SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- What God wanted from the Israelites, and what He still wants from us today, is to love Him (see verses 1 and 13) and to obey His laws (see verse 1) and serve Him wholeheartedly (see verse 13).
- Because these Israelites and their children would always be enticed to turn away from loving and serving God, they were to do everything they could to keep their focus on God (including memorizing God's Words, putting visual reminders all around, and teaching their kids continually).
- "shut the heavens so that it will not rain" (verse 17) - Back then many people believe the "god" Baal controlled the weather, but here Moses asserts that it is the Lord God who decides if it will rain or not.
- "a blessing and a curse" (verse 26) - As Moses continues his speech to the Israelites he will explain the blessings and the curse, in chapters 27 and 28 of Deuteronomy.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
- It's still true that God wants us to love and serve Him, and that we will always be tempted to fall away from that, so we need to do everything we can to help us (and to help our kids) to always stay focused on God and on obeying Him.
- God literally gave the Israelites the choice of whether they wanted to be blessed by God or cursed by God. What's shocking is that most of the Israelites chose to disobey God, forfeiting His blessing and living under His curse. Today we still have the same choice.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- What are you doing to keep your focus on loving and obeying God? What can you do that you aren't currently? And, if you are a parent, what are you doing to teach your kids about God and His Word? And what can you do that you aren't currently?
- Just like the Israelites, most people today choose to live a life of disobedience and therefore live without God's blessing. What choice are you making? A life of obedience or disobedience? To live with God's blessing, or with the consequences of your disobedience? Why don't you talk to God about that right now?