“You shall therefore keep every commandment which I am commanding you today, so that you may be strong and go in and possess the land into which you are about to cross to possess it;” (Deuteronomy 11:8)
It is a simple formula that God sets before us in Deuteronomy 11:8. We are to keep ALL His commandments, so that we may be strong and possess the land that God gives us. No “ifs”, “ands”, or “buts” are attached to God’s statement. We must keep all His law to be strong and possess His land.
In the context from verse one, the people to whom God was talking had seen His mighty works in destroying Israel’s enemies. Those of us that have come to a saving knowledge of Christ through repentance and faith, have come to understand the gospel of His person and work. He accomplished for us in the spiritual world what God did for Israel in the physical world. When Jesus died as a sacrifice for sin, He destroyed the power of sin, the world, and the devil.
God is not asking us to keep His law for the purpose of self accomplishment, but because of His love for us. “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15) God proved His love for us when He sacrificed His beloved Son on our behalf. The best response to His love is to love Him back by keeping His law and doing what He says.
Obedience to God includes a willingness to set a time of devotion to Him every day, by reading His word and adhering to the commands found there. We are to live by faith and trust in His divine care, to die to self by sharing Christ in the face of opposition, rejection, and even physical abuse. We are to live morally pure lives, keeping ourselves from all forms of idolatry and covetousness.
To fail to love God through obedience is to be cut off from His power and thereby forfeit His peace and joy. Failure for the Christian is an unwillingness to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit through pride and a confidence in our own ability. Hence, the simple formula that is set before us. KEEP EVERY COMMANDMENT, SO THAT YOU MAY BE STRONG AND POSSESS THE LAND.
Continue reading in Deuteronomy eleven and you find that the land to which God brought Israel was not the land of Egypt, where the people toiled and labored and lived in bondage, but it was a land for which God Himself cared. It was the power of God for the sun and rain; it was a land flowing with milk and honey that God produced and not the people. So is the result of saving faith.
On the night that Jesus was betrayed, He comforted His disciples, shared His great love for them, and promised them the coming Holy Spirit. He said to them, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.” (John 16:33) He also said to them, “I have told you these things so that My joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11)
Are we believing in Jesus today for the obedience that He desires and requires of us all?