Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Hold Fast

"It is the LORD your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him" (Deuteronomy 13:4).

Was reading this verse the other day and reflecting on what it teaches about knowing God and fearing Him. Some thoughts...

*What is the difference between "keeping His commands" and "obeying Him"? One focuses on the words--the commands--it's about rules, guidelines, standards. That's important. But it's not the be-all, end-all. The other focuses on the Person--it's about relationship, intimacy. It's hollow to follow rules without truly knowing (and loving, fearing, serving, trusting) the Authority behind them. The Law cannot give life--only the Spirit gives life.

*We are to hold fast to HIM--not to traditions or rules or laws. To cling to Him--as you would cling to the last rock that kept you from sliding down the cliff, to the raft that kept you from drowning. To cling as a small child clings to his mother's hand or leg or neck when he doesn't want to be left alone. To cling like this is to acknowledge helplessness, to admit need. It is to be humble. But it is not only to see reality about yourself (you are helpless, needy)...it is to see reality about your God. It is to acknowledge and prize the value of the One you cling to--to recognize His strength, His authority, His ability and power to help. It is to treasure the blessing it is to be near to Him, the privilege of knowing Him.

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