A Choice of Life or Death
Blessings or Curses
The book of Deuteronomy is filled with beautiful language of the promises of God for his people. Many don’t want to accept that Torah is for us…but in the words of God, if we will embrace His way (Torah), he will bless us abundantly.
Excerpts from Deuteronomy 28…
1 If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth.
2 All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God:
3 You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country.
4 The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock--the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.
5 Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed.
6 You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.
7 The LORD will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.
8 The LORD will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The LORD your God will bless you in the land he is giving you.
9 The LORD will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the LORD your God and walk in his ways.
10 Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the LORD, and they will fear you.
11 The LORD will grant you abundant prosperity--in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground--in the land he swore to your forefathers to give you.
12 The LORD will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.
13 The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the LORD your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.
14 Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them.
But then there is also the promise of curses if we do not follow the Lord…
15 However, if you do not obey the LORD your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:
16 You will be cursed in the city and cursed in the country.
17 Your basket and your kneading trough will be cursed.
18 The fruit of your womb will be cursed, and the crops of your land, and the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.
19 You will be cursed when you come in and cursed when you go out.
20 The LORD will send on you curses, confusion and rebuke in everything you put your hand to, until you are destroyed and come to sudden ruin because of the evil you have done in forsaking him.
21 The LORD will plague you with diseases until he has destroyed you from the land you are entering to possess.
22 The LORD will strike you with wasting disease, with fever and inflammation, with scorching heat and drought, with blight and mildew, which will plague you until you perish.
23 The sky over your head will be bronze, the ground beneath you iron.
24 The LORD will turn the rain of your country into dust and powder; it will come down from the skies until you are destroyed.
25 The LORD will cause you to be defeated before your enemies. You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven, and you will become a thing of horror to all the kingdoms on earth.
26 Your carcasses will be food for all the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away.
27 The LORD will afflict you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors, festering sores and the itch, from which you cannot be cured.
28 The LORD will afflict you with madness, blindness, and confusion of mind.
29 At midday you will grope about like a blind man in the dark. You will be unsuccessful in everything you do; day after day you will be oppressed and robbed, with no one to rescue you.
30 You will be pledged to be married to a woman, but another will take her and ravish her. You will build a house, but you will not live in it. You will plant a vineyard, but you will not even begin to enjoy its fruit.
31 Your ox will be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will eat none of it. Your donkey will be forcibly taken from you and will not be returned. Your sheep will be given to your enemies, and no one will rescue them.
32 Your sons and daughters will be given to another nation, and you will wear out your eyes watching for them day after day, powerless to lift a hand.
33 A people that you do not know will eat what your land and labor produce, and you will have nothing but cruel oppression all your days.
34 The sights you see will drive you mad.
35 The LORD will afflict your knees and legs with painful boils that cannot be cured, spreading from the soles of your feet to the top of your head.
36 The LORD will drive you and the king you set over you to a nation unknown to you or your fathers. There you will worship other gods, gods of wood and stone.
37 You will become a thing of horror and an object of scorn and ridicule to all the nations where the LORD will drive you.
38 You will sow much seed in the field but you will harvest little, because locusts will devour it.
39 You will plant vineyards and cultivate them but you will not drink the wine or gather the grapes, because worms will eat them.
40 You will have olive trees throughout your country but you will not use the oil, because the olives will drop off.
41 You will have sons and daughters but you will not keep them, because they will go into captivity.
42 Swarms of locusts will take over all your trees and the crops of your land.
43 The alien who lives among you will rise above you higher and higher, but you will sink lower and lower.
44 He will lend to you, but you will not lend to him. He will be the head, but you will be the tail.
45 All these curses will come upon you. They will pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you did not obey the LORD your God and observe the commands and decrees he gave you.
46 They will be a sign and a wonder to you and your descendants forever.
47 Because you did not serve the LORD your God joyfully and gladly in the time of prosperity,
48 therefore in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and dire poverty, you will serve the enemies the LORD sends against you. He will put an iron yoke on your neck until he has destroyed you.
49 The LORD will bring a nation against you from far away, from the ends of the earth, like an eagle swooping down, a nation whose language you will not understand,
50 a fierce-looking nation without respect for the old or pity for the young.
Frankly, these curses sound terrible. So why not accept the Lord. Why not accept his blessings? Why not believe that his word is true? I believe in this time, we are seeing some of these curses. I believe that our nation has followed other gods, lesser gods and idols and as a nation we will reap what we sow. The Lord is good. He seeks to bless. But, we have to obey to receive those blessings.
I pray today that we individually and as a nation seek God, accept his word as truth, and submit to His good way for our lives.
From Deuteronomy 30…a choice.
15 See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. 16 For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.
17 But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, 18 I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.
I pray that our nation would choose the Lord, His way, and His blessing. I pray that we no longer choose false gods and death. Lord, today I pray for help in repenting against the ways of this world. I pray you would help me seek you, not the false gods of our world. Lord, please help our nation returns its eyes to you and your ways. Amen.