Deut. 17:18-20a When he sits on the throne as king, he must copy these laws on a scroll for himself in the presence of the Levitical priests. He must always keep this copy of the law with him and read it daily as long as he lives. That way he will learn to fear the LORD his God by obeying all the terms of this law. This regular reading will prevent him from becoming proud and acting as if he is above his fellow citizens.
God gave Moses clear instructions on how any future king who may rule over Israel should act. It was required of a king to be a student of God’s Word. They were to know it and live by it. They were to know how to fear God. God’s Word would keep them from ruling from their sinful nature. It would keep them humble before God and help them to rule justly.
History shows us that the kings of Israel failed miserably in this regard. Most of those who would later rule over Israel and Judah were controlled by their sinfulness. It got so bad that the Word of God was lost somewhere in the Temple and no longer influenced the kings at all. King after king did what was evil in his own eyes and the judgment of God followed. Occasionally a king rose up who followed God, but they were the exceptions and not the rule.
We must take very careful measures to protect God’s Word in us. If we are not consistently in the Word and seeking to live by its standards, we too will fall into our sinfulness. It doesn’t take long for us to sin when we neglect God’s Word. We must commit ourselves to the study and application of what God has given to us to govern our lives. We have no one to blame but ourselves when we fail to do so and then fall into sin.
We cannot pick and choose what we want to live out either. We must take all of the Scriptures to heart and let them govern our lives. The Spirit of God teaches us how to apply the Word through grace. Our obedience is an act of love and not duty.
Do you love the Lord enough to submit to the authority of His Word over you? Our failure to obey Him is the true indicator of our love for Him. If we love Him, we will respect Him enough to obey Him.