Year 2 Day 205
Read - Deuteronomy 26:5-11
Message - Alan Burke
Here in Deuteronomy the people were to come and acknowledge God’s gracious activity on their behalf, remembering what the Lord had done for them. This wasn’t about paying off God, some kind of barter system that the people had arranged, that they were paying of the mortgage that they had taken out with God in exchange for the land, or some kind of works based system where they were trying to earn God’s favour by bringing Him their tithe. No it was about acknowledging what God had indeed done for them.
As they did so they were to declare (5-11) the truth of what God had done, and the truth of grace that he had shown them in their salvation. For these verses acted as a reminder of God’s activity in it all, how he was faithful to his promises, how he had redeemed them from Egypt bringing salvation to them and it was only by his grace they were to come into the land.
Of course there would have been some who simply went through the motions, for whom the thought of giving their first fruits away to God no matter what he had done would have vexed them no end, what they would have seen is the value of the offering, the effort there was in producing it. But for the righteous among them, this giving of the first-fruits would have been a time of rejoicing, hearts throbbing, as they joined with the people of God delighting in the reality of what He had done on their behalf. And communally it would have acted as a collective remembrance, serving to reinforce the identity of individual, that they were God’s people, in God’s place under his rule and blessing.
Three words summaries it all, ’Slavery’, ‘Grace’, ‘Response’. For they were slaves in Egypt, God showed his grace and this is how they were to respond. Those three concepts are a repeated pattered throughout scripture, time and time again, of slavery, grace, response. It is the same pattern for us. Slavery, grace response, for we were slaves to sin, that was followed the grace the kindness and the mercy of God in what he has done through Jesus Christ and that has been displayed with such reality to us, and as the recipients of this grace and mercy, well we should live in response to what the Lord has done (Rom 6:20).
The Israelites did not overthrow their bondage nor have have we, for just like they could not save themselves from their slavery neither can we, yet the Lord God Almighty has redeemed us in his grace and because of that amazing truth we should respond to him rightly, responding with all that we have, our entire being that should ultimately lead us to worship him. For that is our primary purpose our goal, our chief end, that is why we were made, to glorify God, our entire lives are about giving him the glory, revealing who his is by our actions by our praise and worship.
Q85 What doth God require of us, that we may escape his wrath and curse due to us for sin?
To escape the wrath and curse of God due to us for sin, God requireth of us faith in Jesus Christ, repentance unto life, (Acts 20:21) with the diligent use of all the outward means whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption. (Prov. 2:1–5, Prov. 8:33–36, Isa. 55:3)