And the LORD said to me, Distress not the Moabites, neither contend with them in battle: for I will not give you of their land for a possession; because I have given Ar to the children of Lot for a possession. Deuteronomy 2:9
A great deal of Israelite distress had to do with their interactions with the Moabites. Indeed it was an interaction with the Moabites on the very borders of Canaan that led to an extermination of a large number of Israelites due to the prostitution explosion (Numbers 25). David was obviously aware of this Deuteronomy instruction and his family’s debt to Moab (the story of Ruth and Naomi) when he did the following.
… smote Moab, and measured them with a line, casting them down to the ground; even with two lines measured he to put to death, and with one full line to keep alive. And so the Moabites became David’s servants, and brought gifts. 2 Samuel 8:2
This is not the only time David spared the life of a known enemy
Next time you think you have a victory or think you are doing a great and wonderful thing consider how many people might be paying for it.
Of all the bits that go into the accurate identity of his disciples this ID card is truly marvelous and elicits from the believer to a grateful and joyful “Yes!” “God’s work” is not a popular way of introducing ourselves but it is arresting, full of consolation and assurance.
For we are his workmanship (poiema, ποίημα), created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10
God prepared our works
Did he need to say “beforehand “? Yes. Someone will say “Prepare is always ‘before’ “. True, but the intention of the writer is to further (see vs. 8) caution people against claiming responsibility for the works that proceed from God’s creation. Not only does he save us apart from any work we have done or are required to perform, but he also takes the initiative to prepare the good works of the new life.
The Father’s poem – the result of grace
There is little room for misunderstanding God’s saving and keeping grace. He has hemmed us in most securely by anticipating our need and our quasi-intelligent objections. We love credit even when we aren’t in the game.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand (proetoimazo, pro + hetoimazo, προετοιμαζω) that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10
What are the chances that Lazarus helped the Lifegiver call him forth from his grave of four days? Are today’s good works subject to condition and human invention and choice? What are the chances of anyone but Yahweh removing the cherubim and flaming sword the gate to Eden?