Not a very fun title, saying that "we are without an excuse" may bring back memories of your high school math teacher telling you this when you didn't have your homework, or your parents saying this to you after you did not do your assigned chores, but watched TV instead. Or even as an adult, you really don't want to hear this from your boss or even a friend when you haven't met the goal or completed the favor you were asked to do. But it is what it is, if you don't follow and commit to the requirements, rules, and standards...then we are without excuse...
That is what resounded in my mind and heart as I was reading the book of Deuteronomy today. A friend, Pastor Abie, suggested that we read the book of Deuteronomy a couple of weeks ago, so that we would be familiarized and be able to follow along better with his current teachings on the Book. He is an excellent teacher and was doing such a great job, I felt at first like "I've read that book before, may have been a while but..." To be honest, I am not a Deuteronomy kinda gal, I'm more of a Psalms gal...or at least I thought I was. See, after my husband passed, I LIVED in the Psalms for about 10 years. I read them over and over, and even when I tried to move on to something else, I felt strongly drawn back to the Psalms. That Book ministered to me inside and out, teaching and assuring me that God is a Comforter, a Peace giver. But when Pastor Abie suggested reading Deuteronomy that morning, I slowly began to feel "Yep, it's time to learn more about you God, more of Your character...even if there are a lot of names in there that I cannot pronounce." :-)
And it has been a new adventure! I am learning how God truly is a Father, a Protector, a Provider that wants the best for His children. He is also a Disciplinarian and if you were blessed to have a wonderful earthly father like I was, then you know that with all the love, provisions and nurturing also comes the discipline. A real father sets good standards and expects his children to abide by those standards, not because he wants to be a dictator, but because he wants to protect us and help us to become all that we should be.
And so it was in the Book of Deuteronomy chapter 30, after God through Moses has given the children of Israel all the blessings that come with following and abiding by God's standards and also the curses that come when they do not, in verses 11 through 14 Moses says:
"Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach. It is not up in heaven, so that you have to ask, “Who will ascend into heaven to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, “Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?” No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it."
In other words...in my translation "Y'all heard and got the Law right? Well you are without excuse if you don't obey it. The Truth is the Truth." The Israelites had experienced physical proof of God's goodness as a Father, a Provider, as a Protector, a Faithful God. Now He is saying to them Obey Me, yes the One that delivered you from Pharoah, opened the Red Sea, sent you Manna, provided meat, sustained your clothes and shoes, caused you to conquer your enemies...I am the same yesterday, today and forever...Obey Me.
Fast forward to today...me...God has proven Himself to me over and over again, He is my Father, my Provider, My Protector, My healer, My Deliverer and on and on and He is saying to me "Obey Me",
" I will fight your battles".
I read on a blog about a person that is attending a church that recently was found to have some corruption in the leadership. This person wrote that they believe that the people that still attend there (themselves included), even though they know about the corruption that transpired, are victims because they themselves did not commit the wrong doings; and that they are in a no win situation and cannot make a decision on what to do. First of all my heart goes out to them and secondly, this is where you need to know the Word and voice of God for yourself. God has standards and if His standards are being compromised in any way, then you need to get direction from HIM on how to get on the right track. Because...we are without excuse...if we KNOW that something is not lining up with GOD's Word (Standard) then there should be a big 'ol red flag flapping in your face. I know that it is not easy, and that is why I am so thankful to be learning more about God's character and His standards in His Word.
No one is perfect and there will be times that we fail, God knows this, but we cannot stay in that position. Hopefully we all can go forward on this journey of learning more about God and what He expects of us, so that when we stand before Him, we will have no excuses for not following Him to the fullest.