"But to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to understand or eyes to see or ears to hear."
Until I grasped the meaning of this verse, I often asked how can people not see Jesus for who He is, whether in the days He walked among us or today. The day I understood, all my reasons for pride disappeared. I know why Jesus says "You must be born again"; why Paul says "For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast."
The people to whom Moses was speaking, just like all mankind, did not have the capacity to comprehend their experience, as phenomenal as it was, in the context of God and His Kingdom; no one enslaved to sin does.
How thankful are you for the new covenant? Ezekiel 36:25-27 describes the new covenant like this, "I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules."
Just as my pastor prays every Sunday before he preaches God's Word, my prayer is, Lord please gives us eyes to see, ears to hear, minds to comprehend and hearts to believe.
There are many passages of Scripture that cause me to stop and think immediately. Like Matthew 7:21-23, these verses stop me dead in my tracks.
Deuteronomy 29:19 (NIV) says, "When such a person hears the words of this oath, he invokes a blessing on himself and therefore thinks, 'I will be safe, even though I persist in going my own way.'" A person can hear the word of God, the blessings and the curses, and say "Wow, I want the blessings, not the curses" and invoke a blessing on himself. The blessing is not of God but a blessing of self. Based upon the self-blessing, they believe "I will be safe (from the curses), even though I do the things God says will lead to the curse." Today this is described as "Yes, I have the fire insurance policy."
I find it interesting that just as the things of the world and it's splendor are a temptation to me, the devil offered Jesus the same thing. Hebrews 4:15 says, "We do not have a high priest (Jesus) who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin."
Notice, Jesus does not refute the devil's claim to be able to give him "all the kingdoms of the world and their glory." But that was not Jesus' purpose; He came to seek and to save the lost (Luke 19:10), not to gain this world and its glory.
For a long time, I did not see wanting the things of this world and their glory as worshiping Satan. Yet, Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:4 describes the devil as the "god of this world." Jesus describes him as the "ruler of this world" in John 14:30. The devil is not as direct in his offer with us as he was with Jesus. To Jesus, he specifically said, "All these I will give you, if you fall down and worship me." To us, his offer comes by making the things of this world appear desirable and worthy of our passions. He wants us to place our appetite for the world's stuff above our desire for Jesus and His kingdom. Our response should be the same as Jesus' response, "You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve."
Holy Spirit, please give me eyes to distinguish the truth from the lie. May I see Jesus and His Kingdom in all their glory so that the kingdom of this world is lackluster in comparison.