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Behold, I set before you today a blessing and a curse: the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you today; and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 11:26-28)

The translation here uses the word obey in regard to the blessing. Other translations use the word “heed” or “hearken.” While the obvious intent of Moses’ statement is to provoke obedience in God’s people, the actual word translated as “obey” is shema, which is “to hear.” In other words, the blessing God imparts to His people comes only if and when they hear. Consequently, in rabbinical thought, “to hear” is a metaphor for “blessing.”

If we are to stand upright before God and walk on the straight path we must be able to “hear.” That is why, at least as far as I am concerned, God designed us in such a way that the center of balance is located in the ear – where we “hear.” So when our ear is infected and our equilibrium is compromised, it becomes difficult to stand upright or to walk straight. In short, I think He is making a point — to do His Will we must be able to hear and when we do, we will act as He commands which, in turn, results in the blessing. Now, if we are to understand that hearing is equivalent to blessing, then consider that, in the future, there comes a day when people will not hear the word of the LORD.

Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD.” (Amos 8:11)

The text doesn’t say a famine for the word but a famine for “hearing the words.” The point is this: in today’s world, people hear so many things, most of it being a “mixed message.” The secular world preaches “tolerance” and “coexistence” and, unfortunately, far too many churches fall in line with the same message. As a result, it has become controversial if not dangerous to speak what the Word of God actually says. Many have chosen not to do so in fear of the repercussions because, in reality, they are fearful of the consequences.

The bottom line is many will not “hear” what God says and, therefore, position themselves to suffer a curse. Here is what I believe we need to take away from this, today: stand firm in the Word. Don’t compromise regardless of how much influence or how many friends it may cost. We need to be those who boldly declare the Word of the LORD in this day, knowing that if we do, we shall receive from Him a blessing that cannot be contained.

Blessings and Shalom,  




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