Observe therefore all the commands I am giving you today, so that you may have the strength… Deuteronomy 11:8a (NIV)
We often see rules and regulations as restricting and confining, a damper on self-expression. The motto for most of society today is just, “you do you”. Do what feels good; do what makes you happy. If all that jargon worked, why is dysfunction at an all time high and emotional disorders flooding out of even the youngest generation within our schools today?! Something needs a reset and I think our answer is found in a renewed mindset. Romans 12:2a (NIV) states, Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind….
In Deuteronomy God is equipping the Israelites to victoriously take the Promised Land, which is currently occupied by the vastly larger than life enemy! This victory will not be accomplished by the meager strength of the Isaelites but rather in the God of Heaven’s Armies, who has promised to go before them in His conquering strength!
Deuteronomy 11:8 above holds an interesting promise. The strength for the battle will be there but what must come first according to this verse? They are to observe or obey all God’s commands, His rules and regulations! Through their obedience His overcoming strength would flow! Society today views humble gentleness, a bending of one’s strong will as weakness but that could not be farther from Truth! When was the last time withholding your own power (when it was within your power to unleash it) whether in word or deed, was the easier route, requiring less self-control, less strength?!?! Just holding your tongue still, remaining silent, in an argument when you know you are right is hard enough!! There is a hidden power in meekness that is anything but weakness. It was through this submission of will that Jesus obeyed His Father, and took the cross in our place that we might gain eternal life (Mark 14:36)!
This world is alluring, and Deuteronomy 11:16 also warns us to be careful of the enticements of this world’s way or we will be caught up in ultimate defeat. If we will bend our knee before God’s way, then we can stand victorious against anything in our way. We will find conquering strength through a God conquered will. Deuteronomy 11:22,25a (NIV) If you carefully observe all these commands I am giving you to follow – to love the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him and to hold fast to him – No one will be able to stand against you….