“All the commandments that I am commanding you today you shall be careful to do, that you may live and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to give to your forefathers.” Deut. 8:1
Recently, I read through Deuteronomy devotionally, and was impressed by how powerfully relevant it is for the church today. As Moses reiterated God’s law to Israel just before they were to enter and possess the Promised Land, he reminded them of some timeless truths.
- God Commissions His People. (v. 1b) God’s plan of redemption required the Israelites to enter, conquer and possess the land. As New Testament disciples of Jesus, we have been commissioned to invade Satan’s domain of darkness and set captives free. We “live” by receiving Christ and experiencing His eternal, abundant life. We “multiply” by proclaiming the Gospel and “making disciples” (Matthew 28:18-20).
- God Commands His People. (v. 1a) The Israelites’ survival in the Land depended upon their obedience to God’s life-sustaining laws. Similarly, our surviving and thriving as the church today depends upon our obedience to God’s commands. Jesus said, “Make disciples . . . teaching them to observe (do) all that I have commanded you.” Obedience leads to blessing. Disobedience leads to discipline. (Read Deut. 8:2-6ff) We need to memorize this principle, live by it, or suffer the consequences.
- God Cautions His People (v. 7-20) Interestingly, God’s main concern for the fidelity of His people was not the enemies they would face, but the prosperity they would enjoy. He had already defeated the opposing armies, but knew that His abundant blessings could cause the Israelites to become proud, forgetful and disobedient (v. 11). Friends, I believe the most dangerous hindrance to our faithfulness and fruitfulness today may be the generous provision we enjoy as God’s people in America.
Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we have been commissioned to take the land (Matt. 16:18, 28:18-20, Acts 1:8). We have been given the Commands of Christ to obey and be blessed by. We are cautioned to lose our lives for Christ’s sake, in order that we may gain them (Luke 9:23-26).
Please ponder this and pray,
In Jesus’ name,
Pastor Tim Sir