August 17, 2013

Deuteronomy 32:3-4 I will proclaim the name of the LORD.
Oh, praise the greatness of our God!
He is the Rock, his works are perfect,
and all his ways are just.
A faithful God who does no wrong,
upright and just is he.

Throughout his life, Moses sought to help the Israelites understand who God is and what He is like. They had no background, no body of literature to help them in that, so Moses very literally wrote the book on the subject. Today we of course have the whole Bible, which starts with the five books of Moses, and now includes the story of Christ, prophesied in the Old Testament, even by Moses, and we have centuries of many people writing about their experiences of the God of the Bible. Even so, we need reminders, because the devil is constantly trying to paint a false picture of God in people’s minds and hearts. Specifically, what Moses says in verse 4 here is denied at every turn, because the devil wants us to think that God is capricious and unfair, completely unreliable. That’s all the more reason to know that He is exactly as Moses says here, because the devil is indeed a liar. (John 8:44) The more accurate an image of God we have in our hearts and minds, the more we will trust Him and the more we will desire to serve Him in full obedience. A major job of believers is to reflect God’s character as accurately as possible, so that those seeing us may understand that such a God really exists, and He cares about them. That can’t be communicated effectively with just words, but we do need to be able to explain to people what they are seeing when they see God through us. (1 Peter 3:15) That’s one more reason to plant as much of the Bible as possible in our hearts and minds.

As I keep being reminded, I grew up with an enormous advantage over most people in this area, with a family heritage of Bible scholarship, on top of loving and serving the God of the Bible. Because of that, I often have to remind myself that the person I’m talking to doesn’t have the background for understanding who and what God is that I do. Many years ago I once had someone come right out and say, “Just who is this ‘God’ you keep talking about?” He was in a militant offshoot of Buddhism, and being Japanese, was familiar with the Shinto pantheon of gods of all shapes and sizes, and what I was talking about was obviously entirely different from that. I didn’t bring him to repentance and faith right there, but I hope I left him with a few things to think about! Like Moses, I need to keep reminding the believers, even, just who it is they have committed to serve. I have a huge ally in that (though that’s an inadequate way to put it) in the Holy Spirit, because only He can really reveal God to people’s hearts. However, He can and will use me in doing that, if I will be humble and obedient.

Father, I do desire that as many as possible know You, and Jesus Christ the Lord. I pray that You would use me more and more for that purpose, speaking Your Word through me and manifesting Your presence in me, for a massive harvest in Your kingdom, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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