Make No Treaty

“The old cross would have no truck with the world. For Adam’s proud flesh it meant the end of the journey” (1) A. W. Tozer

Destroy Them Totally
Deuteronomy 7:1-6 NIV

When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations… and when the Lord your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, for they will turn your children away from following me to serve other gods, and the Lord’s anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you. This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire. For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.

In Old Testament times, under the Old Covenant God had with his people Israel, most everything was of a physical nature. In other words, their temple was a physical structure, constructed by human hands. Their sanctuary was physical. Their circumcision was physical. Their sacrifices were physical. But everything physical had a spiritual counterpart.

And, most everything they did physically, by God’s instructions, also has a parallel to what we do now in the spiritual realm. For instance, we who believe in Jesus Christ are now the temple of God, and his sanctuary is our hearts. Our circumcision is also not physical, but is of the heart. Our enemies, although we have physical ones, too, are predominantly in the spiritual realm, and thus the weapons of warfare we use to fight them are also spiritual. And, the sacrifice God requires of us is our lives given over to him, holy and pleasing to God, which is our acceptable worship of God.

Thus, the land we are going into possess is heaven, our eternal home. The nations we are to drive out are not physical nations, but it is the world of sin, and it is to be driven out of our hearts. Worldliness is to be defeated in our lives, but not in our own strength, but in the strength of the Lord who lives within us. Jesus defeated and destroyed sin in his death and in his resurrection, and so in Christ we are to die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. Sin should no longer have dominion in our lives, nor should it be what we practice. By the grace of God, we die to sin daily.

We also are not to be partners with the world of sin. We should not marry someone who is not a believer in Jesus, and we should not enter into partnerships (binding agreements) with the ungodly, i.e. we should not unite with them in mind, heart, purpose, passion, and desire, etc. And, included in this is that the church should not unite with the government. They should not incorporate the church or turn the church into a place of business, either, for God forbids this, and he has called us to come out of Babylon.

Also, we are not to adopt the gods of this world into our lives, but we are to destroy them. These gods can be fame, fortune, possessions, pride, greed, entertainment, lust, sexual immorality, adultery, slander, gossip, and the like. We are to have no part with what is sinful, worldly, and of the flesh. For God has chosen us out of the world, and he has set us apart from the world and unto himself to be a holy people belonging to him, whose lives are given over to righteousness, purity, integrity, morality, and steadfastness of faith.

God Loves You
Deuteronomy 7:7-11 NIV

The Lord did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But it was because the Lord loved you and kept the oath he swore to your ancestors that he brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the land of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments. But

those who hate him he will repay to their face by destruction;
he will not be slow to repay to their face those who hate him.

Therefore, take care to follow the commands, decrees and laws I give you today.

Because God loves us so much, he sent his only begotten Son into the world to save the world. Jesus Christ, God the Son, the second person of our triune God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – left his throne in heaven, humbled himself, came to earth, took on human flesh, suffered as we suffer, and then died on a cross for our sins. He who knew no sin became sin for us on that cross so that we might die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. By faith in him, we are thus redeemed from slavery to sin, and we are free to now become bond-servants of his righteousness.

God did not love us and send his Son to die for us because of our own goodness, though. For, all have sinned and have come up short of attaining God’s divine approval. There is nothing we can do in our flesh to earn or to deserve our own salvation. It is while we were yet sinners that Christ died for the ungodly. For, it is by the grace of God we are saved, through faith, and this not of ourselves, not of works of the flesh lest any of us should boast, for our salvation is the gift of God to us (See: Eph. 2:8-9).

Yet, our salvation is not absent of works, but they are the works of the Spirit, not of the flesh, which God prepared in advance for us to do. For, we are now his handiwork, and he created us in Christ Jesus to do good works (See: Eph. 2:10). But, we don’t do these works in our flesh or to earn our salvation, but they are the fruit, the byproduct, the outgrowth of our salvation which reveal whether or not our salvation or our faith in Christ is of the Spirit or if it is of the flesh; if it is genuine, or if it is a forgery.

As well, God’s grace to us delivers us out of bondage to sin. It does not just forgive us our sins, but it eradicates the practice of sin from our lives. And, this is where a lot of people get messed up because they think God’s grace just forgives sin and promises heaven when we die, but they don’t see that the gift of grace, or the gift of salvation is to deliver us out of our addictions to sin and to set us on the path of walking in Christ’s righteousness.

God’s grace, which brings salvation, in fact, instructs us to say “NO!” to ungodliness and worldly passions and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we await our Lord’s return. If we say we have fellowship with God, thus, but we continue to walk in sin, the Bible says we are liars who do not live by the truth. If we walk (in lifestyle) according to the flesh, the Bible teaches, we will not have the hope of eternal life with God, but we will die in our sins. So, if we want the promise of heaven as our eternal destiny, we must walk according to the Spirt, and not live to gratify the sinful cravings of the flesh.

If You Pay Attention
Deuteronomy 7:12-13a NIV

If you pay attention to these laws and are careful to follow them, then the Lord your God will keep his covenant of love with you, as he swore to your ancestors. He will love you and bless you and increase your numbers.

We are not saved by keeping the law. No one has ever been. For, not one of us can keep the law perfectly, for we are born with flesh natures, and we live in flesh bodies. Thus, Jesus Christ died on that cross for our sins, taking our sin upon him, so that by faith in him we might be saved. When we believe in him, his righteousness is, thus, credited to our account, and we are set free from the penalty of sin, i.e. from eternal damnation. And, we are also delivered from bondage (addiction) to sin.

Yet, this does not mean that our salvation is absent of obedience to God’s commandments. It is not. All throughout the New Testament it is abundantly clear that our faith, which is God-given, submits to God’s commandments. In fact, the word “faith” means “divine persuasion.” If we are persuaded of God, then, we will repent of (turn from) our lifestyles of sin, and we will turn to walk in obedience to our Lord. But, we don’t do any of this in the flesh. We can only do this in the Spirit, by the Spirit, and according to the Spirit.

But, what it does mean is that, if we are walking according to the Spirit, and not according to the flesh, we will be richly blessed of God, not necessarily materially, but spiritually. We will have peace, joy, love, purpose, direction, counsel, guidance, support, strength, and encouragement. He will empower us with his strength to fight off the enemy of our souls, to defeat sin in the flesh, and to walk in holiness and godliness. We will have no fear of death or fear of the consequences of sin, for by his grace we will be walking in freedom and in the peace of God and thus, our lives will be hidden in Him.

My Jesus, I Love Thee
William R. Featherstone / Adoniram J. Gordon

My Jesus, I love thee, I know thou art mine;
For thee all the follies of sin I resign.
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art thou;
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

I love thee because thou hast first loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love thee for wearing the thorns on thy brow;
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

I’ll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
And say, when the death-dew lies cold on my brow,
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

In mansions of glory and endless delight;
I’ll ever adore thee in heaven so bright;
I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow;
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

Sunday, March 11, 2018, 10:22 a.m. – Thank you, Jesus, for this teaching from your Word. Make it real to our hearts, I pray, in Jesus’ name. Amen!

(1) Tozer, The Old Cross and The New, 1946: http://www.ldolphin.org/oldcross.html

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