And the LORD commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive…
I. THE OBLIGATION OF RELIGION. "The Lord commanded us."
1. The will of God is the proper ground of moral obligation.
2. The will of God, as made known to us, is the statement and rule of religion.
II. THE PARTICULAR NATURE OF RELIGION.
1. "To fear the Lord our God" — the mind constituted so as that certain affections may be produced by certain objects. The true knowledge of God will produce reverence, admiration, and dread. At first this, with a deep sense of guilt, will be the spirit of bondage unto fear. When the Spirit of adoption is received the fear is filial, reverential, producing hatred to sin.
2. "To do all these statutes." Religion is to be practical and external, as well as experimental and internal.
(1) It is not talking about the Divine laws, but doing them.
(2) It is not doing what we please, but the commands of God.
(3) It is not selecting such as we prefer, but doing "all these statutes."
(4) It is not doing them carelessly, but with due thought, observe.
(5) It is not doing them formally or to please man, but in reference to God Himself; "before the Lord.
(6) Obedience is not to be in opposition to the covenant of mercy, but connected with it; "before the Lord our God."
III. VALUE AND ADVANTAGES OF RELIGION.
1. "It shall be our righteousness." Mercy comes only through merit and intercession of Christ. Is at first received only by faith. Still, He is Author of eternal salvation only to them that obey Him. For Christ's sake continued obedience to the law of our dispensation is the channel of continual acceptance.
2. "For our good always." We enjoy the favour of God, and the light of His countenance is our happiness. His providence takes care of us. His glory will receive us.
Parallel VersesKJV: And the LORD commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as it is at this day.