Deuteronomy 32:18-21 (JDV)
Deuteronomy 32:18 You ignored the Rock who gave you birth; you forgot the God who gave birth to you.
Deuteronomy 32:19 When Yahveh saw this, he despised them, angered by his sons and daughters.
Deuteronomy 32:20 He said: “I will hide my face from them; I will see what will become of them, for they are a changed generation – unfaithful children.
Deuteronomy 32:21 They have provoked my jealousy with what is not a god; they have enraged me with their worthless idols. So I will provoke their jealousy with what is not a people; I will enrage them with a foolish nation.
The last few years of my mother’s life were difficult for her. Her mental condition continued to disintegrate from dementia. Most of her children were already dead, so she had few visitors in the nursing home. And I lived in another country, and when I returned to the USA, I was still in another State, many hours away.
But I called her every week. At first, the calls were delightful, because she still recognized me, and she would ask about my children and grandchildren. I looked forward to catching up with mom. But as her condition worsened, the calls were heartbreaking. Still, I kept up the calls. I didn’t want her to feel like her child had forgotten her.
Moses describes God here as a forgotten parent, who first despised Israel, then was angered by them, then was jealous and enraged by them. No parent likes to be put on the shelf. No parent wants to be forgotten.
Lord, we want to be in your presence, and to benefit from your parental love. Draw us closer.