Friday, October 22, 2010

October 21 - Deuteronomy 20

I've been thinking along the lines of smallness and weakness lately as I see numbers and strength dwindling, so as I read Deuteronomy 20, I saw more than just rules for how Israel would fight its wars.  I saw the new Israel, being opposed by Satan's army with the powerful weapons of unbelief and lies and true accusations of our own betrayals of the Lord.  The enemy forces are larger than we are as the Church.  We are outmanned and outgunned.  On earth is not his equal.  But for us fights the Valiant One.  Therefore, "you shall not be afraid of them, for the LORD your God is with you, who brough you up out of the land of" your slavery to sin (Deuteronomy 20:1).  David vs. Goliath wasn't the only "David vs. Goliath" battle Israel (Old or New) faced/faces.
I am thinking it is worth looking at the vocation of pastor in light of the priest's task before battle, telling the congregation that the LORD goes ahead of them in their week, in their life, to give them the victory as they struggle not against flesh and blood, but against the spiritual forces of evil.  In this way, those nearing death can speak as confidently as Moses ("When [not if] the LORD your God gives it into your hand..." verse 13) and Paul (2 Timothy 4:7 - "I have fought the good fight... there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved His appearing.")
Lord Jesus Christ, clothe us, we pray, with the whole armor of God that we may stand firm in every assault and never lose sight of Your victory on our behalf at the cross and empty tomb.  Amen.  (The Lutheran Study Bible, pg. 310.)
btw, having read through TDP a time or two now, as I've repeatedly come across the writings by Valerius Herberger, I've gone from "Wow, that was good," to "Who is this guy?!?!?!?"  In case you've shared similar thoughts check out this blog post on this new book from CPH.

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