Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 29:2-31:29
When I first realized that I needed God in my life I was an 18-year-old kid, that was almost 30 years ago. I had only been away from home at college for about 8 weeks. While in one sense I thought the world was my oyster. I just had to figure out how to open it to get out my prized pearl. There was another sense of total ignorance. I didn’t know a fraction of what the world was really about and what my role in it would be. Sure I could recite the TV-Guide line-up by heart, but I knew nothing about Muslims, or Palestinians, or Chinese people or Darfur or apartheid or Nelson Mandela or Falkland Islands. Al these issues would come up in the years ahead and I knew nothing about them.
I was even more ignorant of the things of God. I knew nothing about the power of the blood, or the reason why Jesus died on a cross. I knew nothing about where the Bible came from or who wrote it, or that 40 different men who wrote it. I knew nothing about the prophets or the exile or the kings or the Jews wandering in the desert.
But once I started to learn about the things of God I began to have questions. Lots of questions. I would ask those around me questions like:
- Why does God allow evil in the world?
- Why does God permit earthquakes and tsunamis and wars?
- How did He create the earth in 6 days?
- When is the end of the world coming?
- Is the Soviet Union part of the end time prophecies?
- Will I see my family in heaven?
- Why did my friend Dean die so young?
- Why did He let this happen?
I was learning about God and His word as a young devoted Christian, but I wanted to know more.
One day my first pastor, Greg Thompson, Grace Bible Church, Peoria, Il, USA, shared a verse in a Sunday Morning sermon that changed my whole perspective on my questions. Through one verse my questions and doubts were erased. In one verse I changed my focus from the unknown to the known. The verse struck me so squarely in the middle of my eyes that I wrote it down on the inside cover of my Bible and soon afterwards memorized the verse. I often find myself reflecting on its meaning when a new challenge comes up in my life. The verse was in our reading today:
Deuteronomy 29:29 NLT
“The Lord our God has secrets known to no one. We are not accountable for them, but we and our children are accountable forever for all that he has revealed to us, so that we may obey all the terms of these instructions.
I learned the verse in the NIV
29 The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.
We read the verse today at the end of the second reading of the law and as a transition into a final admonition of Moses to the Israelites to do the right thing. Just like in yesterday’s blog (https://plimtuna.wordpress.com/2010/03/19/heads-tails-or-both/) the Israelites have a choice they can follow the precepts of the law or not.
But for us the message is this. There are secret things that only God knows, they are his, not ours. Stop worrying about those things. God is all-powerful, all-knowing, ever present and capable of managing those details. You and I have enough stuff to work on down here. We have commands to obey, teachings to understand, people to reach, prayers to be said and enough work to be done to keep us busy until the day we see Jesus. Focus on those things and let the secret things of God stay where they are, with God.