About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

Home Page

Chapter  30

Previous Section - chapter 29 

Next Section - chapter 31

ch. 30:1-10    ch. 30:11-20    

Prosperity After Turning To The Lord (ch. 30:1 - 10) 


We've been talking about the curses and the blessings in the Law of Moses.  As I've said before, these are more than just warnings.  They are prophetic.  This can be seen in verse 1 when the text says, "when all these blessings and curses …"  The word "when" tells you that these blessings and curses are more than simple warnings.  They will take place.  This passage is in fact prophecy.


The question is, "when will these blessings and curses take place"?  It is my thinking that the curses are now rounding down.  It is also my opinion that the blessings will take place at the end of this age when Jesus returns to set up his kingdom in Jerusalem , Israel 's capital city.


Verse 2 and 3 state that "when" Israel finally obeys their God, then He will restore them to their land and take them from all the nations of the world where He had scattered them.  The question to be asked here is, "has this happened as yet"?  The answer is "no".  The Jews have been scattered throughout the world.  They have now got their land back and are in the process of coming back to their land, but as yet, all Israel is not obeying their God.  That will take place when the last few chapters of Zechariah comes to fulfillment and God Himself will pour out a spirit of repentance on the Jews, and they will repent and turn to their God in obedience.


Verse 4 speaks of "distant lands under the heavens" where God had scattered the Jews.  Back in the days of Moses people knew nothing about North America .  Canada and the United States would truly be distant lands.  It is so amazing that in my life time, I have seen this prophecy come true. 


In verse 5 we see that Israel will be more prosperous than in any other time in their history.  They have lots to look forward to, but we must realize, this prosperity has nothing to do with them or their righteousness, because the Jews are no different than anyone else.  God will prosper them simply because that is what He promised Abraham in the Abrahamic Covenant.  He will not break that promise.


Verse 6 gives us the New Testament picture of these Old Testament Jews.  God says that "He will circumcise the hearts" of the generation of Jews that He is speaking about.  Again, it is God that does the circumcising.  This will be miraculous.  He will circumcise the hearts, not the foreskin of Israelis.  Truly, this is a New Testament concept, although hints of it can be seen in the Old Testament.  You know from this that the generation of Jews spoken of here was not an Old Testament generation.  This is not a prophecy that was fulfilled in the Old Testament.  It is yet to be fulfilled.   You therefore notice that when the Jews return to their God, because of this circumcision of heart, you know they are returning in New Testament terms, that is, in Jesus.  


In verse 7 we note that the curses that had been on Israel will now be put on the enemies of Israel .  I see this taking place in what has been called "The Great Tribulation" that takes place at the end of this age.  This is a time where Israel experiences the final curse known as "Jacobs Trials", and the rest of the nations of the world will be judged with God's wrath.


The rest of this section confirms the days of Israel 's success in the days to come.  I see these days of success as in the thousand year rule of Jesus on earth, after the Great Tribulation.


The Offer Of Life Or Death (ch. 30:11 - 20)       


In verses 11 to 14 Moses basically states that the commands the Lord is giving Israel aren't hard to follow.  You don't have to reach up in heaven or go anywhere when it comes to obedience.   It's a matter of believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth.  Paul quotes these words in Romans 10: 5 and following.  He puts a New Testament spin on this text.  He states that the "word" spoken of here in verse 14 is the word of faith.  Faith is trust, and trust is truly a matter of one's heart.  Again, this is a hint of Old Testament Israel becoming New Testament Christians at the end of this age.  Even in the Law of Moses, there are hints of "salvation by faith".  


I think what Paul, Moses, and really, God, is saying is that these command should become part of you.  As you meditate on them, speak about them, and teach them, they live in your heart, and, what is in the heart, the mouth will speak, and the right life you will live.  Simply put, give your heart to the commands of God and you will obey them. 


In verses 15 through 17 God is setting forth either life or death for Israel .  If Israel wants life, then she is to obey.  If she does not obey, death and destruction will come to their nation.  The same rule applies to Christians today.  Obedience ends in life.  Disobedience ends in death.


Note in verse 16 that it's not simply about obeying rules.  When given rules to obey, it sooner or later becomes a drudgery.  God says to love Him, and walk with Him.  That's really the foundation to obeying the commands of God.  It's all about a loving relationship with Him. It's all about walking each step of your life with Him.  We often think that the Old Testament is simply a matter of obeying rules, but that's not so.  Simply obeying rules is something the church is good at.  We've become very legalistic and humanistic, but the bottom line is to love the Lord with all we have.  Jesus Himself confirms that. 


Note in verse 17 the Lord says, "if your heart turns away and you do not obey me…"  The point to be made here that disobedience is a matter of the heart.  Before one outwardly disobeys God, he inwardly disobeys.  This is easily seen in husband wife relationships.  If a woman leaves her husband, she first left him in her heart.  The same would apply if a man leaves his wife.  Heart issues always affect outward issues.  They always precede outward actions.


Verse 18 begins with "I declare…"   If God declares something, you know for a fact, that what He declares will take place.  He declared the destruction of Israel in the promised land, and it came about as He declared when Babylon captured Jerusalem , but most of all when Rome devastated  Jerusalem in 70 A. D..


This is one important date in Israeli history.  In verse 19 God says that He calls heaven and earth as witnesses to what He is saying.  All of the heavenly beings are standing intently, watching this covenant unfold before them.  God is setting life and death before Israel .  He tells them to choose life.  Verse 20 states that the Lord is our life.  How true and how important this is to both know and understand.  We belong to the Lord.  He is our life.  Without Him there is no existence worth living.  No wonder we are to put Him first in our lives. 


One of the important things to understand from this chapter is the New Testament style in many verses.  We see heart matters spoken of.  It's not that God has really changed from Old Testament times to New Testament times.  He has always been interested in matters of the heart. 


Next Section - chapter 31

Previous Section - chapter 29 

Home Page