Deuteronomy 4.9 commands us to just make sure you stay alert. Keep close watch over yourselves. Don’t forget anything of what you’ve seen. Don’t let your heart wander off. Stay vigilant as long as you live. Teach what you’ve seen and heard to your children and grandchildren.
What a great summary of the Christian life. The Bible consistently speaks to us the things God wants us to do, whether through prophets and leaders thousands of years ago or through God Himself in His appearance as a man, Jesus, or through the disciples of Jesus who wrote by direction of God.
The Bible is the recorded word of God and therefore demonstrates a consistency from beginning to end of what God desires from His people, His created image bearers. We are to keep watch over ourselves, to stay alert to those evil desires that exist within us causing us to do evil to those around us.
The purpose of our creation is to know God and to do His will for His glory forever. While we were made to love God, to serve God and to worship God, He made us in such a way that doing these things brings us the greatest meaning, purpose and joy. We are at our best, we feel our best, we are doing our best, when we are doing what God commands.
These commands include passing along to the next generation the knowledge of Him and His ways. Teaching our children by our words and deeds the ways of God is the core purpose of our parenting and is to become the focus of our relationship with our children.
Knowing God and doing His will is easy in that He has provided His Word, His Spirit and His people for keeping us apprised of what He wants but it requires all our effort, for our nature, our DNA, is not predisposed toward obedience and the enemy of God does His best to lead us astray toward selfish desires leading us to destructive ends.
To stay alert, to keep watch over ourselves, is to know God’s Word thoroughly so that we can adjust our thinking and our doing to sync with His will because our natural inclination is to wander away from that which is good and pleasing to God.