Law doesn’t inspire the heart

““You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the LORD swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth. For if you will be careful to do all this commandment that I command you to do, loving the LORD your God, walking in all his ways, and holding fast to him” (Deuteronomy 11:18–22 ESV)

The way to avoid our hearts from wandering is to lay up the words of God in our hearts and souls, teaching them to our children and placing practical reminders around us.  This isn’t just the law (or a moral checklist) because the law, on its own, does not inspire the heart.  God is after a heartfelt love for Him.  This has to also include the constant, persistent recalling of God’s goodness, faithfulness & provision to an undeserving people (you & me).  This is a major theme in Deuteronomy – Moses continually unpacks the majestic power & greatness of God and the Israelite’s rebellion & hard heartedness. He anticipates that they will be prone to rob God of His glory by attributing the abundance in their lives to something else – and they did.  We do the same thing today.

Perhaps, we should follow the pattern of intentionally recalling God’s goodness, faithfulness & provision to us despite our persistent hard heartedness toward Him.  We need constant reminding that we are not deserving, but objects of His mercy – not because of anything that we did or will do.  He chose us because He is gracious and is working good, not because we did/do good.