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The first worship service in Israel took place before God instituted the church. Israel was commanded to do this and so after a loss in battle Joshua thought it would be wise to do so. God had described to them what was to take place and it is a view of what should still take place today. It is found in Deuteronomy 27:12-14. '“When you cross the Jordan, these shall stand on Mount Gerizim to bless the people: Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin. For the curse, these shall stand on Mount Ebal: Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali. The Levites shall then answer and say to all the men of Israel with a loud voice, '

According to Clarke, Gerizim abounds with springs, gardens, and orchards, and is covered with a beautiful lush grass, while Ebal is as naked and as barren as a rock. Because of this, Gerizim was highly proper for the ceremony of blessing, and Ebal for the ceremony of cursing. The acoustics were such that all would hear the word of God.

God divided 6 tribes on one side and 6 on the other showing that some would follow and be blessed while others would not and would suffer. The division also shows us that the people who suffer are not only the ones who sin and dont follow.

Sins are far-reaching and affect all. God's chosen people to proclaim the word (the Priest) would stand in the middle and preach the word of God to them. Then as we carry on through the rest of this chapter we notice that the curses were given first to show that they were in need of Salvation. Then in Chapter 28, the Blessings were given, showing the mercy of God.

We also notice that the Curses are shown to be the fault of man yet the blessing all come from God. Examples are 27:15 Cursed is the man who makes an idol or a molten image, an abomination to the Lord, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ And 28:9 The Lord will establish you as a holy people to Himself,

We know through Jesus this was always God's plan, for Him in Christ to Bless the people for their prideful sins. Next, we see starting in verse 27:15 and following that, after each curse, the people admitted that the sin and guilt were deserving of punishment.

27:15 '‘Cursed is the man who makes an idol or a molten image, an abomination to the Lord, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ And all the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen.’ '

They replied after each curse with the word "Amen." This literally means that this is truth and so be it. Worship service is not like God meant for it to be. People seldom listen and when they do they dont agree or never respond with an Amen. Maybe we have gotten to where we doubt the truth of the word. Maybe we need more reading of the word. Maybe people have forgotten the wages of sin. Whatever the reasoning I pray we get back to God's design. Love Bro. Scott


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