Call to Worship November 17 2019
THE POOR MAN’S OLD TESTAMENT COMMENTARY by Robert Hawker
The charge to Israel was special and distinguishing. Israel was set apart, and distinguished, from all other nations of the earth. No people knew the LORD by signs and wonders, by holy worship and ordinances, as Israel did. What nation (as Moses told them) had the LORD so nigh [near] as Israel? Deuteronomy 4:7. Reader! I charge it upon your mind, in the view of this subject, to consider how infinitely this argument is heightened since the SON of GOD, in substance of our flesh, came and tabernacled among us. Oh! what nearness are believers now brought to, in the blood and righteousness of JESUS! How beautifully the apostle dwells upon this, 1 Peter 2:9, 10.
This is a charming line of distinction which the man of GOD has drawn between the ignorance and unconsciousness of children, and the experience of men. In recapitulating those mighty acts of GOD, he appeals to facts which their eyes had seen, and which their knowledge of allowed no debate concerning, in proof of mercy shown them: what the LORD did for them against their enemies; and what the LORD did to them in numberless providences during their wilderness state: Hence therefore, it is as if he had said, I appeal to your own judgments; is not this a most gracious GOD, and justly entitled to all the love, and reverence, and obedience of a people so highly favoured. But Reader! when you have paid all possible attention to this view of Israel of old, pause over the subject, and consider how increased is the argument, as it may be applied to Israel now. If the Reader himself be an object of divine grace, may I not say, in the language of Moses, Know you this day, for I speak not to the unconscious, unawakened state of childhood, who have never experienced the grace of GOD in JESUS, but it is to you I speak, whose eyes have seen, and whose hands have handed, the word of life. What spiritual foes has the LORD your GOD driven out, and consumed before you, and what great acts of grace in quickening mercy, converting mercy, and renewing mercy, has the LORD manifested to you otherwise than he does to the world? Oh! what a volume is opened to every man’s view, in the history of his own heart, who reads GOD’S love to Israel of old with the New Testament explanation, as the truth is in JESUS.”