See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse—the blessing if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today; the curse if you disobey the commands of the Lord your God and turn from the way that I command you today by following other gods, which you have not known.
Reflection: His Blessings, Our Curse :: A Guided Prayer
By John Tillman
The blessings and curses of the law were a consistent theme of Moses’s final messages to the people of Israel. Moses gave instructions for a gigantic visual demonstration as a community learning event that was eventually carried out by Joshua.
Half the tribes would stand on Mount Gerazim and half on Mount Ebal. The tribes on Gerazim would pronounce the blessings that could be theirs if they obeyed. The tribes on Ebal would pronounce the curses if they failed to follow the laws that Moses was leaving them.
May we hear in God’s Word, always the tender love of our father who wants blessings for us.
May we also give thanks for our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who became a curse for us. He died to release the curse’s hold on us, then he rose to bring to us the full blessings of life that overflows with good things.
Praise and thank him this week using the prayer below that is based on our readings for today:
His Blessings, Our Curse
Oh, Lord, we are your people.
We are the sheep of your pasture and we need your provision.
Your care for us Lord goes deeper than
The superficial service of hired help.
You are our Good Shepherd who lays down his life for us.
You became a curse for us.
You became sin for us.
We have your blessings today, Lord,
Because you took our curse!
We stand on Gerazim and you stand on Ebal.
If only we would hear your voice today, Lord.
If only we would walk your path of service.
If only we would walk your path of grace.
May we proclaim your salvation day after day and
May we never cease telling of your wonderful deeds.
Let the heavens, the seas, the fields, and the trees resound with praise
As you come to judge the world with equity!
As Israel was to be your instrument in the world, Lord, make us instruments of your grace and truth to others.
Prayer: The Call to Prayer
Bless our God, you peoples; make the voice of his praise to be heart;
Who holds our souls in life, and will not allow our feet to slip. — Psalm 66.7-8
– From The Divine Hours: Prayers for Summertime by Phyllis Tickle.
Deuteronomy 11 (Listen – 4:38)
Psalm 95-96 (Listen – 2:37)
This Weekend’s Readings
Deuteronomy 12 (Listen – 5:11) Psalm 97-98 (Listen – 2:19)
Deuteronomy 13 (Listen – 3:05) Psalm 99-101 (Listen – 2:48)
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Read more about Balaam’s Success
No matter what sins or idols we are tempted with, may we approach God humbly, seeking repentance and redemption through Christ.
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