Saturday, August 8, 2020
“Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons; Specially the day that thou stoodest before the LORD thy God in Horeb, when the LORD said unto me, Gather me the people together, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children” (Deuteronomy 4:9,10 KJV).
Some have cried out, “This world is going to hell in a handbasket!” Others have exclaimed, “We have lost our country!” Surely, surely, they are all correct!
The Holy Spirit afforded Moses the ability to look at the nation Israel millennia into the future: “Of the Rock that begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee” (Deuteronomy 32:18). Circa 750 years before Christ, halfway between Moses and Calvary, we observe the Jews’ divided kingdom—Israel up north, Judah down south. “For Israel hath forgotten his Maker, and buildeth temples; and Judah hath multiplied fenced cities: but I will send a fire upon his cities, and it shall devour the palaces thereof” (Hosea 8:14).
Israel’s land abounded with temples, places of worship. She appeared religious. Yet, the fact of the matter was they had taken their eyes off the LORD God. Outwardly, she looked alive. Internally and spiritually, however, she had already perished. As for Judah, that kingdom relied on military might instead of the LORD—seemingly strong, it was really weak.
Fast-forward to Christ’s earthly ministry, Matthew chapter 21: “ Now in the morning as he [Jesus] returned into the city [Jerusalem], he hungered.  And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away.  And when the disciples saw it, they marvelled, saying, How soon is the fig tree withered away!” Again, “religious” Israel was promising on the outside, but barren on the inside….