Field Stone Cottage Blog

Thursday, May 7, 2009

God's Love

One of the things that has been the focus of my attention during my hiatus from blogging is the Bible study I've been doing this year on the life of Moses. We've studied through the books of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers this year and are now finishing up the book of Deuteronomy. And this book, Deuteronomy, has surely captured my attention! Right now, its my favorite book of the Bible! The leader of our study has described it as similar to a commencement address, this series of addresses to the Israelites that Moses gives before they cross the Jordan to inhabit the land God has promised them for generations now. I can see her point. There is certainly a retrospective quality to how Moses speaks to them as they are about to commence a new stage of their life as a nation, the nation chosen by God. But to me, no commencement address conveys the kind of love that Moses does. Its the kind of love a father might convey to his beloved children as he gives them his final advice from his death bed. And in a very real way, it is that. Moses knows that he will die before his people enter Canaan. He's grown to love these "stiff-necked, rebellious" people through his forty years of leading them, as a parent loves his recalcitrant children. But still, he could not love the people the way he does as a human shepherd. He is a servant of God and he is really conveying to them the love of God. By extension, Moses is conveying God's love to all of us present day people of God people too. And that's the part I've been just soaking up!

There are lots of warnings of curses, as well as blessings, in the book of Deuteronomy; curses in the form of pronouncements of what will happen to God's people if they incur His wrath by their disobedience to Him, especially by idolatry. But I find that oddly comforting too. He doesn't just let us go our own way when we turn away from Him. He does all of those terrible things to bring us to the end of ourselves so we have no where to turn but back to Him. Now if that isn't love, I don't know what is!


ellen b. said...

I think it's time to re-read Deuteronomy! I can understand that love since I have an unruly son that I ask God's mercy for everyday :0)
Blessings Dorothy

Willow said...

Having an unruly son also, I find those are words of comfort. I agree that Deut is more like final words than a commencement speech. We read John 17 in Bible study this week--it's a great pattern for how to pray for 'our own'.