It’s The Law - The One Year Through the Bible Devotional

It’s The Law

1“And now, Israel, listen carefully to these decrees and regulations that I am about to teach you. Obey them so that you may live, so you may enter and occupy the land that the LORD, the God of your ancestors, is giving you. 2Do not add to or subtract from these commands I am giving you. Just obey the commands of the LORD your God that I am giving you. 3You saw for yourself what the LORD did to you at Baal-peor. There the LORD your God destroyed everyone who had worshiped Baal, the god of Peor. 4But all of you who were faithful to the LORD your God are still alive today—every one of you. 5Look, I now teach you these decrees and regulations just as the LORD my God commanded me, so that you may obey them in the land you are about to enter and occupy.”

Deuteronomy 4:1-5

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If you were to give a slide show reviewing the last twenty years of your life, what would you highlight? The fun times? The disasters? The family outings? The struggles and pain? The brushes with greatness?

The book of Deuteronomy is where Israel gets to sit down for a little reminiscing—both good and bad. Moses highlights God’s laws and how well (or poorly) Israel obeyed those laws along the way.

As you relive the history of Moses and the Israelites, watch for other important insights for God’s people: understanding the qualities of good leaders; knowing when not to fight; and overcoming insurmountable obstacles.

Read Deuteronomy 1:1–5:33

God gave Israel many laws, and he commanded that the people remember those laws and then teach them to their children (Deuteronomy 4:8-9). Do these laws apply to Christians today? God designed his laws to guide his people in honoring and worshiping him and to help them see their sin and the proper way to deal with that sin. God’s law is the perfect expression of who God is and how he wants his people to live.

God’s laws always have a purpose, but in some cases the purpose has been finished. For example, God told Israel to practice animal sacrifice in worship to receive forgiveness and to express thanks. But Christ made the ultimate, final sacrifice for sin—we must now come to him for forgiveness. The principle (coming to God for forgiveness and thanking him), not the form (animal sacrifice), still applies.

Whenever you come upon a law directed specifically to Israel in its own time, look for the principle behind it. Look for ways to obey God; don’t search for loopholes in his commandments.

From the Book: