are banished from the garden and must live outside God’s intended blessing. But even in the midst of this calamity, God is setting in motion His plan to redeem humanity. Oh what a beautiful hope we see in His redemption plan through His Son, Jesus Christ!
We also see how God is a holy God through His displeasure with man’s disobedience and wickedness, through events such as the fall and the flood. We see God’s faithfulness too, in keeping His covenant with Abraham despite how His people keep failing Him. God promised Abraham – a childless old man – that he will have many descendants and they will form a great nation through whom salvation will come. God chose to use these people to be part of His plan for saving the human race. The people He chose are not perfect and at times, deeply flawed in character and action. Yet, God still uses them because of his faithfulness.
God’s providence of a redemptive sacrifice in Jesus Christ makes it possible for us to follow Him and be part of His kingdom again. He gives us new hope and beginnings to become what we were intended to be; to be His image bearer and to live for Him.
From the God’s Story sermon series, I learned:
- That God saves us so that we can serve Him (Gen 7:16).
- To appreciate more deeply who Christ is. He is the perfect sacrifice who once for all by a single offering perfected those who believe in Him for all time.’ (Heb 7:27), (Heb 10:14).
- That we are to be His holy people, to live lives pleasing to Him, just as how God commanded the Israelites “to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exodus 19:6), so that other nations around them will know that He is the Lord and worship Him.
- That as Numbers 14:27a says, I must be careful not to harden my heart towards God and His word.
- To fear God as a God who judges. His judgement is real, and therefore there is real urgency to share the gospel to others.
I have learnt that God in His mercy chose to make himself known in written Word through the Scriptures which includes both the Old Testament and the New Testament. In order to know God, we are to read the Scriptures diligently as if He Himself is speaking to us through it.
I have learnt that the Scriptures are to be interpreted with Christ as the key component. An understanding of biblical theology is important for us to read the Scriptures correctly and we need to be born again with the Spirit to help us interpret the Scriptures.
I have learnt that God is holy, just and sovereign over all creation while we, humans, are utterly sinful and can only be saved with God’s initiative. Ever since the Fall, we chose to define what’s good and evil instead of trusting God’s Word, and that is the definition of sin. Time and time again I am reminded as I read through Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers how evil human beings are, as seen in the Israelites’ stubbornness and failure to obey the God who has saved them.
Yet, God, in His faithfulness and great love, chose to save this rebellious, undeserving people to be His own people. Much like the Israelites, I am reminded of how utterly depraved and enslaved in sin I am, and it is ultimately by God’s sovereign grace that I am saved from the sorry state that I am in, through His Son Jesus Christ. Praise be to God!
Going through the Pentateuch has given me a great appreciation for biblical theology. It has shown me that the Old Testament is not merely about reading history that happened decades ago but it’s God’s plan in salvation history to redeem a people to Himself. It shows God’s faithfulness in fulfilling His promises in the midst of a rebellious, grumbling and ungrateful people. These are the ones that were entrusted by God with His law and were chosen to be His holy people. But time and time again, we can see the stubbornness of the Israelites towards God in their sin despite God’s judgment towards them which eventually led them to repentance. However, it was never meant to be lasting as the law was not enough to make them holy. Rather, the sin within them caused them to act rebelliously against the law.
Fast forward to today, being a new covenant Christian, I’m thankful for Christ and His work on the cross, that because of that, I can now live a life free from the bondage of sin and walk according to the Spirit. This has taught me also that as people of God, saved by the redeeming blood of Christ, sin is dangerous and I need to be on my guard by reminding myself on how to live faithfully, courageously, and unashamedly for the gospel through the reading of the Scriptures.
If you’ve been encouraged by the testimonies above and would like to be part of a Growth Group, join us for our weekly meetups here! Interested to tune in to the sermons in the God’s Story series instead? Catch up here.