March 7th Deuteronomy 11
Remember Gods great acts
1: Therefore thou shalt love the LORD thy God, and keep his charge, and his statutes, and his judgments, and his commandments, always. 2: And know ye this day: for I speak not with your children which have not known, and which have not seen the chastisement of the LORD your God, his greatness, his mighty hand, and his stretched out arm, 3: And his miracles, and his acts, which he did in the midst of Egypt unto Pharaoh the king of Egypt, and unto all his land; 4: And what he did unto the army of Egypt, unto their horses, and to their chariots; how he made the water of the Red sea to overflow them as they pursued after you, and how the LORD hath destroyed them unto this day; 5: And what he did unto you in the wilderness, until ye came into this place; 6: And what he did unto Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, the son of Reuben: how the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their households, and their tents, and all the substance that was in their possession, in the midst of all Israel: 7: But your eyes have seen all the great acts of the LORD which he did.
God will give you a new life
8: Therefore shall ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it; 9: And that ye may prolong your days in the land, which the LORD sware unto your fathers to give unto them and to their seed, a land that floweth with milk and honey. 10: For the land, whither thou goest in to possess it, is not as the land of Egypt, from whence ye came out, where thou sowedst thy seed, and wateredst it with thy foot, as a garden of herbs: 11: But the land, whither ye go to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinketh water of the rain of heaven: 12: A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year. 13: And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, 14: That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil. 15: And I will send grass in thy fields for thy cattle, that thou mayest eat and be full. 16: Take heed to yourselves, that your heart be not deceived, and ye turn aside, and serve other gods, and worship them; 17: And then the LORD's wrath be kindled against you, and he shut up the heaven, that there be no rain, and that the land yield not her fruit; and lest ye perish quickly from off the good land which the LORD giveth you. 18: Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. 19: And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 20: And thou shalt write them upon the door posts of thine house, and upon thy gates: 21: That your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, in the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers to give them, as the days of heaven upon the earth. 22: For if ye shall diligently keep all these commandments which I command you, to do them, to love the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, and to cleave unto him; 23: Then will the LORD drive out all these nations from before you, and ye shall possess greater nations and mightier than yourselves. 24: Every place whereon the soles of your feet shall tread shall be yours: from the wilderness and Lebanon, from the river, the river Euphrates, even unto the uttermost sea shall your coast be. 25: There shall no man be able to stand before you: for the LORD your God shall lay the fear of you and the dread of you upon all the land that ye shall tread upon, as he hath said unto you. 26: Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse; 27: A blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you this day: 28: And a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the LORD your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known. 29: And it shall come to pass, when the LORD thy God hath brought thee in unto the land whither thou goest to possess it, that thou shalt put the blessing upon mount Gerizim, and the curse upon mount Ebal. 30: Are they not on the other side Jordan, by the way where the sun goeth down, in the land of the Canaanites, which dwell in the champaign over against Gilgal, beside the plains of Moreh? 31: For ye shall pass over Jordan to go in to possess the land which the LORD your God giveth you, and ye shall possess it, and dwell therein. 32: And ye shall observe to do all the statutes and judgments which I set before you this day.
Deuteronomy 12 Instructions regarding worship
1: These are the statutes and judgments, which ye shall observe to do in the land, which the LORD God of thy fathers giveth thee to possess it, all the days that ye live upon the earth. 2: Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree: 3: And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place. 4: Ye shall not do so unto the LORD your God. 5: But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, even unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come: 6: And thither ye shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks: 7: And there ye shall eat before the LORD your God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your households, wherein the LORD thy God hath blessed thee. 8: Ye shall not do after all the things that we do here this day, every man whatsoever is right in his own eyes. 9: For ye are not as yet come to the rest and to the inheritance, which the LORD your God giveth you. 10: But when ye go over Jordan, and dwell in the land which the LORD your God giveth you to inherit, and when he giveth you rest from all your enemies round about, so that ye dwell in safety; 11: Then there shall be a place which the LORD your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there; thither shall ye bring all that I command you; your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, your tithes, and the heave offering of your hand, and all your choice vows which ye vow unto the LORD: 12: And ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God, ye, and your sons, and your daughters, and your menservants, and your maidservants, and the Levite that is within your gates; forasmuch as he hath no part nor inheritance with you. 13: Take heed to thyself that thou offer not thy burnt offerings in every place that thou seest: 14: But in the place which the LORD shall choose in one of thy tribes, there thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, and there thou shalt do all that I command thee. 15: Notwithstanding thou mayest kill and eat flesh in all thy gates, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which he hath given thee: the unclean and the clean may eat thereof, as of the roebuck, and as of the hart. 16: Only ye shall not eat the blood; ye shall pour it upon the earth as water. 17: Thou mayest not eat within thy gates the tithe of thy corn, or of thy wine, or of thy oil, or the firstlings of thy herds or of thy flock, nor any of thy vows which thou vowest, nor thy freewill offerings, or heave offering of thine hand: 18: But thou must eat them before the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates: and thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto. 19: Take heed to thyself that thou forsake not the Levite as long as thou livest upon the earth. 20: When the LORD thy God shall enlarge thy border, as he hath promised thee, and thou shalt say, I will eat flesh, because thy soul longeth to eat flesh; thou mayest eat flesh, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after. 21: If the place which the LORD thy God hath chosen to put his name there be too far from thee, then thou shalt kill of thy herd and of thy flock, which the LORD hath given thee, as I have commanded thee, and thou shalt eat in thy gates whatsoever thy soul lusteth after. 22: Even as the roebuck and the hart is eaten, so thou shalt eat them: the unclean and the clean shall eat of them alike. 23: Only be sure that thou eat not the blood: for the blood is the life; and thou mayest not eat the life with the flesh. 24: Thou shalt not eat it; thou shalt pour it upon the earth as water. 25: Thou shalt not eat it; that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, when thou shalt do that which is right in the sight of the LORD. 26: Only thy holy things which thou hast, and thy vows, thou shalt take, and go unto the place which the LORD shall choose: 27: And thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, the flesh and the blood, upon the altar of the LORD thy God: and the blood of thy sacrifices shall be poured out upon the altar of the LORD thy God, and thou shalt eat the flesh. 28: Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee for ever, when thou doest that which is good and right in the sight of the LORD thy God.
Destroy all Idol worship
29: When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; 30: Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou inquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. 31: Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods. 32: What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.
1: If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, 2: And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; 3: Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 4: Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him. 5: And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee. 6: If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers; 7: Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth; 8: Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him: 9: But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. 10: And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. 11: And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is among you. 12: If thou shalt hear say in one of thy cities, which the LORD thy God hath given thee to dwell there, saying, 13: Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known; 14: Then shalt thou inquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you; 15: Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword. 16: And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for the LORD thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again. 17: And there shall cleave nought of the cursed thing to thine hand: that the LORD may turn from the fierceness of his anger, and shew thee mercy, and have compassion upon thee, and multiply thee, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers; 18: When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the LORD thy God.
In chapter 11 and 12 the Lord reminds Israel of the great acts that he has performed for them. He tells them of the new life that is awaiting them in the Promised Land; he gives instructions regarding worship and he reinforces the need to destroy all the idol worship of the inhabitants of the land. The Lord begins by reminding them of their present obligations which are based on past experiences. They are to love the LORD, keep his solemn duties, statutes, judgments and commandments because the LORD brought them up out of Egypt in greatness and power. While thinking of their deliverance they must never forget the judgments that fell on the Egyptians. And what happened to the priests who did not obey the Lord and what happened in the desert to those who rebelled. And so the LORD goes on to explain that keeping the commandments will be the secret to victory in the battles ahead. By keeping the commandments their relation to the LORD will be an unbroken and ongoing experience of victory after victory. They will have a long life to enjoy the abundance of the land. It is not a flat plain like that of Egypt, which had to be watered by hand, but a land of mountains and valleys on which pours down abundance of rain. If Israel is faithful to the LORD then he will sent abundant rain in the due seasons. (This gives us the clue to the ministry of Elijah) the Lord then causions Israel saying if you drive the nations out of the land then every place on which the sole of your foot treads will be yours, from the river Euphrates to the river of Egypt. How unlike the relation God has with the NT Church he promises blessing if they obey the commandments and a curse if they obey not. All of the curses of the Christian believer were taken upon Christ on the cross and while believers might loose fellowship, they never come under the curses of God. Next having given the commandments the LORD outlines the statutes and judgments of the LORD. The first judgment will be the total destruction of all traces of the idol worship of the Canaanities and in its place will be the establishment of the religion of Judaism – the worship of Jehovah. They are not to do whatever they think might be a good idea. They are to follow the judgments of the Lord to the letter. In all their eating they are to not to eat blood and they are not to eat the tithes that are devoted to the Lord. The Levite is never to be forgotten, because he is dependant on Israel for his daily food. All the statues of the Lord will be kept including the offerings to the LORD. Then the Lord gives another warning to Israel not to be captivated by the idol worship of the Canaanities. It will be forever a snare because of its appeal to the flesh. Israel is not to learn about their idols or serve their gods. The Lord hates their idols because even their little innocent children are murdered and burnt in the name of the heathen gods. Then the Lord gives a slomen warning to Israel not to listen to false prophets. One can always tell a false prophet by his ministry which tends to the worship of false gods. In fact that false prophet is to be put to death from among the people. If a family member tries to entice you away from the worship of the Lord alone then this sin is not to be concealed but brought out into the light and he or she is to be executed and the first one to stone him will be the one who first heard the temptation. If it happens that a number of men in a city gather to worship the false gods, then there is to be an investigation and the whole city is to be destroyed that allowed this thing to grow there. The city will be burnt by fire and all its possessions and livestock. The city will never be built again. For false religion to come into the heart of a man, or a family, or a community or even a whole city - this was one of the most serious things to occur in Israel and the LORD insisted that firm and severe action should be taken to eradicate it altogether. Similarily in Christian churches the leaders need to be very sure of the difference between the opinions of honest believers and outright heresy. And they too are to take a strict stand on the upholding of the truth of Gods word.
- What sort of New Life would Israel experience in the land?
- How does the Lord instruct Israel to worship him?
- What is the test of a prophet?