The Multiple Power of Obedience 

All the commandments which I command thee this day shall ye observe to do, that ye may live, and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers. 

Deuteronomy 8:1.

Obedience has benefits, just as the opposite has consequences.  In this passage, God Himself announces four blessings that should come to His people IF they obeyed “All” (rather than a convenient selection of some of) “the commandments” that He had given them.  The potential benefits of that obedience are listed as follows:

i) “that ye may live” – life 
ii)  “and multiply” – increase 
iii)  “and go in” – access 
iv)  “and possess” – inheritance 

  1. Life 

The first of the four promises in that passage is life: “that ye may live.”  Disobedience brings death, but obedience sustains life.  Obedience to the fifth Commandment, for example, grants the benefit of a prolonged and a good life.  Firstly, “that thy days may be prolonged, AND” secondly, “that it may go well with thee” (Deuteronomy 5:16).  On the way from Egypt to the Promised Land, disobedience brought untold hardships and deaths to many Israelites.  They lost the basic benefit of life by which they could have enjoyed the further benefits.

Let’s go back to our passage and see to whom God was making the promise: “… observe to do, that ye may live… and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers.”  God was speaking to children about a promise made to their “fathers”; He was speaking to a present generation about a blessing made to their ancestors.

Why didn’t or couldn’t the fathers who originally received the promise enjoy it?  What happened to them?  They died in the wilderness.  Why?  Disobedience.  In other words, receiving a promise does not always translate into enjoying it if reception of the promise is not followed with obedience or adherence to the accompanying conditions or commandments.

Not everyone who receives a promise enjoys the fulfilment of it.  Sometimes it passes on to a more obedient generation, or it gets entirely lost.  In Colossians 4:17, for example, Paul specifically and strongly advised that a young preacher be told to “Take heed” in time present to a ministry “received” in time past, so that he would “fulfil it” in time future.  The point was being made that reception did not automatically mean fulfilment; that receiving a ministry was separate from keeping or fulfilling it.  There are not a few who received something that they later lost.  Judas Iscariot.

The first of the four things that God promised in Deuteronomy 8:1 as benefit of obedience to His commandments, was life.  One has to be alive to enjoy every other benefit.  Life is basic, and obedience assures life.

  1. Multiplication  

The second blessing is multiplication.  Being alive does not mean being multiplied.  Life and fruitfulness are two separate states, even though one needs the other for its realisation.  One needs life to be fruitful.

It is possible to be alive and yet barren.  It is also possible to be alive and be multiplied.  Much more than being alive, God assures that obedience would also grant multiplication, thus enhancing the quality of the living.  Only the living can multiply.  Dead things don’t grow, let alone multiply.  To multiply means much more than increase; it means astronomical increase.  That is Stage 2 of the blessings for obedience.

  1. Access 

The third blessing is access to the Promise – “go in.”  It is one thing to receive the promise, it is something next to see the promise, but entering into it is a further matter.  Moses saw the promise but did not ‘go in.’  You know the story. Seeing something or being close to it does not mean having it.

The tangibility of the promise is one thing, access into it is something else.   Not everyone enters through a door merely by seeing it.  Being alive is merely preliminary to gaining access into the realms of further blessings.  Some there are who often ‘see’ what God has promised but never enter in; they recount profound revelations but sadly without fulfilment; visions of open doors that are perennially inaccessible.  Their case is like that of the lame man at the Beautiful Gate, who daily saw an open door through which he always saw others freely go, but himself could not, restrained by his condition.  So close, yet still outside (Acts 3:1-11).

It is great to be alive, and gracious to be multiplied, but what is life without the needed access to what life offers? How sad to always see possibilities yet be unable to reach them!  To be so close yet still so far!  Obedience makes a difference.  In the story of the ten lepers, for example, the lepers were not healed by any prayer that Jesus prayed for them.  They were healed “as they went.”  They were healed in the process of obeying the instruction to go and show themselves to the priest (Luke 17:14).

  1. Possession 

Access is one thing; possession is something more.  Not everybody on a land is the owner of it.  Some are mere tenants where they have managed to enter; squatters in their own promised land, hanging on the ‘goodwill’ of others in a land that should be theirs.  Sometimes somebody else exercises jurisdiction in what should be their territory; or they are in a marriage in which another rules; or in a business that they started but which benefits everyone else but themselves. It is access without possession, but obedience to God can make a difference.

  1. A Prayer 

May God grant you a heart to obey, life to enjoy His blessings, multiplication while you live, access into His promise, and strength to possess where you enter, in Jesus name. Amen.

From The Preacher’s diary,
December 11, 2023.

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7 months ago

My obedience status is upgraded, thank you, Sir.

Alabo Dakoru D.
Alabo Dakoru D.
6 months ago

I’m so so blessed with this charge.
Lord help me to obey your divine instructions and commandments, to enjoy all the blessings tied to obedience. So help me God in Jesus name, Amen!

Bishop Isaac Robert
Bishop Isaac Robert
6 months ago

I am richly blessed. This is key to fulfillment. Knowing what to do to be whom I should be. Lord help me

6 months ago

This is an eye opener for me. Thank you very much Man of God

James Eze
James Eze
1 month ago

This is a beautiful lesson to know. God bless the Preacher.

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