Deuteronomy is a challenging book to consider. On one hand, it hold the last words of Moses and he makes his last address to the new generation before they enter and take hold of the land God had promised their forefathers hundreds of years before. No longer slaves to Egypt, they have been taught, shaped, tested and readied for God's great plan ahead. Underneath the repetition of laws and instructions found in Leviticus and Numbers, there is a building anticipation for God's fulfillment of His promise to Abraham.
On the other hand, I am reading through the same instructions again. The repetition is challenging my attention span as a Bible student. None-the-less, I found a shout from God among the chapters I read today. This little shout shows me much about the heart of God. Take a look at these verses:
When you reap your harvest in your field and have forgotten a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back and get it; it shall be for the alien, for the orphan, and for the widow, in order that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. (Deuteronomy 24:19, NAS)
Remember what Amalek did to you along the way when you came out from Egypt, how he met you along the way and attacked among you all the stragglers at your rear when you were faint and weary; and he did not fear God. (Deuteronomy 25:17-18, NAS)
In all that God has been doing to make this gathering of ex-slaves into a nation, there is a repeated concern and demand that the Israelites practice sacrificial love toward those in need. In the abundance of what God will provide in the land, there will still be those among them who have need. God will be caring for them from the abundance He provides the rest. So, each man who has enough (grain, olives, grapes) is responsible for having in mind a blessing for the needy. What he worked to grow and harvest is not for him alone. The needy are to share in His blessing.
The second verse about Amalek shows God's great anger toward anyone who disregards and seeks to take advantage of the needy and weak. They are a disgust in His sight and show a disregard for the holiness of God. Not even the memory of Amalek is to remain in the future of Israel. As Amalek treated the weak, so God will treat him.
I received this challenge today, to have in mind a blessing for the weak and needy. It is proactive and decided in advance, that what you have is not yours but rather God's. Our blessings are there to share as an extension of the heart of God. He is the defender of the weak and brokenhearted. He is concerned for the hurting and needy. Let's not communicate the opposite to the world we live in. They need to see His heart lived out through us.
© 2006 by Kendra Hinkle.
Scripture marked “NAS” is taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by the Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.