|On-Line Bible Lessons|
With Lesson #1 in mind let's move on to Lesson #2.
We would think that Moses has a one track mind as he points out for the hundredth time that the method of prosperity is to keep the words (law) of the covenant. Even though he said this so many times as soon as he and his generation were gone they departed from God. See book of Judges.
Who all stood before the Lord, vv. 10-15? ________________________________________
Not all were Israelites. This shows us clearly that every man, woman and child, all of mankind, is covered in this covenant. It reaches into every corner of creation, wherever mankind is found. It especially reaches into the church. See the lessons in chp. 7.
The people had seen the corrupt Egyptian worship and this would have been a tremendous in&SHY;fluence upon them to think this was legitimate worship (chp. 4, Lesson 5).
2. The people had seen the corrupt Egyptian worship, therefore, what would have been strong temptation, vv. 16-18? ________________________________________________________________
a. If they yielded, what would be the result, v. 18? _________________________________
Compare v. 18 here with Heb. 12:15. This also is interesting. "Fail of the grace of God". Grace is God's power working in us to give the desire and to do His will. The sin of Deut. 29:18 will cost us that power. The result will be a root of bitterness (judgment) and many defeated. Of course, the opposite of this curse (v. 19) is a life of righteousness and many converted, I Cor. 15:34; I Pet. 1:9.
3. Follow Moses on here in 29:18-20. We have seen in v. 18 that the person's heart turns away from the Lord and starts serving what? ________________________________________________
4. These people hear the word of God and the result of turning
from God yet what do they do, 29:19?
There is so very much here in vv. 18, 19. One of the many points would be "Everyone serve God in his own way." This is so contrary to God's word it doesn't even deserve an answer. But our danger here is much more subtle than such an open statement as this. We have seen several aspects of this already and it includes serving the Lord God after the manner of the world.
5. Let's meddle here for awhile. This includes using such philosophers
as presented by Maxwell Maltz (Psycho-Cybernetics, etc.). It would
include most of the "Christian Motivation" of our day.
There can only be ONE basic motive for serving God. What is that
motive, I Cor. 10:31?
a. Our Lord also gave the basic motive for service for God,
what is it, Jn. 14:15? (Not a feeling but action)
b. We would be ignoring facts to say that the world's methods do not bring results. Can you see one of the world's methods in Jn. 12:43? ______________________________________________
We know many people who claim Christ. If you will exalt them for what they do, they will move "mountains" for God. If no one notices them, you cannot find them. Why are they "serving God?" The answer is all to obvious. Now we should recognize a job well done but we need to be careful to avoid using that recognition as a motivating factor to get the job done. Any motive other than I Cor. 10:31 and Jn. 14:15 is not of God and is sin, Rom. 14:23. Therefore the work done is being done apart from God and in the arm of the flesh. Jer 17:5 addresses this. Moses places the curse of God upon this, as does Jeremiah.
There are many programs today designed to pump up the flesh--to get the job "for God". These have the curse of God upon them. Personally, we would just as soon not use a person if the only time you see them is when you praise them publicly. Of course, it is much easier to use these worldly means to get the job done. It is so much easier to inflate the flesh than it is to build faith. We have covered the definition of faith several times. Let it suffice here to say faith is obeying God's Word no matter what the cost and leaving the results up to Him, Heb. 10:35-39. The illustration of faith is given in Heb. chp. 11. Again, this is I Cor. 10:31 and Jn. 14:15.
6. With this in mind look at Rom. 14:23. Anything which is not done with the motive of obedience to God's word and pleasing Him is what? _______________________________________________
It is an imagination of the heart to think we can use the flesh and the world for the glory of God. The Lord will not spare the one who uses the world's means to serve the Lord. Rather the anger of the Lord will be against him and the Lord will smote him with all the curses that are written in this book, Deut. 29:19-20.
Notice part of the curse is the loss of the family to the enemy. This would make one wonder, is this a reason we have seen so many families in the "Big Church" movement go to the devil? Of course, we have no way of knowing motives. We can only watch out for our own. Let us be very careful that our motives are in accordance to His revealed Word, and that those we might be responsible for are confronted with the proper motive for service. The danger warned of here by Moses is NOT that of serving God too much. The danger is the use of the world's means to serve God. This is actually serving other gods. Again, back to vv. 16-17 as well as many previous les&SHY;sons, the command is to serve God with all of our might. It is when we serve Him after the im&SHY;agination of our heart that His curse comes upon His people.
Which raises another question. Will our enemy try to convince God's people that it is because they are "ignoring" their families that the families are being destroyed? You will notice here the curse of 27:15-30:20 is NOT pronounced upon those who "ignore" their families. It is pronounced upon those who try to serve the Lord God in the manner which the world (Egypt) used to serve their gods. God does not accept this type of service. He condemns it as idolatry and places His curse against it. Are we seeing this curse against the mixture of Malcham and God coming to pass in the destruction of the families?
By "ignoring" we do not mean forgetting the family is there. If a man does not provide for his own he is worse than an infidel, I Tim. 5:8. Where is the line drawn? All we know is that the curse from God which is pronounced upon His people is for trying to serve Him and the world. It is for trying to serve Him after the manner of the world. It's for trying to serve others gods, the gods of the heathens. If the devil can convince God's people that the families are falling apart because not enough time is being spent with them, then he has accomplished the same goal. That goal being to have God's curse against His people. Balaam has taught Balak very well.
As "great churches" have been built using the world's methods of debt, motivation, ungodly em&SHY;phasis upon education, state approvals, etc., all comes unglued. Then the devil convinces us it is because we didn't spend enough time at home. This will prevent God's people from dealing with these unscriptural methods and continue walking in the imaginations of their heart. It will leave the curse upon them according to Deut. 29:18-22. The law of sowing and reaping is in effect.
7. What is the promised result of "forgetting" the covenant law of God, Hosea, 4:6? ___________
8. Our worship (worship=Obedience, not some "spiritual"
feeling) must be what kind of worship, Jn. 4:24?
The Word of God gives instructions for everything, II Tim. 3:16. Instructions especially in what to do to please Him and HOW to do it. We cannot separate one from the other. No man can avoid the results no matter how "big" he may be in men's eyes. The "hemlock" will spring up no matter how much "cutting back" of it we might do.
Zephaniah describes the times which Moses spoke of in Deut. 29:18-20. Moses warns against trying to serve both the Lord God and the gods of the surrounding heathens. He points out the disasterous results. Moses is saying, "here is what will happen if you do." Zephaniah, many hundreds of years later, is saying, "Here is what is going to happen because of what you are doing". In Zeph. 1:5 we see God's people trying to serve both Malcham and the Lord God (Malcham's worship was state worship. This is far too much in depth to approach at this time. See R.R. J. Rushdoony's "Institutes of Biblical Law" Vol. I, pg. 30-40).
The warning of Moses as well as Zephaniah are just as much for us today as they were to OT Israel. God's people are caught in an attempt to serve the Lord God AND the gods of the heathens around them. God's people today say, "Well, as long as we are doing God's work, He overlooks these other things when we are not faithful to Him. He doesn't really care." Or even "I haven't done right and the results aren't upon me, therefore I am okay, Ecc. 8:11, 12." (The AXE -- "Free Beer".)
9. Both Moses and Zephaniah give us the same result. What is it, Deut. 29:20; Zephaniah 1:13? (Really Ecc. 8:12 sums this up). ______________________________________________________
10. No matter how well hidden those who try to serve both the heathen's gods and the Lord God, what does Moses promise will take place, v. 21? _______________________________________
VV. 22-28. We see that the land itself will reject the people who reject the Lord God and go serve other gods. How do His people do this? One way would be to allow any other source to tell us how to live other than God's Holy Word.
The destruction will be so complete that even those who pass by will see it. v. 24. Of course this was the OT Israel, and it came to pass. The application is for God's covenant people of all ages. The violation of His principles of life still have His curse upon them. Christ gives the power to overcome the sin nature and obey His principles of life, thereby avoiding the curse.
Deut. 29:29. We have talked about this verse several times. Let us conclude this chapter with this. God's ways are as high above our ways as the heavens are above the earth. People like to hear about these "high ways", and hidden "secret things". There are many "teachers" who make a good living teaching about these secret things with their "prophecy conference". We best be emphasizing the things we know to do and quit worrying about the things we don't know about God's plan.
Another thing which this verse presents. Moses has given many "strange" principles according to man's view. Only one of these things would be the "motive" as mentioned earlier. God's law and principles of life are as contrary to human understanding as anything can be. Some may say, "When I can understand then I'll believe, or do God's Word." No, they won't, Heb. 11:3, "Through faith we understand" the many "secret things" of our Lord God. His Word says it and that settles it. This would also include the things to wonderful for us to understand. We spend too much time trying to understand these things such as election, grace, foreknowledge, prophecy, just to name a few. Job thought he had "God in his pocket", yet, he repented, Job. 42:3. Many Christians today feel the same.
Deut. 29:29, God has clearly spelled out how we can please Him in His law-word. There is enough here to occupy our total time and our children's time, forever. Let us be emphasizing and striving for the things we do know which pleases Him.