And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God…. and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I command you today for your good?
The Ebers Papyrus is one of the oldest medical books in the world, dating from about 1500 B.C., but you wouldn’t want to try most of the prescriptions found on its pages. To cure baldness, for example, the physicians of Egypt applied a mixture of six fats, from the horse, the hippopotamus, the crocodile, the cat, the goat, and the snake. To remove splinters, the doctors used worm blood and donkey dung.
Now consider this: Moses lived in Egypt while the Egyptian doctors were developing these prescriptions, yet the medical treatments in his books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were centuries ahead of their time. Moses taught the Israelites about sanitation, quarantines, dietary restrictions, sexual behavior, childbirth, and lifestyle choices. His advice kept the Israelites from the kind of diseases that plagued the Egyptians (see Exodus 15:26).
The same principle is true of all the commands of God, including the Ten Commandments. God knows what is best for us, and His commands aren’t intended to punish us but to prosper us. The healthiest life is a biblical life.
God’s commands are such as in their own nature they tend to our good… Keeping these commands tends, on their own nature, to prevent the soul’s misery and renders it happy.