It happened again. Just going through material read so many times before and boom- something new.
Last year when we did B90X, I had an ambivalent reaction to Moses’ death at the end of Deuteronomy. The man worked really hard for God. I know he was called specifically for his work, but think about what he had before he left Egypt for his second 40 years of life to be a shepherd in the wilderness he would eventually wander in. He put up with a ton of carp from a whole pile of rebellious people. He even talked the Lord out of killing the whole lot of them one time (Num 14).
Have you ever noticed that the three items kept in storage as remembrances in the Ark were all the result of rebellion? All the result of a rebellious moment that required supernatural intervention and a sign to, once again, prove the point that God is God and humans are not.
I digress. Moses, was the man. ”Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, who did all those miraculous signs and wonders the Lord sent him to do in Egypt- to Pharaoh and to all his officials and to his whole land. For no one has ever shown the mighty power or performed the awesome deeds that Moses did in the sight of all Israel” (Deut 34:10-12).
Wow, yet he had to walk through and suffer the consequences of the entire crowd and wander for 38 + years in the wilderness because 10 Recon Experts were afraid of some big guys. Rather than trust the Lord and trust in His promises, the people erected giant ideas in their minds that Father was going to abandon them. Moses, Caleb, and Joshua all had to wander for 38 years along with the grumblers. They were innocent yet, they had to walk. They were faithful, yet had to wait a bunch of years.
At the end of Deuteronomy, just before Moses dies, he blesses the tribes. This has happened in the past with other sages’ pronouncing words on the Twelve. The words to Joseph were particularly captivating this time around. It looks to be the longest blessing and is so rich in vocabulary and word pictures.
The word picture I was specifically drawn to was “with the best gifts of the earth and its fullness and the favor of him who dwelt in the burning bush” (Deut 33:16). Notably, Moses is obviously speaking about God who dwelt in the burning bush. What a fantastic way to refer to Father. He is the only one on the planet who can speak of him this way. It is such a furtive reference and if you blink as you are reading that section, you can pass right over it.
The part that is the glaring is the part about favor. If you have the favor of God, what else do you need? When Father speaks to people on your behalf so that as soon as you meet, boom, they already trust you, that is priceless. When Father works in some one’s heart on your behalf, you can’t pay enough money for that. When Father works in someone who has not liked you, held a grudge against you, or even hates you, and they change their minds and suddenly forgive, you can’t manipulate a situation to make that happen- incalculable. Favor. When Father’s favor is on your life, it is a gift. It is a blessing. It is treasured. To have the favor of the one who dwelt in the burning bush on your life- celestial joy.