MARCH 16 READINGS…Deuteronomy 13:1-16:17.
In our readings today Moses deals with the reality that the people would be enticed to depart from the worship of the One, True, and Living God…to begin to worship other gods. The Lord takes idolatry very seriously…it is the breaking of the first and greatest commandment. A people cannot serve, love, and worship God…and at the same time go after idols and false gods. Moses gives severe punishments for those who would come into the nation, or from the nation, and attempt to lead the people into idolatry. The punishment for these acts was to be death. The Lord said to kill the false prophets…to kill even your own family, if they tried to lead you into the worship of false gods. Some might think this too severe a punishment…but we must remember that physical death cannot be compared to spiritual death. This is lost on today’s generations…we have been groomed to believe that this life is all there is, and that the worse thing that could happen to us would be to die physically. There are things worse than physical death…our minds cannot comprehend eternity, and we certainly cannot fathom the horror of spending eternity separated from God in hell. Jesus put it like this…”For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?”-Mark 8:36.
In the second part of our readings Moses continues to give final instructions to the people concerning clean and unclean animals…the giving of tithes…how to treat those who are indebted to you, and who have become servants because of debt. Finally, Moses reminds the people of the necessity of honoring God by keeping the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread…the Festival of Harvest…and the Festival of Shelters. These were not given for the purpose of celebration alone, though they were celebrations for the people…these were given as remembrances of the provisions of God. This people needed to remember where they were and how God brought them to the place where they are. History is important…its a sad thing that some try to erase it…it is not always pretty, clean, or pleasant…but it is important we remember and learn from the past. We who are believers in Jesus need to remember what we were like when Jesus found us and saved us from our sins…we need to celebrate the Lord for His eternal goodness toward us!
Please share your thoughts and insights from today’s readings. Take time to remember your journey. Can you see the Lord’s hand upon you? Do your remember what you were like when the Lord found you? As you remember, praise Him for His goodness in your life.
TOMORROW’S READINGS…Deuteronomy 16:14-21:9.