11th March: Deuteronomy 29:1-32:18 – The way of obedience is the way of blessing.

Deuteronomy

29:1-29 –  God has done great things for His people – ‘in the land of Egypt… in the wilderness’ (2,5). Acknowledging Him to be the Lord their God, they were to live in obedience to Him (6,9). The way of obedience is the way of blessing. Moses warns the people that they must not depart from the way of blessing. Moses warns the people that they must not depart from the way of obedience (16-28). Turning away from the Lord leads to judgment – ‘anger and fury and great wrath’ (24-28). There are ‘secret things’. There are ‘things that are revealed’. Some ‘things’ we will never understand. These ‘things belong to the Lord our God’. There are many ‘things’ we have learned and have firmly believed. ‘The things that are revealed’ are found in ‘the Holy Scriptures’. Through God’s written Word, we are brought to ‘salvation’ and we are ‘thoroughly equipped’ for Christian  living (29; 2 Timothy 3:14-17).
30:1-31:13 –  For Israel, a real turning to the Lord with ‘all the heart and soul’ involved obedience to ‘His commandments… written in this book of the law’ (30:10). We are not left wondering what God wants us to do – ‘…the Word is very near you…’(11-14). Through His Word, God ‘sets before’ us a choice. He calls us to ‘choose life’ (15-20). Joshua was to succeed Moses (31:1-2,7-8). Conflict lay ahead. God’s people needed His Word of encouragement: ‘Be strong and of good courage, do not fear or be in dread of them’. Beyond the conflict, there would be triumph. God gave His Word of promise: ‘It is the Lord your God who goes with you; He will not fail you or forsake you’ (31:6). Turning from the people to Joshua, Moses spoke the same words (31:7-8). Hear; Learn to fear the Lord; Be careful to obey His Word (31:12-13).
31:14-32:18 –  ‘Write this song, and teach it to the people of Israel’ (19,22). Moses did not delay his obedience to God. ‘Write… Teach…’: God is speaking to us about the renewal of our worship. Don’t say, ‘It’s never been done that way before’ – ‘the seven last words of the church’! Moses’ song was ‘a witness for God against the people of Israel’ (19). It can still help us, in this generation, to confess our sin – We ‘have dealt corruptly with Him’ (5) – and glorify our God – ‘I will proclaim the Name of the Lord’  (3). Modern music can help us to hear afresh the ancient message: ‘Ascribe greatness to our God…’ (3-4; Mission Praise, 40). Let us praise God ‘in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs’ (Ephesians 5:18-20).
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