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October 17, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do."—Joshua 1:7–8 (NLT)
As a kid, did you ever think your parents’ rules were unfair? Why do I have a curfew? Why can’t I eat cake, cookies, and candy all day? As an adult, do you find yourself thinking some laws are unfair? Why can’t I drive as fast as I want? What’s the big deal if I don’t pay my taxes?
If we’re honest, we’ve all questioned why we have to follow rules. My son has questioned our house rules in the past. In those moments, I make it a point to tell him that I don’t make rules to ruin his fun or be mean, but to keep him safe and create boundaries that will help give him the best chance at a happy, healthy, meaningful life. In the same way, the “Book of Instruction” (the Law of Moses) was given by God to the people so they would “prosper and succeed” in all they do.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had people say that being a Christian is no fun, that there are too many rules and restrictions. Some take it as far as to say that God hates fun. Friends, nothing can be further from the truth! The principles and commandments in the Bible were given in order for us to live a purpose-filled, meaningful, enjoyable, abundant life. The commandments are in place so we can experience all the amazing things God has for us in the right context and avoid hurting ourselves and others along the way.
As believers, we know that when Christ came He summarized all the law into two commandments. And as we go deeper into the law of Christ (both Matthew 22:35–40 and the new commandment given in John 13:30), as we genuinely and intentionally meditate further and study His Word and His ways, and seek to put them into practice, I believe our attitudes and mindsets will change. We’ll begin to see the commandments of Christ as guiding principles to a life of contentment and fulfillment, not as restrictions.
It’s not always easy—and it’s definitely not always popular—but if we’re diligent and courageous to obey the Lord despite what the world may think, I believe wholeheartedly we will experience prosperity and success. Maybe not physical or earthly prosperity, but spiritual prosperity and blessings as we tap into the riches of God’s grace and His will for our lives. We’ll no longer see the law as a burden, but as a blessing that helps us experience abundant life.
DIG: What laws or rules have you found unfair in your life? For what reason do you think they exist?
DISCOVER: How have the commandments that Christ called the greatest impacted your life?
DO: Thank the Lord today for His commandments.
Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.