Friday, February 23, 2018

Seek your Lover

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Deuteronomy 4-6; Psalm 54

TO CHEW ON: "But from there you will seek the Lord your God, and you will find Him if you seek Him with all your soul." Deuteronomy 4:29

The Bible is a love story describing the wooing and pursuing, the back-and-forth between lovers—God and us humans. In many places Bible writers remind us of how God is seeking us. Here Moses prods Israel to seek God.

The little word "but" that begins our focus verse signals a change of thought direction. We see Moses is warning Israel in a prophetic way, that they will stray from following God. When they settle in Canaan they will serve idols and images (Deuteronomy 4:28). God doesn't give them up to these. If and when they seek Him, Moses promises, God will be there for them.

Moses goes on to remind them of all the reasons it makes sense to seek God over idols (a recitation of ways God has pursued them):
  • Because of His merciful and faithful nature (Deuteronomy 4:31).
  • Because of His creativity and power (Deuteronomy 4:32,33).
  • Because He showed them special favor in Egypt when He helped them escape slavery with power signs (Deuteronomy 4:34-35).
  • Because He guided them with His voice through the wilderness (Deuteronomy 4:36).
  • Because He helped them gain independence from Egypt and other nations (Deuteronomy 4:37-38).

We can find many parallels between God's wooing of Israel and how He pursues us:
1. We too turn to Him from idols. No, these are probably not images of stone or gold, but things we serve more than Him (like success, money, fame, pleasure etc.). That turning may come when we get into trouble, or find ourselves dissatisfied, or over our heads, or any number of reasons.

2. When we return to God, He faithfully meets us with mercy, creativity, and power.

3. Our histories remind us of His faithfulness.
  • This could be recent history. Many of his have faith-filled family members who have prayed for us, and whose prayers are answered by our return to God.
  • It could be distant history, where we look back at the long story of God's work in our family, community, or nation through immigrants who came to experience freedom of religion, or missionaries who first brought the gospel.

For Israel and for us, the result of being rightly related to God is a future of well-being: "...that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may prolong your days" (Deuteronomy 4:40).

Where are you and I in relation to our lover, God, today? Do we sense He is pursuing us? Are we seeking Him?

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for this reminder of Your love and pursuit of Israel and me. Please help me to see where I am being lured away by idols and to serve You with renewed vigor. Amen.


The Bible Project VIDEO: SHEMA: Listen (Shema Word Study Series)

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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