Today’s Bible reading is from Deuteronomy 29-30. What is the relevance for today’s Christians? I asked the Lord. Here are some of what I received based on what Jesus had done.
EYE WITNESS: Here is an account of a multitude of eye witnesses of God’s mighty awesome deeds: signs and wonders. A whole nation of Israel. No one disputed the facts. Jesus (and later, His disciples) too, did lots and lots of miracles, signs and wonders in front of many eye witnesses -the multitudes. In fact, the whole nation of Israel knew and many saw. Some foreigners heard and came to Jesus to see for themselves and seek help too. (John 20:30-31; Acts 4:30-33)
MIRACLES that display GOD’S POWER superseding all natural elements and physical laws: Aside from the spectacular signs and wonders God did in Egypt, God continued to display his POWER superseding the natural elements for two million people in the harsh conditions of the wilderness for forty years, not just one day or several occasions. Forty years of daily miracles: food from heaven, water from rock, clothes and sandals lasted forty years. Jesus had displayed the same POWER: He multiplied a few fishes and loaves of bread into colossal amount of food and fed five thousands and four thousand men plus women and children respectively in two separate records. Jesus walked on water, commanded raging waves and wind to cease, cast out countless demons, healed the sick and made whole the body of many handicapped people, even resurrected the dead. (All the Gospels and Acts)
The WORDS of God can be kept by a whole nation and followed in action. Otherwise Moses would have been telling lies and deceptions. God promised that when they did as God had spoken through Moses, they would prosper and live long. Jesus also said that He came to bring abundant life. He gave His words and the Holy Spirit to His believers. And the authority to use His name. He required the same allegiance to love God only and obey His commandments. (John 10:10; the whole chapter of John 14, 15, 16)
The WORDS of God are binding, good for His people, and just as effective for the future generations. The worlds were framed by the word of God, Jesus said heaven and earth will pass away, but His words will not pass away. (John 1:1-4; Luke 21:33; 2 Timothy 1:13, 3:16; Hebrews 1:1-3, 4:12, 11:3; Revelation 19:11-16)
There are serious CONSEQUENCES for breaking this covenant. Both the persons/nation and their land will be left desolate. They will be uprooted from their homeland and cast into a foreign land. Jesus has warned of the desolation. (Luke 21; Matthew 23, 24)
When they REMEMBER and TURN BACK to the Lord and His words, they will be accepted back into the covenant, delivered from bondage and return to their promised homeland, to multiply and prosper. God sent Jesus to establish a new covenant in His blood. Under the new covenant, God has given us the Holy Spirit, blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, and the privileged status as sons of God. In Christ we have obtained an inheritance. (Acts 2:38-39; Ephesians 1; Romans 8:15-17; 1 John 1:9)
The Lord will TRANSFORM His people’s HEART TO LOVE GOD only. Jesus said we are to love God with our total being. The mighty power of God works in us who believe in Jesus. God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us. He will enable us to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that we may be filled with all the fullness of God. We are not to copy the custom and behavior of the world but let God transform us by changing the way we think. (Ephesians 1-3; Romans 8:1,14, 37; 12:2; 1 Corinthians 2:10-16)
LOVING GOD IS THE WILL OF GOD and ONLY WAY to ensure their continuous survival. There is no option as those who do not love the Lord Jesus Christ is accursed. Christians are specifically urged not to love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of God is not in him. He who does the will of God abides forever. (Mark 12:30; 1 Corinthians 16:22; 1 John 2:15-17)
ENEMIES will continue to hate and persecute God’s people. But they will suffer the terrible consequences for their evil for hating the children of God (followers of Jesus), thereby hating Jesus and hating God. (Luke 21:12-19; John 15:18-23; 16:33; 17:14; Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8)
GOD WILL REJOICE OVER HIS PEOPLE. He likes to prosper them. (Zeph. 3:17)
BIBLE VERSES: Deuteronomy 29-30 (quoted in parts)
29:1 These are the words of the covenant which the Lord commanded Moses to make with the children of Israel… “You have seen all that the Lord did before your eyes in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his servants and to all his land— 3 the great trials which your eyes have seen, the signs, and those great wonders…5 And I have led you forty years in the wilderness. Your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandals have not worn out on your feet. 6 You have not eaten bread, nor have you drunk wine or similar drink, that you may know that I am the Lord your God…9 Therefore keep the words of this covenant, and do them, that you may prosper in all that you do…14 “I make this covenant and this oath, not with you alone, 15 but with him who stands here with us today before the Lord our God, as well as with him who is not here with us today…18 so that there may not be among you man or woman or family or tribe, whose heart turns away today from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations, and that there may not be among you a root bearing bitterness or wormwood; 20 “The Lord would not spare him…23 ‘The whole land is brimstone, salt, and burning; it is not sown, nor does it bear, nor does any grass grow there, 28 the Lord uprooted them from their land in anger, in wrath, and in great indignation, and cast them into another land, as it is this day.’
30:1 “Now it shall come to pass, when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the Lord your God drives you, 2 and you return to the Lord your God and obey His voice, according to all that I command you today, you and your children, with all your heart and with all your soul, 3 that the Lord your God will bring you back from captivity, and have compassion on you, and gather you again from all the nations where the Lord your God has scattered you… 5 Then the Lord your God will bring you to the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it. He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers. 6 And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.
7 “Also the Lord your God will put all these curses on your enemies and on those who hate you, who persecuted you. 8 And you will again obey the voice of the Lord and do all His commandments which I command you today. 9 The Lord your God will make you abound in all the work of your hand, in the fruit of your body, in the increase of your livestock, and in the produce of your land for good. For the Lord will again rejoice over you for good as He rejoiced over your fathers, 10 if you obey the voice of the Lord your God, to keep His commandments and His statutes which are written in this Book of the Law, and if you turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
Zephaniah 3:17 (NLT)
“For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”
John 14:23 (NKJV)
Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.