“If you don’t see it right, you won’t get it right.” Most people live in moral confusion, adrift on life’s sea, not knowing why they are here and where they are going. God gave us His Word as a light to show us the way and to answer the questions of life. In the Book of Deuteronomy, God spoke messages through Moses to the Israelites as they were poised and ready to enter the Promised Land. This new land was occupied by people who had given themselves over to evil—even sacrificing their children to be burned alive to their demon gods. The Lord clearly warned His people not to “accept” the beliefs and practices of the inhabitants of Canaan. He told them, “This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire” (Deuteronomy 7:5). Why does God demand separation? He answers this question in the next verse: “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession” (7:6). God is holy, pure, and just. He called his children “out of” the world in order that they may witness to the world…showing them what God is like and how God’s people live in harmony with Him and one another. When you read the Old Testament, you see that, for the most part, Israel failed. Instead of seeing themselves as belonging to God (as His treasured possession), they grew cold toward God and eventually embraced the same evil practices as the nations they dispossessed. What are we to learn from this? By the power of God’s Holy Spirit in us, we can succeed where Israel failed. Jesus clearly taught us that, though we live in the world, we are not of the world. Believers in Christ have overcome the world “through our faith” (1 John 5:4). However, vigilance and watchfulness are needed! Being alert and aware of the tendencies of the “sinful nature,” we turn to the Lord with all our heart. Through Jesus, we see ourselves as God’s children…His treasure! May we please our Father by our choices to destroy any wickedness in our lives and live for Him alone.
Pastor Mark Boucher