The Rock Covenant Church

The Rock Church Worship Service

Revelation Song (Holy holy holy holy is the Lord God almighty)
Our God (Our God is greater, water You turned into wine)
Your Love Never Fails (You stay the same through the ages)
Take Heart (Take heart for His love will lead us through the night)
I Receive (I receive everything You have for me)

Women’s bible studies Tuesday mornings and evenings, Hebrews and Gideon
We are having needs in various ministries, if you want to help out, check out the table in the back
Hopefully you’ve been hearing about cardboard box city
Family Promise is a national, multi-faith organization
There are a lot of issues in the South Bay that complicate getting resources if you’re homeless

This week we’re going to talk about gluttony
We’re in a series on sin, talking about what’s wrong with the human race
Last week was envy and Genesis 4:7
Next week is lust
Sin likes to crouch in the corner like a cat waiting to pounce
If in your life you feel like you’ve mastered something in your life, it’s not necessarily done with you
God talks about mastering sin
Going to talk about how to practically become the people that God is calling us to be

Joshua said to Achan, “My son, give glory to the Lord the God of Israel. Tell me what you have done. Don’t hide anything from me.” Achan answered Joshua, “It’s true. I’ve sinned against the Lord, the God of Israel. This is what I have done: Among the booty I saw a single beautiful robe in the Babylonian style, two hundred shekels of silver, and a single gold bar weighing fifty shekels. I desired them and took them. Now they are hidden in the ground inside my tent, with the silver on the bottom.” Then Joshua sent messengers. They ran to the tent. There it was, hidden in his tent, with the silver on the bottom. They took the things from inside the tent. They brought them to Joshua and to all the Israelites and emptied them out before the Lord. Then Joshua seized Achan, Zerah’s son, along with the silver, the robe, the gold bar, his sons and daughters, his cattle, donkeys, flocks, tent, and everything that belonged to him. All Israel joined Joshua. They brought them up to Achor Valley. Joshua said, “You have brought disaster to us! May the Lord bring disaster to you today!” Then all Israel stoned him. They burned them with fire and stoned them with stones.
‭Joshua‬ ‭7‬:‭19-25‬ CEB

Cas and I were in Oklahoma City
When you’re in Oklahoma City, you have to try the barbecue
It’s not a place you just visit
We were driving along and saw a sign for a 7 meat platter
I said why go anywhere else
Ordered the 7 meat platter, I didn’t even know there were that many kinds of meat
Barbecue sauce dripping everywhere, it’s like Thanksgiving where you just keep stuffing food in
Our images of gluttony are connected to overeating
But if you pull back the curtain, it’s really about taking something that’s beautiful and good and cramming it in until you explode
All these sins seek to deface God’s creation
We all have cravings, we’re all addicted to something
First we’re going to look at the depth and the power of the craving
Then take you through the structure of temptation in the human heart
And then lastly the path to healing
We need a bit of background to see how Achan got to this place
When God brought the Israelites out of Egypt and into Canaan, he made covenant rules for them to obey
I want you to be a light in the world
When there was a conquest and God leads Israel against another nation, no plundering
That’s against the norm for the culture/period
If you don’t do this, I will pull my presence from you
Everyone, including Achan, understood this rule
When confronted, he owns up to it though
Achan saw those things and his cravings deep inside took over
Our cravings are so strong, they can overcome our conscience, our reasoning, our thoughts
They can overcome our fear of consequences
The internal mechanism against craving is even shut down
It’s a lot easier when you know what you’re addicted to
When the craving is more physical (sexual addiction, substance abuse, spending money), it’s a bit easier to check in with some group or something
But what about the rest of us where the craving / addiction isn’t so visibly obvious
What about certainty?
Needing to be100% certain before doing something
Achieving is a good thing, but what about being addicted to it?
If it leads into the immoderate zone and it becomes a craving
Leads into difficulty with commitment
Or what about dependence, needing to be with someone
Achan committed suicide
Ed. Note – really?
He brought this in himself
Last week we talked about friends or a spouse or a spiritual advisor, someone who reads your mail and knows you, you have been given a gift
We need truth tellers to help spot the things that appear tiny to us (sin crouching in the corner)
Achan Saw
Achan Weighed
Achan Took
Not just seeing, but beholding
He’s in the gaze zone, fondling it in his heart
Nothing wrong with noticing something, but when you move to I see to, oh, I see
If you’re gazing, you have opened your heart to possibility
In manhattan beach, there are a lot of beautiful people, beautiful houses, restaurants on every corner with amazing aromas
I want that, I want that, I want that
So many different possibilities to see and gaze and behold
Stepped off the steps and into the lobby
Ed. note – …of the Twilight Zone
How did he know how much was there?
He’s likely not Rain Man, so he had to touch it, to weigh it, to count it
He’s letting his imagination run away with it
Sin is always an inflation of the imagination
Whatever holds our imagination has our attention to the point where we fantasize and daydream until those things become the desire of our soul
One author said: “Your imagination is like the tongue of your soul”
When your taste buds take over, you’re done
Achan’s imagination wasn’t set on God or on God’s people
The entire community was affected, cast away from God, as a consequence of one person’s sin
Achan didn’t care about that when he gazed
Achan’s heart was completely inflamed at this point
Some of us have these physical addictions (substance abuse, pornography, etc. )
Some of us have desperate needs to be successful or beautiful
I want you to catch this: at any point in your life, you can break this
There’s always an exit before the destination
If you’ve gotten off the steps and into the lobby, there’s an exit
If you’re weighing, there’s an exit
Before you take, there’s an exit
Be aware of what you’re gazing at
My dad told me when I was young, “It’s okay to look once, Buck, but don’t look twice”
Here’s another way to know what you’re gazing at
Go blank
It’s easier for men than for women sometimes
Where does your mind tend to go?
That can help you find what’s operating in the center of your heart
Simply identifying hem and saying no isn’t enough
Self-discipline isn’t going to be enough
Hebrews talks about running a race and taking things off of you that are hindering you
But that’s not enough
You have to put your eyes on Jesus
All the things you want, desire, are craving…are in Jesus
Thomas Chalmers: “The only way to take your eyes off of something beautiful is to give then something more beautiful to look at”
We’re always worshiping, we’re always praising; that’s how we were created
John Donne wrote a poem:

Batter my heart, three-person’d God, for you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise and stand, o’erthrow me, and bend
Your force to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp’d town to another due,
Labor to admit you, but oh, to no end;
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captiv’d, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be lov’d fain,
But am betroth’d unto your enemy;
Divorce me, untie or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.
The Poetry Foundation

If Christ doesn’t imprison me, then something or someone else will
Jesus is the beautiful one that we’re all chasing after
The Scriptures keep telling us this over and over and over again
The only certainty we need lies in Jesus Christ
And Jesus loves you
We belong to Him
He’s got us
The only verdict that matters is the verdict that Jesus speaks over our lives
That we are His children and with us He is well pleased
When we fix our eyes on Jesus and we see it and we gaze at it and we behold it and we weigh it and we take it in – you’re set free for the first time

One Pure And Holy Passion (give me one magnificent obsession)

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