Pericope: Deuteronomy 6:1-3
Last week, a friend of mine was telling me about an anesthesiologist his wife works with. He is a young attractive single man who happens to have a lot of money. When he goes out on dates, he has to be careful to discover the motives of his dates. Recently, one of his dates persuaded him to take her to a restaurant and she ordered a bottle of campaign. There was no price on the menu, but he consented because it was her “favorite”. At the end of the evening when the bill came, it turns out that the “bubbly” cost over $300! Luckily, money is not necessarily an issue with this guy, but he became skeptical when this date immediately started pressuring him to take her to a concert. He found out the tickets were over $100 a piece and the concert and the concert is not until July! They had only been on one date at this point. So either she was incredibly optimistic about the relationship (yeah right!) or she was using him for his money. Motives in relationships are huge. They ultimately tell us whether we should trust someone or not.
This morning as I was reading through Deuteronomy, one of the first things I stumbled across was a passage that describes God’s intentions with His people. God had delivered his people out of Egypt. An entire generation of people who had rebelled against God have died. And now a new generation is about to embark into the promised land. Moses is reestablishing the Covenant with God’s people. So the very first thing Moses addresses is God’s motives. What was God’s ultimate plan? What were His intentions in giving people the Law?
In Deuteronomy 6:1-3 describes God’s plan to make provision for his people to live in covenant community with Him. God wants his people to engage in this covenant for four reasons:
1. So that God’s people could enjoy the freedom and richness of being in right relationship with Him and with each other.
2. So that they would be distinct from other nations.
3. So that they would be a witness to their neighbors.
4. So that they would freely worhsip God.
There is incredible blessing associated with being in right relationship with Yahweh! His ultimate desire is to bless His people and to restore them to true life and freedom from the bondage that sin has brought into this world. This is ultimately fulfilled through Christ Jesus who said that He came to give us life and to give it to the fullest.
As people, like the anestesiologist mentioned above, we must be careful to examine the motives of others or we could experience tremendous pain and disappointment. In every way that we make decisions, it is ok to ask “what is in it for me?”- as in what are the consequences. Consequences are natural result of motive. Motive leads to consequence. Through Scripture, we can find that following Yahweh has wonderful consequences because the motives of God are pure. If we examine the outcome of poor choices, we will find that they are closely linked to us being deceived by our enemy the devil. He comes to steal, kill and destroy. But we can trust Yahweh because of the true life that he brings.