Dec 2012

The Road to the Promised Land

Act 3 | The King Chooses His People

This sermon on “The Road to the Promised Land” from The Drama of Redemption was preached by Demetrius White at Redemption Hill Church on Sunday, December 30, 2012. His text was Numbers 1:1-36:13.

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Sermon Notes:

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The Road to the Promised Land
Numbers 1:1-36; 13

God Prepares His People

God Prepares His People by His Word

The word of God is authoritative, clear, sufficient and purposeful. It should be the ultimate standard in the lives of Gods people. It is profitable for all of life, doctrine, and practice. It is adequate to feed and sustain Gods people; it provides clarity in an unclear world. It is from the word of God that the people in the wilderness received a sense of purpose. This word gives us purpose as we reflect upon the glory of God in the person of Christ who yields the meaning of life.

Application Questions

Are there areas in our lives which challenge the authority of the word?
What parts of scripture challenge you and why?
How can we encourage one another to see the word as authoritative?
Are there areas in our lives in which we do not trust the word of God to be sufficient enough to lead us?
What keeps us from the word of God and what keeps us from seeing it as sufficient and clear? How have you struggled in this area?
Do you find meaning in your social status, jobs, education, or economic status?
Do you receive joy from the word of God’s purposes for his people or in your own purposes?

God Prepares His People by His Good Providence

God demonstrates his care for his people through his providence. He cares about every area of His people’s lives and through trials is working to sanctify us.

Application Questions

How have we seen this work out in our lives and how have we struggled in this area?
Do we see God at work even behind our suffering?
Looking back at times of suffering in our lives, how have they worked to draw you closer to God?
Can you see why God allows suffering?

Consider Deuteronomy 8:2-5 “And you shall remember the whole way that the Lord your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not. And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Your clothing did not wear out on you and your foot did not swell these forty years. Know then in your heart that, as a man disciplines his son, the Lord your God disciplines you.”

The Problem of God’s People

God’s People are Under the Bondage of Sin

God faithfully prepares His people in the wilderness because they will not prepare themselves. They are incapable of preparing themselves because they are under the bondage of sin. Sin is wholly insane and irrational; we sin in the presence of God and against God himself. Numbers 14:11 “And the Lord said to Moses, How long will this people despise me? And how long will they not believe in me, in spite of all the signs that I have done among them?” Sin is rooted in our hearts, is deceptive, pervasive and always seeks to hide its true nature. Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” Yet, sin cannot be contained and hidden, it will always be exposed. Numbers 32:23 “Behold, you have sinned against the Lord, and be sure your sin will find you out.” It is because of sin that the wrath of God is revealed in the wilderness.


We must realize that our sin is something God must help us deal with. It is not just external but it reigns in the hearts of unbelievers and, indwelling sin still assaults the believer. Both believers and unbelievers need the grace of God to deal with sin. But believers should know to bring their sin before God and not seek to hide it. 1 John 1:5-9 “This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Application Questions

How have we forgotten the severity of our sin?
Can we see how sin deceives and keeps us from having proper views of God?
Have we tried to deal with sin externally or tried to stop it with our own self-righteousness?
What areas of our lives display the power of sins deception?
How have we sought to make provision for sin without realizing that it pays us wages in death?
Are there areas of our lives in which we hide our sin instead of bringing it to God?

The Promise to God’s People

The people are sinful and thus God gives a promise of redemption through His son, Jesus Christ, who takes both the wrath of God and the sinfulness of man to deliver eternal salvation. He is the one Moses pointed to in the wilderness.

Numbers 21:4-9 “From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom. And the people became impatient on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this worthless food.” Then the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. And the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole, and everyone who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a pole. And if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live.”

John 3:13-16 “No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.”

Application Questions

How has the gospel changed you?
How is the gospel continuing to change you?
Do you trust in your works and conscience or the gospel?

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