Blinded by discontentment – Bro Ekene Otugeme
Topic: Blinded by discontentment
Text: Exodus 1:1-12
Preacher: Bro Ekene Otugeme
What is discontentment? It is lack of satisfaction with ones possession and status in a negative way, it is lack of contentment; it could also mean to be disgruntled or displeased about a thing or about life. Most persons are quick to forget what God has done. In this message, we will do a study of the children of Israel as our basis to address this issue.
- Now these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt; every man and his household came with Jacob.
- Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah,
- Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin,
- Dan, and Naphtali, Gad, and Asher.
- And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already.
- And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation.
- And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with them.
- Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.
- And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we:
- Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.
- Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses.
- But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel.
- And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve with rigour:
This was the beginning of the problem of the children of Israel, when a certain king arose and decided to afflict them and give them hard labour. The children of Israel kept on suffering up till Exodus chapter 5, and at this time it became intense.
Exodus 5:6-8; 19
- And Pharaoh commanded the same day the taskmasters of the people, and their officers, saying,
- Ye shall no more give the people straw to make brick, as heretofore: let them go and gather straw for themselves.
- And the tale of the bricks, which they did make heretofore, ye shall lay upon them; ye shall not diminish ought thereof: for they be idle; therefore they cry, saying, Let us go and sacrifice to our God.
- And the officers of the children of Israel did see that they were in evil case, after it was said, Ye shall not minish ought from your bricks of your daily task.
God being compassionate about their situation, sent Moses to deliver them and in Exodus chapter 14, God performed a great miracle in their midst.
Exodus 14:13-14; 21-22; 29-30
- And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more forever.
- The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.
And the LORD said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward:
- And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
- And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.
- But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.
- Thus the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.
- And Israel saw that great work which the LORD did upon the Egyptians: and the people feared the LORD, and believed the LORD, and his servant Moses.
At this point in their journey of delivery out of Egypt, the children of Israel rejoiced in the Lord and sang praises. Not too long from that experience, they forgot what the Lord had done and were murmuring.
- So Moses brought Israel from the Red sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water.
- And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah.
- And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink?
- And he cried unto the LORD; and the LORD shewed him a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet: there he made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there he proved them.
In their murmur, God showed up and made water available to them. Not too long again in chapter 16 of Exodus, these same persons murmured again concerning what to eat. They suddenly forgot that they were suffering in Egypt, and that God was in a bid to deliver them. God in his mercy showed up again. Again, they were in a hurry to forget what God had done, still in discontentment they murmured.
- And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, after their journeys, according to the commandment of the LORD, and pitched in Rephidim: and there was no water for the people to drink.
- Wherefore the people did chide with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said unto them, Why chide ye with me? wherefore do ye tempt the LORD?
- And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?
- And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, What shall I do unto this people? they be almost ready to stone me.
Indeed, many persons have taken the posture of the children of Israel and it is God’s desire that we be delivered from the blindness of discontentment. As we trust the Lord to address the issue of discontentment today, take a pause, and ask yourself: Am I discontented?
- What are the Products of discontentment?
- Unhealthy comparison. “For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” 2 Cor. 10:12
iii. Strife and Jealousy
- It leads to cutting corners. Numbers 22:1-25
- It leads to rebellion. “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.” 1 Samuel 15:23
- It can be a hindrance to your spiritual growth: “And Naaman said, Be content, take two talents. And he urged him, and bound two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of garments, and laid them upon two of his servants; and they bare them before him.” 2 Kings 5:23
- How do I break free from the spirit of discontentment?
- Be grateful – have a heart of gratitude: When God sees that you have a heart of gratitude, he keeps on moving you forward. “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” Psalm 103:2.
- You need to build capacity: It could that the person who is more blessed than you has more capacity than you, maybe in terms of degree, skills, etc. So while you are trusting God to bless you, build capacity. “Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.” Proverbs 22:29
iii. Let your focus be on Jesus: “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2
1 Timothy 6:6-12
- But godliness with contentment is great gain.
- For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
- And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
- But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
- For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
- But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
- Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
Today, make a commitment that God is the focus and not man. Trust God for your business, health, and everything that concerns you. Decide to be contented.
Ask the Lord for mercy in any way you have been blinded by discontentment and repent today. Confess that you will henceforth be grateful and ask the Lord to help you.