God’s Standard

Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 (NIV)
And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to observe the Lord’s commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good?

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 (MSG)
So now Israel, what do you think God expects from you? Just this: Live in his presence in holy reverence, follow the road he sets out for you, love him, serve God, your God, with everything you have in you, obey the commandments and regulations of God that I’m commanding you today—live a good life.
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“And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require from you, but to fear [and worship] the Lord your God [with awe-filled reverence and profound respect], to walk [that is, to live each and every day] in all His ways and to love Him, and to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul [your choices, your thoughts, your whole being], and to keep the commandments of the Lord and His statutes which I am commanding you today for your good?” -AMPLIFIED

At this point in time we find Moses recounting to the Israelites the story of how the tablets, the commandments, came to them. He starts Deuteronomy 10 with these words, “At that time the Lord said to me, “Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones and come up to me on the mountain. Also make a wooden ark. I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Then you are to put them in the ark.” -Deuteronomy 10:1-2 (NIV)

Moses tells how God instructed him to make the ark to place the tablets into. He recounts how the people traveled from place to place with the Lord God leading them. He reminds the people how he stayed on top of the mountain 40 days and 40 nights with the Lord. Then Moses tells them exactly what the Lord had commissioned him to do, ““Go,” the Lord said to me, “and lead the people on their way, so that they may enter and possess the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.” -Deuteronomy 10:11 (NIV)

We then find Moses urging the people to do what God has asked of them. “And now, Israel, what is the Eternal your God asking of you? Only that you fear Him, live as He wants you to, and love Him; serve Him with every part of you, heart and soul; and obey His commands and rules, which I’m giving you today for your good.” -(VOICE)

Tonia’s translation, “Israel, listen up. This is what the Lord God is expecting of you; respect and reverence Him, live your life holy before Him, (as He expects you to do) love Him with everything that is within you, serve Him with all your heart, and obey everything that He has told you to do.”

The prophet Micah spoke something similar to what Moses had to say to the people many years later. Micah said, “But he’s (God) already made it plain how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, and don’t take yourself too seriously— take God seriously.” Micha 6:8 (MSG)

Standards have been set; now it is the job of the people to follow them. Nothing is left to chance, Moses tells the people exactly what it is that God requires of them; for the law was given in order that the people would know what it was that God desired.

Now mind you, we can never completely live perfectly; for we are imperfect, sinful people, but we need to strive to do our best to live holy lives before the Lord our God. God knows that we are sinful. He knows that we cannot fulfill His law perfectly; so He, in His great mercy and love, sent His Son to die for us to be the perfect sacrifice for our sins.

The Apostle Paul shared these thoughts on the law and God’s provision for us. “Before the coming of this faith, we were held in custody under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed. So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.” –Galatians 3:23-24 (NIV)

It was impossible to do all that God required of us, but Christ accomplished for us exactly what God required of us. Hallelujah! Thank you Jesus! This does not let us off the proverbial hook though. We are still required to live a holy life, doing our very best to please God. But when we mess up we can humbly go to the Father and tell Him all about it, ask forgiveness and know that He will forgive us. Praise God For His great mercy!

My Prayer:
Lord, help me to live my life holy and acceptable to you. You have set the standards and I desire to follow them. At times I mess up, I disobey, and I insist on doing my own thing. I am sorry, Lord, please forgive me. Help me to be obedient; help me to make wise choices. When I do mess up though, I am so thankful for that grace and mercy that is extended to me. God, you are so good to me.

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