The Blessing and the Curse #268

Joshua 8: 34 Then afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessing and the curse, according to all that is written in the book of the law.

After the death of Moses, Joshua followed the instructions of God in leading the people of Israel across the Jordan River, destroying Jericho, and then taking Ai after first failing. Then all Israel stood in the valley between Mount Gerizim- blessings and Mount Ebal- curses. As commanded by Moses six representatives of the tribes of Israel stood on Mount Gerizima to bless the people and six from the other tribes stood on Mount Ebal to curse the peopleb.  Then in v.34 above, Joshua read the blessings of obedience and curses of disobedience as given by Mosesc.

That day God gave the people of Israel standing in the valley between Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal a choice between obedience resulting in blessings and disobedience resulting in terrible curses.  Israel was provided the way to success: d “Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you …succeed in all you do.” 

God promises to be with them on the journey: e This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

 Today we stand between Mount Calvary- where Jesus died for our sins and Mount Olivet- the future return of Jesus in great power and glory. Believers in Jesus Christ have eternal lifef and will be with Jesus at His returng. This is on the basis of the exchange of our sin for His righteousness by God’s graceh. Just like Israel, true believers today have a choice of disobedience or obedience between their salvation and the end of their time on earth. Disobedience will result in suffering on earth but by God’s grace we will be in heaven with Jesus for eternity. However, some of us may get into heaven with our “coattails on fire i “.

As I consider the tremendous love and sacrifice Jesus made for me how can I not love Him and obey His commandments. I pray and strive by God’s grace to live a holy life and be welcomed into heaven with “well done good and faithful servant”.  

a- Deuteronomy 27:12; b- Deuteronomy 27:13; c- blessings of obedience Deuteronomy 28:1-14, curses as consequences of disobedience Deuteronomy 27:14-26, 28:15-68; d- Joshua 1:8 [NLT]; e- Joshua 1:9 [NLT], 1 Corinthians 6:19; f- John 3:16; g- 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; h- 2 Corinthians 5:21, Ephesians 2:8-9; i- 1 Corinthians 3:11-15

Henry Luke 12/11/2016

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