Declaration of Blessings And Curses

In his autobiography, Col. Harland Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame says that he was always a God-fearing man. In every venture he gave God a tenth of the profits. Yet he knew that if he died, God probably wouldn’t take him to heaven. Worried, he traveled to Australi … More


Moses gives Israel an exhortation to obey God’s commands because success and longevity in the land depends on it (vv. 16-25). The problem wasn’t with God or the land; it was in the hearts of the people (v. 16). Israel had been told to keep God’s statutes, judgements, and commandments. As a reward they would receive the land, live there forever, have fruitful crops and be able to expel their enemies. On the other hand, a curse would fall on them if they broke this agreement and they would be in danger of crop failure, invasion and driven from the land (v.v. 22-25).

Moses emphasizes that the history of Israel would be determined by her relationship to the Lord. The heart of the whole matter was that the nation had to make a choice whether to obey God and enjoy His blessing or disobey Him and experience His chastening (vv. 26-32). They could enjoy the land, endure chastening in the land, as seen in Judges, or be evicted from the land, as seen in the Babylonian Captivity. It is amazing that God gave them a choice between blessing and cursing. However, it is even more amazing that most of them through disobedience chose the curse.

God’s dispensations change but His principles never change, and one of those principles is that God blesses us when we obey and chastens us when we disobey. Obedience offers a personal, wonderful, glorious relationship with God. The opposite is also true. Disobedience brings with it a curse.


I have the same fundamental choices today that the Israelites had back then. I can choose to either live for self or serve God.

Deuteronomy 11:16-32 (English Standard Version)

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