“Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the Lord your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, that you may fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. Therefore hear, O Israel, and be careful to observe it, that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the Lord God of your fathers has promised you — ‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’ – Deuteronomy 6:1-3
This passage was first addressed to a people who had been without laws for hundreds of years, except the regimen of Egypt, their land of slavery. Now, as free citizens, they were about to go and take possession of their own land and build a society of their own. So the Lord began to teach them His ways—the Kingdom lifestyle. In a way, the whole essence of all the commandments God gave them was to create a divine pattern for their success and sustenance.
God conducted the children of Israel through the wilderness, after their deliverance from the land of bondage, and taught them for many years so that the slave mentality would wear off and they would mature into full sonship. Of what use is it if sons do not recognize the benefits of their sonship and live instead like slaves?
Talking about the laws and commandments that were to guide His relationship with them, God said: “You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (Deuteronomy 6:8-9). In other words, they were to make them the subject of every discussion, find how they fit into every area of their lives or find how they applied in everything they did. That was the only way they could enjoy the best of God.
Today, many want the good things of life without any commitment, much less committing to God. No wonder there is so much struggle and misery. People labour to death without the desired satisfaction. But there is a better way—God’s best for you! The problem is that we sometimes become too confident of ourselves and put God in the back seat. That is why many labour and struggle endlessly.
The truth is, it is all about relationship. God does not withhold His blessings from man; it is man who always has a problem connecting with the blessings of God. Romans 12:2 declares, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
Without continual renewal of the mind by God’s Word, one cannot hold a meaningful relationship with Him. And if you do not have a relationship with God, you cannot benefit from His blessings as much as He has designed it. To fail to habitually get into the Word is to be like an unbeliever. It is the Word that keeps, builds and sustains us. We are all in a great battle – it is a cosmic battle for our souls, and we succeed only by the Word of God.
Like the children of Israel out of Egypt, we have been delivered from the oppression of the enemy. We have been redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb. But if we do not begin to walk in the reality of what He has done for us on a daily basis, we will function like mere men. In other words, the devil will take advantage of the genuine, God-given desires of our lives–significance, security, happiness, pleasure, fulfillment, meaning, purpose—and twist them. He will deceive by saying, “You can get this same thing in another way.” Do not fall into that trap. What the devil gives you may look real but, like the giver, it has no future. It is only what God gives that lasts.
What are you looking for? Are you looking for pleasure? Are you looking for significance? Are you looking for meaning? Fear the Lord. Walk in His ways. You may ask, how? The Bible says be transformed by the renewing of your mind. And this can be achieved by staying in the atmosphere of the presence and the Word of God. You need to get into the Word for yourself on a daily basis.
People pay anything to look for pleasure. And how do they define this pleasure? Sex, money, fame etc. All these are things that cannot really last or satisfy. At best, they are temporary. In the Garden of Eden, the devil played on the seeming need of Eve to deceive her and got Adam compromising. Same in the wilderness: the devil knew Jesus was hungry and weak; he knew He needed to eat, so he tried to take advantage of the situation. But Jesus knew better, so His response was: “It is written…” Had He not resorted to the written Word of God, it is certain He would have fallen like Adam.
I am not disputing the fact that we get tempted. As humans, we all do. But the Bible says that we should not conform. In other words, do not let the world fit you into its own mold. And that boils down to the company you keep. Who are you emulating or who are you aspiring to be like? If you keep on hanging around the wrong crowd (conducting your affairs as if God does not exist), you cannot be different from them. No matter how many times you come to church, if you stay more with them, they will influence you more than the church.
The Bible says, “For all that is in the world — the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:16). Although some of the things we desire are legitimate, they can become a snare if they are sought outside of God’s boundaries. Then the devil takes advantage of our gullibility and wreaks havoc. He gives the fake, which afterwards becomes sour. But God says His fear will lead you to the place where you do not have to struggle to get any good thing.
You are bigger than what the devil is offering you. God has much more for you than the little things the devil is offering. So it becomes a matter of your own resolve. It is for you to say, “I am going to stop the devil in his tracks. I want to get only the things God is offering me. I will walk in the fullness of what rightly belongs to me.”
The Bible says, “In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11). This is not talking about fleeting pleasure. No, it is the pleasure that enriches; it is the pleasure that adds to you.
Rejoice in the fact that you are a covenant child of God. Rejoice in the fact that you have pleasures that the world cannot give. You have a status the world cannot give. You have possessions that the world cannot give. And the blood of Jesus has made all these possible. Rejoice in the fact that your steps are ordered. Your path is as a shining light. Rejoice!
However, if you do not have a relationship with this God we are talking about, you can start one right away by accepting the gift of His Son Jesus Christ. The Bible states, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). You can start a new life in Him by praying this prayer:
Lord, I thank you for giving your only begotten Son Jesus Christ that I might have life. Today, I receive Him as my Lord and personal Saviour. I ask that you forgive my sins and cleanse me of all unrighteousness. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
If you just prayed this prayer, I will like to hear from you. God bless you.