Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | December 5, 2014

“No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly. … How blessed is the man who trusts in You!”

Today’s devotion comes from Deuteronomy 28:1-14.

“1 “Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the Lord your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth.  2 All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the Lord your God:

3 “Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country.

4 “Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.

5 “Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl.

6 “Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out.

7 “The Lord shall cause your enemies who rise up against you to be defeated before you; they will come out against you one way and will flee before you seven ways.  8 The Lord will command the blessing upon you in your barns and in all that you put your hand to, and He will bless you in the land which the Lord your God gives you.  9 The Lord will establish you as a holy people to Himself, as He swore to you, if you keep the commandments of the Lord your God and walk in His ways.  10 So all the peoples of the earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will be afraid of you.  11 The Lord will make you abound in prosperity, in the offspring of your body and in the offspring of your beast and in the produce of your ground, in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers to give you. 12 The Lord will open for you His good storehouse, the heavens, to give rain to your land in its season and to bless all the work of your hand; and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.  13 The Lord will make you the head and not the tail, and you only will be above, and you will not be underneath, if you listen to the commandments of the Lord your God, which I charge you today, to observe them carefully, 14 and do not turn aside from any of the words which I command you today, to the right or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.”   Deuteronomy 28:1-14.

———————

Some may wrongly think that this Scripture leads us back to focus on our own alleged ability and our own alleged free-will to obey the Law.  But, this Scripture does not negate the blessedness of those who trust in the LORD.  It rather should be correctly understood as making a vivid spectrum display of the blessings that the LORD gives.  We get the total understanding from the following Psalm 84:11-12.

“11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
The Lord gives grace and glory;
No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
12 O Lord of hosts,
How blessed is the man who trusts in You!”

We can obey only because God gives us grace to obey (and walk uprightly):  “according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood:  May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.”  1 Peter 1:2.

We read in a recent devotion.  “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you;  and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.”  Ezekiel 36:26-27.

But, what immediately follows these verses?

The same type of blessings that we read in today’s Scripture!

“You will live in the land that I gave to your forefathers;  so you will be My people, and I will be your God.  Moreover, I will save you from all your uncleanness;  and I will call for the grain and multiply it, and I will not bring a famine on you.  I will multiply the fruit of the tree and the produce of the field, so that you will not receive again the disgrace of famine among the nations.”  Ezekiel 36:28-30.

So, let us not wrongly receive these Scriptures as motivation to turn from our simple trust in the LORD to focus on our own alleged ability and our own alleged free-will to obey the Law.

Let us not turn from looking up to the LORD to looking down inward.

“You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified?  This is the only thing I want to find out from you:  did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?  Are you so foolish?  Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?  Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?  So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?”  Galatians 3:1-5.

Let us cling to Christ.

“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”  Romans 8:32.

 

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