Deuteronomy 10 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“The L_rd said to me at that time, ‘Cut two stone tablets like the first ones and come to Me on the mountain and make a wooden ark. I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets you broke, and you are to place them in the ark.’” Deuteronomy 10:1-2
Today’s passage is a wonderful picture of G_d’s grace. Israel had willingly sinned against the L_rd by making a golden image, yet He gave them a second chance.
It has been argued that Israel should not have been held accountable for the calf, because the 10 commandments had not been given at that time. Not so.
The “tablets” had not been delivered, but the L_rd had already spoken His commandments directly to the hearts of each Israelite. This was prior to Moses’ ascension of the mountain to receive the tablets. Scripture tells us each person had heard the voice of G_d from the fire on the mountain.
“Then the L_rd spoke to you from the fire. You kept hearing the sound of the words, but didn’t see a form; there was only a voice. He declared His covenant with you.” Deuteronomy 10:12-13
Think of the scenario in terms of a standard business contract. A contract is binding when two people agree to the terms, whether written or not. First, two parties get together and define the terms. Once they agree on the terms, a formal contract may be drawn up, but a verbal contract is still binding, as long as there are two witnesses.
When speaking to Israel, the L_rd says, “I call heaven and earth as witness against you.” Deuteronomy 4:26 The covenant had mutual terms and sufficient witnesses. Hence, Israel was already “under contract” before the commandments were written on tablets.
Here’s the grace of this passage: After Israel had broken their contract, (so soon after having entered into it) G_d allowed Moses to go back up with blank tablets. He (the L_rd) literally gave them a “blank slate”! From there, G_d re-wrote the 10 commandments.
The word “Torah” does not mean “Law”…it means “Teaching”. G_d’s purpose for mankind is not just to give us a standard and say, “Live under it or die!” He is also patient and compassionate to TEACH us how & why we should trust Him. His desire is to commune with us…even more than our desire to commune with Him. It has been said that the Bible is the story of 1) G_d’s desire to redeem men, and 2) mankind’s efforts to redeem themselves, apart from G_d.
G_d is the Holy and Righteous Judge. His Commands are the standard by which mankind will be weighed. Our salvation comes exclusively through Messiah. And that further heightens our appreciation of Yeshua’s sacrifice, on our behalf. (Hebrews 2:1-4)
~Steve Wiggins, Associate Leader, Worship Leader
Daily Devotional, Sunday, June 22, 2014