Pastor Thomas Smith   -  

“Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse; A blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you this day: And a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the LORD your God…”┬áDeuteronomy 11:26-28

What a gracious God our Lord is! Our text tells us He set before Israel “a blessing and a curse.” They would be blessed if they would “obey the commandments of the LORD your God.” This verse reveals not only the care He has for us in that He promises and provides blessing for our journey, but also the conduct He expects of us. He gives His children the responsibility to obey Him. God’s blessings are promised to them that obey His commandments.

He did not make us as machines that are programmed to follow Him without any love or devotion on our part. He wants us to obey Him and He blesses us when we do, but He leaves choices to us. This, in no way, diminishes His power and sovereignty. It is the way He sovereignly designed us, that we would love and serve Him by choice, preferring His will above our own. As God’s beloved children, saved by His marvelous grace, we are to choose the path of obedience and submission to Him.

Everyone wants to enjoy life and experience blessings. However, we face decisions that determine how those blessings might be enjoyed or experienced. Will we choose to obey God and His commandments, and trust that blessings will follow? Or, will we seek to find our own way of being blessed, while disregarding His will? One is a life of faith, love, and obedience. The other is a life of self-will, pride, and self-determination. These choices are ours to make, but if we do not follow the path of obedience, we will not see the Lord’s blessings that otherwise might have been ours.

In another place, God promised Israel that if they would diligently obey His commandments, “All these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God” (Deuteronomy 28:2). Blessings come to those who obey. Another place says, “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19). To obey is a choice that we make every day, and it is a choice that leads to God’s blessing.