The book of Deuteronomy is a call to obedience—the proper response to God’s faithfulness and love. Consisting primarily of speeches that Moses gave to the Israelites shortly before they entered the Promised Land, Moses’ words proclaimed God’s covenant faithfulness in hopes of motivating the Israelites to obey God despite the coming temptation to conform to the Canaanite culture.
The challenges they faced then are remarkably parallel to those facing Christians today as we grapple with the issue of obedience in a world that offers other attractive ways of life. We wonder: How can we be faithful to God? And how do we help our children and the people we lead to be faithful? This book tells us how Moses tackled these challenges and, as Paul confirms in the New Testament, Deuteronomy serves “as an example…written down for our instruction” (1 Cor. 10:11).
Ajith Fernando unpacks the relevance of Deuteronomy and captivates us with rich anecdotes from his thirty-five years of ministry to first-generation Christians in Sri Lanka. He offers concrete examples of how the truths contained in Deuteronomy can be applied, and he teaches us that obedience is the necessary response to the God who loves and saves us.
Ajith Fernando (ThM, Fuller Theological Seminary) is the teaching director of Youth for Christ in Sri Lanka after serving as the ministry's national director for thirty-five years. He and his wife, Nelun, are active in a church ministering primarily to the urban poor, and his ministry includes counseling and mentoring younger staff and pastors. He is the author of seventeen books published in twenty languages. Ajith lives in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with his wife, and they have two adult children and four grandchildren.
“Out of his broad experience of expounding the Scriptures, Dr. Fernando has given us a commentary that will appeal to all those who preach the Word. The work breathes a love for God, a deep understanding of Biblical theology, and a warmly poignant grasp of human nature—with its failings and its potentials. His applications of Deuteronomy’s teaching are both perceptive and relevant. While showing an awareness of scholarly treatments, the work is very accessible to those who do not have scholarly training. It is highly recommended.”
- John Oswalt, author, Called to Be Holy and The NIV Application Commentary: Isaiah
“Vintage Fernando. Like all of his preaching, this book is a model of the wonderful gift that God has given to Ajith Fernando for simple, clear, and challenging exposition of the Word of God. Without evading the more difficult questions and problems that scholars have wrestled with in the book of Deuteronomy, he does not allow them to dominate but stays close to the thrust of the text, patiently explaining and applying it step by step. The rich infusion of illustrations that are mostly drawn from the challenges and stresses, joys and sorrows of his own experience in ministry add a wonderful earthy texture to the whole book as we constantly weave between the Biblical world and today’s world in a way that listens to and engages with both. This book is a deep well of Biblical study, ethical challenge, practical advice, pastoral wisdom, and spiritual warmth. It breathes love for God, God’s Word, God’s world, and God’s people.”
- Christopher J. H. Wright, International Director, Langham Partnership International; author, The Mission of God