Today’s readings are Deuteronomy 3-4
Let’s dive in and soak up the word!
In Deuteronomy 3:18 we see the sentence :
“All your men of valor shall cross over armed before your brothers, the people of Israel.”.
The word valor here means what it seems to mean: strong, brave, bold, courageous.
The Hebrew word for this is chayil.
What is interesting is that when we look at that famous passage in Proverbs about a “woman of virtue” and “virtuous woman”, the original word used for virtue and virtuous is – guess what? chayil.
And seriously, that changes things.
So next time you hear woman of virtue, think to yourself “woman of valor”.
I bet if you know women like this who are striving to follow after YHWH you’ll see that the more accurate translation (valor) is a much better fit to the character being referenced.
Don’t take my word for it. Look up these verses on biblehub.com and click “interlinear”, then the number above the word to check it out in the concordance.
Deuteronomy 4:2 2 “You shall not add to the word that I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of YHWH your God that I command you.”
Unfortunately, this has happened over the centuries through translations and scribes. Now, most of these changes were well meaning in an earnest (and often difficult) attempt to go from one language to another. I will try to point you to interlinear versions when we come across certain key verses so that you can see for yourself where something was added or taken away but keep your eyes open for it as well. The more you know the foundational Scriptures, the quicker any translator issues or contradictions will jump out at you. The Bible does not contradict itself so if we ever see this, we know something is amiss, either in our understanding or in the translation.
We are reading the foundational Scriptures of the entire Bible, the very words of YHWH Himself, the creator of all things. The “new” testament consists of people teaching from and living according to the books we are studying now. Scripture is the straight edge and all else must line up to it in order to be consistent, Godly, and true. Fortunately, with the map oriented property and our foundation set, the “New Testament” does just that.
9 “Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children’s children— 10 how on the day that you stood before the Lord your God at Horeb, the Lord said to me, ‘Gather the people to me, that I may let them hear my words, so that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children so.’ Deut 4:9-10
Can you imagine standing before YHWH, hearing His voice, seeing His power visibly, in the way that Israel did – and then forgetting? Stop and consider the gravity of this. With all that they witnessed, and they were still prone to forget, how much more are we? Remember, we are not given this history so that we can see how much better we are than ancient Israel, but so that we can recognize how much alike we are with ancient Israel, dare I saw even more prone to the things they were prone to. These are grave and serious warnings. You’ll notice they are repeated throughout Deuteronomy and after reading them for a short time they begin to sound to me more like pleadings of a loving Father.
“So that they may learn” It is a process. Even Israel had to go through the process. We are a work in progress and if we don’t commit to working on us, we make no progress.
The father knows us better than anyone, He always reminds us to remember the things he knows we are going to forget. ❤️Therefore, whenever you see God say “remember” pay special attention to the directive after.
Also note the directive to teach all that we know and have seen to our children and our children’s children. This is our responsibility as parents and we must work at it daily, regardless of our children’s age. If we have a conversation with our children about the price of milk, it wouldn’t hurt one bit to end with “You know YHWH is the one true God, Messiah is returning, and we must seek Him.” Am I kidding? Nope. Just wait til Brady calls me today.
Here is another post it note challenge:
“The Father reminds us because He knows we will forget.”
Write it out somewhere, place it where you will see it, take a photo, and put it in the comments on today’s discussion thread.
It’s amazing how so many Biblical passages read like current events in our time:
Deuteronomy 4:27 And the Lord will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the Lord will drive you. 28 And there you will serve gods of wood and stone, the work of human hands, that neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell. 29 But from there you will seek the Lord your God and you will find him, if you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul. 30 When you are in tribulation, and all these things come upon you in the latter days, you will return to the Lord your God and obey his voice. 31 For the Lord your God is a merciful God. He will not leave you or destroy you or forget the covenant with your fathers that he swore to them.
Now read Deut 4:29 again and then read Jeremiah 29:13
As we will see, the recurring theme of Deuteronomy is an urging to choose life by following YHWH’s teachings and recognizing them as the blessing that they are.
We have seen in our reading and will see many times over in the Bible and in life, YHWH’s principles defy the logic of the world but they require faith and trust in Him in order to take the necessary steps to see this.
It’s not just about trusting in Him – but trusting in Him enough to do as He says.
For the Israelites, obedience to YHWH meant Freedom, Life, and Blessings.
It is no different with us.
May we choose life!
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!