The book entitled Rich Dad Poor Dad is one that my business-loving family has read. Written by a fellow named Robert Kiyosaki, it contains advice he received from his two different fathers – a wealthy entrepreneurial dad, and a father who was more traditionally a money saving employee. Written in a sort of storytelling style of parables, it challenges a good bit of traditional thinking about money and financial strategy. Though popular with many, one well-known economic critic has said that it “contains much wrong advice, much bad advice, some dangerous advice, and virtually no good advice … and is one of the dumbest financial advice books I have ever read.” The debate in on!
But there is no debate about what father we should follow if we want to have success in life – and that is the essential message of today’s reading. We could follow Satan who is called the big daddy of lies, as Jesus said of him, “When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” Or we can follow our Father God.
When you think about it logically, it is crazy not to follow the Lord.
Moses, in his sermon to this new generation of Israelites, asks them to think about all of human history and consider when there was ever a time where anything so great and awesome has happened like what God caused to happen for Israel’s good. Where was there ever a nation so chosen and redeemed and rescued as was this people of God’s choosing? Most nations who were enslaved, as was Israel in Egypt, simply ceased to exist – being lost and swallowed up by the more powerful people group. But it was by God’s power that they were delivered.
The Israelites had seen God’s great power. Those who could remember the incident at the mountain where the Law was given (detailed story coming in two days) should certainly stand in awe and obedience to such a powerful God. And the others who had come along more recently were not devoid of seeing miracles – of God’s provision in the wilderness wanderings, and of God’s miraculous empowerment to defeat the kings in this Transjordan area.
All of this was extraordinary … nothing like it could be found anywhere in the world, ever! So the Rich Dad advice?… He is in heaven, you are on earth, obey him gratefully in the land he has given you, and by this you will find success that can be passed on to successive generations.
That same principle and timeless truth can revive us today, and tomorrow, and forever.
The Lord Is God
32 Ask now about the former days, long before your time, from the day God created human beings on the earth; ask from one end of the heavens to the other. Has anything so great as this ever happened, or has anything like it ever been heard of? 33 Has any other people heard the voice of God[a] speaking out of fire, as you have, and lived? 34 Has any god ever tried to take for himself one nation out of another nation, by testings, by signs and wonders, by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, or by great and awesome deeds, like all the things the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes?
35 You were shown these things so that you might know that the Lord is God; besides him there is no other. 36 From heaven he made you hear his voice to discipline you. On earth he showed you his great fire, and you heard his words from out of the fire. 37 Because he loved your ancestors and chose their descendants after them, he brought you out of Egypt by his Presence and his great strength, 38 to drive out before you nations greater and stronger than you and to bring you into their land to give it to you for your inheritance, as it is today.
39 Acknowledge and take to heart this day that the Lord is God in heaven above and on the earth below. There is no other. 40 Keep his decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the Lord your God gives you for all time.
Cities of Refuge
41 Then Moses set aside three cities east of the Jordan, 42 to which anyone who had killed a person could flee if they had unintentionally killed a neighbor without malice aforethought. They could flee into one of these cities and save their life. 43 The cities were these: Bezer in the wilderness plateau, for the Reubenites; Ramoth in Gilead, for the Gadites; and Golan in Bashan, for the Manassites.
Introduction to the Law (specifically coming in the next chapter)
44 This is the law Moses set before the Israelites. 45 These are the stipulations, decrees and laws Moses gave them when they came out of Egypt 46 and were in the valley near Beth Peor east of the Jordan, in the land of Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon and was defeated by Moses and the Israelites as they came out of Egypt. 47 They took possession of his land and the land of Og king of Bashan, the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan. 48 This land extended from Aroer on the rim of the Arnon Gorge to Mount Sirion[b] (that is, Hermon), 49 and included all the Arabah east of the Jordan, as far as the Dead Sea,[c] below the slopes of Pisgah.