Parashat Re’eh (See or Look)
D’varim (Deuteronomy) 11:26–16:19
In this week’s parasha, I noticed a phrase that repeats numerous times: “…that the Lord your God will choose…” The same phrase, or a variation of it, appears in Deuteronomy 12:5; 11, 13–14, and 26–27. I believe that this phrase holds an important principle for us to remember. The fact that it repeats again and again shows us that God wants us to pay close attention. The truth is that God is the one who chooses how, where, and when He desires things to happen; we have the freedom to choose to obey or disobey Him.
In chapter 12, verses 13 and 14, there is a warning to us:
Be careful (be on your guard) that you do not offer your burnt offerings in every place you see, but in the place which the LORD chooses in one of your tribes, there you shall offer your burnt offerings, and there you shall do all that I command you.
We are to be careful to do things according to God’s instructions and not according to our own ways! I am a firm believer that we are to seek God in everything that we do. That being said, we must be careful to make sure that what we hear is from Him and is not based in our own flesh or selfish desires.
God is the Creator of the world, and He has His own order for things. While it may seem harmless, it is dangerous to take matters into our own hands and do things in our own way. It is very dangerous when we put our own spin and interpretation on things. Although we may have good intentions, the moment they go against God’s principles, they lose their goodness.
Another point that I would like to raise here, and give a firm warning against, is misusing parts of God’s Word in order to justify our wrongdoing or our faulty convictions. We need to read His entire Word from beginning to end, and understand the continuity of the story that runs from Genesis to Revelation. This the only way that we will find God’s true and perfect will for our lives.
God’s ways are higher than ours. I know that can be tough to accept, but there is an amazing freedom in surrendering to this truth. This Shabbat, let us take time to reflect and rid ourselves from things rooted in our flesh, and choose instead those things that are from Him!
Did you know? — Lone Soldier
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