|On-Line Bible Lessons|
Now we come to this central passage of all scripture, the curse and the blessing as found in Deut. 27:14-28:68.
1. How many curses are pronounced here, vv. 15-26? ___________________________________
2. Another thing, what do all but the last one have in common? There would be a key word here in a couple of them, v. 15, 24? _______________________________________________________
We have talked about these already so we really won't spend much time here. Although, let's look at a few.
3. An interesting comparison here for the curse of 27:15 would be Ezek. chp. 8. In Ezek., 8, where is the secret place (v. 12)? __________________________________________________________
This curse, though, has to do with molten images representing Jehovah God and done in secret. See lesson 4-5.
a. Which commandment would this deal with? ______________________________________
4. Deut. 27:16 "sitteth light by his father or his mother." What would this be a reference to, Ex. 21:17; Eph. 6:2? ______________________________________________________________________
a. What is the result of doing this in secret, Ex. 20:12; Eph. 6:3? __________________
The curse of Deut. 27:17 is also found in 19:14.
5. What has a curse upon it in v. 18? ________________________________________________
a. What is this called in Lev. 19:14? ___________________________________________
b. In Lev. 19:14, rather than do this, what are we commanded to do? _____________
1. If we do this, what will we do, Prov. 8:13; 16:6? _____________________________________
Now, this is far too good to pass over lightly. When a person does v. 18, it is probably in secret. Maybe even the blind or helpless don't know it. Only two people would know what is going on, the one doing it and the Lord God. We see this law reflected in the NT.
c. How does Paul apply this law, Rom. 14:13; I Cor. 8:9? ________________________
d. How many will miss the blessings of God because of the violation of this law. What does Paul contrast this with sin, Rom. 14:19? ___________________________________________________
Let us point out here that Paul is not condoning sin at all as he tells these Romans to follow after the things which make for peace. I Cor. 8:9 clearly shows us he is talking about eating meat which had been offered to idols, and this would not be pork either. This would be a good cut of beef or lamb which has been offered to an idol, v. 4. The stumbling block which is referred to goes much further than just meat. The principle goes into every area of life.
When I worked in construction, a particular job we were on had 14 "pans" (double engine earthmovers) working on an earthen dam. There was one man whose job was to keep the pans run&SHY;ning. He was an automatic transmission specialist because 14 double engine pans would have 28 transmissions. This man professed to be a Christian and he used tobacco. He tried to witness to an unbeliever about the Lord and the unbeliever pointed to the pack of cigarettes in his pocket and said, "You don't have any room to talk, look at those cigarettes." This was a stumbling block which kept this man from hearing the gospel.
We all know illustrations along this line. We also know that many times these are only ex&SHY;cuses so that sinner (saved or unsaved) won't have to get right with God. Regardless though, not only will the sinner face the judgment of God, but the "saint" who hangs onto that stumbling block will have the curse of God against him. These things won't cost us our salvation, yet they may cost others their salvation. These things may not even be a sin in themselves, yet because others (the weaker Christian or the unsaved) view them as sins they are stumbling blocks. These things might be things such as the movies, dress, places of amusement, even eating places. It could in&SHY;clude lack of church attendance or failure to tithe. It could include the slang words we use. Of course it includes the use of tobacco and alcohol. It might even cover the occupation we have, such as driving a beer truck. --"What is a Christian doing driving for them, making his living off of drunkenness?"
Really, many times the worldly crowd has a higher standard for God's people than we do. They are "blind", and there is a curse from God upon the Christian who permits things which will hinder their hearing or receiving the message of truth.
6. What is a reason Paul gives that many are unsaved which we come into contact with, I Cor. 15:34 (I Pet. 1:9)?
The next curse of Deut. 27:19 would be found in 24:17 and is against those who would pervert the right of orphans and widows. Notice in 24:17, this sin is contrasted with humility before God, v. 18. There we see that this secret sin is known to God. The secret sins of 27:16, 17 are also known to Him, Lev. 19:3; Deut. 19:14. In Lev. 19:14, we are told not to cause a stumbling block but to fear God. In Deut. 24:18 we are reminded that God redeemed us when we were tempted to pervert justice in secret. Notice that everything is in comparison to the Lord God who knows all the secret activities of man.
The next curses of Deut. 27:20-23 deal with incest. These laws are found in Deut. 22:30; Lev. 18:8-17. The curse of Deut. 27:21 deals with probably one of the most vile of sins, and this law is found in Lev. 18:23. In fact, Lev. 18:22 and 23 deals with both of these vile unnatural sins, sodomy and bestiality. Of course, we see both of these laws given again in the NT. Paul deals with incest in I Cor. 5. He also deals with these vile, unnatural affections in Rom., chp. 1. The pagans in Canaan practiced these things as religious ceremonies.
The next curse is Deut. 27:24 in secret murder. This is Ex. 20:13 and Num. 35:16. The next curse is v. 25 which would include the use of the judicial system to carry out ungodly plans and perversions of justice. This is found in Ex. 23:7, 8.
7. Now, notice the last curse, 27:26. Who is the curse of God
We see from this that the previous curses were only examples of sins which were easily hidden from the authorities, yet open before God. The individuals involved in these sins might be in&SHY;clined to believe they had escaped any kind of judgment against them because the authorities did not find them out. In the pronouncement of these curses we are reminded that they have not es&SHY;caped the sight of a Holy God, II Cor. 5:10; Heb. 4:13. This is a message that everyone needs to understand. That sin may be will hidden now, but there will be a day when it will be open to all, Mk. 4:22; Lk. 8:17.
8. Each curse which is pronounced is ended with the people saying what? ______________
Here we see that the people said, "So be it," to each curse. In this they voluntarily placed themselves under each curse if they failed to obey, although they would have been whether they agreed or not. Really, they were saying, "Yes, we understand".
9. "Curse" --ban or anathema. That which is under
a curse is devoted to or dedicated, given over to destruction.
Again, we see this reflected in I Cor. 5:5 where the one involved
in incest was given over to destruction. What was done to preserve
the purity of the church, v. 7.?
10. Here in Deut. 27:15-26, who pronounces and carries out
these curses and blessings, 28:1?
a. What is the basis or standard for all of these curses, 28:1,
15, 45, 58, 62?
b. The other side of the coin. What is the basis or standard
for the blessings, 28:9?
We should also point out that although material prosperity can be a sign of God's blessing, it is a gross error to identify material prosperity with God's blessing. Numbers, money, building, etc., are not what determines whether a person is blessed of God, I Tim. 6:5.
11. What is the mark of God's blessing, I Tim. 6:6? __________________________________
12. We cannot close this chapter without once again looking at Gal. 3:10. In fact, what verse does Paul quote in Gal. 3:10? _________________________________________________________
Here we must emphasize His redemptive work did not remove us from the curse in the sense that we can now do the above mentioned things and avoid the curse attached to them. This is the sin of presumption of the worst sort and will inherit this curse rather than the blessing of God.
The blood of Christ redeemed us from power of that sinful nature which desires that we do the things listed above. It also tries to convince us that no one will know about these things so go ahead and do them. God forbid that His people would be anything less than a Holy people and be involved in such wickedness. We must be about the Master's business of obeying the truth, thereby purifying our souls, I Pet. 1:13-25.
Paul goes even further in Heb. 10. He calls this known sin on His people's part trotting un&SHY;der foot the blood of Christ, V. 29. God forbid that any of His people would be involved in such wickedness.
Yes, we are redeemed from under the curse. The power of sin which results in the curse of God has been broken through the victory of Christ upon the cross. We now have freedom to con&SHY;tinue in the law, thereby receiving the blessings of Abraham. The covenant is ours by faith. The blessings are ours through obedience. Christ hung on the tree, being made a curse for us, that we might have victory over sin and inherit the blessing, Gal. 3:13, 14.