Honouring God with your Obedience

Reading Deuteronomy 28 can evoke a duality of feelings. The chapter has 68 verses, the first 14 verses talk about the blessings that God would shower on Israel for obedience towards Him and the rest of the chapter, verses 15-68 lay out curses for disobedience and reading that can sometimes truly feel overwhelming.

In this chapter Moses exhorted the nation of Israel with a choice. If they fully obey the Lord, they would abound in blessings in their home, in their field, in all their undertakings and He will exhort them above every nation and make His name known through them.

A question that often arises reading such text is whether these blessings and curses apply to us today considering that we are in a new covenant with Christ. I am not going to be getting into that today. But I do believe in the consequence of living either honouring God or otherwise and I just want us to look at this passage from that perspective.

I do like the fact that in the chapter, the blessings are laid out first. That is what God wants for us. Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

He wants to shower those blessings on us. That is His heart’s desire and He rejoices in it.

Jeremiah 42:31 “I will rejoice in doing them good.”

God’s blessings do not mean an abundance of possessions. We would falter to restrict His blessings in terms of monetary abundance. In Mathew 5, scripture lays out those who are called blessed as the ones who exalt God and hold within them characteristics that are reflective of Him. Blessed are the humble, pure, merciful and meek, not the rich and famous. Wealth is indeed a blessing but it does not comprise the entirety of God’s blessings. We as Christians have received the greatest blessing, Jesus Christ himself.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 1:3)

The stipulation ‘if’ in verse 1 clearly takes a pivotal role in receiving those blessings. Again, the choice was in Israel hands, followed by the words ‘Obey Fully’.

For us: The choice is our too, to choose Him as our Lord and saviour, to walk in obedience to Him and grow in our faith and live a life of Christhood.

Obey Fully – Like Israel were to fully obey the Lord, we cannot obey the Lord in certain areas and give into our sinful desires in other area. Each of us will have areas that we have weaknesses and those are the areas that can be stumbling blocks for our growth, areas that allow Satan to get a hook into us leading us towards actions done or words said that will grieve the Father. Those are the areas that we have to especially pray for and put in a little extra to stay strong on Gods path.

I am not going into the details of each of those blessings or curses. But I just want us to focus on the fact that the Lord wants us to live a life of obedience to Him. He does not demand perfection or a life devoid of any mistakes or sins. But He wishes a heart that is devoted to HIM, a life reflective of His grace, mercy and love. A mind steadfast on His words and His ways, to see Him being pre-eminent in our lives, being fully committed to Him and giving Him the glory.

Our God is a loving father, so to read those verses detailing the curses as a consequence of disobedience can feel a little harsh. How are these terrible realities consistent with the love of God?

Our God is loving but He is also holy and just. His ways are right and true.

Deuteronomy 32:4 “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.”

He is a just God; he cannot overlook wrong and does not shrink away from the punishment of sin.

We cannot just choose the reality of the blessing and at the same time shy away from the truth that there will be consequences for the choices we make.

I must admit to always reading the curses part of this chapter quite swiftly and never dwelling on it too much. But this time as I read it, I did not look at those verses with a less than favourable lens but instead it reminded me that God’s favour on us protects us from so much. Without the Lord’s grace, mercy and protection, we have absolutely nothing that stands between misery and us. God is our shield. We can take that for granted sometimes.

Let me reiterate again that the curses are detailed out in 54 out of those 68 verses in contrast to the 14 verses of blessings. Maybe we need to hear the warnings of turning our back on God in greater detail so that it sinks in a little bit more. But instead of looking at God as being harsh if we do not follow His rules, let’s think of His grace, mercy and protection that He lavishly bestows on us because turning our back to Him can make those 54 verses a reality.

Another perspective that I have always taken when reading this passage is to focus only on the blessings and the curses (God’s end of it). Maybe we need to pay more attention to what is tied to those; which is our obedience and disobedience respectively. Taking this perspective helps us be more aware of our actions in response to His love and grace when it comes to living a life that is pleasing to God.

For us: We are not to live, teach or share a watered-down version of the gospel that appeals to our sinful desires or makes us more acceptable with others in the world. Obedience to God in our everyday lives is not something that should be questioned or debated. The extent of our obedience is not to be bartered with or compared to. Obedience to God should be our first reaction, our first response, our default mode. It should not be easily swayed by or affected by the world, our circumstances or our emotions.

This chapter was a reminder of what dwelling under His wings keeps us from. God is serious about His love for us and that is why He sent His son to atone for our sins. Yes, those sins that He being a just and holy God cannot ignore. There has to be an atonement for those sins and Christ Jesus was that for us on the cross.

Let us not treat with any less significance the sacrifice made for us on the cross. That should be our motivation to live a life in obedience to Him, honouring Him. Let this scripture passage be a reminder that the ones who love Him, follow His will and God draws near to them. A blessed life is a life lived honouring and glorifying Him. God hasn’t changed, old or New Testament, He still requires our selfless sacrifice, our obedience and our whole heart. And we recognize that it all comes through His grace and mercy, not because we are amazing. 

God Bless.

34 thoughts on “Honouring God with your Obedience

  1. “Obedience to God should be our first reaction, our first response, our default mode. It should not be easily swayed by or affected by the world, our circumstances or our emotions.” I love this statement, I believe you captured the essence of the entire message in these two sentences.

    We have such a great God (demonstrating His love) by having provided us with power through the Holy Spirit for obedience. Due to our sinful nature, we would/will fail. Praise be the name of the Lord that through HIM we can be victorious! What glorious redemptive grace.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much 😊.
      Yes indeed He is a wonderful God who enables us to be obedient to Him because without that we would definitely fail. And there has to be a will and a want within us to be on that path.
      Thank you for your input and thoughts, it is much appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Obedience to God’s Word, love, and faith, all should be part of our daily perspective. The thing we often miss is where our focus is, what is most important to us. When the focus of our attention is on God, listening, obeying, and following His path becomes our default mode.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This post cannot be popular but it is the truth

    I have read This book infact it is my favourite, I read out those blessings every morning. I decree and declare them and own them.

    But waoh!those curses sound scary but they are happening.

    I have seen people live their lives struggling and troubled and balme it on circumstances and people but excuse me, we can’t run away from the fact that many people are under a curse in this streets.

    Obedience is way better than sacrifice. You either obey or die, there is no in-between. But Gods grace is sufficient and God is a loving God.

    Nobody can encourage you not to sin and pick you up when you sin and fall, unless they love you.

    And again, lack of faith in the nature of God is like chasing after the wind, whether we believe it or not, God still remains who He is.

    Thank you for this timely message. The sheep of Christ know His voice and I can promise you that many souls will be turned back to God through this post.

    Be blessed!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Consequence of living a life of obedience or disobedience to Him does matter. He is rich in grace but that does not mean we use that as an excuse to not give our best to God. And we can do that only with the power of the Spirit in us.
      Thank you for your encouraging words Cynthia 💙🤗.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You have a way of wording things so well! “He wishes a heart that is devoted to HIM!” Yes and Amen! If we keep that in the forefront of our minds, obedience should come easier. Your reflection on this chapter of the Bible helped me to see it in a new light. Although the curses do sound harsh at first glance, now I see how they were coming from a loving Father who just wanted to show His children the right way of living. God bless you, friend! ✝️❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree, with a heart devoted to Him, a posture of obedience is easier and the desire to be obedient will also be stronger.
      Thank you Bridget for being such a support and encouragement 💙.
      God bless you too my friend. Have a lovely weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for another expository word. Truly, some people water down the word so as to boend into the culture of the world and sound more modern and acceptable. But that defeats the power in the gospel. As the gospel alone is enough.
    As Christins we are called to a life of obedience to the truth and every other thing follows.
    Thank you so much! Blessings to you! ❤️🙏

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As I was working on my prayer journal yesterday I just added “devotion” and “obedience” to my personal prayers, so this was a really excellant read. (An answer to prayer too.) Thanks for sharing, and all the work you put into each piece. It can definitely take some work! Appreciate it, Manu. ☺

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I love that it coincided with what you were working on personally. Looking forward to you sharing about your journaling. I must admit that is a discipline I have not yet ventured successfully on.
      Thank you Tina for your encouragement, it is very much appreciated 🤗💙.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Beautiful post! One thing I have realized when meditating on obedience is the truthfulness of 1 John 5:3 which says, “For this is what the love of God means, that we observe his commandments; and yet his commandments are not burdensome.” Jehovah God never asks us to do anything that is impossible and he has never asked us to do anything that he isn’t willing to do or isn’t doing himself. He is truly a loving Father that’s trying to help us live a happy and fulfilled life (Isaiah 48:17,18). Those verses in Deuteronomy attest to that. Jehovah was trying to spare the Israelites the pain and suffering experienced by the neighboring pagan nations. Their worship of false gods led to immorality, inequality and disgusting practices including sacrificing their own children. Jehovah was leading them to a new way of life and thinking. Thanks for this. I look forward to the discussion about if we as Christians are to follow the Mosaic Law Covenant.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kind words 😊. That verse is so apt for this. He is a loving Father who wants the best for us. And His boundaries are for our benefit.
      Blessings to you 💙.

      Like

  8. God wants to make sure we know what’s around the corner if we choose to disobey and go our own way. A Loving Father warns His children for their own good! Thank you, Manu, for reminding us of the blessings and curses.

    Liked by 1 person

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