Diligently Keep the Commandments

Deuteronomy 6:17 (ESV) … “You shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and his testimonies and his statutes, which he has commanded you.”


Moses describes the ambition of obedience to the Word: “You shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and his testimonies and his statutes, which he has commanded you” (6:17). The familiar word shamar, which appeared in verse 12, appears twice here, yielding the translation, “You shall diligently keep.” We are talking about people who are so eager to do the will of God that they will study the Word and always ask what the Bible says about what they are thinking of doing. This is like the people in Charles Sheldon’s book In His Steps who asked, “What would Jesus do?” in every situation of life. It revolutionized their lives.


Psalm 119:4 describes what our verse says: “You have commanded your precepts to be kept diligently.” Then it gives a prayer that should be in the hearts of those who want to do this: “Oh that my ways may be steadfast in keeping your statutes!” (v. 5). The Bible is a book that is not only to be studied but should be studied primarily with the intention of obedience. As Oswald Chambers said, “Never try to explain God until you have obeyed Him. The only bit of God we understand is the bit we have obeyed.”[1]




[1] Hughes Kent R. (2012). A Word to Those Who Preach the Word. In R. K. Hughes (Ed.), Preaching the Word: Deuteronomy—Loving Obedience to a Loving God (p. 279). Wheaton, IL: Crossway.

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