Today’s reading: Deut 33:1–34:12, 2 Cor 8:16–24, Ps 46:1–11
Today’s theme: Today we see the ultimate narrative of the Bible which is God as king in his kingdom. We submit to and worship Him as the rightful king of our lives and all creation. Glory to the King alone.
God is King
Thus the LORD became king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people were gathered, all the tribes of Israel together. Deuteronomy 33:5 (ESV)
As this book draws to a close we focus on God again. The Lord became king in Israel. The passage speaks of God as their teacher and guide (verse 3) too, but one of the ultimate truths of the overall biblical narrative is that God is king. God became or was recognised as king over the people when they were given the law and they agreed to keep it.
We affirm God as king in our lives when we hear His word (the bible), agree with and apply it. In this way we submit ourselves to His loving, sovereign rule and dominion. The ultimate story of God’s word is about God as King in His Kingdom. See Matthew 6:10.
The Lord our shield and sword
Happy are you, O Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD, the shield of your help, and the sword of your triumph! Your enemies shall come fawning to you, and you shall tread upon their backs.” Deuteronomy 33:29 (ESV)
In verse 26 we affirm again that there is no one like the Lord. Here God affirms that His people Israel are special and there is no other nation like them.
This final passage encourages God’s people that His everlasting arms are there for them to lean on and He is their shield and sword. It is not a promise of peaceful paradise but of God’s protection and deliverance in the middle of conflict. We should be encouraged and happy today that the Lord is our shield and sword as we fight the fight of faith. See Ephesians 6:16-17.
The death of Moses
and he buried him in the valley in the land of Moab opposite Beth-peor; but no one knows the place of his burial to this day. Deuteronomy 34:6 (ESV)
This point is picked up in Jude 1:9. The devil would have wanted to have the body of Moses enshrined and then set up as an object of worship and distraction for God’s people. This is because Moses was recognised as being so great. We see the devil’s power is limited as the Archangel rebuked him in the name of the Lord.
Moses was one of the greatest prophets of all time and had experiences with God that no one else will ever have. He inaugurated the old covenant and was the mediator of the law. He saw some of the most breath taking miracles and despite all of this he was only a man, a servant of God. This is emphasised in that when he died God buried him.
We can learn from this that no matter how powerfully God uses us we are yet men subject to death. The abiding glory belongs to God alone through Jesus Christ our Lord. See 1 Peter 4:11 and Romans 11:36.
2 Corinthians 8:16–24
Don’t be arrogant
for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man. 2 Corinthians 8:21 (ESV)
Like Paul we must avoid arrogance when working for the Lord. The Lord knowing we have acted in integrity is good but we need to be mindful of people. We need to ensure that we are open and honest before each other. We must portray the right image to outsiders to the glory of God and so the ministry and work does not come under unnecessary scrutiny or criticism.
The glory of the King
As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker for your benefit. And as for our brothers, they are messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ. So give proof before the churches of your love and of our boasting about you to these men. 2 Corinthians 8:23–24 (ESV)
As individual believers and as a church body we should bring Glory to Christ in our service and giving. We should also proclaim the glorious gospel that the King and his kingdom have come. The Church can also be seen as the glory of Christ because He has redeemed her and she is alluded to as His bride and prize.
We should bring honour and credit to Jesus by promoting His glory and living lives worthy of His calling. We are the light of the world, the body of Christ, the evidence of God’s victory and the proclaimers of His fame.
God our refuge
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1 (ESV)
God remains a refuge for His people today. He is our strength and although He is the mighty King He is still very close and accessible to us. He makes Himself available to help us in times of trouble. We should have faith in God that He can help us right now. See Hebrews 7:25.
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” Psalm 46:10 (ESV)
We can take encouragement that God will be exalted over the nations and throughout the earth in our daily lives. We can trust in God’s power. The context here however is really pointing to the victory of Jesus at the second coming when He will put an end to war (see the previous verse) and all nations will bow to Him as the king. See Revelation 11:15.
Most of the above post is a copy of the original notes from the same date in 2014.
The Gospel Coalition on 2 Corinthians 8