9/6 Reading (Deuteronomy 7-9; Acts 24)

Deuteronomy 7: More on case laws. This time the focus is on the importance of removing any idols related to the canaanite gods and completely destroying the Canaanites. God also warns the people not to intermarry. He promises that if you have faith and not fear, he will be there to protect and defend you. All God asks is for them to NOT worship other gods.

Deuteronomy 8: God warns the people to keep following and worshiping him. He specifically warns against the people becoming lazy as they grow more rich and prosperous. He warns them (and us) to not succumb to pride. He reminds them of what he did for them over the 40 year journey. The chapter ends with a somewhat scary warning:

“But if you do, in fact, forget the Lord your God and follow other gods, serving and bowing down to them, I swear to you right now that you will be completely destroyed. Just like the nations that the Lord is destroying before you, that’s exactly how you will be destroyed—all because you didn’t obey the Lord your God’s voice.” (CEB Study Bible; Deut 8.19-20)

Deuteronomy 9: God gives a pretty strong statement near the beginning of this chapter:

When the Lord your God thrusts them out before you, do not say to yourself, “It is because of my righteousness that the Lord has brought me in to occupy this land”; it is rather because of the wickedness of these nations that the Lord is dispossessing them before you. ⁵ It is not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart that you are going in to occupy their land; but because of the wickedness of these nations the Lord your God is dispossessing them before you, in order to fulfill the promise that the Lord made on oath to your ancestors, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. ⁶ Know, then, that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land to occupy because of your righteousness; for you are a stubborn people. (Deut. 9.4-6)

Well! That would be tough to swallow. After all that time in the wilderness and to hear this. That would definitely teach me to listen.

Moses reminds the people of the Golden Calf incident and what he did to save them from complete and total destruction. Again, humbling stuff to hear for sure.

Acts 24: Paul’s third defense speech, this time in front of the Roman governor, Antonius Felix, high priest Ananias, and Jewish prosecutors in Caesarea. This is similar to his early defenses. What I find interesting is that Felix seems to like Paul. He starts to meet with Paul on a regular basis for 2 years, but he doesn’t release him. Kinda strange!!!

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