How Soon They Forget God and the Things He Told Them to Do
So, Moses receives ten commandments from God and teaches them to the people. God gives other directions and instructions, too, which Moses also passes on.
But the people begin to disregard and forget God and what he told them to do. This displeases him, so eventually, he sends a series of wake-up calls, first in the form of judges and later through prophets. Sometimes a foreign power is used to get their attention. (There’s nothing like a crisis to send us scurrying back to God.)
This happens gradually, over time, right? Not necessarily.
They Forget God and His Commands in One Generation
Several hundred years after Moses, Nehemiah comes along and reinstates the “festival of booths”—which had not been practiced since the days of Joshua, Moses’ immediate successor. (It is unclear if it is disregarded fully or partially or if it happens during Joshua’s watch or after, but either way, Joshua drops the ball for not perpetuating it.)
It didn’t take hundreds of years for the festival to be dismissed, but less than one generation. They forget God and what he instructed them to do.
Turn to God
In only one generation, a people can forget God and turn away from him—or turn towards him.
Which way do you want to turn?
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.