Not for Your Righteousness

Understand therefore, that the Lord thy God giveth thee not this good land to possess it for thy righteousness; for thou art a stiffnecked people.

Deuteronomy 9:6

In this chapter of Deuteronomy, the Lord is reminding His people of how they provoked Him in the wilderness and how they rebelled against Him from the time they left Egypt until the time He was speaking to them.  The entire journey from Egypt to the Promised Land was a list of time after time that God’s chosen people has tried to rebel against Him.  The Lord is reminding them of this to nail down an important truth: He is not giving them the “good land” for their possession because of anything that they had done.  They are not going to possess the land because of their own righteousness.

They rebelled against Him.  The Lord Himself called them a “stiffnecked people”.  God did not bring the Israelites out of Egypt because they were good and noble and always obeyed Him; He brought them out of Egypt because they were His people.  In the same manner, God did not save us because of how great we are or were.  He did not save us because He knew that we would be perfect followers of Him.  He saved us and forgave us for our sins because 1) He wants to bring glory to His name and 2) He loves us.  We should never forget that the Lord didn’t save us and He doesn’t allow us to walk with Him because of anything great that we have done.  Everything we are and everything we have is entirely because of Him.

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