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This Chapter is a continuation of the same subject as the former. The man of GOD is exceedingly earnest in enforcing obedience to all the precepts contained in the covenant.
As the religion of the LORD JESUS distinguisheth his followers from all others that are in the earth, so will it follow that his people are distinguished by their life and conversation from all others. It is a charming feature of character which the Jewish council, in the first age of the gospel, gave of the apostles, when it is said of them, they took knowledge of them, that they had been with JESUS. Acts 4:13 .
Reader! do examine in your own heart for that which is among the first evidences of a renewed life, the fear of the LORD; for the sacred writer had it in commission to say, that it is the beginning of wisdom. And if you possess this filial, child-like fear, as distinguished from the fear of bondage, learn to give the LORD the glory of it. See Jeremiah 32:40 compared with Romans 8:15 . Moses adds a sweet note to the end of this verse, in taking in the consideration of the children, and the children's children. Yes! the promise of the covenant in CHRIST JESUS, is to be a GOD in CHRIST to our offspring: See that precious promise to this effect, Isaiah 59:21; Isaiah 59:21 .
What a blessed verse is this, which folds within its short, but mighty contents, the foundation of all our faith. Our GOD, though existing in a manner totally distinct from all his creatures in a threefold character of Person, is but one and the same JEHOVAH. For, as the apostle beautifully represents it, There are Three that bear record in heaven; the FATHER, the WORD, and the HOLY GHOST; yet these three are but one. I would beg the Reader to remark with me, that though the verse be but short, yet no less than three times is the glorious name of JEHOVAH repeated in it. May we not suppose, that the very design of this was to convey the glorious truth of a threefold character of Persons in the divine unity? Happy the soul who hath an evidence in his own breast of the truth of this; in being enabled there to trace the tokens of the FATHER's love, and the Redeemer's grace, and the SPIRIT's fellowship. I detain the Reader only to make a short observation more upon this precious Verse, and to ask him, whether the manner in which Moses calls upon Israel to attend to this leading truth, that our GOD is but one LORD, doth not carry with it a testimony, that as the people had been accustomed to receive tokens of a plurality of persons in the GODHEAD, they were not to lose sight, at the same time, of the unity of the divine essence. 1 John 5:7 .
Reader! do you know anything of this precept in your own experience? If so, bless the HOLY GHOST for shedding abroad this love in your heart: for he is the author of it. 2 Thessalonians 3:5 .
What can the imagination form of more loveliness, than that of beholding a pious parent encircled by his little family, to whom he is recounting the LORD'S gracious dealings with his soul. Reader! only picture to yourself a father, or a master, thus engaged, and then ask, whether the blessing of the LORD must not rest upon such households! And observe moreover, the care that is taken, by the Jewish law-giver, acting in his high character under GOD, to enforce religion as a personal thing, as well as a national concern. The words of GOD were to be bound for a sign, to the man himself, and to all with whom he, had to do; sweetly intimating thereby, that the whole life and conversation were to carry a suitable correspondence to the profession. Neither was this all, the posts of the house were to have the same inscription, that the stranger, and everyone passing by, might know that the LORD'S servant dwelt there. Reader! do not overlook the provision of the gospel, on these grand points. Our whole conversation is to be such as becometh the gospel of CHRIST. And whatsoever we do, in word, or deed, all is to be done to GOD'S glory. Not merely on our doors, but in our hearts, CHRIST is to be formed, and dwell there. LORD! grant both Writer and Reader these decisive evidences that we are thine, Philippians 1:27 .
Observe, how the man of GOD speaks with confidence of the people's possessing Canaan, as if it were already in possession. Reader! do not overlook the sweet property of faith. And why should not true believers in JESUS speak with the same confidence of their heavenly inheritance, since he is gone before to take possession of it in their name John 14:1-2 . Observe also what stress Moses lays, upon the attention to a change of circumstances, when from, a wilderness state they are brought into the full enjoyment of every earthly felicity. Then beware; as if, (and no doubt it is) this were the critical time-then, when in prosperity, the heart is lifted up, we are in most danger of forgetting GOD. Reader! look into the state of your own mind concerning this! Wise was the prayer of Agur, Proverbs 30:7-9 .
These are so many, beautiful repetitions of the same important precepts; and all leading to the same point, to intimate the jealousy of the LORD over his people. Reader! only pause and consider what evidences of divine love the life of every truly regenerated disciple of the blessed JESUS is marked with, in the original, free, and unpurchased mercy of the FATHER; the tender and expensive testimonies of the SON, and the gracious tokens of the HOLY GHOST; and then ask yourself whether such unequalled love hath not a just cause for jealousy; and especially, when you and I sometimes, and not unfrequently, allow even the slightest and most trifling things to carry away our mind and affection from the LORD GOD of all our happiness.
What a most delightful subject seems to be opened to us in these verses. The Jewish children are naturally supposed to enquire into the peculiarities of their fathers faith. And the fathers are supposed as naturally to be earnest in gratifying their infant minds in the information of the truth. Oh! that all Christian parents, and masters of families, were but alive to this most interesting business! Reader! do turn to the gospel, and take a view of the children in the temple, when, under the divine teaching of the HOLY GHOST, they were saluting the blessed Redeemer with Hosannas. This will afford somewhat of an idea of the loveliness of early piety. Matthew 21:16; Matthew 21:16 ; Psalms 8:2 . I only detain the Reader, just to observe, what Moses saith of the conduct of Israel, that it shall be their righteousness, (an imputed righteousness implied,) meaning, no doubt, that all their acceptance would be in GOD their Savior, and in his complete righteousness; for the apostle tells us, that CHRIST is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth. Reader! do not fail to consult the apostle upon this important subject. Romans 10:3 .
BLESSED GOD! may it be my happiness to be distinguished from all carnal and ungodly persons, and to carry about with me, wherever I go, all the distinguishing features of character which should mark thy people. I rejoice, gracious GOD, in the recollection of the unity of the divine essence, and while I pray for continual grace to live a life of faith in the constant enjoyment of communion and fellowship with all the Persons of the GODHEAD, may it be my joy and comfort, the conviction of this first and most glorious truth, the LORD our GOD is one LORD!
Oh! that all who in the present hour are tempted to question, whether the LORD JEHOVAH existeth in a plurality of persons or not, would read those numberless passages, where the word LORD which is singular and means the one glorious JEHOVAH is joined with the word GOD in the plural: as if forever to silence the blasphemy of infidels and to strengthen and confirm the faith of believers. And oh! that all the seed of Abraham according to the flesh would consult their own scriptures on this glorious truth, that when they discover the sacred name of, Jacob's GOD joined with words that are plural, they might no longer doubt whether a plurality of persons exist in Him who is the glorious GOD of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob! Hasten thou great deliverer, and arise out of Zion to turn away ungodliness from Jacob.
LORD! I beseech thee give me grace, that the vital religion of my adored Redeemer, may be with me a family religion, a personal religion, A religion manifested to all the world. May it be my glory, and delight, to let everyone know whose I am, and whom I love, and desire to serve in the gospel of GOD'S dear SON. Yes! thou blessed Redeemer, be thou my portion, my joy, my happiness, my delight; and be thou my LORD my righteousness, that I may speak of it every day, and all the day, and wear thy holy and dear name as a seal upon mine heart, and upon mine arm; and as frontlets between mine eyes. And do thou, dearest LORD, own me for thine, both now and when thou comest to make up thy jewels.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 6". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://studylight.org/
the First Week of Advent