“in that I command you this day.” This phrase and the verse show how God has set before each person life, good, death, and evil. God sets life and death before us by giving us commandments and showing us how to live a godly life, and we choose what happens by either walking in God’s ways and obeying His commands or rejecting God’s ways and being rebellious against Him. Deuteronomy 30:15-16 are integrally connected, although many English versions break them into two sentences. God does not just say that He sets before us life and good and death and evil. He tells us He has done that by commanding us to love Him, walk in His ways, and follow His commands. Then the way we choose to live is the choice we make either to live or die. In a few verses (Deut. 30:19), God makes it explicit that we choose life or death (“I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse; therefore choose life”). On the Day of Judgment no one will be able to say, “I never made a choice,” because the way a person lives is their choice. In essence, Deuteronomy 30:15, 16, and 30:19 say, “Today I have set before you life and death in that I command you to love God, walk in his ways and keep His commandments—so choose life.”
In this same general context, Deuteronomy 30:19-20 says the same basic thing as Deuteronomy 30:15-16: that each person chooses life and blessing by making the decision to obey God.
God has set before us life and good, and death and evil. This life includes a good life now as well as the promise of everlasting life in the future. This message contrasts the requirements for a good life before Christ came with the righteousness based on trust available now by following Romans 10:9-10.
Verses: Deut. 30:11-20; Rom. 10:5-10
Teacher: John Schoenheit