Pastoral Commentary for Deuteronomy 29:1-30:10
Author: Pastor Bob Nordlie
In the covenant renewal ceremony that took place in the land of Moab, God gave Israel every reason to obey His commands, reminding them of all the grace He had shown them in Egypt, in the wilderness, and in giving them the land of their enemies. It is always the grace of God that moves us and empowers us to obey Him. The purpose of the covenant renewal was to demonstrate God's faithfulness to fulfill the promises He made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that He would be their God, and they would be His people. God reminded His people of the detestable idols they saw in Egypt which bore "poisonous fruit" and brought suffering and destruction. God warned them that the same thing would happen if they were to forsake the LORD's covenant and worshiped false gods. Sometimes when we read and study God's Word we have questions that remain unanswered. However, God tells us that He has made known everything necessary for our sanctification. "The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law" (Deuteronomy 29:20). God knew, however, that His chosen people were sinful by nature and would fall short of the covenant commands He gave them. Therefore, He promised that when they recalled His blessings and curses and turned to Him in repentance that He would forgive and restore them. God promised Israel that through the repentance He brought about by Law and Gospel "God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live" (Deuteronomy 30:6).