Summary: There are many things in our lives that can lead us to forget about the Lord and how He has blessed us. Moses warned the Israelites about this before they entered the promised land. We must listen to this warning!
Who here has a busy life?
I sure can identify with you all.
• Right now has been one of the busiest times of my life
• I am now a full time college student
• If I do all of the homework, I at times have 6-10 hours of homework per week
• I am still working up to 20-24 hours per week.
• I am a husband and need to meet the needs of my wife
• I am preaching and teaching many Bible studies
• And to top it all off, we have been blessed by God with a house that we have been spending a lot of time fixing up.
I am sure you all have your own lists that are busying your own lives:
• other hobbies and activities
We all have busy lives, but I would like to tonight to leave you with one important thought that I have been reminded of recently and a thought that God through Moses tells His people before their entrance into the promised land at least 6 times in Deuteronomy:
Be careful not to forget the Lord your God!
Read Deut 8:1-20
The children of Israel were being blessed with the Lord with the ability to enter the Promised Land. They would be blessed with many earthly blessings that they didn't have before. But with blessing comes danger. You fall into the danger of thinking you are self-sufficient. You can think in your pride that the blessings you have you got for yourself. You can forget the one who really gave you those blessings!
This is the danger that the Israelites were in, and they ended up not listening to the warnings from the Lord. They did forget the Lord. They would give credit to themselves and their idols for what the Lord gave them. They would live lives showing that they did not know the Lord. And the Lord would fulfill His promises to them by sending them into captivity.
My brothers in sisters, we are in that same danger as the Israelites! We are in danger of forgetting the Lord our God!
FOUR WAYS WE CAN FORGET THE LORD:
1. WE CAN FORGET THE LORD BY THINKING THAT EVERYTHING WE GOT WE GOT OURSELVES.
We can be just like the Israelites. It is easy for us to condemn them for what they did. God was so clearly working among them. He took them out of Egypt, cared for them through the wilderness, brought them into the Promised Land, defeating their enemies before them. We see how the Lord tells them that He is the One doing these things for them in the scriptures. Then they forgot about the Lord and gave themselves the credit for the wealth and possessions that they had. It is easy to condemn them, but we at times are not too much different from them.
The Lord is active in our lives sustaining us, blessing us, giving us and allowing us to have everything that we have! He is the One who gives life, breath, and ALL things (as Paul states in Acts 17). But we forget about the Lord. We think that we got things for ourselves. We feel like we worked so hard, we put in so much time to get what we have; our houses, our clothing, our cars, our jobs, all of our cool technology that we have, etc. We may have put in a lot of work and effort to get these things, but that does not mean that the Lord was not working and giving us the ability to get them! The Israelites put in a lot of effort to get the Promised Land, but the Lord was working the whole time. He is the One that was and still is blessing His people.
“Beware lest you say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.' 18 You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day.”Deut 8:17-18
It amazes me at how easy it can be for me to focus more on my blessings than on the One that gives them!
2. A SECOND WAY WE CAN FORGET THE LORD OUR GOD IS BY THINKING THAT WE CAN SAVE OURSELVES.
This may not be an issue for you as the prior 2, but I have been amazed at how many brethren have believed this. They may not have said “I can save myself, but other things they say show it sometimes.” We may say things like, “I hope I am doing good enough, or obeying the Lord good enough to be saved and to go to heaven.” This kind of comment says that you are focusing more on your works than you should. Guess what: you are not being good enough. You are not obeying the Lord good enough to be saved and to get to heaven. Our hope does not lie in whether or not we are living up to the standard of perfection. We never will! Our hope lies fully on the grace and mercy of God who promises to be merciful to us and to forgive us. The definition of grace is that we are given a gift that we do not deserve. We are not good enough, but the Lord is. He is going to fulfill His promises if we will have faith and trust in Him as one who is able to keep His promises.