God’s Covenant—- Choosing Life
Text: Deuteronomy 27-30
Our Focus: Deuteronomy 29:1, 9-13; 30:1-6, 15-20
Why are we here? What is life all about? What is the meaning of it all?
If you were to confront anyone and give them a choice between living in their present circumstances or not living at all, most of us would choose to continue living. This tells where are priorities are!
Life is truly valuable and dear to us, regardless of the circumstances!
But is this what the Bible teaches?
Joh 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, [I am the way, the truth, and the life]: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
And Jesus also says:
Joh 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
The Bible teaches us that if we choose life in this world then we have not chosen true life.
To choose eternal life then is to choose death!
We must “die to our flesh” in order to live for Our Lord Jesus Christ!
When God calls out a special people to Himself, He will always make a place for us to meet with Him. To the Jew it was the Tabernacle and then the Temple. To the Church it is our local assemblies.
The Jew is promised the land of Palestine where they will rule with King Jesus for 1000 years.
The Church is promised a home in Heaven for eternity!
There is a great difference between these two promises!
In order for these things to happen “choices” must be made “while we are still living” in these bodies of flesh.
This Book of Deuteronomy we have been studying tells us that Israel will take possession of the land of Palestine.
69 times in this book we can read that Israel will take possession of Palestine. It is the Jew who own the land of Palestine.
But, the Lord did set down conditions for them to stay in the land!
They had to obey the Word of God and judgments would come if they would not obey!
The prophecies of dispersion are foretold!
We know that they were dispersed by Assyria about 722 BC, and by Babylon about 586 BC and finally by Rome in 70 AD.
But we also see that God will reveal that Israel would once again possess the land.
They only live on a small portion of it now that began on May 14, 1948. They added another portion during the six day war of 1967.
The ultimate fulfillment and the return of Israel to all their land will come during the Millennial Kingdom “after” the Church has been called home!
Before this Palestinian Covenant will be fulfilled, Israel must first come to a place of repentance and knowledge of the Messiah whom they rejected the first time.
The Bible tells us:
Zec 12:10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.
Zec 12:11 In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.
So what we study in these final chapters of Deuteronomy are prophesies that are partially fulfilled and the remainder will be fulfilled after the Church Age ends, with the “Rapture” of the Bride of Christ, the Church.
One of the main things we should determine is, that the land of Palestine belongs to Israel and not any other nation because God says so, and we do not need any other reason to believe this!
The true Palestinians are the Israelites!
Some of God’s promises are conditional!
His blessings are based on obedience from the heart!
God will keep all His Word, when we meet all His conditions!
Deu 29:1 These are the words of the covenant, which the LORD commanded Moses to make with the children of Israel in the land of Moab, beside the covenant which he made with them in Horeb.
Deu 29:9 Keep therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may prosper in all that ye do.
Deu 29:10 Ye stand this day all of you before the LORD your God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, with all the men of Israel,
Deu 29:11 Your little ones, your wives, and thy stranger that is in thy camp, from the hewer of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water:
Deu 29:12 That thou shouldest enter into covenant with the LORD thy God, and into his oath, which the LORD thy God maketh with thee this day:
Deu 29:13 That he may establish thee to day for a people unto himself, and that he may be unto thee a God, as he hath said unto thee, and as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.
Chapters 29 and 30 are known to Bible scholars as the Palestinian Covenant. Many say we can understand the Bible best by learning these covenants.
There are many people we call Dispensationalist, who study the Bible by the dispensations but I believe if we are to understand what God says we will use both the Covenants and the Dispensations as we rightly divide the Word of God.
The Covenant given at Mount Horeb was the Moral Laws, along with the laws of worship, and the oracles of life.
This the Mosaic Law or the 613 laws given to Israel, or whats called the Mosaic Covenant.
This Palestinian Covenant deals with the land that was promised to Abraham in the Abrahamic Covenant.
This is not as complicated as it may sound and makes a good Bible study.
God does not wait until after Israel enters this land of Canaan to make a covenant with them. This is an unconditional covenant AND some conditions must be met for them to stay in the land, BUT there is also no condition to be met for them to own the land.
This is the fulfillment in part of the promise made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
God says there are many mansions in His house in Heaven, this is an unconditional statement, but there are conditions that must be met for us to live in our mansion. Namely faith in the work of our Savior, The Lord Jesus Christ!
But even today, once Born Again as Jesus said, we already own that Home in the Gloryland!
We make a “covenant of faith” with the Lord when we pray the sinners prayer:
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
1Jn 4:15 “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God”, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
Heb 12:24 [And to Jesus the mediator of the “new covenant”], and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel
The secret to life after being saved is being obedient to the Word of God!
Obedience is still the place of blessings! Israel was warned by Moses of this fact. Blessings come with obedience!
Notice Moses began with the leaders of Israel.
It is sad to say but in 1789 our nation adopted the Constitution of the United States of America. These are the laws that govern our nation and strict guidelines were given before any change could be made in any of those laws.
Our leaders are to obey those laws and then see that they are obeyed.
Our nation was formed as a Christian nation and now our leaders have forgotten that fact and ignore not only God’s Word but they ignore our Constitution as well!
They have placed themselves above the Law of the land and the Laws of God!
And we wonder why America is suffering! Our leaders do not set a very good example to our own shame.
Our laws are for our leaders, every individual, and for every immigrant that comes to America!
How many migrants have forgotten this and want to live by their own laws which is why many left their own nation to come to America.
We can also see that not only the leaders of Israel but everyone else were to have that same obedience to the Law of God!
The men, the women, the children and any servants and also any stranger that was not a Jew.
How can we say we have a God if we do not yield ourselves to His Word?
What God does for us depends a great deal on how we relate to Him:
2Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
2Co 6:15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
2Co 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? [for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people].
2Co 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
2Co 6:18 [And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty].
To Israel the Palestinian Covenant is forever but for them to enjoy this land promised to Abraham, would depend on how well they were obedient to the Word of God.
It is also important to realize, that what these people decided this day would also affect their children and grandchildren, and all their descendants for years to come.
This was not so much a warning as it was the truth!
Deu 30:1 And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee,
Deu 30:2 And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;
As we try to understand this covenant of God we will see about seven great promises but we will not see
the word “IF”.
Notice the first thing we see is the “fact” that Israel would be dispersed among all nations because of disobedience and unfaithfulness.
This is a fact and it has happened!
There will be a future repentance and a coming back to God.
This has not happened! They were dispersed for disobedience and they will have to obey for this to take place but this will be under “Grace” and not by any law.
There are at least 12 prophesies of the regathering of Israel in the Old Testament and they have not taken place yet even though other prophesies have been fulfilled to make preparation for this event.
*****Deu 30:3 That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.
This is an important prophecy of the Messiah. This is the very first time the Bible mentions the return of Christ Jesus to the Earth in the Bible.
Jud 1:14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
Jude makes a record of what Enoch said, but this was not recorded in the Old Testament for the Jews to see.
These children of Israel were to listen entirely to the Word that God gave to Moses!
This prophecy has not yet been fulfilled! Yes, Jesus the Messiah came to begin His Church and to make a way of salvation but this was before Israel had been dispersed by Rome after 70 AD, when they have been dispersed all over the world.
It is the second coming of Christ Jesus that will bring peace to this world and blessings to the land for 1000 years. This will be after Jesus comes in the clouds to get His Church.
The Bible says:
1Co 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.
1Co 15:24 [Then cometh the end], “when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God”, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.
*****Deu 30:4 If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:
Deu 30:5 And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.
We can see that this is the promise that Israel will be restored to the land but only after they have been scattered all over the world.
No amount of scattering can change the “fact” that in the future God will bring them back into their land. This is made very clear in this passage. This is not some new land but the exact same land promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
*****Deu 30:6 And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.
Notice there will be national conversion BUT Even this may not mean every single individual but it does mean that Israel as a whole will be converted to Christianity.
Jeremiah 32:39 gives us this same prophecy.
Hosea gives us this same prophecy.
Ezekiel 11:19-20 and Ezekiel 36:26-27 gives us this prophecy.
And the Apostle Paul wrote to the Church:
Rom 11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
Rom 11:26 And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:
Rom 11:27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.
Notice the fulness of the Church still refers to the Rapture!
BUT, This is God’s fulfillment of this Palestinian Covenant!
This is the second coming of Christ to judge the enemies of Israel, as the Church will already be in Heaven!
The “enemies” of Israel and of the Church, are all that reject Jehovah God, The God of the Holy Trinity!
This is where many get lost in the Word of God. The Church is not “Spiritual Israel”!
These Old Testament prophesies are not being fulfilled in the Church!
These prophesies were not fulfilled at the first coming of Our Lord!
Moses is speaking to Israel in these passages and not some other people of God!
The Church has “NO” covenant relationship to the land of Palestine!
These blessings and curses were declared to Israel and not to the Church!
God will forgive Israel of her sins and they will be establish in Messiah’s Kingdom:
The Bible says:
Zec 14:8 And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be.
Zec 14:9 [And the LORD shall be king over all the earth]: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.
Deu 30:15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;
Deu 30:16 In that I command thee this day to love the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the LORD thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.
When Christ Jesus was on this Earth, He said the greatest commandment was “to Love God with all our heart” and that all the laws could be wrapped up in that command of “Love”.
We see this in these words of Moses. If we love the LORD as we should, we will walk in His ways. We will keep His commandments. [He will bless us for our obedience!]
We know that Israel lost their land for more than 1878 years and have still not gotten it all back.
God will return all their land but we will probably not see it in our life time. Why? Not because of obedience! God will return the land to Israel because He promised.
It is in the promises of God that we have written down for us in this Bible, that we need to place our faith and not what the world tells us. We never read of God breaking a promise and a covenant is a promise!
God ask us to trust the Lord Jesus as our Savior.When we pray a prayer of faith we receive God’s Promise of eternal life and a place of rest in His House forever!
Deu 30:17 But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;
Deu 30:18 I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it.
Deu 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: [therefore choose life], that both thou and thy seed may live:
Deu 30:20 That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them
Again we see the the word “Heart” is one of the key words in these chapters.
Because we are created in the image of Our God, we have minds to think with, hearts to feel with, [and and a free will to choose]!
God has given us His pure Word and God expects us to make the right choices!
Moses made it very clear to Israel that this should not be a very difficult task.
Only a fool will say there is no God. (Psa 14:1)
We can choose life or we can choose death. We must choose because if we do not choose, we have chosen death!
Blessings still come with obedience and therefore cursings still come with disobedience!
Moses called all God’s creation to witness the great opportunities God was giving Israel at this time.
As believers God gives us a great opportunity for eternal life!
But He also gives us a great opportunity to receive His blessings while we are still living!
We hinder our own blessings with disobedience. Shame on us!