29. You saw it!

Meditations in Deuteronomy : 29 :  You saw it

(Focus: Deut 11:1-7)

Deut 11:2,7 Remember today that your children were not the ones who saw and experienced the discipline of the LORD your God: his majesty, his mighty hand, his outstretched arm ….. But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the LORD has done.

Testimony takes on responsibility. When you have seen something yourself you have a responsibility to the truth. Testimony is very powerful and many of us don’t realise just how powerful it is. THIS is what happened! I often say it but it bears repeating, the blind man’s testimony in John 9 is brilliant: He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!” (Jn 9:25)  You really can’t challenge that sort of straight forward testimony!  I think the apostle John’s own testimony is equally powerful: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched–this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard.” (1 Jn 1:1-3)

So Moses starts out this chapter with a call to love God and obey Him: “Love the LORD your God and keep his requirements, his decrees, his laws and his commands always,” (11:1) and to further reinforce and encourage them he makes this long statement about their testimony which begins and ends as follows: Remember today that your children were not the ones who saw and experienced the discipline of the LORD your God: his majesty, his mighty hand, his outstretched arm ….. But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the LORD has done.” You have no excuse is what he is subtly saying, you have seen and heard all this so you know who it is you are following.

Previously Moses had said something very similar but there it had been in respect of the Sinai experience: “It was not with our fathers that the LORD made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today. The LORD spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain.” (5:3,4) No, they were the ones who have seen and heard everything at mount Sinai. Now he refers them back to what had happened in Egypt.

Moses spells this out, all that they saw: “the signs he performed and the things he did in the heart of Egypt, both to Pharaoh king of Egypt and to his whole country; what he did to the Egyptian army, to its horses and chariots, how he overwhelmed them with the waters of the Red Sea as they were pursuing you, and how the LORD brought lasting ruin on them.” (11:3,4). Note this time he does take them right back to the incredible events in Egypt. It’s not just the Sinai experience but everything that went before it. You saw all that! It was one of the most incredible episodes in history – God versus a king! But is wasn’t only that, it was also what followed in the desert after coming out of Egypt and after Sinai: “It was not your children who saw what he did for you in the desert until you arrived at this place, and what he did to Dathan and Abiram, sons of Eliab the Reubenite, when the earth opened its mouth right in the middle of all Israel and swallowed them up with their households, their tents and every living thing that belonged to them. But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the LORD has done.” (11:5-7)

Yes, YOU saw all these things and they should be well and truly fixed in your memories. There is absolutely no question who it is you are following. There can be no saying you didn’t know who He was or what He was like. You have no excuse possible for not obeying Him now! The call to remember is a familiar call in the whole Bible. That in itself it something we may take for granted but when you are called to remember something it is a call to recollect something that actually happened in time-space history, that happened earlier in your life; it is an appeal to remember events that occurred or things that were said in your presence.

I have this feeling that many of us forget the wonder of what has happened to us and now take it for granted. We forget what we used to be like, we forget the experience we had of coming to the Lord, we forget the incredible change that took place then, and we forget the many answers to prayer or other experiences of the Lord we have had since! In our memories there are possibly hundreds of things to do with the Lord, things that have happened to us in the years of our experience of Him. Maybe we need to sit down and quietly go back over our history and bring to remembrance those many things. If we did that we would be strengthened and be given much cause to praise Him. Why not do it today!

 

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