- Dearly Beloved,
"If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his
commands that I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high
above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come upon you
and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God.... However, if you do
not obey the LORD your God and do not carefully follow all his
commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come
upon you and overtake you..." (Deuteronomy 28:1-2, 15, NIV).
The first fourteen verses of Deuteronomy 28 are ones of the passages
the Bible that many people like very much. They quote the verses most
often and are ready to apply them to themselves. Some ministers of God
also are fond of using the verses to pray for their congregations.
However, few people would like to read the remaining part of the
chapter. I was nearly guilty of this recently. I ought to read the
chapter in my "Read the Bible through in a Year" schedule that day. I
gladly read the first fourteen verses and even applied them to myself,
but the moment I got to verse 15, I was reluctant to go ahead. I went
back to verse 1 to see the conditions attached to the blessings in
those "good" fourteen verses, then, I re-read verse 15 and discovered
the conditions attached to the seeming "bad" fifty-four verses that
follow: diligent obedience of God's commandments is the condition for
the blessings of the first fourteen verses (see verses 1, 2, 9 and
13), while disobedience of God's commandments is the condition for the
curses in the subsequent fifty-four verses (see verses 15 and 58).
Another thing I discovered from this chapter is that Moses took extra
time to explain the curses as a warning to the people. He followed the
example of God in Leviticus 26 where God gave similar warning with
similar pattern. Moses had earlier summarized these warnings in
Deuteronomy 11:26-28, "See, I am setting before you today a blessing
and a curse — the blessing if you obey the commands of the LORD your
God that I am giving you today; the curse if you disobey the commands
of the LORD your God and turn from the way that I command you today by
following other gods, which you have not known" (NIV).
A careful study of the history of the people of Israel when they
eventually occupied the Promised Land reveals how all these blessings
and curses came to pass in their lives. They had blessings and
prosperity when they diligently obeyed the commandments of God, and
curses and punishments when they disobeyed the commandments.
What do you want from God – His blessings or His curses? Claiming the
blessings is not enough. You have to diligently obey His commandments
as spelt out in the Scriptures to have His blessings. Obey Him and His
blessings will be yours.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
+234 805 515 9591
"I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will
have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted
in my body, whether by life or by death. FOR TO ME, TO LIVE IS CHRIST
AND TO DIE IS GAIN" (Philippians 1:20-21, NIV).