WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17
SCRIPTURE: DEUTERONOMY 3
BY: Josh Boles
Today’s chapter is a continuation of chapter 3. You will notice that the first word in verse 1 is “then.” There is nothing special about this paragraph break, it is just to help us break it down. This is a continuation of the historical recount of Israels victories and shortcomings.
Just as we have been talking about the last couple of days, this chapter is just rehashing the past so the Israelites will be better equipped to enter the promise land. To us, these stories can be hard to read and seem rather boring. It is just detailed information on what happened in the past, but there is great purpose to these words. Let’s take a closer look at verses 5-7. Moses speaks of the fortified cities here. Basically Moses is saying here that there is no way we should have beaten them, but we did.
Remember that the context of Deuteronomy is 40 years in the wilderness because of Israels rebellion. This helps us to understand this chapter a little better. Moses is trying desperately to persuade them in these verses to cross the Jordan, not fearing their enemies, but trusting in God’s power. The rest of this chapter up to verse 18 is more details, and distribution of land.
In verse 18-22 is the conclusion of this specific speech. It is Moses final argument to get the Israelites pumped up and ready for battle. I played football for ten years in Marlow, and I cannot remember one time where a coach did not do all he could do to get our adrenaline pumping to defeat our enemy. To me, this is what Moses is doing. He lets them know here that all of them except for women, children, and livestock are to go into battle. In verse 21 Moses tells them that their victories will be ensured to any enemy they come in contact with. The “why” of this is found in verse 21. This victory is only ensured if they trust in the Lord. If God fights for you, victory is assured, there is no doubt about it. This is the model of victory that the Israelites will see under the leadership of Joshua.
Verses 23-29 is the last section of historical narrative that Moses will give in his speeches. Tomorrow we get into the Law. This si still preparation for entering into the promised land, but this one last pump up speech. Moses is coming to them here with a very emotional plea. Moses, because of Israels rebellion, is not allowed to enter the promise land. He can look at it, see how beautiful it is, but will not be allowed to enter. Moses even says, “The Lord was angry with me, because of you.” But yet Moses is still writing these words.
This says something about the Character of Moses. He was far less interested in personal gain, and was committed to the success of the nation of Israel. Even though this is true, Moses and the nation of Israel is still punished. This reminds me again of my football days. I was an offensive lineman. Anytime one of us had a false start, the whole line had to suffer. Even if it was one person, one time in the game. The next Monday, we all ran just about until we puked. I remember other times when a couple of the players did a few really stupid things. One time in particular there were some very offensive things done to the Comanche football field. The coaches knew who did it, and they had to set the game our, but we all ran.
The point here is that we are all in this together. When the church suffers, we all suffer. Like Moses, our main priority should be the kingdom of God, and for us specifically in Marlow, Oklahoma, that is our local Church. We are to stand with the Church, fight for the Church. God, through His son Jesus, has ensured us great victory over our enemy. It is time to stand together, trust in the Lord, and prevail over our enemy, and reach the lost for the sake of the Lord. Be encouraged Church, because the Lord is fighting WITH you!