Daily Hope

April 11, 2022 - Deuteronomy 3-4

A review of significant events often will help when we are facing new challenges and obstacles. Each time we have moved to a new state, we have reflected how God has gone before us in previous moves. Even though we did not know what lay ahead, we faced it with the assurance that the Lord was directing and would guide our steps.

Israel was preparing to enter a land that teemed with adversaries and giants! It was a land rich and prosperous, yet, challenging. The path had not yet been clearly defined for this fledgling nation. The consideration of how God had directed them in the past became a foundation that would assist the Israelites in the days ahead. Sihon, the Amorite and Og, the king of Bashan, were formidable foes that God had soundly defeated in the Transjordan region.

As the two and a half tribes took possession of this region, the Lord made it clear they were to lead the remaining Israelites across the Jordan. These soldiers were to assist in winning the territory that God had promised to the nation. Looking forward into the next phase of God's plan, the nation's past victories gave confidence and strength to the people.

Obedience is emphasized in the fourth chapter. The Lord warns the people to "take heed" (v.9) and then repeated this phrase in 6:12; 8:11; 12:13,19,30; 15:9. While not visibly seeing God Himself, Israel was not to forget what they had seen God accomplish in the past forty years. The memory of the events was to encourage them to continually follow the Lord.

Moses reminded the people to keep their commitments to the Lord which they made at Mount Sinai (v.10). These commitments are later identified as the Ten Commandments in verse 13. Finally, they were to take heed (v. 15) and make no statues and fall into idolatry by worshipping things made with hands.

Memories assist us a great deal in living lives of faith. Looking back at how the Lord has protected, provided, and divinely led, gives us the courage to advance into the unknown future. Being obedient to His written word also guides us and keeps us from straying into idolatry by worshipping icons, pictures or objects made by man. Being faithful students of the word of God will keep us close to what the Lord has instructed, despite the claims of influential teachers and seemingly new methods of worship.

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