Summary: At the backdrop of abundance and prosperity, people have the tendency to forget the Being behind all of it. Deuteronomy 8:1-20 reminds us that God is the One who causes the good things that are happening to us.
Forgetfulness has been a problem most people experience. remember the time when you have something to get from a particular place, and when you are already there you thought to your self, "What on earth am i doing here?" Funny, isn't it? But most of us have experience that.
This morning,i like to share with you another form of forgetfulness that we are prone to commit. That is, forgetting God especially during the times of our prosperity and abundance.
In our passage, Moses, knowing the mere fact that he won't be able to enter into the promised land and that his fellow Israelites were about to take over the land, set a warning before them not dare to forget God when they enter and enjoy the gift of the promised land (vv. 7-9).
How easily people take away God from the picture when we enjoy good things. Because of the alluring beauty of blessings and the happiness it brings, we become preoccupy with it, and the thought of God easily vanish from our minds.
Moses discerned that his fellow men would be preoccupied by the many goos things in the land that would cause them to forget God. The point of this passage simply states, with all the good things in the land and the enjoyment it brings, do not even dare forget God!
In order to prevent this, Moses lays down three important facts about the way God dealt with them in the past. And these facts ring true up to now.
I. God gives Real Satisfaction (v. 3)
Moses reminds the Israelites of their "wilderness experience", wherein the Israelites complained of hunger which caused responded by God's word of manna. It appeared and the hungry complainers were satisfied (cf. Ex. 16:4; 13-21, 31ff).
Out of God's mouth comes satisfaction.
We can have all we want in life but only God gives real satisfaction. Without real satisfaction we are restless. We are lost in the vast space of ourselves seeking for something we do not know into places we do not know either.
That's quite hard!
Here's a homely illustration:
You can have delicious foods on the table but not appetite.An expensive soft bed but not sleep. A well-built house but not home. A first-class lots of medicines but not health. Pleasure but not peace. All kinds of amusements but not joy. A dozen of religion but not an ounce of salvation.
This shows how incapable we are and the things of this world to give real satisfaction. God is the only One who has the power to satisfy us.
Quote: "Our souls are restless till we find rest in you." -Saint Augustine of Hippo
II. God's goodness in the Past (vv. 14b-16)
A glimpse of our past will reveal the remarkable foot steps of God's goodness to us. Our past experience of God's goodness is a good starting point to be humble and acknowledge God in every seasons of life. Humility is the antidote to forgetfulness of God. When we begin to see that all that we are and all that we have are the results of God's gracious dealing we avoid forgetting Him.
A little evidence of God's gracious dealing to men is shown in the wonders and order of natures.
Our very own planet has a balance atmosphere. It is made up of 78% Nitrogen, 21 % oxygen, and 1% lots of other elements. Try to change the value of each element and life would cease to exist.
Indeed, God has been so good to us since the very day of our birth.
III. God gives Enablement (vv 17-18)
Success in any endeavors--even in Christian ministry--can cause devastating pride. A person who thought to him/erself that everything he/s has is because of his/er cleverness, might, and consistency.
But the truth is the opposite. God provides enablement to carry out our daily tasks. Our strength, wisdom, opportunities are all by-products of the Sovereign One. We may have good visions in life and lay-out plans but only God gives opportunities to work out those visions and plans.
In other words, it is an imperative for us to realize that we all depend on God for enablement. this truth calls us to be humble enough to avoid the pitfall of forgetting God.
As believers of Christ, the Holy Spirit is the One who enables us perform our tasks with effectiveness that produce great results.
Do not let the overwhelming force of blessings (or even trials)to preoccupy you that you forget the One who does good things.
Awards, achievements and everything that we have and we will be are results of immeasurable goodness. Let us be humble and thankful before Him.
We are what we are and we have what we have not because we are clever but because God is so wise; not because we are mighty but because God is powerful; and not because we are consistent but because God is faithful. Do not forget God.