First Sunday in Lent

Sermon Text: Deuteronomy 26:5-10

Other readings: Romans 10:8b-13, Luke 4:1-13


  1. Who is the “father [who] was a wandering Aramean” from verse 5?


  1. God’s names tell us who he is and what he does. “The God of our ancestors” reminds us of all the promises he made to the patriarchs like Abraham and Isaac and how he kept those promises. The name the LORD, when written in all-caps in the Old Testament, is a very important name to remember if you want to know who God is and what he does. Shortly after delivering Israel from Egypt, how did God explain the name the LORD to Moses in Exodus 34:4-7?


  1. Compare Israel’s deliverance from Egypt with our deliverance at Calvary’s cross.


  1. What is the connection between remembering how the Lord delivered us and giving our first fruits?






  1. That is a reference to Jacob, whom God later renamed Israel. You can read about Jacob’s wanderings in the region of Aram, especially his wandering under his uncle Laban, in Genesis chapters 27-35.
  2. The LORD tells us that God is both gracious and just. Because of that, he must both punish sin and show love. He did both at the cross of Jesus. He justly punished Jesus for our sins and showed us love by not punishing us. So, when you see the name the LORD, think about God’s free and faithful love shown to us in Christ. This free and faithful love allows us to call him our God, just as the Israelites do here.
  3. Israel was delivered from slavery in Egypt. We were delivered from slavery to sin and Satan through our fear of death. Israel began their march to the Promised Land. At the cross we begin our march to the Promised Land of heaven.
  4. There is joy when we receive a sudden windfall. Living in America, it’s hard for us to imagine what our joy would be if that sudden windfall were freedom after living in slavery for generations. If we feel generous and throw a little money around after a windfall, thinking about the windfall of spiritual and eternal freedom we have from the Lord causes rich generosity to well up in us. However, rather than throwing our riches around for trinkets, it is our privilege to be the Lord’s instruments in bringing many more to freedom. His free gifts motivate our gifts back to him. Praise God for his indescribable grace!