Do Not Forget the Lord

Deuteronomy 6:10-12 ESV

“And when the Lord your God brings you into the land that he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give you—with great and good cities that you did not build, and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant—and when you eat and are full, then take care lest you forget the Lord, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.”

Now, this is Old Testament and Old Covenant, so these words were written specifically to the children of Israel of the Old Covenant. But “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV). So, there are lessons to be learned even from Old Testament Scriptures which can be applied to us who live under the New Covenant.

So, there is a spiritual parallel between the children of Israel of the Old Testament (and their slavery in Egypt, and their deliverance, and their time in the wilderness, and their entering into the promised land), and that of our deliverance from slavery to sin, (and our time on this earth, and our walks of faith in the Lord Jesus). For when we believe in Jesus with God-given faith, we are delivered from slavery to sin, and we enter into relationship with Jesus Christ, and now we live on this earth, and we walk by faith in Him.

And so for us, the counsel here can be that when we enter into salvation from sin – which is deliverance from our slavery to sin, by faith in Jesus Christ, and we now belong to God and we are part of his family, and so now we are to walk by faith in him, in obedience to our Lord, in the forsaking of our sin, and in holiness and righteousness – we need to take care that we do not take God’s love and grace for granted and that we forget the Lord who saved us. We need to take care that we do not fall back into sin and forget the reason Jesus died on that cross which was to deliver us from slavery.

Deuteronomy 6:13-15 ESV

“It is the Lord your God you shall fear. Him you shall serve and by his name you shall swear. You shall not go after other gods, the gods of the peoples who are around you— for the Lord your God in your midst is a jealous God—lest the anger of the Lord your God be kindled against you, and he destroy you from off the face of the earth.”

The fear of the Lord is not just Old Testament teaching. For it means to take God and his word seriously and to honor God with our lives; to revere, respect, and obey the Lord. It involves dying with Christ to sin and living to him and to his righteousness, no longer living in slavery (addiction) to sin but now as slaves of God and of his righteousness. And it means walking in fellowship with our Lord and going where he sends us and doing what he calls and commands us to do, for obedience is New Testament teaching.

And the New Testament, as well, teaches us that we are not to go after other gods, the gods of this world, which may not be literal gods but anything we worship and venerate and give our hearts and minds and bodies to in place of or over and above worship of the one true God. Another god is anything which replaces or supersedes the one true God in our hearts and minds, which is evident by our actions, and by our attitudes, too. So it can be possessions, talent, intellect, entertainment, and/or sinful addictions.

Now, the goal of our salvation from sin is that we die with Christ to sin and that we live to God and to his righteousness. It is that we live for Christ, and no longer for ourselves and for our fleshly passions. It is that we put sin to death with Christ, not just once, but daily, and that we walk in obedience to our Lord’s commands (New Covenant). For Jesus did not die for our sins just so that when we die we can go to heaven. He died to transform us and to give us new lives in him to be lived for his glory and praise.

[Lu 9:23-26; Matt 7:21-23; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; Eph 4:17-32; Tit 2:11-14; Rom 12:1-2; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15; 1 Jn 1:5-9]

Deuteronomy 6:16-19 ESV

“You shall not put the Lord your God to the test, as you tested him at Massah. You shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and his testimonies and his statutes, which he has commanded you. And you shall do what is right and good in the sight of the Lord, that it may go well with you, and that you may go in and take possession of the good land that the Lord swore to give to your fathers by thrusting out all your enemies from before you, as the Lord has promised.”

We read in 1 Corinthians 10 that with most of the children of Israel God was not pleased, so they were overthrown in the wilderness. And these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did. So we are not to be idolaters and revelers. We are not to indulge in sexual immorality. And we must not put Christ to the test as they did. And we must not grumble against the Lord. For the majority of them were put to death for their rebellion and for their disobedience to the Lord and to his commands, and so they did not enter into God’s eternal rest because of their unbelief.

So, the very fact that the New Testament warns us to not do what they did, and then it tells us what happened to them when they disobeyed, it serves as a warning to us of the consequences of ignoring the commands of our Lord and of us deciding our own course in life, and of us rebelling against the Lord and doing the things he says we ought not to do. For the New Testament teaches us that if we walk in sin, in deliberate and habitual sin against our Lord, and if we do not obey our Lord’s commands, that we will not inherit eternal life with God regardless of what we profess with our lips.

So, we are given in the New Testament basically the same message as the Lord gave to his people of the Old Testament. And we need to take that seriously. For we need to realize that the New Testament, too, warns us of the consequences of continued sin against the Lord and of disobedience to him and to his commands. So, don’t ignore this. For God’s word will be fulfilled, and what he promised will happen, it will take place. If we walk in sin and not in righteousness and not in obedience to our Lord, we do not have eternal life with God. It is what the Scriptures teach.

[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Matt 7:21-23; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

Oh, to Be Like Thee, Blessed Redeemer

Lyrics by Thomas O. Chisholm, 1897
Music by W. J. Kirkpatrick, 1897

Oh, to be like Thee! blessèd Redeemer,
This is my constant longing and prayer;
Gladly I’ll forfeit all of earth’s treasures,
Jesus, Thy perfect likeness to wear.

O to be like Thee! while I am pleading,
Pour out Thy Spirit, fill with Thy love;
Make me a temple meet for Thy dwelling,
Fit me for life and Heaven above.

Oh, to be like Thee! Oh, to be like Thee,
Blessèd Redeemer, pure as Thou art;
Come in Thy sweetness, come in Thy fullness;
Stamp Thine own image deep on my heart.

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