“Alas O Lord the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and lovingkindness for those who love Him and keep His commandments,” (Daniel 9:4)
Street one is named God’s part and street two is named man’s part. Those who believe that in the end, God will ultimately save everyone have missed one of Daniel’s two streets. They are of the opinion that they live on a one-way street which allows them to live any way they wish and still gain God’s favor because God is “Good.”
Let’s see how Daniel, God’s great prophet saw, saw the street he lived on. In the first place, he recognized God for who he is. Notice that he calls him Lord, then great, then awesome. That’s is who Daniel addressed in his prayer. This was followed by Daniel’s declaration of what this great and awesome God does. He keeps His covenant. God is not a covenant breaker. He does what he says he will do. Not only does he remain faithful to his word but he maintains lovingkindness. God is not wishy-washy and his love is as solid as a rock.
If Daniel had stopped with just that introduction mankind could be at ease about their salvation. It would appear that man is dealing with a God who could never show wrath or punish man in any way. There would be no hellfire or eternal damnation. Daniel did not stop there, however. No, he did not. He continued to explain two important things.
The first is that his great God keeps covenant and shows lovingkindness to those people who love him. When one loves another it changes their behavior towards that other person. Jesus put it this way, “If you love me you will keep my commandments.” Love is not caused by commandment keeping but commandment keeping is created by love.
The second is that his great God keeps covenant and shows loving kindness to those people who obey him. Without question, this is the key to salvation. Loving God and keeping his commandments. Notice that in the next verse Daniel laments that his people have not obeyed God. He doesn’t mention that they don’t love God because their disobedience proves that they don’t.
Daniel prays for forgiveness. Repentance is the beginning of renewed love which leads to obedience. God’s will covenant those who repent and change. His lovingkindness in the form of his Son’s death on the cross will restore those who return to their first love.
Task for Today: Instead of worrying about obeying God concentrate on loving Him. If your love grows and grows your obedience will follow.