The Privilege of Holiness
“When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are about to enter and occupy, he will clear away many nations ahead of you: the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. These seven nations are greater and more numerous than you. When the Lord your God hands these nations over to you and you conquer them, you must completely destroy them. Make no treaties with them and show them no mercy. You must not intermarry with them. Do not let your daughters and sons marry their sons and daughters, for they will lead your children away from me to worship other gods. Then the anger of the Lord will burn against you, and he will quickly destroy you.
“For you are a holy people, who belong to the Lord your God. Of all the people on the earth, the Lord your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure.” (Deuteronomy 7:1-4, 6 NLT)
I’ve always been told that I become like who I hang out with. Moses was basically telling the people the same thing. If they intermarried or spent all their time with the people of the other nations, pretty soon they’d be worshiping idols and getting farther and farther away from God.
For you, a thousand years are as a passing day, as brief as a few night hours. You sweep people away like dreams that disappear. They are like grass that springs up in the morning. In the morning it springs and flourishes, but by evening it is dry and withered. We wither beneath your anger; we are overwhelmed by your fury. You spread out our sins before you—our secret sins—and you see them all. We live our lives beneath your wrath, ending our years with a groan. Seventy years are given to us! Some even live to be eighty. But even the best years are filled with pain and trouble; soon they disappear, and we fly away. Who can comprehend the power of your anger? Your wrath is as awesome as the fear you deserve. Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom. (Psalm 90:4-12 NLT)
I don’t know how long I’ll live on this earth. But all I know is that I don’t have much time left. My entire life is barely even a second in God’s time. I want to live my life intentionally, spending my time doing what God wants me to do, instead of what the world wants.
O Lord, come back to us! How long will you delay? Take pity on your servants! Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives. Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery! Replace the evil years with good. Let us, your servants, see you work again; let our children see your glory. And may the Lord our God show us his approval and make our efforts successful. Yes, make our efforts successful! (Psalm 90:13-17 NLT)