Deuteronomy 4:29-31—But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. When thou art in tribulation and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice; (For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;)
Moses warned the people that if they worshipped other gods and did not keep the covenant, they would become captives of other nations. God states that the reason is that He is a jealous God. The word for ‘jealous’ in Hebrew includes the meaning of a white-hot fire. God is passionate about those He has chosen. He will bring into their lives whatever it will take to turn them back to Him. He promises, in this passage, that if from that place of slavery, you will seek the LORD you will find Him. But that is accompanied by a big “if”. The condition is looking for Him with all our heart and soul. That is why Israel went into captivity, their hearts were mixed, thinking satisfaction and fulfillment lay in God plus something else. God allows distress to come into our lives to return us to Him. Then we get a sense of the reality of life without Him and become desperate to be in Him. That is when He will help us turn back to Him. Why? Why would God want His unfaithful bride back after she so willingly sought other lovers? The LORD our God is a merciful God. Mercy forgives and forgets and loves once again. We have been recipients of this mercy as Israel was. It is now our duty to be merciful to others. Forgive and forget and love again so that you will be a reflection of the wonderful God who loves you.
Deuteronomy 4:9—Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons;
Israel had seen so much since the days when Moses began to confront Pharaoh. If they could just remember all God had done and the lessons that He had taught them. If their children could only learn those stories by vivid storytelling so that they would cling to the lessons. What a difference it would make in their future and the choices they would make! It would save them from such heartache and sorrow. They were warned to be careful and watch themselves closely so as not to forget, letting the lessons slip from their heart. We have the same warning in the New Testament. (Hebrews 2:1) We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. And how much more it applies to us who know all that God did to provide us the Way of salvation in His only Son? We need to teach our children the lessons of the Word as well as those from our own lives. We need to remember the testimonies of when God met us and share them with our children. We need to share the wonder of when the Word came alive to us and spoke to us personally. When we do that, we not only encourage their faith, but we set an example that will affect future generations. Never fear to share your personal walk with God with your children. They need to hear about it. It also reminds you of the lessons you have learned and helps prevent them from slipping from your heart.
Deuteronomy 4:7-8—For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statute and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?
Our God fills the universe, and yet He is near everyone, ready to commune with hearts that are receptive to Him. He is overall and yet willing to have a personal relationship with those who seek Him in truth. There has never been a god invented by any religion that is so great and so loving as the God of the Bible. We did not invent our God. He revealed Himself to us. He continues to reveal Himself to us as long as we continue to seek the wonder of His infinite greatness. Though Israel was a nation with the privilege of seeing Him move on their behalf, all the nations that came in contact with Israel could witness the same and decide if they wanted to pursue the God of Israel. He would be just as near any of them that sought Him whenever they prayed to Him. What really made Israel unique was that they had the recorded word of God. The laws that they received were full of the Creator’s instructions that kept them from the diseases and injustices that the nations around them experienced. The revealed Word gave them a new culture, the culture of God. Even the culture was meant to be a witness to the nations.