(The previous post documented Moses retelling the story of Israel's forty years and eleven months since their deliverance from Egypt.)
1 And now, O Israel, hearken unto the statutes and unto the ordinances, which I teach you, to do them; that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which Jehovah, the God of your fathers, giveth you.
(This chapter began with Moses saying "And now." He was no longer talking in past tense regarding the journey in the wilderness and its events. Moses started telling them what to do in their present time.)
2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish from it, that ye may keep the commandments of Jehovah your God which I command you.
3 Your eyes have seen what Jehovah did because of Baal-peor; for all the men that followed Baal-peor, Jehovah thy God hath destroyed them from the midst of thee.
4 But ye that did cleave unto Jehovah your God are alive every one of you this day.
5 Behold, I have taught you statutes and ordinances, even as Jehovah my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the midst of the land whither ye go in to possess it.
6 Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, that shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.
(God's Word brings wisdom (right how) and understanding (right why).)
7 For what great nation is there, that hath a god so nigh unto them, as Jehovah our God is whensoever we call upon him?
(The reason they would have wisdom and understanding was because God was near them and intimately involved in their lives.)
8 And what great nation is there, that hath statutes and ordinances so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?
(God’s statutes and ordinances were Righteous. The cause was Righteous and the effects would never result in sin.)
9 Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes saw, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life; but make them known unto thy children and thy children's children;
10 the day that thou stoodest before Jehovah thy God in Horeb, when Jehovah said unto me, Assemble me the people, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children.
11 And ye came near and stood under the mountain; and the mountain burned with fire unto the heart of heaven, with darkness, cloud, and thick darkness.
12 And Jehovah spake unto you out of the midst of the fire: ye heard the voice of words, but ye saw no form; only ye heard a voice.
13 And he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even the ten commandments; and he wrote them upon two tables of stone.
14 And Jehovah commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and ordinances, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go over to possess it.
15 Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of form on the day that Jehovah spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire.
(Moses was building their faith based on their experiences with God. He made the point that God was an intangible God but clearly existed and lived.)
16 Lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image in the form of any figure, the likeness of male or female,
17 the likeness of any beast that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged bird that flieth in the heavens,
18 the likeness of anything that creepeth on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the water under the earth;
19 and lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun and the moon and the stars, even all the host of heaven, thou be drawn away and worship them, and serve them, which Jehovah thy God hath allotted unto all the peoples under the whole heaven.
(They knew God was Spirit and this was why they were not to worship anything physical.)
20 But Jehovah hath taken you, and brought you forth out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt, to be unto him a people of inheritance, as at this day.
(Egypt was referred to as "the iron furnace." Remember, people were referred to in the Bible as "metal" and the only way to purify a metal is by fire. The trials the Israelites faced in Egypt ought to have purified them.)
21 Furthermore Jehovah was angry with me for your sakes, and sware that I should not go over the Jordan, and that I should not go in unto that good land, which Jehovah thy God giveth thee for an inheritance:
22 but I must die in this land, I must not go over the Jordan; but ye shall go over, and possess that good land.
23 Take heed unto yourselves, lest ye forget the covenant of Jehovah your God, which he made with you, and make you a graven image in the form of anything which Jehovah thy God hath forbidden thee.
24 For Jehovah thy God is a devouring fire, a jealous God.
(Moses wanted the Israelites to learn from his own mistakes. God was a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29) and a jealous God. From another verse (Exodus 34:14) we learned that when the word "jealous" was used as a description of God, it meant He did not bear any rival.)
25 When thou shalt beget children, and children's children, and ye shall have been long in the land, and shall corrupt yourselves, and make a graven image in the form of anything, and shall do that which is evil in the sight of Jehovah thy God, to provoke him to anger;
26 I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that ye shall soon utterly perish from off the land whereunto ye go over the Jordan to possess it; ye shall not prolong your days upon it, but shall utterly be destroyed.
27 And Jehovah will scatter you among the peoples, and ye shall be left few in number among the nations, whither Jehovah shall lead you away.
28 And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men's hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell.
(God sees, hears, eats, and smells, especially sweet savors.)
29 But from thence ye shall seek Jehovah thy God, and thou shalt find him, when thou searchest after him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.
(If you seek the Lord with all your heart and soul, you will find Him. "Seeking God" is a right what, "with all your heart and all your soul" is a right how/why.)
30 When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, in the latter days thou shalt return to Jehovah thy God, and hearken unto his voice:
31 for Jehovah thy God is a merciful God; he will not fail thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them.
(They were told that when they were in tribulation, if they turned to God and were obedient to Him, He would be merciful and not forget the Covenant of their fathers. Mercy meant "delayed/postponed judgment.")
32 For ask now of the days that are past, which were before thee, since the day that God created man upon the earth, and from the one end of heaven unto the other, whether there hath been any such thing as this great thing is, or hath been heard like it?
33 Did ever a people hear the voice of God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as thou hast heard, and live?
(Moses was asking them: do you realize how much of a blessing it is to be God's people?)
34 Or hath God assayed to go and take him a nation from the midst of another nation, by trials, by signs, and by wonders, and by war, and by a mighty hand, and by an outstretched arm, and by great terrors, according to all that Jehovah your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes?
35 Unto thee it was showed, that thou mightest know that Jehovah he is God; there is none else besides him.
36 Out of heaven he made thee to hear his voice, that he might instruct thee: and upon earth he made thee to see his great fire; and thou heardest his words out of the midst of the fire.
37 And because he loved thy fathers, therefore he chose their seed after them, and brought thee out with his presence, with his great power, out of Egypt;
38 to drive out nations from before thee greater and mightier than thou, to bring thee in, to give thee their land for an inheritance, as at this day.
39 Know therefore this day, and lay it to thy heart, that Jehovah he is God in heaven above and upon the earth beneath; there is none else.
40 And thou shalt keep his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days in the land, which Jehovah thy God giveth thee, for ever.
(They were to keep His statutes and commandments so that it would be well with them. Pay attention to the "that's." There were a lot of them in this book. When the word that is used, it is a causal statement.
For instance, in verse 40 above it said,
-"thou shalt keep his statutes..." which was a cause for the Israelites to focus on.
The verse continued by saying,
-"that it may go well with thee..." which was the result or effect of that cause.)
41 Then Moses set apart three cities beyond the Jordan toward the sunrising;
(Cities of Refuge)
42 that the manslayer might flee thither, that slayeth his neighbor unawares, and hated him not in time past; and that fleeing unto one of these cities he might live:
43 namely, Bezer in the wilderness, in the plain country, for the Reubenites; and Ramoth in Gilead, for the Gadites; and Golan in Bashan, for the Manassites.
(At this point, Moses could only appoint three of the six Cities of Refuge because they had yet to take the land on the western side of the Jordan River.)
44 And this is the law which Moses set before the children of Israel:
45 these are the testimonies, and the statutes, and the ordinances, which Moses spake unto the children of Israel, when they came forth out of Egypt,
46 beyond the Jordan, in the valley over against Beth-peor, in the land of Sihon king of the Amorites, who dwelt at Heshbon, whom Moses and the children of Israel smote, when they came forth out of Egypt.
47 And they took his land in possession, and the land of Og king of Bashan, the two kings of the Amorites, who were beyond the Jordan toward the sunrising;
48 from Aroer, which is on the edge of the valley of the Arnon, even unto mount Sion (the same is Hermon),
49 and all the Arabah beyond the Jordan eastward, even unto the sea of the Arabah, under the slopes of Pisgah.
(This chapter covered Moses reminding the Israelites of the Covenant at Horeb, which was Mount Sinai.
1 And Moses called unto all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and the ordinances which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and observe to do them.
2 Jehovah our God made a covenant with us in Horeb.
3 Jehovah made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.
4 Jehovah spake with you face to face in the mount out of the midst of the fire,
5 (I stood between Jehovah and you at that time, to show you the word of Jehovah: for ye were afraid because of the fire, and went not up into the mount;) saying,
(Verses 6-7: the First Commandment.)
6 I am Jehovah thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
7 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
(Verses 8-10: the Second Commandment.)
8 Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
9 thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them; for I, Jehovah, thy God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the third and upon the fourth generation of them that hate me;
10 and showing lovingkindness unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.
(Verse 11: the Third Commandment.)
11 Thou shalt not take the name of Jehovah thy God in vain: for Jehovah will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
(Verses 12-15: the Fourth Commandment.)
12 Observe the sabbath day, to keep it holy, as Jehovah thy God commanded thee.
13 Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work;
14 but the seventh day is a sabbath unto Jehovah thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor any of thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates; that thy man-servant and thy maid-servant may rest as well as thou.
15 And thou shalt remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and Jehovah thy God brought thee out thence by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm: therefore Jehovah thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.
(In verse 15, the word "keep" meant "to die to self." The opposite of keeping the Sabbath day would be "to produce from one's self." Remember, God allowed people to do whatever they wanted for six days as long as they did not violate the Law. On the Sabbath, people had to cease from their occupation of being a first cause (Genesis 2:1-3) and they could only do what the Law told them to do.)
(Verse 16: the Fifth Commandment.)
16 Honor thy father and thy mother, as Jehovah thy God commanded thee; that thy days may be long, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which Jehovah thy God giveth thee.
(Verse 17: the Sixth Commandment.)
17 Thou shalt not kill.
(Verse 18: the Seventh Commandment.)
18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.
(Verse 19: the Eighth Commandment.)
19 Neither shalt thou steal.
(Verse 20: the Ninth Commandment.)
20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbor.
(Verse 21: the Tenth Commandment.)
21 Neither shalt thou covet thy neighbor's wife; neither shalt thou desire thy neighbor's house, his field, or his man-servant, or his maid-servant, his ox, or his ass, or anything that is thy neighbor's.
(Moses restated the Ten Commandments from Exodus 20:2-17. This was not a new set of commandments.)
22 These words Jehovah spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and he added no more. And he wrote them upon two tables of stone, and gave them unto me.
23 And it came to pass, when ye heard the voice out of the midst of the darkness, while the mountain was burning with fire, that ye came near unto me, even all the heads of your tribes, and your elders;
24 and ye said, Behold, Jehovah our God hath showed us his glory and his greatness, and we have heard his voice out of the midst of the fire: we have seen this day that God doth speak with man, and he liveth.
25 Now therefore why should we die? for this great fire will consume us: if we hear the voice of Jehovah our God any more, then we shall die.
26 For who is there of all flesh, that hath heard the voice of the living God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived?
27 Go thou near, and hear all that Jehovah our God shall say: and speak thou unto us all that Jehovah our God shall speak unto thee; and we will hear it, and do it.
28 And Jehovah heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and Jehovah said unto me, I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken unto thee: they have well said all that they have spoken.
29 Oh that there were such a heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!
(Notice, God stated He wanted the heart of men to fear Him and keep (DO) His commandments. Remember, Pharaoh had a hard heart which led to God being able to harden it from the outside as an effect. Pharaoh chose (cause) to act unjustly against the Israelites. The heart itself proves (effect) what is inside the individual (cause). God wanted these people to choose to respect Him and keep His commandments and the effect would be they would plant this behavior in their heart as proof.)
30 Go say to them, Return ye to your tents.
31 But as for thee, stand thou here by me, and I will speak unto thee all the commandment, and the statutes, and the ordinances, which thou shalt teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give them to possess it.
32 Ye shall observe to do therefore as Jehovah your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.
33 Ye shall walk in all the way which Jehovah your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.
(At the Israelites request, Moses received the Law from God.)
(Deuteronomy 6 was known as the "shaba." Strong's #7650 shaba - "to be complete...to seven oneself, i.e. swear (as if repeating a declaration seven times)." This chapter stated the principles that supported the Law that ought to be taught. We will see within this chapter that Jesus referenced this chapter when dealing with Satan and the Pharisees.)
1 Now this is the commandment, the statutes, and the ordinances, which Jehovah your God commanded to teach you, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go over to possess it;
2 that thou mightest fear Jehovah thy God, to keep all his statutes and his commandments, which I command thee, thou, and thy son, and thy son's son, all the days of thy life; and that thy days may be prolonged.
3 Hear therefore, O Israel, and observe to do it; that it may be well with thee, and that ye may increase mightily, as Jehovah, the God of thy fathers, hath promised unto thee, in a land flowing with milk and honey.
(These commands were meant to help the Israelites be profitable in their new land. This stated the what (commandments, statutes, and ordinances), the how (teach and observe), and why (benefit) for the rest of the chapter.)
4 Hear, O Israel: Jehovah our God is one Jehovah:
(The word hear meant "obey." This verse began the famous statement to God known as the Shema. It was a traditional confession of faith in God and a description of our duty towards Him.)
5 and thou shalt love Jehovah thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
(This was the principle Jesus referred to as the First Command: Love the Lord your God with your whole being. This was the cause. Loving your neighbor would be an effect of this.)
6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be upon thy heart;
7 and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thy hand, and they shall be for frontlets between thine eyes.
9 And thou shalt write them upon the door-posts of thy house, and upon thy gates.
10 And it shall be, when Jehovah thy God shall bring thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee, great and goodly cities, which thou buildest not,
11 and houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and cisterns hewn out, which thou hewedst not, vineyards and olive-trees, which thou plantedst not, and thou shalt eat and be full;
12 then beware lest thou forget Jehovah, who brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
(God wanted people to really remember this critical principle. Next principle...)
13 Thou shalt fear Jehovah thy God; and him shalt thou serve, and shalt swear by his name.
14 Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the peoples that are round about you;
15 for Jehovah thy God in the midst of thee is a jealous God; lest the anger of Jehovah thy God be kindled against thee, and he destroy thee from off the face of the earth.
(Jesus quoted verse 13 to the devil during His temptation: Matthew 4:10 and Luke 4:8. Fear meant "to respect." Respecting God was a principle, it was a cause (right why) that would result in keeping (right how) the rest of the Law. Next, Moses stated the opposite of respecting God...)
16 Ye shall not tempt Jehovah your God, as ye tempted him in Massah.
(Do not tempt the Lord. Tempt came from the Hebrew word nacah: which meant "to test, try, prove, tempt, assay, put to the proof or test." Tempting the Lord was putting Him on trial, trying to see Him as wrong, and/or trying to test Him with the intent of Him being wrong or unjust. Jesus quoted this verse to the devil during His temptation: Matthew 4:7 and Luke 4:12. Think about Satan tempting Jesus. What was Satan's intention? To get Jesus to make a mistake: be wrong or unjust.)
(Moses mentioned Massah because it was an example of when the Israelites had tempted the Lord: Exodus 17:7.)
17 Ye shall diligently keep the commandments of Jehovah your God, and his testimonies, and his statutes, which he hath commanded thee.
18 And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of Jehovah; that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which Jehovah sware unto thy fathers,
19 to thrust out all thine enemies from before thee, as Jehovah hath spoken.
(Next, Moses focused the people on the generation that would follow...)
20 When thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What mean the testimonies, and the statutes, and the ordinances, which Jehovah our God hath commanded you?
21 then thou shalt say unto thy son, We were Pharaoh's bondmen in Egypt: and Jehovah brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand;
22 and Jehovah showed signs and wonders, great and sore, upon Egypt, upon Pharaoh, and upon all his house, before our eyes;
23 and he brought us out from thence, that he might bring us in, to give us the land which he sware unto our fathers.
24 And Jehovah commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear Jehovah our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as at this day.
25 And it shall be righteousness unto us, if we observe to do all this commandment before Jehovah our God, as he hath commanded us.
(This powerful chapter presented the principles supporting all of the Law and encouraged believers to observe and teach these principles to the next generation.)
(This post documented the beginning of Moses' presentation of the Law to the people.)