Deuteronomy 9

Deuteronomy 9 is the big day.  “You are to cross over the Jordan today”.  Can you imagine after wandering and waiting over 40 years?  You’d have to pinch yourself just to see if it was real.  Moses tells them they are “to go in to dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourselves, cities great and fortified up to heaven, a people great and tall”.  Oops, that sounds a bit intimidating.  We’ve been waiting for this day all our lives and now we have to go in and face a nation that is superior to us?  How is this a good deal?

Then Moses tells them the rest of the story.  “Know therefore today that he who goes over before you as a consuming fire is the Lord your God. He will destroy them and subdue them before you”.  Whew, it isn’t about our ability.  It is God who will make it possible.  Must be good to be us.  But God says wait a minute, this isn’t about you.  It is “that he may confirm the word that the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob”.  This is a bout God fulfilling His promise and covenant to His people.  It absolutely is not because they are worthy or deserve it.

“Know, therefore, that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness, for you are a stubborn people”.  In fact, given the facts they wouldn’t be entering the Promised Land at all.  “Remember and do not forget how you provoked the Lord your God to wrath in the wilderness…..the Lord was so angry with you that he was ready to destroy you”.  Truth is that God had enough and was ready to end it all.  “They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them; they have made themselves a metal image”.  God wanted to blot them out and start anew.

But Moses did what he always did as their leader.  He interceded and saved their skin.  “I lay prostrate before the Lord as before, forty days and forty nights….the Lord listened to me that time also”.  Moses had to intercede many times for the people. They continually were stubborn and insisted on doing things their own way.  God was ready to destroy them on multiple occasions, but Moses led them to safety through his willingness to sacrifice his own life on the people’s behalf.  And now, as they stand ready to cross the Jordan into the Promised Land, he once again reminds them that “You have been rebellious against the Lord from the day that I knew you”.  Time to change ways and walk in obedience to Him.

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