This week we are looking deeper at Deuteronomy 16: 13-17, specifically at the concept of the Festival of the Booths (or Tabernacles) and the giving that is associated with it and other festivals. Today we’re going to look at the World in front of the Text. What does this passage actually mean to our lives?
This passage speaks to us about a couple of things that should impact and shape our lives – thankfulness and giving. And one should lead to the next. The festival of booths is about thankfulness. The people all called to celebrate and give thanks. But notice, it isn’t just the “people.” Everyone in the lands is called to remember and give thanks, from the people to the preachers (Levites) to the widows and orphans, slaves, strangers, everyone. Is called to be thankful. Because everyone, in some way, has been blessed by God. And one of our main jobs is to remember that. Those of us that have much in our lives should stop and thank God for all that we have, for our blessings, for our health, for our families, for everything that we have. If we have been given much, we are called to be thankful for much.
This text calls on those that don’t have much and who have lost much to be thankful as well. Why? Because they are among the people of God and the people of God should take care of them. Something for us to think about today is this. Do those around us that are hurting, that are in need, who have little; do these people around us thank God because of us? Do we live lives of such generosity and care and love that people that may not know God, or those that have been hurt by life, do they want to stop and give thanks to God because of us? Not stop and thank us, but stop and thank God because of us.
That is how the people of God, throughout scripture, are called to live; in a way that causes others to stop and be thankful to God because of their lives.
Tomorrow we’ll take a deeper look at the practical applications of giving.
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