Deuteronomy 16:1-17:20; Luke 9:7-27; Psalm 72:1-20; Proverbs 12:8-9
God’s Word is so important to our lives that we cannot take it lightly. When Israel was instructed about the rules for a King, God says that the King should write the entire Law, which God had given Moses, by hand in front of the priests.
This seems like a strange request. However, God was laying out a strategy for how we can become saturated with His Word so that we do not stray from it. In addition to handwriting the entire scroll, the King was to always keep a copy of the scroll with him and read from it daily. As the King persists in reading the Word of God, he became saturated with its truths so that he would not become boastful and act like he was above others.
The advice God gave for the King applies to us. As we stay connected to the Word of God, it will keep our flesh in tact so that we can remain humble and not act as if we are better than others. You see, the King had an office of responsibility but it did not make him better than the people he ruled. As you remain connected to God’s Word, you will drive out all obstacles in your life and remain in alignment with God’s Word. The closer you stay to God’s Word, the more you will see the hand of God work in your life. Treasure God’s Word! It is your foundation for living.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 18:1-20:20; Luke 9:28-50; Psalm 73:1-28; Proverbs 12:10
Deuteronomy 13:1-15:23; Luke 8:40-9:6; Psalm 71:1-24; Proverbs 12:5-7
As good as some people may seem, we must be careful that they do not draw us away from God! Moses cautions the Israelites about prophets who come in God’s name and do miraculous signs and speak accurate prophetic words. Then, they somehow suggest that you should turn aside to follow foreign (or strange) gods. Even though they did spectacular things, their testimony is not to be believed because they are not remaining true to God.
Those who lead people astray, away from God, were to be put to death. This seems like a big deal for God to demand the ultimate penalty for them. Well, it is a big deal! If someone is drawing you away from Him, that person cannot be trusted– even if they do spectacular spiritual things. This is the caution that all of us have to heed.
No one should be allowed to weaken our relationship with God or the church in which God has set us because if we lose those two anchors in our lives, we will drift aimlessly on the sea of life. If you have let someone do this, there is no better time than today to get back in place. Repent to God for allowing this to happen and then get back in place. Your joy and peace are tied to being in the right place! When you are in the right place, you can say like our psalm reading, “I will shout for joy and sing your praises, for you have ransomed me. I will tell about your righteous deeds all day long, for everyone who tried to hurt me has been shamed and humiliated.”
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 16:1-17:20; Luke 9:7-27; Psalm 72:1-20; Proverbs 12:8-9
Deuteronomy 11:1-12:32; Luke 8:22-39; Psalm 70:1-5; Proverbs 12:4
Obedience cannot be overlooked in our relationship with God. If we look at the two sides to our relationship. We have God’s side and our side. God took the first step to love us, care for us, provide for us, make a way for us to get back into His family and put in place any and everything we could, or would, ever need or want. In response to all that He has done, God just says, “Love me back.”
Here is where we misunderstand it. Love is not a feeling. I know when we think of God and His overwhelming love for us, it causes us to feel good. But, when God is saying, “Love me back,” He is not saying, “Have good feelings towards Me.” No, God is saying, do what I ask of you. Now in the Old Testament, this was a voluminous list of things. However, we are under grace in the New Testament so we don’t have that long list. Jesus distilled all the Old Testament law into 2 commandments.
“Jesus replied, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.'” (Matthew 22:37-40)
To love God is to obey God! Love is demonstrated in our obedience to His will for our lives. What has constantly held humanity back from the fullness of all God has for us is our disobedience. Moses went on to even tell the Israelites that they had witnessed all the miraculous signs that God had performed and their children were not privy to any of this. Their obedience is what would pass down a legacy of obedience and blessings.
Today, make your legacy to demonstrate your love to God by living an obedient life. Live with a listening ear to God’s instructions. When you read something in the Word of God or He witnesses a message to your heart, obey Him. The next generation is counting on you!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 13:1-15:23; Luke 8:40-9:6; Psalm 71:1-24; Proverbs 12:5-7
Deuteronomy 9:1-10:22; Luke 8:4-21; Psalm 69:19-36; Proverbs 12:2-3
When God moves on our behalf, we should be careful not to allow that to cause us to be boastful or proud. God was preparing Israel for one of the biggest national coups that would take place. He was going to displace several nations to make room for His people, Israel.
But before they even get into the land, God says, “It is not because you are so good or have such integrity that you are about to occupy their land.” God makes it very plain to them that what He is about to do has nothing to do with them. He goes on to say that He is doing it as an act of judgment for those people’s sins and to keep a promise to a previous generation. It had nothing to do with the current generation of Israelites.
This is a powerful reminder for us. Some of the blessings that we enjoy are not because we did anything right! It’s because of God’s commitment to the prayers of another that we have some of the things we enjoy. Our responsibility is to be grateful for everything we have and not become haughty!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 11:1-12:32; Luke 8:22-39; Psalm 70:1-5; Proverbs 12:4
Deuteronomy 7:1-8:20; Luke 7:36-8:3; Psalm 69:1-18; Proverbs 12:1
Do you really know how much God loves you? God is so passionately in love with you, that He looked over all others and selected you to be His very own. This is hard for many people to accept. God told Israel that He chose them simply because He loved them!!
God loves you for the same reason. God’s love is not something that you can earn. All you can do is accept it. It boggles the mind why God would love us but He does. Israel was the smallest of all nations and wasn’t held in high regard. But, they enjoyed the favor of God’s love. In fact, they had a covenant of unfailing love!
When God says He loves us, it is no small thing. When God loves us, it means He will act on our behalf. God told Israel that He would fight their battles. He said that He would open doors for them. God promises when they get in trouble, He will rescue them.
He even said that He will keep His covenant to 1000 generations. If a generation is about 22 years, He is saying that for 22,000 years he will watch out for you and yours. And we don’t earn any of this.
All God asks in return is that we love Him back. How do we love God? By doing what He says. One of the responses to this love is to protect it by living the way God prescribes. God says to Israel that they cannot compromise His standards and allow their lives to be polluted by the ways of the ungodly. You see, God wants people who are exclusively His. He wants this as a response not a requirement of His love. The next time you say, “I love God” check your heart to make certain that you are doing all you can to honor the love He shows you.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 9:1-10:22; Luke 8:4-21; Psalm 69:19-36; Proverbs 12:2-3
Deuteronomy 5:1-6:25; Luke 7:11-35; Psalm 68:19-35; Proverbs 11:29-31
Do you fear God? Now, before you answer too quickly, I am referencing a respect, awe and reverence of God. You should never be afraid of God. But, is your respect and reverence for Him so great that you do not want to displease Him in any way? That is the Biblical sense of fearing God.
Moses recalled how the people were reluctant to go up to hear God’s voice so they told Moses you go up and come back and tell us what God says. God remarks that, “Oh, that they would always have hearts like this, that they might fear me and obey all my commands! If they did, they and their descendants would prosper forever.”
God’s desire for Israel was that they would maintain a fear (respect, awe, reverence) of Him and pass this on to their children and grandchildren because in so doing, they would establish an unbroken line of blessings!
Our disobedience to God actually shows a lack of respect for God! This is where we have to be careful as we live under grace. We can be lulled into thinking that we can blatantly continue to disobey God and it not carry any consequences. When we become comfortable disregarding God’s ways, Paul said that we are treating “the grace of God as meaningless.”
If God’s love, mercy and grace means anything to you, then you respect it by obeying God’s directions. Whatever God leads us to do is never to hurt us but to help us. And, it requires obedience because those things God tells us to do are things that we naturally would not desire to do. If you really fear God, obey Him today. You will establish a spiritual legacy of blessings!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 7:1-8:20; Luke 7:36-8:3; Psalm 69:1-18; Proverbs 12:1
Deuteronomy 4:1-49; Luke 6:39-7:10; Psalm 68:1-18; Proverbs 11:28
Israel had the unique privilege of hearing God’s voice. When Moses ascended up on Mt. Sinai to receive the law, God’s voice boomed from the clouds and His fire could be seen. Among all the nations on the earth at this time, only Israel enjoyed this honor.
Moses reminded the people as he prepared for his death not to take God’s voice lightly or for granted. As they prepared to enter the Promised Land, they were cautioned to listen to God’s voice diligently all their days. Moses was concerned that they would be enthralled by all the blessings of the Lord and neglect to hear His voice.
Moses warned them not to forget the time when, “ …the Lord spoke to you from the heart of the fire. You heard the sound of his words but didn’t see his form; there was only a voice.” Israel only had a voice.
You have His voice as well! This is a unique miracle that we can experience daily. God is always speaking but are you listening. He wants to speak to you about your life and your future. Heed Moses’ admonition and listen to His voice. He will guide you by His voice.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 5:1-6:25; Luke 7:11-35; Psalm 68:19-35; Proverbs 11:29-31
Deuteronomy 2:1-3:29; Luke 6:12-38; Psalm 67:1-7; Proverbs 11:27
Have you ever done the right homework on the wrong day? Or, have you arrived for an appointment to only find out that you were there at the wrong time? As diligent as you were to do the homework or be at the appointment, if it’s not at the right time and day, then you get no credit.
The same is true with God. We think it’s easy to get credit when we are nice to people who are nice to us. Or, when we are generous with those who are generous with us, we think God smiles. “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them!” But in truth, it’s not when things are easy that God smiles, its when they are challenging.
Jesus reminds us that how we represent God in those hard cases really gets us credit. It is when we are the target of people’s venom and we return kind words in response that we get God’s attention. It is when others mistreat us and we return compassionate acts that God smiles because that is a clear representation of His character. Don’t run from difficult situations with people. Use them as ways to show God that you love Him more than you love yourself (pride).
Remember your reward will come from God not people! That’s the best credit you can get!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 4:1-49; Luke 6:39-7:10; Psalm 68:1-18; Proverbs 11:28
Numbers 36:1-Deuteronomy 1:46; Luke 5:29-6:11; Psalm 66:1-20; Proverbs 11:24-26
Treading water and standing still are not God’s way! We are called to be ever expanding, ever in perpetual forward movement. Israel was free from Egypt but they were stuck. They weren’t moving forward and they weren’t going backwards. They were standing still. In fact, they had spent about 40 years taking a journey that was only supposed to be 11 days.
God had enough and challenged them through Moses. He simply said, “You have stayed at this mountain long enough. It is time to break camp and move on.” (Deuteronomy 1:6-7). God had a purpose and plan for Israel and they were not fulfilling it. Through all of their rebellion and disobedience, God saw their future stalled.
God also knew that the negative influences to their future were gone and they were ready to move forward. Now look at your life. Where are you stalled? Where are you stuck in life? How far are you from your Promised Land? Hear God saying to you, “You’ve stayed here long enough!” then break camp and start moving forward. It may have been a layoff on your job, the dissolution of your marriage, or a financial reversal, God is saying today, move forward! Your Promised Land is still waiting.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Deuteronomy 2:1-3:29; Luke 6:12-38; Psalm 67:1-7; Proverbs 11:27
Numbers 33:40-35:34; Luke 5:12-28; Psalm 65:1-13; Proverbs 11:23
Can your faith be seen? People often ask, “What is faith?” Others will tell you in trying situations, “Keep the faith” or “Have Faith”. Without a full knowledge of how God operates, these phrases can sound like empty, religious statements.
Faith begins where the will of God is known. What you should know is: If you know at least one promise from God’s Word, you have faith. The key is: will you act on it? If you don’t act on it, it means nothing.
These men had a friend who was paralyzed. They desired to see him healed. They heard that Jesus was teaching nearby but they had to get their friend to Jesus. You see, they had information that Jesus was the healer but if they had not acted on it, their friend would have remained on that mat. Their faith had action!
With the house completely blocked, they took shingles off the roof and lowered their friend down in front of Jesus. When Jesus sees their faith, He acknowledges it and heals the paralyzed man. Can God see your faith or just hear your complaints? What are you doing today to show God that you believe what He promised? Are you consumed with worry? That is not a sign of faith. Are you staying home away from church because things are not going well? This is not a sign of faith.
God has given you faith. All He needs us to do is act on it! Show God that you really believe Him and just like that paralyzed man, you will see victory!!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Numbers 36:1-Deuteronomy 1:46; Luke 5:29-6:11; Psalm 66:1-20; Proverbs 11:24-26