Deuteronomy 6:2-3 – “Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the Lord your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, that you may fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged.”
The commands that God coursed through Moses for the Israelites were not mere tickets for them to this “land flowing with milk and honey”. These were standards that they were to live out once they get to the promise. These were to instill “fear of the Lord” (Hebrew: yare – to respect, to reverence) which produces obedience.
The meaning of the word “fear” as used in this phrase is not what the world is accustomed to. Fear of God acknowledges His good intentions (Exodus 20:20), and it is produced by reading His Word (Psalm 119:38, Proverbs 2:5). It opens us up to wisdom and knowledge (Proverbs 1:7). It can be learned (Psalm 34:11, 13-14). (source)
As we have already discussed briefly before, obedience keeps the blessings. And it is not a respecter of time and place and relations. In Deuteronomy 6:7-9, the people were expected to pass on these standards to their children (“teach them diligently”), and put it to practice whenever and wherever they may find themselves.
Why was it so important for the people to learn this fear before they enter the Promised Land? In verses 10-14 we see that blessings can quite easily take our focus away from the Blessor. We can easily slip into a “good life” mentality and be complacent with our faith. We see a glimpse of this truth in Proverbs 30:9: “Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, Who is the Lord?”
Deuteronomy 6:24-25 – “And the Lord commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is this day. Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the Lord our God, as He has commanded us.’”
To know how to live right, we turn to the Word and know that God’s instructions were never meant to limit us. In fact His rules are always for our own good.