If we asked a hundred people what they thought God required of them, we’d probably get a hundred different answers. The answer, though, always includes two words: love and obedience.
Our text for today comes from the Book of Deuteronomy. But stick with me because love and obedience bring the Old Testament commands and New Testament together.
If you carefully obey the commands I am giving you today, and if you love the Lord your God and serve him with all your heart and soul, then . . . Deuteronomy 11:13
Evidently, the people Moses addressed in this chapter were under twenty, forty years prior. Before they would enter the promised land, he needed to give them these instructions.
You must love the Lord your God and always obey his requirements, decrees, regulations, and commands. Deuteronomy 11:1
Then Moses reminded them of how God cared for them during the years they traveled through the wilderness. Speaking to the older generation, not to their children, he said again,
. . . Obey every command I am giving you today, so you may have strength to go in and take over the land you are about to enter. Deuteronomy 11:8
He emphasized that the Lord wanted to bless them and abundantly give them a long life. But to receive those blessings, God required their love and obedience.
If you obey, you will enjoy a long life in the land the Lord swore to give to your ancestors and to you, their descendants—a land flowing with milk and honey! Deuteronomy 11:9
Description of the Promised Land
Quite a few of that older generation remembered the food they grew and ate in Egypt. God assured them that the land He promised them was much better.
- For the land you are about to enter and take over is not like the land of Egypt
- where you planted your seed and made irrigation ditches with your foot as in a vegetable garden.
- the land you will soon take over is a land of hills and valleys with plenty of rain—
- a land that the Lord your God cares for.
- He watches over it through each season of the year! Deuteronomy 11:10-12
He continued by telling them to love God and live in obedience to all His commands. Because the blessings would continue as they served Him with all their hearts.
- then he will send the rains in their proper seasons—the early and late rains—
- so you can bring in your harvests of grain, new wine, and olive oil.
- He will give you lush pastureland for your livestock,
- and you yourselves will have all you want to eat. Deuteronomy 11:14-15
The Importance of God’s Instructions
Moses could not emphasize enough the importance of God’s instructions. He stressed for them to love God by living in obedience to His commands.
He wanted them to commit themselves wholeheartedly to His words. Then Moses offered suggestions on how they could consciously make that commitment.
- Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders.
- Teach them to your children.
- Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up.
- Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deuteronomy 11:18-20
In reading these verses, the blessings promised by the Lord all revolved around the land and its production. Including the fertile ground to produce good crops and make excellent pastureland.
Maybe when you think of the blessings from the Lord, farmland and crops don’t even enter your mind. God blessed them with what they needed, and He’ll bless you with what you need.
But to receive God’s blessings, we must follow the same principles written in this chapter. According to Moses’ instructions, we must love God and live in obedience to His Word.
Sometimes, we can become very lax in loving and obeying God. Our attitude at times shows that our love and obedience to Him revolves around if we feel like it.
The Principles Hinge on Love and Obedience
Our love and obedience cannot hinge on our feelings. God wants them to naturally and continually flow out of us no matter how we feel.
This chapter uses a word five times to help us get to that place. See if you can pick that word out to apply it to yourself.
- Therefore, be careful to obey every command I am giving you today. Deuteronomy 11:8
- If you carefully obey the commands I am giving you today. Deuteronomy 11:13
- But be careful. Don’t let your heart be deceived. Deuteronomy 11:16
- Be careful to obey all these commands I am giving you. Deuteronomy 11:22
- You must be careful to obey all the decrees and regulations I am giving you. Deuteronomy 11:32
The principles still stand true today, and our options remain the same as well.
Look, today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! Deuteronomy 11:26
A Blessing or a Curse
No matter who reads that verse, God is speaking to them. And no matter when they read it, they are reading today. By our choice, we decide between an eternal blessing or an eternal curse.
You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. Deuteronomy 11:27
Love in our Hearts with Obedience to His Word
When we live with love in our hearts and in obedience to God’s Word, He promises us His blessing. Which means an eternal home in heaven with the Lord. The other choice . . .
But you will be cursed if you reject the commands of the Lord your God and turn away from him and worship gods you have not known before. Deuteronomy 11:28
That verse for us, means separated from God. In other words, it is an eternal curse, which I wouldn’t wish on anyone.
Lord, we pray for your blessings. Help us to naturally show your love and live in obedience to your Word.
Check out these related posts about love.
- How Have You Shown Your Love To God?
- What God Has Prepared For Those Who Love Him
- The Commandment To Love Is Nothing New
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Republished with permission from Blogs.crossmap.com, featuring inspiring Bible verses about Love And Obedience, The Basic Requirements Of God.