“Now it shall come to pass, when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the Lord your God drives you, 2 and you return to the Lord your God and obey His voice, according to all that I command you today, you and your children, with all your heart and with all your soul, 3 that the Lord your God will bring you back from captivity, and have compassion on you, and gather you again from all the nations where the Lord your God has scattered you. 4 If any of you are driven out to the farthest parts under heaven, from there the Lord your God will gather you, and from there He will bring you. 5 Then the Lord your God will bring you to the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it. He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers. 6 And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.”
In this passage there are two little words that are repeated so much that they stand out despite their initial insignificance. The first word is “all.” In these 6 verses it’s repeated 8 times so clearly we need to pay attention to it. I know its obvious but “all” really does mean exactly that: all. All of the blessings and curses the Lord had promised would come to pass depending on whether the Israelites chose obedience or disobedience. If they disobeyed they would be scattered, but when they called on the Lord He would gather them from every single nation to which they had been scattered. God promised life if they loved Him with every part of their heart and with the entirety of their souls. He doesn’t ask for part of us but for every single part of who we are to be completely surrendered to Him. Our God is not a God who does things in pieces. He finishes what He begins (Philippians 1:6) and not one of His promises is not fulfilled (Joshua 21:45). Since Easter just passed, the fact of just how far the Lord went to save us is fresh on my mind. He paid the ultimate price by giving up His life to pay for the sins of the world. He went all the way in order to save us. In light of a God who goes all in, how could we do anything but go all in as well?
The second word that’s repeated over and over again is the word “will.” I just talked about how the promises of God can be trusted and in these verses are about 8 different promises that the Lord gives His people if they just turn to Him with their whole hearts. He promises to bring His repentant children out of captivity and have compassion on them. They don’t have to re-earn His love; He has been waiting for them to return so He can once again be their God. Obedience to God’s commands brings life and liberty, but our sinful natures still want to rebel and do life our own way. What a slap in the face to a God who loves us and desires that we would live! The Lord has so clearly been impressing upon my heart that complete obedience is vital to living the life He has planned for me. To not obey is to miss out on His perfect plan for my life.