The God Who Carries Us
As God’s people gather just east of the promised land, Moses begins delivering his farewell addresses. The protective leader’s fierce love pours out as he preaches words heavy with finality.
Reviewing the faithless fiasco of the spies, Moses reminds the people that the previous generation’s lack of trust in God and his abilities cost them the opportunity to see the promised land. For the sake of the current generation, Moses reviews the landmarks and battles the nation has walked through in the last 40 years—including the recent annihilation of the kingdoms of Sihon and Og. The message is crystal clear: Walking with God has resulted in blessing; stepping outside of his guidance has been disastrous.
From a heart of love and great concern, Moses beseeches the people—with shake-you-by-the-shoulders intensity—to follow God and his commands. They are his, the nation chosen by God. An honor so high should be carried with awe and intentional obedience. They have been given the honor of knowing the supreme King.
The King’s Heart
“You saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place” (Deuteronomy 1:31).
“As a father carries his son . . . ” This image implies a sense of a proud lifting, a protective raising. A young boy is tenderly raised above the ground by his daddy, feet high above danger, pulled close, ear pressed to heart . . . preciously held through the journey.
Like Israel, we are the held-close ones. We are enveloped in the protective arms of the Almighty One, raised high above all danger, pressed close as a cherished treasure. God longs for us to rest in his love and power, exhaling our worry in the safety of his goodness and strength.
Anxious children hear the threat of danger more clearly than they can hear their daddy’s reassuring voice. If you’re worried or stressed, ask God to help you remember the strength of his arms and love. Then rest in them. Your good Daddy is carrying you through.
The nation gathered on the plains of Moab across from Jericho (see Numbers 36:13 and Deuteronomy 34:8) while Moses spoke his final words to the nation—calling them to repent and walk with God. Interestingly, John the Baptist, who also called people to repent and walk with God, baptized people “at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan” (John 1:28). It’s possible that John may have baptized and preached at the same place where Moses spoke.