Today’s reading is Deuteronomy 14-16
Recall that Moses is addressing the next generation of Israelites. All those who left Egypt in the exodus have passed on and while some of these adults may have been tiny children at the time and survived up until now, God clearly said that no man or woman of the age of accountability when they grumbled against Him in Numbers 20 would enter the promised land. (Numbers 14:28-30)
So now we have this new generation who are about to enter into the land that they should have been raised in had their parents been obedient to YHWH. They are no doubt very aware of this and understand the importance of all the instructions Moses is giving them.
Keep in mind, as Moses goes over the commandments and instructions from YHWH that this is not information that originated with Moses, but with YHWH Himself. Moses was just the guy who delivered the telegram, so to speak. When Matthew, Mark, Luke, etc tell us what Messiah said, we don’t refer to this as “The words of Matthew” or “The sermon of Mark”. Instead, we rightly attribute it to Messiah, as we should. The same principle should be applied to YHWH’s words when Moses is the one relaying them. To attribute them to Moses makes them one step easier for folks to dismiss. Let us encourage everyone to face the Father fully, in wholehearted pursuit of Him!
We will see a review of many things in our reading today, some of which we’ve already read about at least twice in other books.
When does a good parent repeat things over and over? When they are important.
Deuteronomy 14:1-2 details again how we are not to cut ourselves in honor of the dead. Detached from context, this is often misconstrued as a passage against tattoos. You can read my notes on this on my Leviticus 19-21 post.
Deuteronomy 14:3-21 details again what is considered food and what is not considered food according to YHWH. This was declared in Leviticus 13 but we can see there was also prior knowledge of these guidelines even before the time of Leviticus in Genesis 7:1-3 and we see that Peter was still living according to YHWH’s instruction in Acts 10:14. You can read more about Peter’s vision and the tragic way we have willfully mistranslated it (and taught others to do the same Matt 5:19) by checking out my Leviticus 11-13 notes here.
Why does YHWH instruct us so carefully on what is to be food, what is not to be food, what is clean, what is not clean? He tells us.
Deut 14:21 For you are a people holy to YHWH your God.
We are important to Him. We are special to Him. We are His representatives in the world.
Also in Deut 14:21 If you haven’t already, you can read my paper: Do not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk: another possibility.
In Deut 14, pay attention to what is being tithed. It’s not money – and they did have a monetary system then. Remember when Abraham insisted on paying for Sarah’s burial site? Immediately following this are the very surprising (to us) instructions on what to do with that tithe if one is unable to travel to a feast. Deut 14:24-25 Most people have never read that passage and when they finally do, they have to read it a few times in order to believe it!
Deut 15 describes part of the welfare system set up by YHWH. I specifically zeroed in on how, when we give, we are to give freely, not grudgingly, with a wide open hand. Deut 15:11. It is not our place to judge if someone is worthy when the Father puts it on our heart to give. We have to be sensitive to those nudges and when we receive one, rejoice knowing we have an opportunity to serve the Father in doing so. When the Father prompts us to give of our resources (all of which He has provided to us to begin with), what the receiver does with it is none of our business. Books open, eyes on Him.
Deut 16 details the Biblical feasts again, make sure you read each time these feasts are mentioned. We should never have the mindset of “I’ve already read this in the last book so I can skip this section.” Again, when does a Father repeat Himself? When it is important. We will go on to see them being kept throughout the Bible. They were never abolished, diminished, or done away with in YHWH’s word, teachings, or example. The next Holy day (also known as Moedim, appointed time, feast of YHWH, or Biblical feast) is Passover so mark your calendars! (*At the time of writing. Depending on the reading cycle Passover may have already passed). While there are different calendars people use, the date we use can be found by simply googling “Passover” and the current year.
Some extra verses to feed your soul today:
“I am God I do not change.” Malachi 3:6
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” ~Matthew 11:28-30
“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” ~Jeremiah 29:13
I’m grateful to be here with you, on this wonderful adventure studying the greatest book ever written!
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!