Sunday, July 16, 2017

Deuteronomy 13:3-4 -- On Proving Ourselves

"Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him."
Deuteronomy 13:3-4

We're tempted often, as were many groups in the scriptures, to follow people who tell us what we want to hear.  When someone comes along who tells us that we need to shape up, it's way easier to be skeptical rather than doing something about it.

These verses have a lot in here that sounds on the surface like God is demanding a lot of us just so he can feel powerful. ... proving us to see if we love him, and wanting service, love, and loyalty.  Sounds pretty taxing.  Why would God need so much reassurance of our devotion?  Is he an egomaniac?  ... But if we follow this line of thinking, of course, we are getting off track and forgetting that God doesn't do things for petty reasons.  God asks these things of us not because he needs an ego-boost, but because *we* need devotion and reminders in our lives in order to keep the spirit with us, and to be able to stay in tune with God.  *Everything* that he does is designed for our salvation--not our enslavement.

Let's not listen to false prophets or dreamers or people who tell us the nice things that we might want to hear, where life becomes a simple matter of doing whatever we want all the time and then getting everything we want in the afterlife too.  Just like we don't allow our children to remain in a state of selfishness and learned helplessness, God has to push us out of the nest at some point as well, so that we can learn to fly.  Let's accept that there are some rules, and that life requires some effort, and learn from God rather than trying to fight him or resist him.  Let's realize and *remember* that God is always helping us and doing what is best, even when things don't seem to be going our way.

Today, let's follow God, and prove to ourselves that we can really become all that we want to be, with God's help.

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