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Listen to me!

By Pastor Ronald E. Krause
Zion Lutheran Church, Grant

“And now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the rules that I am teaching you, and do them, that you may live and go in and take possession of the land that the Lord, the God of your fathers, is giving you.” Deuteronomy 4:1

I don’t know about some of you, but I really don’t like election years—with all of the campaigning, with all of the negative speeches and slanderous ads. And it doesn’t matter which side of the aisle you’re on, we are treated to the same empty promises, the same sure-fire solutions that will be just what our nation needs to bring us out of the current slump; I’m sure that such tactics have been going on since day one of our nation.
If only we had some good, solid advice to follow; if only there were someone who would speak the truth to us and show us the best path for us to take as a nation… oh, wait, I think we do have something like that, it’s called the Holy Bible!
Every time God’s people of old went astray and encountered problems and difficulties in their lives it was because they failed to listen to the words of guidance and instruction that God had given to them. Whenever they turned away from the one true God, their nation crumbled around them; just as when they were faithful to his Word, God’s blessings and grace was upon them.
I think there’s a lesson in there somewhere! But then we know that it is so politically incorrect to suggest that our nation return to our Christian roots and follow the will and ways of our Lord in all of our dealings. I can’t imagine a better way for a politician to be laughed out of office than to propose something like that.
But it is something that all of us can take to heart on a personal level. As our congregations begin another year of Christian education, we realize how important it is to bring up our children in the fear and admonition of the Lord, teaching them His ways from the truth of His holy Word.
Where we fail though, I’m afraid, is in realizing that all of us are to be life-long students of the Bible. “Listen to me!” our God says to each of us—and then promises blessing after blessing to those who do so.
Of course we do not listen and obey so that we might become God’s people, but because we already are through faith in our Savior. It is the voice of our Good Shepherd that we long to listen to; and as we do so we hear so many promises and assurances of his unfailing love and guidance and presence in our lives.