Deuteronomy 4:1-2 – “Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you. Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.”
How is it that God would give the Israelites the land of Canaan? Would they have the mightiest army, or the most sophisticated weaponry? Would God’s people develop a strategy that would outmaneuver their enemies? Could the Israelites overpower the giants by having them statistically outnumbered? Actually, their victory would come from none of these factors. Our text tells us that God would give them the land as a direct result of their strict obedience to the Word of God (His statutes and judgments). They were to “hearken…to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land.”
THE WAY TO VICTORY for the nation of Israel was directly tied to their adherence to God’s commands. Herein was the secret to their spiritual power. Disobedience to God’s Word would spell defeat and failure to God’s chosen people. What about us? How are we to experience spiritual victories in our lives? We are also promised victory through obedience to God’s Word. It is not through our physical prowess or intellectual abilities that we win spiritual battles. We cannot defeat Satan’s attacks or overcome temptation by our natural will power.
The battle is the Lord’s, and He promises to help us as we walk in obedience to Him. Sin and compromise weaken us, whereas surrender and faithfulness bring God’s blessings. Our victory is found in trusting the Lord. “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith” (I John 5:4). God encouraged Israel to hearken to His Words and follow His precepts that they might see victories in the Promise Land. They were not to “add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it.” Our potential is realized in submission and consistent obedience to God’s will. As we walk with Him and seek to follow His will in our daily lives and ministries, we can trust Him to give the victory.