Defenses Against Discouragement
Intro: Each year 1,000 SBC ministers leave the ministry. One major cause is discouragement. It is an OCCUPATIONAL HAZARD. Discouragement is one of the most effective weapons Satan has forged against believers.
Some leave the ministry; others, the ministry leaves them.
Cause: Things don't work out as we expect, as we think they ought to. If we know what to expect, we can brace ourselves, roll with the punches.
Moses is a qualified speaker on the subject. He was a man facing discouraging situations and his life ended on that note
Our text reveals some thing we can expect in the service of the Lord.
I. THE GREATEST SUCCESSES OF LIFE ARE OFTEN FOLLOWED BY FAILURE.
The context is important--the preceding verses record the great praise hymn of victory; then immediately there is FAILURE.
THIS IS A PATTERN IN SCRIPTURE: Jericho followed by Ai; Elijah on Mt. Carmel, then whining under the juniper tree; Peter's confession followed by Jesus' rebuke; even Jesus: His baptism and anointing, followed by 40 days in the wilderness..
IT IS ONE THING TO SING A HYMN, ANOTHER TO LIVE TH4E LIFE.
Surely, Moses and the people thought the worst was behind them.. they thought their only enemies were the Egyptians.
Usually, when this happens, we think we have missed God; gotten out of His will. But Marah is on the map! God LED them to the bitter waters.
WHAT DO I MEAN BY FAILURE? A bitter experience... when you can't get it down and keep it down. Anything that's tough to swallow. When the sweetness and ease is gone out of it. That which was once refreshing and sweet but becomes bitter.
Discouragement destroys our resistance and makes us vulnerable, susceptible to other spiritual ills, attacks of the enemy... such as unbelief, critical spirit, cynicism, murmuring against God and people.
WHY DOES GOD LEAD US TO MARAH?
1. To Prove Us. vs. 25 "And there He proved them." Note the word "there". ...
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