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SermonGod Sees Our Intent
An all-creatures Bible Message

God Sees Our Intent
 
A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
26 March 2017
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References

Genesis 6:5
1 Samuel 16:1-13
Isaiah 29:20
Ephesians 5:8-14
Philippians 2:1-4

God sees our intent rather than looking at our appearance, as we humans usually do.
 
And at other times both we and God see our intent, for we act out our intent in the world around us, but God sees our intent before we act and also as an indicator of the way we will act in the future.
 
Letís now take a look at Genesis 6:5, and what we are told about the people in the days of Noah before the flood.

5. Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
NASB

Note specifically that God sees our intent more like a movie or video of our life upon this earth, and not just as a snapshot in time, such as seeing that our thoughts were only evil continually.
 
In Isaiah 29:20, we are told about the fate of the people who follow the evil and ungodly ways of the devil and his minions.

20. For the ruthless will come to an end,
and the scorner will be finished,
Indeed all who are intent on doing evil will be cut off;
NASB

Keep these things in mind as we continue with our discussion on how God sees our intent before we act.
 
In 1 Samuel 16:1-13, we are told about how God called Samuel to anoint David as king in place of Saul.

1. Now the LORD said to Samuel, "How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have selected a king for Myself among his sons."

Instead of just believing God and doing what He asked him to do, Samuel expresses doubt about his mission.

2. But Samuel said, "How can I go? When Saul hears of it, he will kill me." And the LORD said, "Take a heifer with you, and say, 'I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.'

Note carefully that in the beginning God made no mention of a sacrifice, for as God told Saul, obedience is better than sacrifice.
 
Human beings are the corrupt ones who believe that they can appease God or bargain with Him by making a sacrifice, but this is not what God desires; nevertheless, God gives Samuel further instruction.

3. "And you shall invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for Me the one whom I designate to you."

Note also that God didnít actually command Samuel to make a sacrifice, but only to anoint the one that He tells Samuel to anoint.

4. So Samuel did what the LORD said, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the city came trembling to meet him and said, "Do you come in peace?"

These elders are trembling because they know that they havenít been living in the heavenly will of God, and they fear that Samuel came to prophesy against them.
 
They know that God sees our intent, but instead of repenting years before, they are still living in their own sins.

5. And he said, "In peace; I have come to sacrifice to the LORD. Consecrate yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice." He also consecrated Jesse and his sons, and invited them to the sacrifice.

Yet, there is no mention of an actual sacrifice.

6. Then it came about when they entered, that he looked at Eliab and thought, "Surely the Lord's anointed is before Him."
 
7. But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."

And God sees our intent, too.
 
But we donít need to tremble as did the elders of Bethlehem, for if we just repent of our ungodly way of living, and seek the Lord with all our heart and soul, God is faithful to forgive us, and help us to live in His heavenly will, where there is no pain or mourning or death.
 
Letís go on and see what happened at Jesseís homeÖ

8. Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one."
 
9. Next Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one."
 
10. Thus Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. But Samuel said to Jesse, "The LORD has not chosen these."

We are not told what God saw in the hearts and souls of these sons of Jesse, but God saw something in their intent that was not suited for being king over Israel.

11. And Samuel said to Jesse, "Are these all the children?" And he said, "There remains yet the youngest, and behold, he is tending the sheep." Then Samuel said to Jesse, "Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here."

Notice again that there is no mention of a sacrifice or eating the flesh of a sacrificed animal; all that we are told is that they were going to sit down and share a meal together.

12. So he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, with beautiful eyes and a handsome appearance. And the LORD said, "Arise, anoint him; for this is he."
 
13. Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel arose and went to Ramah.
NASB

Note again that there is no mention of sacrificing an animal to God, and no mention of even eating a meal together.
 
All that we know is that Samuel arose and went to Ramah.
 
God sees our intent, but we also need to learn to see Godís intent or His heavenly will, much of which Jesus taught us, as recorded in the pages of our Bibles.
 
In Ephesians 5:8-14, we are told of some of the ways that God sees our intent.

8. for you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; walk as children of light

Figuratively speaking the ungodliness within us is seen as darkness by God, and partially by those of us who live in the Lordís heavenly will.

9. (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth),

These things we can see in the way a person lives their life before us; as an example, if someone constantly lies, you can tell that they are not living in Godís heavenly will, and that we shouldnít believe anything they say, and we should not follow any of the schemes that they want us to participate in.

10. trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.
 
11. And do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them;
 
12. for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.

And this includes political leaders, and unfortunately many clergy; we are to be the children of God at all times.

13. But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light.

This light is the heavenly love of God, which exposes the deceitful and violent things that are happening all over the world

14. For this reason it says,
"Awake, sleeper,
And arise from the dead,
And Christ will shine on you."
NASB

This is the way we can start to see Godís intent for our lives, just as God sees our intent; it is really quite easy, if we want to do it.
 
And we can see more of these things in Philippians 2:1-4Ö

1. If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion,
 
2. make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

Paul is talking about being in the same love and spirit of God, and that united we seek to do the things in Godís heavenly will, and we reject the worldís ways around us.

3. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself;

Isnít this really loving God with every part of our being and loving our neighbors as ourselves?
 
We believe it is; and when God sees our intent, we believe that this is the intent He is looking for.

4. do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
NASB

Pure heavenly love always puts God first and considers every other living being as being more important than ourselves, and when we do, we bring peace to the world, for we no longer are part of the world system that causes so much violence and death to millions of humans and billions of other animals every year.
 
When God sees our intent, He wants to see peacemaking children of God who live in His heavenly will and do everything in their power to free creation from its present corruption.
 
We can and should live this way.
 
It really isnít hard, if we want to.
 
Amen.

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