Snapshots: Day 111
The Snapshot: “All these blessings will come on you … if you obey the Lord your God.” (Deut 28:2) Chapters 27 and 28 are remarkable chapters of great clarity, chapters of curses and blessings respectively. A ‘curse’ is a divinely imposed penalty and a ‘blessing’ is divinely imposed good, and they come on disobedience and obedience respectively. When Paul was to say, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows,” (Gal 6:7) he was reiterating in shorthand what Moses brought in the Law: there are always consequences in respect of what we do. It is a sign of the many problems of modern Western societies that, as a society, we have abandoned the design of God. The signs are increasingly there to be observed. When will we learn?
Further Consideration: I repeat, when will we learn. I see Christians drifting, those who disdain ‘church’ (and yes, there is much to be critical about because it is made up of imperfect people – less imperfect hopefully than all those outside) and think they can get by on their own outside that community of people we call church.
But the blessings of God that Moses spoke about, and to which Paul implicitly referred, come on obedience, in whatever form it is seen in response to God’s word.
For example, “let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another.” (Heb 10:24,25) How can you encourage one another when you are not with one another? Don’t we realize that ‘church’ is a resource area for our spirit, a place to receive of the Lord, even if the worship or the preaching is lacking something of the Spirit?
The ‘blessing’ that God brings is first an awareness of Himself which in turn brings peace of mind, and an awareness of being loved. These things may not flow every day – because battles rage, disruptions come, distractions are imposed – but they will be there. With that awareness comes the realization that we can talk to Him, offload our worries, receive His wisdom and direction, and those things in themselves impinge on our physical world and it is changed – we are blessed.
In the face of the follies of the modern Western world, I find myself coming back again and again to Jesus’ parable of the two house builders (see Mt 7:24-27) about how to stay upright in the face of the storms of life of which, in our modern world, there are many. The answer to all these problems that we try to pretend are not there, is obedience, hearing the words of Jesus and putting them all into practice, not just the obvious ones, the ones we like, but the ones we will find when we regularly read His word.