“Oh, that they would always have hearts like this, that they might fear me and obey all my commands! If they did, they and their descendants would prosper forever.’” – Deut. 5:29
The Israelites were used to having Moses as the mediator between God and themselves. On this particular occasion they experienced God firsthand. Their response was one of reverential awe and fear of the Lord. Upon hearing them talk this way, the Lord said, “Oh, that they would always have hearts like this, that they might fear me and obey all my commands! If they did, they and their descendants would prosper forever.” God mentioned three things that would determine whether the Israelites and their descendants would prosper forever or not – heart condition, fear of the Lord and obedience.
What kind of heart is God looking for? One that is humble and filled with respect and honor towards him. One that is teachable and can receive from him easily. One that overflows with gratitude, praise and worship towards him. God is looking for a heart that will trust him, and align itself properly to receive. God will bless a heart like this.
God wants his people to fear him. Not the anxiety stricken, worry laden fear we’re used to talking about. Rather, the kind of fear that is really a reverential awe of him. It is amazement at his bigness, his power, his ability and his love. He wants us to come to a place where we know and understand that there is no other god beside him and that our entire existence is dependent on him and his goodness. When we enter this place of knowing and respecting God for who he truly is, his natural response is to pour himself out to us. He blesses us!
The last thing God mentions is obedience to his commands. Obedience to the Word keeps us in the place where provision happens. It positions us. It keeps us close to God. Obeying the commands of the Lord is powerful that way.
God said that if the Israelites had a “right” heart condition, feared him and obeyed his commands, they and their descendants would prosper forever. It is the very same for us today!