It’s Because They Are Worse
In Deuteronomy 9:4-6, Moses said to the children of Israel: “After the Lord your God has done this for you [scripture tells us He drove the Anakites out of the land before them], don’t say in your hearts, ‘The Lord has given us this land because we are such good people!’
No, it is because of the wickedness of the other nations that He is pushing them out of your way. It is not because you are so good or have such integrity that you about to occupy their land.
The Lord your God will drive these nations out ahead of you only because of their wickedness, and to fulfill the oath he swore to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. You must recognize that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land because you are good, for you are not – you are a stubborn people.”
The long-suffering of God is astounding. Over and over and over, the children of Israel disobeyed God and trusted in everything and everyone besides Him to help them. They grumbled about His provision for them while wandering in the wilderness.
They feared going in to take the land God had promised them because of the report of giants in the land. Then, on their own, they decided to go into the land and were defeated because they acted independently and did not rely on God to go before them. Do these facts indicate in any way that the people were good or had integrity? Of course not!
God gave the land to them because of the wickedness of the nations occupying the land and to keep His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. It had absolutely nothing to do with the immediate audience, those people that were accompanying Moses on the trek to the land of promise. It had everything to do with sin and God’s keeping his promise.
A Gifted Land
Today, we live in a land that God has given us. He helped drive out wickedness and has kept His promise to bless the nation that puts Him first.
We have a tendency to think of ourselves as “good.” But scripture tells us through the Apostle Paul that there is “no one good, no not one.” As mortals, we sometimes forget that truth and think God blesses us because we are good. In reality, we are a stubborn people, just like the children of Israel. In a sense, we have rebelled against Him by fraternizing with the wicked and not putting Him first.
The thing about God is that He keeps His covenant with us even when we rebel. It’s not because we are good that He chose to save us from eternal destruction—it’s because He is good! Of course, that doesn’t mean we don’t suffer the consequences of our stubbornness and rebellion, but the salvation He promised is a certainty.