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And it shall be, when you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, and you possess it and dwell in it, that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground, which you shall bring from your land that the Lord your God is giving you, and … go to the place where the Lord your God chooses to make His name abide. (Deuteronomy 26:1-2)

It is important to take note of the fact that this command was given before Israel crossed the Jordan to take possession of the land. No battles had taken place and no fields had  been sown, yet, Moses spoke in definite terms: “You shall possess it … and you shall bring the produce of the ground.” Furthermore, the place they were to bring these first fruit offerings was to a Sanctuary that had not yet been built. My point is that, God spoke to them in such a way that left no uncertainty about their future — He would fulfill His promises.

Decades later, after many battles, many ups and downs and a lot of hard work, there came a day when the families of Israel living in the land saw the first fruits of their labors growing in the fields. In compliance with God’s command, they harvested those fruits and brought them to the Sanctuary — the one that had been spoken of many years before. As the heads of families brought their first fruits, they were to declare, “I have come to the country which the Lord swore to our fathers to give us.” In that instant, they participated in the fulfillment of the promise given to their ancestors.

All of this is to say that there is a generation that receives the promise and there is the generation that realizes the fulfillment of the promise. The promise given to one generation instills hope that provokes them to continue believing. The realization of the promise gives confidence to the other generation to believe that God will keep all of His promises — to them and to subsequent generations. In both scenarios, God’s faithfulness to His people and His steadfast love and consideration for their well-being is demonstrated. Furthermore, the fact that He fulfilled His promises to those of long ago should give us confidence that He will do the same for us. There will be a day when we will declare, “I have come to the time and place that the Lord promised to me. He has kept His Word.” Until that day, hold on to the hope inherent in the promise He has given because He will bring it to pass.

Blessings and Shalom,  




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