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D'varim/Deuteronomy 26:16 This day Adonai your G-d is commanding you to do these statutes
The verb is a Pi'el participle from the root , a device used to construct what in English is the present tense. ButHaShem had been giving the people commandments in the desert for forty years, so why is this day special? Rashi picks up this point and says, "On each day, they should be new in your eyes, as if you were commanded regarding them that day." Or, in other words, HaShem's commandments should be fresh and new to us each day, every day, and we should obey them as if this were the first opportunity we had had to obey them. Moshe is telling us that the commandments have a currency that stretches all the way from Sinai in an unbroken line up until this very day, today.
TheSforno adds the comment that "this is ... the day you enter into a covenant with Him. Today G-d commands you to obey His statutes and you accept the obligation to do so." So combining the two ideas, we can see that every day is a covenant day; it is not that G-d once made a covenant with us, way back when, and we are still tied to that covenant that our fathers made - on our behalf, so to speak. No, each day we enter into a new covenant with G-d for this day and hereafter, to obey Him today. And this is how it must be: as "The L-rd's lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail; they are new every morning" (Lamentations 3:22-23, NASB), so each day is a new day and we - as temporal creatures - are confined to operating only in today. We may do things today and hope to do things tomorrow; and exercise come choice and control over our actions. Yesterday is gone; we cannot exercise any choice over or change any action or word that has already been done and said.
There is a popular saying that "today is the first day of the rest of your life". Yeshua said that "no-one who puts his hand to the plough and keeps looking back is fit to serve in the kingdom of G-d" (Luke 9:62, CJB), at least in part because G-d calls us to obey and serve Him today, in the things that can be done, rather that reliving, rehearsing or regretting the things of the past that can never be redone - whether good or bad. Yeshua also said, "do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble" (Matthew 6:34, ESV); G-d has provided today with quite enough for us to do. But He has also promised to be with us every moment of that day and He has given us His commandments and His Spirit to guide us through that day, if we will let Him. Today is a new day, a fresh day, a day that the L-rd has made, a day to make covenant with G-d to walk with Him today, a day to live life to the full in the kingdom of G-d and know His blessings. What will you do today?
Further Study: Psalm 30:1-5; Hoshea 6:1-3
Application: G-d doesn't want any of us to be carrying the shadow of past sin, hurts or regrets into today. If that describes you, then take them to Him right now without wasting another moment of today. He can and will forgive the past and wants you to hear His command for you today.
© Jonathan Allen, 2006
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