May 11: Jacob’s Trouble: God unique relationship with Israel

A promise with a warning

Israel’s history vacillates between times of blessing and times of great tragedy.  It is human nature to question God’s faithfulness in the times of tragedy and forget in times of blessing.

While we forget God’s faithfulness we ALSO forget our sin and rebellion which is the cause of the tragedy. 

God gave Israel a promise when they were about to cross into the Promised Land.  

Deuteronomy 11:1-9

“Therefore you shall love the Lord your God, and keep His charge, His statutes, His judgments, and His commandments always. Know today that I do not speak with your children, who have not known and who have not seen the chastening of the Lord your God, His greatness and His mighty hand and His outstretched arm—His signs and His acts which He did in the midst of Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt, and to all his land;  what He did to the army of Egypt, to their horses and their chariots: how He made the waters of the Red Sea overflow them as they pursued you, and how the Lord has destroyed them to this day; what He did for you in the wilderness until you came to this place;  and what He did to Dathan and Abiram the sons of Eliab, the son of Reuben: how the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them up, their households, their tents, and all the substance that was in their possession, in the midst of all Israel—but your eyes have seen every great act of the Lord which He did.

 “Therefore you shall keep every commandment which I command you today, that you may be strong, and go in and possess the land which you cross over to possess, and that you may prolong your days in the land which the Lord swore to give your fathers, to them and their descendants, ‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’

But it was promise with a warning!

Deuteronomy 11:13-17

 ‘And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love the Lord your God and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, then I[b] will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil. And I will send grass in your fields for your livestock, that you may eat and be filled.’ “Take heed to yourselves, lest your heart be deceived, and you turn aside and serve other gods and worship them, lest the Lord’s anger be aroused against you, and He shut up the heavens so that there be no rain, and the land yield no produce, and you perish quickly from the good land which the Lord is giving you.


Tree to honor the Wegryznowska Family.
Vasiuta Wegrzynowska was a poor widow with three children in the Ukraine. Before the war she worked for a Jewish family, the Helpers, who were very kind to her. During the war she hid the family in an underground shelter in her home, sharing what little food she had. After the liberation she and her children were murdered by nationalists for hiding the Helper family. After testifying in the murders trial, the Helper family fled to Israel to live.

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