Today's Texts: Proverbs 30:1-31:9, Deut. 28:15-68, Micah 5, Matt. 6:25-34
Wow! That passage from Deuteronomy was intense! It was even gross at times! Wow! What are we to make of such harsh language? How do you feel about God making these promises of cursing? Is God a big meanie? How do we deal with a passage like this?
Well, first of all, no, God is not a big meanie. He is Holy! Absolutely Holy. Holy without a trace of unholiness. Do we truly get that? That means that He cannot tolerate even an ounce of sin; not even a smidgen of unholiness. If he did tolerate it, it would contaminate His holiness. He cannot do that. So, He MUST punish and eradicate sin. His people (especially His Old Testament people)must understand the absolute horror of their sin in the eyes of God.
This is the same concept that we'll read about in Joshua when the Israelites are told to completely eradicate the nations of the Promised Land. Again, the language in these passages is harsh. However, the idea is the same: if the Israelites allow the sin and idolatry of these foreign nations into their camp, it will contaminate them and they will be infected. Well, what happened? Did the Israelites completely destroy the people that inhabited the Promised Land? Nope. What was the result? The Hebrews eventually turned from God and embraced the sin and idolatry of the land and were infected. God had to take drastic measures (exile into Babylon & Assyria) to deal with the sin problem.
Now back to the overall problem of sin. Why are we promised God's love and forgiveness and not the harsh curses of eating our own children? Why doesn't our sin elicit the same response? Only, and I mean ONLY because of the blood of Christ! His sacrifice on the cross once and for all paid the penalty of sin. His blood cleansed all who have faith in Him so that God would not see our sin, idolatry, and unrighteousness, but would instead see the righteousness of His Son. Because of Christ, we can rest (without worry: see Matt. text) in the blessings of the first part of Deut. 28 and praise God that we can avoid the curses of the latter part of that chapter.
I hope that put this passage in perspective for you, all 2 of you!
Blessed and not cursed,