“And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord doth man live.
Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day:” ~ Deuteronomy 8:2-3; 11
My dad died when I was young, and one of the most vivid memories of his death was that immediately more than anything else, I wanted to remember his voice. It was before the days of casual recordings and voicemails so all I had was what I could bring to mind. For years every night, I would think on his voice and his words to me. Words of instruction and love and how he would laugh and kid with me. He couldn’t carry a tune, but I wanted to remember his out of tune singing so much. As I got older and his absence became more familiar, I stopped thinking about him every night, and just every now and then would sit and remember his voice. I will never forget the day and the grief I felt when one day I sat and tried to recall his voice and I couldn’t bring it to mind AT ALL. It is something that I still can’t remember and still grieve and it has been a valuable life lesson to me. No one is immune to forgetting, and we are not only given a command to remember the Lord in our passage today but we are given a warning – BEWARE that thou forget not the Lord thy God!!!!
Remember – to recall to the mind by an act or effort of memory; to retain in the memory; keep in mind; to mention to another; to possess a memory
Forget – to cease or fail to remember; be unable to recall; to omit or neglect unintentionally; to leave behind; leave unnoticed; to fail to think of; to neglect willfully; disregard or slight.
Beware – to be wary, cautious, or careful of
Yesterday in the One Year Bible we read in Deuteronomy 7 that Israel was instructed to remember the power of God and his faithfulness in leading them out of Egypt. Today, in Deuteronomy 8 they are commanded to remember the provision and faithfulness and benefits of God in the wilderness. They are commanded not to remember just bits and pieces but ALL the ways the Lord led them and His goodness.
There is great power and value in remembering. When we become forgetful of what God has done we drift away. Eventually, we can drift so far that we remember little at all. We see forgetfulness over and over in the lives of the Israelites, and many of us can see it just as often in our own lives.
This week of Easter is a week of remembrance of how Jesus died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and on the third day arose from the grave. This week we will remember in detail the pain, the torture, the sacrifice, the LOVE as the week goes on and Sunday approaches. Sunday will be a celebration as we remember the resurrection. It is good to remember. Jesus instructed His disciples to remember His body and His blood when He gathered with His disciples, and they sat to eat the Passover. (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:19-20)
And when he had given thanks, he brake it (the bread), and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. ~ 1 Corinthians 11:24-26
Communion or the Lord’s Supper is not only a command of Jesus to His disciples and to us, but it is a beautiful act of remembrance of who Jesus is and what He did for each one of us that we might have eternal life.
Today let’s not forget the cross. Let’s not forget Jesus. Let’s not forget the sacrifice of His body and His blood. Let’s not forget all His benefits. Let’s not forget those that are searching desperately for the love and life we have found in Jesus.
Lord, help us today to be people of remembrance. Show us how to remember and celebrate and proclaim Your greatness and your faithfulness. Show us and convict us when we are becoming slack and not remembering You as we should. Show us, so we don’t become one of the forgetful. I love You, Jesus and I thank You for dying for me on that old rugged cross that I might have life eternal. I thank You for having Deuteronomy 8 as my manna…to show me the consequence and the Hope in remembrance. Revive us all with Your Spirit that we might remember, today and every day…In Jesus Name, Amen!