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Deuteronomy 10:11-32 – Life’s Greatest Lesson
Deuteronomy 10:11-32 Commentary: Life's Greatest Lesson
+If you could ask the Lord to personally teach you only one lesson in your life, what would it be? The bravest would ask for patience, others would ask for joy, but God's word recommends love.
1 Corinthians 13:11-13:
-If there's nothing else God wants to accomplish in our hearts and lives before leaving this world, it is in sharing, knowing, and receiving God's love. If we get this one down, then things like selfishness impatience will sort themselves out naturally.
The Revelation of Love: How we can know for sure how God feels about us?
The Response of Love: How does God want us to live in light of His love?
The Reward of Love: What does the life of an individual who has been touched by God's love look like?
-The Christian life isn't showing how much we love God, but knowing how much God loves us.
+Deuteronomy covers the last month and a half of Moses' life as he's getting ready to depart this world. Not wanting to waste any time He gives a series of last sermons to remind them of everything they would need to remember as they entered the Promised Land. Leading up to these passages about love, Moses clarifies the kind of relationship Israel has had with God since day one. Their favor in God's eyes had nothing to do with their goodness. Their history testified as much to that fact. They were loved by God because He is loving and nothing more. The security found in His faithfulness over our own needed to be understood before reconciliation and recognition with Him could take place. Moses gives Israel examples of not only their greatest failure as idolaters with the Golden Calf, but also the time Moses himself got one right in providing a picture of the same intercession that Jesus performs for us before the Father to this day.
+The first insight into how God expresses His love is shown here. Israel had no excuse to behave the way they did at the foot of Mount Horeb/Sanai. They had seen God's deliverance in Egypt, at the Red Sea, through the Wilderness, and now at the foot of the mountain itself where God gave Israel a very palpable demonstration of His glory. Forty days later, Israel fell right back to where they started and God had good reason to be frustrated with them at this point. Yet this was the time when the Ark of the Covenant was introduced to Israel. The Ark was a box of Acacia wood wrapped in hammered gold where the second copy of Ten Commandments that replaced the pair Moses smashed would be contained. This shows that no matter how much mankind tends to fall away from God, He has an unbroken streak of replacing and keeping His word.
-Never before in history, it seems like the world is going out of its way to condemn the Bible as a collection of fairy tales. Yet now more than ever, more evidence is available to us to confirm the authenticity of scripture. An example of such evidence is the manuscript known as P52, Rylands fragment of John, which includes a piece of text from the Gospel of John dating back to within 30 years of the original text. The text not only matches the moderns translations we have of the gospel account, but shows to even biased skeptics that the latest of the gospel accounts were not things made up hundreds of years after the fact. Another example is the Magdalen papyrus, P64, which is a fragment of the Gospel of Matthew dating to no later than 50AD. 20 years after the events themselves took place and we have evidence to show these accounts were recorded exactly when they said they were. God continues to confirm His word.
+A jot was Jesus referencing the smallest possible Hebrew letter that looks like an apostrophe. A tittle is the Hebrew equivalent of the line that makes the difference between a “l” and a “t.” God is that faithful to preserving His word.
+The second thing God gave the nation of Israel to testify to His continual love for them and us was demonstrated through the Tribe of Levi. They would not be given an inheritance in the land, but God Himself would be their inheritance as they lived throughout the entire land of Israel. This would not only be in their role as priests, intermediaries between God and man, but their role in bearing the Ark itself. Their messages wouldn't be to preach themselves, but do the only thing that would make any impact in the lives of people would be to share and show God's word from their mouths and through their lives.
2 Timothy 4:1-5:
-If you have something better than God's word to share with people, share it. Until then, stick to the Bible. -Pastor Romaine
+Levites weren't to give out of an empty bucket. They themselves were the first ones to be impacted by the word of God before having anything to share with others. An example of this would be on airline flights where during depressurization they tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping anyone else. This may seem selfish until you realize what happens during depressurization. The oxygen isn't just sucked out of the cabin when that happens. It's sucked completely out of you as well. If a well intending parent tries to get the oxygen mask on their child before getting a source of oxygen themselves, they are more likely to pass out then help either their child or themselves. The same principal applies here. God's love can't be shared if it's not first received.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4:
+When God takes us through the ups and downs of life, it's meant to be used to comfort those who will inevitably go through the same.
+There are too many people who try to do things “for God.” While it may sound noble, we don't have the energy or capability to successfully minister to people in the way only God can. The Levites weren't to preach themselves or make themselves the solution to Israel's problems. They were to be constant reminders of the reality that God was in their midst and their help.
+Effective ministry is best understood as sharing from the overflow of what God is already doing in your life. The Levites were not a substitute or an excuse for pursuing God, they were to point people to God and get out of the way. That's the only way to effectively minister to people. The moment people think that they can't understand or pursue God's word without you around, either one or both of you have made a mistake.
1 Corinthians 2:1-5:
+Godly people in our lives who encourage us in our walk with the Lord are another way God expresses His love to us. He uses the people in our lives to impact us in a way that creates a deeper desire for Him.
-Moses didn't intercede for the people of Israel once for all. His prayers for the people were continual. This is an important reminder of what our relationship with God is like right now. Israel and us have this much in common, we are bent on destroying ourselves. That's why when Jesus died on the cross, His involvement in our salvation didn't end. Note, when Jesus announced, “it is finished” and gave up His spirit, everything that was needed to ransom us from our sins was accomplished in that moment alone. However, when Jesus ascended to the right hand of the Father, His involvement in our lives didn't end. He continues to pray for us and intercede for us in the same, if not more so, pattern that Moses did for the people of Israel. Understand the significance of that. Jesus has spent the last 2000 years in Heaven praying for you.
-If Moses' prayers accomplished something, imagine what Jesus' prayers are accomplishing in our lives?
+God's love is propositional. It's based on truth, not on feelings.
+God's love is personal. It's something He wants to live in your heart.
+God's love is permanent. It's not something that fades or fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8:
-If we put our own name where love appears in this passage, we drop out before we finish the first verse. However, if you put Jesus' name in this passage, it fits to such a level of accuracy that you understand who this passage was talking about.
1 John 4:7-8:
+Note that Paul never begin with what we need to do, but spends the majority of every one of his epistles talking about what God has done for you before that magic “therefore” appears.
-The first thing God wants us to do in response to the love He's shown us is to fear Him. This fear is the idea of awe and respect. When you know who God is and who we are by comparison, that's the fear of the Lord He wants us to have in our relationship with Him. Understand that God is everywhere and knows what we are going to say before we say a word, and someday to Him we will give an account.
-The second thing God wants us to do is walk with Him.
1 John 1:6-7:
-The third thing God wants in His relationship with us is to love Him back.
1 John 4:19:
-The fourth thing is to serve God. Spiritual sponges can do one of two things. They can absorb what they can from God and use it, or sit around soaking up what God gives until He wrings us out.
-God doesn't want cathedrals or songs, but to do what He's told us to do. Fortunately, God doesn't leave us in a losing battle. The power of His Holy Spirit gives us the power to be able to serve, love, and obey God as He's called us to.
+To the average Jew, their greatest point of national pride was their nation's calling of circumcision. Starting at Abraham, it was meant to be an outward sign of an inward reality that they didn't live for the pleasure of their flesh but the purposes of God's spirit. Overtime, however, this ended up becoming more of a badge and ritual rather than any meaningful dedication of yourself to God. The same thing has happened to baptism in a lot of spiritually immature environments. People confuse knowing Jesus Christ personally as having gone through a ritual when nothing could be further from the truth. Baptism without a personal relationship with Jesus will only get you wet. Baptism with a personal relationship with Jesus is a beautiful acted out sermon of what already occurred within that person's life.
-A Jew isn't a person who has been physically circumcised anymore than a Christian is one who has been physically baptized. What made a Jew a Jew in God's eyes is the same thing that makes a Christian a Christian. Not who you were related to or what has happened to you on the outside, but an internal dedication and work of God in someone's life.
1 Corinthians 12:12-14:
+God is a God who loves unconditionally. The stranger was the kind of person who you'd only see once in your life and likely never see again. If anything was done for them, it would never be returned. The fact that God doesn't take a bribe emphasizes the point that nothing you do for Him or give to Him will make Him look on you any differently than He already does.
“God cannot love us more and will not love us less.” -Michael Card
+God had been good to Israel, and therefore they were to be good to others.
+The greatest blessing God has to give us is Himself.
+How can we effectively respond to the love of God in a way that blesses His heart?
+Keep the love of God first and foremost in; your life, heart, and relationships. Then you will see why He is the greatest blessing we have.