Topic: Unmerited Mercy [November 17, 2016]
Text: Deuteronomy 9:1-6
Key Verse: "Speak not thou in thine heart, after that the LORD thy God hath cast them out from before thee, saying, For my righteousness the LORD hath brought me in to possess this land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD doth drive them out from before thee" (Deuteronomy 9:4).
You may have heard of the ‘pardoning' of turkeys by US presidents during annual thanksgiving. Meaning that turkeys were released instead of killing and eating them. Presentation of turkeys began in 1947 under President Harry Truman, and no records exist that he ever â€˜pardoned' any turkey.
There are records in presidential library documents where he publicly admitted to eating some of them. This went on until President John Kennedy spontaneously spared a 55-pound turkey that was presented to him even though it wore a tag: "Good for eating". President Kennedy returned it to the farm with the remark "We'll let this one grow". After that, President H. W Bush instituted the "turkey pardon" as an integral part of the turkey presentation to the presidents during thanksgiving.
Moses wanted Israel to understand that their possessing the Promised Land was entirely a favour from God. They, like the "pardoned turkey" could have met a different fate had God not had mercy on them. From today's text, Moses saw to it that Israel was properly briefed and prepared for the future event of crossing the River Jordan into the Promised Land. Israel should see their eventual conquests of Canaan as entirely an act of God.
The defeat and destruction of the seven nations in those battles would be more a punishment for their sins than it would a reward for Israel's righteousness. God's favour and the propitious intervention of fate has been the reason for the success of many of us today, and not a product of our own goodness. Our salvation from sin and its terrible consequences and the victories we have in Christ are all by His grace not our own efforts.
Thought for the day: Your pardon was entirely God's prerogative.
Bible Reading in one Year: Ezekiel 22-24
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria.