Keep Your Soul Diligently
Pastor Tony Chute
Overview: Moses prepared Israel to enter the Promised Land by focusing their attention on the land as a gift from God that included covenant obligations. The land was gifted to them as a result of God delivering them from slavery in Egypt and guiding them to their final destination. The covenant obligations were stipulated at Mount Horeb when Israel received the Ten Commandments and were to be passed on to successive generations. Israel’s residency in the land thus depended upon their continued commitment to godly living as described in God’s Word and would serve as a demonstration of God’s goodness for all the world to see. Given the tendency of Israel to stray from God’s commandments, Moses warned the people to guard their hearts from choosing a different path and encouraged them to seek God’s restorative mercy whenever they failed to honor Him as Lord.
01. We keep our soul diligently by knowing God’s Word. This includes accepting His Word above all other words; neither adding to nor taking away from His Word; hearing and doing His Word; and passing on His Word to others.
02. We keep our soul diligently by knowing God. This includes acknowledging Him as the only God among many gods; exalting Him as the transcendent God while embracing Him as near to us; embracing His jealousy for holy living; and rejoicing in His mercy towards sinners.
03. We keep our soul diligently by knowing ourselves. This includes admitting our need to be delivered from sin; accepting our obligation to live obediently before the Lord; realizing our tendency to stray from Him; and remembering His mercies toward us.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION & DISCOVERY
1. Why is it necessary to understand that God delivered Israel before He gave them the Ten Commandments? What parallels can we draw from this pattern with regard to justification and sanctification?
2. What examples do you know of people adding to or taking away from God’s Word? How does our view of inspiration and biblical authority inform our application of God’s Word, including and especially the areas that we find hard to accept?
3. What attributes of God stand out to you from this chapter? How would you explain to someone that God is both transcendent and immanent? How would you explain to someone that God is jealous for holy living and merciful towards sinners?
4. How were the people of Israel expected to propagate the knowledge of God to their families and the world around them? Do you agree that God’s laws are so rich and good for us that, when lived accordingly, others will notice the difference in our lives and be drawn to worship Him?
5. What do you think Moses felt as he described God’s judgment and mercy, knowing all the while that he would not be allowed to enter the Promised Land? Do God’s temporal judgments and fatherly discipline erase His love for us? Discuss the blessings of God’s promise in this text to love His people and honor His covenant, even when we fail to live up to our obligations as Christians.