Hear now, O Israel, the decrees and laws I am about to teach you. Follow them so that you may live and may go in and take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your fathers, is giving you. Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the LORD your God that I give you. … Observe them carefully, for this will show your wisdom and understanding to the nations, who will hear about all these decrees and say, “Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.” What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him? And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?
His Calling Card
Jim was a salesman. He traveled to visit his customers. He always left them a business card, so they would be able to contact him again later.
God uses his people as his calling card. On his people, he imprints his promises: “I will be with you. I will be near you. I will never leave you nor forsake you. I will always, always listen when you pray.” And a host of other promises. On his people, he imprints his laws: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart. Love your neighbor as yourself.” And he added a fully fleshed out code of conduct for his people’s society, worship, and personal life. God wanted his people to be his calling card. The people of other nations would see Israel and see God’s promises and commands stamped across the fabric of their lives. And it would have worked…
Except his people sinned. They fell away from God again and again. They disregarded his commands and promises and turned to other gods.
How about you? Do you represent God well? Do you display God’s commands to the world by the way you live? Do you promote God’s promises by what you say and do? Or are you guilty of giving God “bad press?”
God in his mercy sent another calling card: his own Son. In his Son, people of every nation can see the imprint of God’s righteousness, God’s laws. In God’s Son Jesus, the world can see God’s love, God’s promises. Jesus not only publicized God well in life but connected lost souls with God through his death on the cross. People from every nation who believe in Jesus not only learn about God, but know God as their Father, receive forgiveness of sins, and live forever.
God forgives you through Christ. And in grace, sends you out as his calling card into the world.
Dear Father, forgive me for giving you a bad name by a sinful life. Forgive me and cleanse me in Christ and use me as your calling card in a world of lost souls. Amen.