For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime;
weeping may stay for the night,
but rejoicing comes in the morning.
You turned my wailing into dancing
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent.
Lord my God, I will praise you forever.
Moses continues the recap of history, reminding the people to remind their children, “teach them to your children and to their children after them” (Deuteronomy 4:9).
The Lord took you and brought you out of the iron-smelting furnace, out of Egypt, to be the people of his inheritance, as you now are. Deuteronomy 4:20
Moses warns the people, somewhat prophetically, of the dangers of making idols in the future, long after they’ve entered the Promised Land.
But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul. Deuteronomy 4:29
Today’s Our Daily Bread centered on Matthew 6:33 where Jesus tells us to “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness.” Seek the Lord and he will be found. God is not hiding from you! He is not hiding from me, he is right here in this place. Set aside the idols of money and instant gratification and seek first his kingdom.
Chapter 6 has some great words of wisdom for us to remember, words to live by: link.
Chapter 7 is a motivational talk to remind us not only of the bad, but also the good that will happen if we keep the Lord first. Moses continues this in Chapter 8 with a stern warning, “If you ever forget the Lord your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed. Deuteronomy 8:10
Chapter 9 reminds us that the people driven out of the Promised Land are wicked; it’s their wickedness that set them against the Lord. It’s not the wonderful righteousness of the Israelites that prevails:
Understand, then, that it is not because of your righteousness that the Lord your God is giving you this good land to possess, for you are a stiff-necked people. Deuteronomy 9:6
Moses recalls the day when Aaron and the people created a Golden Calf as an idol to worship and the potential doom avoided because of his begging the Lord to forgive the people. Essentially, Moses says, “remember, you are idiots, but God loves you anyway! Now, stop being stupid!”
There are dozens of sermons wrapped up in chapters 4-11, many calls to remember the past, how God has always been the constant, steady light for us to follow. Moses reminds us past failures to help us in the future. Don’t forget the past, but don’t live there either. Use history to learn from not relive.