-This is an amazing prophetic chapter describing the blessings of obedience to the Law of the LORD for His people in Israel and the curses of disobedience should they choose to stray away from their covenant God. The first fourteen verses delineate the prosperity of doing things God’s way. These blessings will come upon them and overtake them if they are diligent to keep the commands of the LORD their God. They will be blessed in the city, in the country, in their offspring, in their produce from the ground and animals. They will be blessed when they come in and go out. Their enemies will be cursed and scatter before them in seven (complete) directions. All that they do will prosper in the land. They will be established as a holy people, called by His Name, and feared among the nations of the world. God will open up His “good storehouse” from the heavens to give rain in its season (of appointed times) to bless the works of their hands. The result? They will become a creditor nation rather than a debtor nation. They will become the head and not the tail (top not the bottom, brain not the butt). All of this will happen IF they listen to the LORD and observe His decrees carefully and faithfully (Deuteronomy 28:1-14).
-The reverse is then given for the remaining verses in this text (Deuteronomy 28:15-68). Notice that the warnings are more distinct and graphic as a warning to the people of God on the front end. Sadly and tragically, they ended up going this way in the course of their earthly kingdom (2 Chronicles 36, see Jeremiah and Lamentations among many other Scriptures). The curses center around the themes of suffering, lack of provision, and weakness. There will be constant oppression and destruction for their waywardness and unfaithfulness. The details are astounding and descriptive of what actually happened in their land as they would follow idols other than the Living God. God was showing His goodness in foretelling what they would experience if they turned away from Him. They were without excuse when disaster occurred (2 Chronicles 36:15-16). The LORD delighted to prosper them as long as they trusted only in Him, but He disciplined them severely when they left their first love. They would be scattered throughout the nations without rest because of their own freewill choices. Nevertheless, God would eventually promise to bring them back as the faithful covenant keeper that He is (Deuteronomy 30:4 among many other prophetic Scriptures).
-*Application* God still has high expectations and gives us the choice to follow Him on our own accord. While He knows the direction we will go before it ever happens, from our perspective we still have some important decisions to make. As this book concludes over the next several chapters, we are faced with some important biblical teaching and doctrine. Choose life or death, blessings or curses, faith or unbelief. God is good and wants to prosper us in every way. Do you believe that today, or are you still a skeptic? His ways are higher than ours and we must come up to His standard if we are to live (Isaiah 55:6-9). Great thing about that though, is that He paid it all on Calvary giving us the opportunity to simply receive His righteousness to cover our transgressions by faith (Luke 23:33, Ephesians 2:1-10, Titus 3:3-8). His compassions, they fail not.
Verses to Memorize: Deuteronomy 28:1-2, 15