“God and I”
Sermon Text: Exodus 20:1-7 and the first three Commandments
Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God our Father and from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
You shall have no other gods. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God. Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. The first three commandments deal with our relationship with God, His name, and His Word. They are not so simple that they can be kept by going to church and not saying bad words, but are kept by what we think of God, the way we use His name, and what we do to keep His Word holy.These commandments help us to understand and shape our relationship with God in every aspect of our life.
It is not just about making sure you are a Christian, but about fearing, loving, and trusting in God above all things. God is not meant to be a part of our life, an hour or two of our time on Sunday, but He is to be the prime and most important factor,person, and relationship that we have when we consider what we do, say, and think. God and His will should always come first.
In the same way,the second commandment is not about saying bad words, but using God’s name and using it appropriately. It is not about using or not using those four letter words we try to keep our children from learning. It specifically relates to using God’s name, which assumes that we do use it. Use God’s name. Not carelessly or thoughtlessly, or with any evil intention or purpose, but use it and all of its power for good: for God’s good, for your good, and for the good of your neighbor.
And the third commandment isn’t just about being in church, but it is about the gift of God’s Word to us. It is about our relationship with His Word on Sunday, and Monday,and Tuesday, and every day of the week. Use God’s name and use God’s Word. Make it a part of who you are and what you do. Make it a habit that you read God’s Word and call upon His name every day so that He influences you in what you think, say, and do. Let your God, His Name, and His Word change your heart,kill your Old Adam, and create in you a new man who has a right relationship with God.
That is the gift of the first three commandments. You shall have no other gods. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God. Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Did you hear that beautiful Gospel? You have a God who has made Himself known to you. He has shown Himself and revealed Himself not just in creation and the laws of nature, but in His mercy.
He has revealed Himself to you in a way that no other God has or ever can. He has revealed Himself to you in His Son who points to the Father, your Father, who for the sake of the death and resurrection of His Son has made His relationship with you right. And He wants you to know that. He wants you to know Him and all the right He has done for you to wipe away your wrong. You have a God that you can fear, love, and trust above all things because He has shown that He will take care of all things for you through His Son.
So talk to Him,know Him as He has made Himself known, in His name and in His Word. He has given you His Son, made His relationship with you right, made you His own child that you can call upon His name in every trouble, pray, praise, and give thanks. The name of the Almighty God, the maker of heaven and earth wants you to talk to Him, to make your requests be known to Him and has promised to hear you and answer you to give you the best thing for you for the sake of His Son.
The fact that we know all this and can say all this is proof of just how good our God is. That He has revealed this all to us through the Scriptures. He has given us an ever living Word that continues to talk to us, to give to us an eternal truth that holds meaning for us yesterday, today, and every day. And He continues to come to us on the Sabbath day, in His Word every day, and in His Sacraments, to bear witness that He has made our relationship right.
He has done it and continues to do it. He has forgiven you and continues to forgive you for the sake of the crucified and risen Son. He continues to be you God, to be here for you and to hear you when you use His name, and speak back to you in His Word even when you have neglected Him, His name, and His Word. Still, He meets us here and says, “I forgive you. I love you. You are mine.” In the Name of Jesus. Amen.