In Deuteronomy 5, Moses presents the nation of Israel with the Ten Commandments. He then tells them why they should obey these orders:
These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:1-9
Too many people view God as a Cosmic Killjoy — He gives us all these ‘silly’ rules just to take away our fun.
Have you ever heard someone say, “I’ll never be a Christian. They never have any fun!” Maybe you’ve said something similar yourself.
In reality, Christians can have MORE fun. Why?
Parents make rules because they love their children and want to protect them from harm. So they warn their kids, “Don’t touch the stove element or you’ll get burned!”
The same is true with God. He loves us and wants what is best for us, so He sets boundaries, like a fence around a playground. If we run out into the street chasing after a ball, we are likely to get hurt.
Unfortunately we are rebellious children, wanting to do things our own way. What happens when we break the law?
If we run around with the wrong crowd and lie, cheat, steal, commit adultery, murder, etc., we will hurt others and ourselves. Even more, we lose our relationship with God. Where is the fun and freedom in that?
We need to learn the rules of the game, otherwise we will ‘foul out.” [I had to throw that in here with the NBA playoffs in progress.] But we can keep playing if we stay in bounds and follow the rules.
Moses told the Israelites what they could expect if they followed God’s commands:
- They and their children would enjoy long life.
- It would go well with them.
- They would increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey.
Doesn’t that sound better than getting drunk and throwing up all over the place? Or having casual sex and getting an STD? Or overdosing on drugs? Or getting fired or even going to prison due to fraudulent business practices? Or . . . . Well, you get the idea.
One of my favorite books is Written By The Hand of God by Bill Bright. If you want to learn what a blessing God has given us through His laws, read it now. You can find a copy for $4.80 plus shipping at http://www.campuscrusade.com/catalog/Written-by-the-Hand-of-God.html
What is your view of God? Do you see Him as a killjoy or a kind parent?
How does your viewpoint affect your attitude and actions?