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Deu 11:1 Therefore you must love Yahweh your God and keep His instructions, His statutes, His ordinances and His commandments always-
Yahweh was to be loved with all the heart, soul and mind (Dt. 6:5). This is understood by Joshua as meaning that those who loved Yahweh would not "mix with" and intermarry with the nations and accept their gods (Josh. 23:11,12,16). "Love" for God was not therefore a feeling; Joshua said that they must "take good heed therefore to yourselves, that you love Yahweh" (Josh. 23:11). This is the love of conscious direction of the mind, the love which is a choice rather than an emotion.    

Some time, read through the book of Deuteronomy in one or two sessions. You'll see many themes of Moses in Deuteronomy. It really shows how Moses felt towards Israel, and how the Lord Jesus feels towards us, and especially how he felt towards us just before his death. For this is what the whole book prefigures. "Love" and the idea of love occurs far more in Deuteronomy than in the other books of the Law. "Fear the Lord your God" of Ex. 9:30; Lev. 19:14,32; 25:17 becomes "love the Lord your God" in Deuteronomy (Dt. 6:5; 7:9; 10:12; 11:1; 19:9; 30:6,16,20). There are 23 references to not hating in Deuteronomy, compared to only 5 in Ex. - Num.; Moses saw the danger of bitterness and lack of love. He saw these things as the spiritual cancer they are, in his time of maturity he warned his beloved people against them. His mind was full of them. The LXX uses the word ekklesia eight times in Deuteronomy, but not once in Moses' other words (Dt. 4:10; 9:10; 18:16; 23:1,2,3,8; 32:1). Responsibility for the whole family God had redeemed was a mark of Moses; maturity at the end of his life, at the time of Deuteronomy. It is observable that both as a community and as individuals, this will be a sign of our maturity too.

Deu 11:2 Know this day - for I don’t speak with your children who have not known, and who have not seen the chastisement of Yahweh your God - His greatness, His mighty hand and His outstretched arm-

The might of Yahweh's hand was shown through His grace in as it were forcing Israel out of Egypt, when they actually wanted to remain there and He wished to destroy them (Ez. 20:8). They were idolatrous and had told Moses to leave them alone and let them serve the Egyptians. Yahweh's strength therefore refers to the power of His grace in continuing His program with them. 

Moses was to stretch forth his hand to cause the waters of the Red Sea to part and return, not his rod; because he was manifesting the hand of Yahweh which was to deliver Israel (s.w. Ex. 7:5). The repeated references to the stretched our arm or hand of Yahweh to save His people invite us to recall this incident, and to perceive that Yahweh's hand had been manifest through the hand of Moses (Dt. 4:34; 5:15; 7:19; 11:2; 26:8). That stretched out, saving arm and hand of Yahweh was and is stretched out still, to save His people (1 Kings 8:42; Ez. 20:34; Dan. 9:15 "as at this day") and bring about a new creation in human lives (Is. 45:12). For the deliverance through the Red Sea is intended to be experienced by all God's people, and is now seen through His saving grace at baptism (1 Cor. 10:1,2). What happened there was but the beginning of the work of God's outstretched arm (Dt. 3:24). Yet the stretched out arm / hand of God is also a figure for His judgment (1 Chron. 21:16; Is. 9:12; 10:4). His hand is at work in our lives- either to our condemnation or our salvation. And it is for us therefore to humble ourselves beneath that mighty hand (1 Pet. 5:6).


Deu 11:3 His signs and His works, which He did in the midst of Egypt to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and to all his land-

It is stressed that Israel were taken out from the "midst of Egypt" (Dt. 4:34; 1 Kings 8:51). The plagues and wonders were done in "the midst of Egypt" (Ex. 3:20; Dt. 11:3). The midst of Egypt appears to be defined in Ps. 135:9; Is. 19:3; Ez. 29:3 as being Pharaoh and his servants. The narrative therefore stresses so much his response to the plagues. God's especial focus had been upon his conversion, and yet he refused. Israel were taken out right from under his nose, from the very heart of Egypt. Ez. 20:8 reveals what is not recorded in the historical record; that because the Israelites were so devoted to Egyptian idolatry still, His thought had been to destroy them "in the midst of the land of Egypt" (Ez. 20:8). But God's pole of grace overcame the pole of necessary judgment. He tolerated them and saved them, with enthusiasm, by the grace which comes from love- love taken to its ultimate, saving term. The whole narrative speaks as if the Hebrews were all at one place at one time and left "the midst of Egypt" together. Although unrecorded in the historical narrative, this would have meant that they gathered together "in the midst of Egypt" with Moses, who was not in Goshen but in the locality and presence of Pharaoh.   


Deu 11:4 and what He did to the army of Egypt, to their horses and to their chariots; how He made the water of the Red Sea overflow them as they pursued after you-
But they were cast into the sea by God (Ex. 15:21). We see here how God confirms people in the desires of their heart, for both good and bad.


And how Yahweh has destroyed them to this day-
Although the pursuit of Israel by the Egyptians was a historical act at a specific time, caused by God's direct action upon the hearts of the Egyptians (Ex. 14:8), the pursuit and their destruction is described as ongoing "to this day" (Dt. 11:4). God's word and His actions according to that word are somehow alive to this day. This is the unique nature of Biblical history. All the incidents within it speak to us of later generations. And so in Josh. 24;6 and often, Israel are bidden understand their history as speaking directly to them, to perceive God's grace to them in history, and respond now. 

We are to understand each victory and achievement of God as somehow ongoing right down to our own day and our own lives and experience. This is what makes the Bible a living word for us. This explains why David repeatedly refers to the miracle at the Red Sea as if this had affected him personally, to the extent that he could ecstatically rejoice because of it.

 


Deu 11:5 and what He did to you in the wilderness, until you came to this place;
Deu 11:6 and what He did to Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, the son of Reuben, how the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them up, and their households and their tents and every living thing that followed them in the midst of all Israel.
Deu 11:7 Your eyes have seen all the great work of Yahweh which He did-
 
v. 7,8 Because God saved them from Egypt by grace [cp. baptism- 1 Cor. 10:1,2], with they themselves so spiritually weak at the time, still taking idols of Egypt through the Red Sea with them- therefore they were to keep the law (Dt. 11:7,8). Because God gave them the land of Canaan, a land for which they did not labour, didn't do any 'work' to receive, but were given because "You did a favour unto them" (Ps. 44:3)- therefore they were to keep the law (Dt. 26:15,16; 29:8,9; Josh. 23:5,6). David said that he loved keeping the law because God's testimony to him was so miraculous (Ps. 119:129 Heb.). There is an awesomeness to God's grace in all this. Hence the paradox of Ex. 20:20: "Fear not... that the fear of God may be before your faces". We are not to fear Him, for such perfect love casts out fear... yet it is exactly because of the wonder of all this that we live life in some fear / awe of misusing and abusing that grace.


Deu 11:8 Therefore you must keep all the commandment which I command you this day, that you may be strong and go in and possess the land where you go over to possess it-
 v.
8,11- see on 31:9; Josh. 1:6.


Deu 11:9 and that you may prolong your days in the land which Yahweh swore to your fathers to give to them and to their seed, a land flowing with milk and honey.
Deu 11:10 For the land where you go in to possess it isn’t as the land of Egypt that you came out from, where you sowed your seed and watered it with your foot, as a garden of herbs-
Our separation from this world isn’t merely negative. We are separated from the world ["come out from"]  so that we might be separated unto the things of God ["you go in"]. These two ideas are found together in the Hebrew word for ‘holiness’. 

Deu 11:11 but the land you go over to possess is a land of hills and valleys which drinks water of the rain of the sky-
The people were often reminded that they were about to “go over [Jordan] to possess” the land, as if they were on the banks of Jordan almost.

 


Deu 11:12 a land which Yahweh your God cares for. The eyes of Yahweh your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the end of the year-
 
Under Michael's control (see on Dan. 12:1) there are many other Angels similarly dedicated to the affairs of the people of Israel- Dt. 11:12 describes the land of Israel as "a land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God (i. e. the Angels) are always upon it from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year. Does the phrase "the LORD thy God" refer to the Angel which led them through the wilderness? The Angel  Michael? Remember Moses was speaking  to the people of Israel at this time, and they very much conceived of the "the LORD thy God" in terms of the Angel of the presence going with them. Thus God was promising that His Angels would physically be present in the land and would be especially sensitive to the events there.



Deu 11:13 If you will listen diligently to my commandments which I command you this day, to love Yahweh your God, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul-
See on Dt. 7:4. As Moses very intensely manifested God to the people, so he foreshadowed the supreme manifestation of the Father in the Son. The commands of Moses were those of God (Dt. 7:11; 11:13,18; and 12:32 concerning Moses' words is quoted in Rev. 22:18,19 concerning God's words); his voice was God's voice (Dt. 13;18; 15:5; 28:1), as with Christ. Israel were to show their love of God by keeping Moses' commands (Dt. 11:13); as the new Israel do in their response to the word of Christ. Indeed, the well known prophecy that God would raise up a prophet "like unto" Moses to whom Israel would listen (Dt. 18:18) is in the context of Israel saying they did not want to hear God's voice directly. Therefore God said that he would raise up Christ, who would be another Moses in the sense that he too would speak forth God's word.   

 


Deu 11:14 I will give the rain of your land in its season, the former rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine and your oil-

Moses is one of greatest types of the Lord Jesus, in whom the Father was supremely manifested. Because of this, it is fitting that we should see a very high level of God manifestation in Moses. Indeed it seems that God was manifest in Moses to a greater degree than in any other Old Testament character. Therefore the pronouns often change (in Deuteronomy especially), showing a confusion between the voice of God and that of Moses. Dt. 7:4 is an example: “They will turn away thy son from following me (this is Moses speaking for God)... so will the anger of the Lord be kindled against you”. Thus Moses’ comments on God’s words are mixed up with the words of God Himself. There are other examples of this in Dt. 7:11; 29:1,10,14,15 (“I” cp. “us”). Consider especially Dt. 11:13,14: “If ye shall diligently hearken unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord... that I will give you the rain of your land... I will send grass in thy fields”. The “I” here switches at ease between God and Moses. The Moses/God pronouns are also mixed in Rom. 10:19.


Deu 11:15 I will give grass in your fields for your livestock and you shall eat and be full.
Deu 11:16 Take heed to yourselves, lest your heart be deceived and you turn aside, and serve other gods and worship them-
There are so many other examples of Moses showing his recognition of exactly how Israel were likely to be tempted (Dt. 6:11-13; 8:11-20; 9:4; 11:16; 12:13,19,23,30; 13:1-4; 14:27; 15:9,18; 17:11,12 ("will"),14,16,17; 21:18; 22:1-4,18; 23:21; 25:8). See on Dt. 7:16. We can take comfort in God’s sensitivity to us in an age unlike any other and apparently with its own unprecedented temptations.

Paul warned the new Israel that after his death ("after my departing", Acts 20:29) there would be serious apostasy. This is the spirit of his very last words, in 2 Tim. 4. it is exactly the spirit of Moses' farewell speech throughout the book of Deuteronomy, and throughout his final song (Dt. 32) and Dt. 31:29: "After my death you will utterly corrupt yourselves". Paul's "Take heed therefore unto yourselves" (Acts 20:28) is quoted from many places in Deuteronomy (e.g. Dt. 2:4; 4:9,15,23; 11:16; 12:13,19,30; 24:8; 27:9).

We note the continual emphasis upon the heart. This was unique amongst contemporary religions, which [as today] were all about external appearance rather than the internal transformation of the spirit / mind.


Deu 11:17 and the anger of Yahweh be kindled against you and He shut up the sky, so that there shall be no rain, and the land shall not yield its fruit and you perish quickly from off the good land which Yahweh gives you-

Dt. 11:17 had said that God's people would "perish [s.w. "destroy"] quickly from off the good land". But by grace, that didn't happen "quickly" at all. They were finally destroyed from off it (2 Kings 24:2 and often), but God did not bring that about quickly but after much patient pleading through the prophets. This is one of so many examples of where God simply did not punish His people to the extent He said He would; simply because of His grace and love toward them.


Deu 11:18 Therefore you must lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them for a sign on your hand and they shall be for memorials between your eyes-
 
- see on Song 8:6. Time and again, Moses speaks of the state of their heart. He warns them against allowing a bad state of heart to develop, he speaks often of how apostasy starts in the heart. Moses makes a total of 49 references to the heart / mind of Israel in Deuteronomy, compared to only 13 in the whole of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers. This indicates the paramount importance which our Lord attaches to the state of our mind. This was perhaps his greatest wish as He faced death; that we should develop a spiritual mind and thereby manifest the Father and come to salvation. Moses likewise saw the state of our mind as the key to spiritual success. But do we share this perspective? Do we guard our minds against the media and influence of a mind-corrupting world? It's been observed that the phrase "The God of [somebody]", or similar, occurs 614 times in the Old Testament, of which 306 are in Deuteronomy. Our very personal relationship with God was therefore something else which Moses came to grasp in his spiritual maturity. Statistical analysis of the word "love" in the Pentateuch likewise reveals that "love" was a great theme of Moses at the end of his life (Moses uses it 16 times in Deuteronomy, and only four times in Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers).


Deu 11:19 You must teach them to your children, talking of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you rise up.
Deu 11:20 Write them on the door posts of your house and on your gates,
Deu 11:21 that your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, in the land which Yahweh swore to your fathers to give them, as the days of the heavens upon the earth-
This is the essence of the New Testament idea of the “Kingdom of Heaven” [not, the Kingdom in Heaven] coming upon earth at Christ’s return.


Deu 11:22 For if you will diligently keep all these commandments which I command you, to do them, to love Yahweh your God, to walk in all His ways and to cleave to Him-
The idea of 'cleaving' to God is a big theme of Moses in Deuteronomy (Dt. 4:4; 10:20; 11:22; 13:4,17; 28:21,60; 30:20); the only other time Moses uses the word in his writings is in Gen. 2:24, concerning a man cleaving to his wife. Moses seems to have been suggesting to Israel that their covenant relationship with God meant they were marrying God. This was a real paradigm breaker. We may be used to such things. But against the theological background of the time, not to say the generally low level of spirituality among Israel, this was a shocking idea. It reflected the heights to which Moses had risen. 

The Lord’s common Upper Room theme of ‘abiding’ in Him uses the same word as Moses used in the LXX when exhorting his people to ‘cleave unto’ God (Dt. 10:20; 11:22). This abiding involved loving God and keeping His commandments- all ideas which occur together in Dt. 13:4; 30:20.

“If you love me you will keep my commandments” (Jn. 14:15,21,23; 15:10) reflects a major identical theme in Dt. 5:10; 7:9; 11:1,22; 13:3,4; 19:9; 30:16. Moses at the end of his life, when he spoke Deuteronomy, was very much the image of the future Lord Jesus.


Deu 11:23 then will Yahweh drive out all these nations from before you and you will dispossess nations greater and mightier than yourselves-

"Drive out" is s.w. "possess". We must note the difference between the  Canaanite peoples and their kings being "struck" and their land "taken" by Joshua-Jesus; and the people of Israel permanently taking possession. This is the difference between the Lord's victory on the cross, and our taking possession of the Kingdom. Even though that possession has been "given" to us. The word used for "possession" is literally 'an inheritance'. The allusion is to the people, like us, being the seed of Abraham. The Kingdom was and is our possession, our inheritance- if we walk in the steps of Abraham. But it is one thing to be the seed of Abraham, another to take possession of the inheritance; and Israel generally did not take possession of all the land (Josh. 11:23 13:1; 16:10; 18:3; 23:4). The language of inheritance / possession is applied to us in the New Testament (Eph. 1:11,14; Col. 3:24; Acts 20:32; 26:18; 1 Pet. 1:4 etc.). Israel were promised: "You shall possess it" (Dt. 30:5; 33:23). This was more of a command than a prophecy, for sadly they were "given" the land but did not "possess" it. They were constantly encouraged in the wilderness that they were on the path to possessing the land (Dt. 30:16,18; 31:3,13; 32:47), but when they got there they didn't possess it fully.

The Hebrew word translated as "thousand" can mean a family, or some other administrative division. Many of the 'number problems' in the Hebrew Bible are only really resoluble using this approach. And that may be in view in the census of Israel taken in Num. 1, and in the statement that six hundred 'thousands' of footmen left Egypt (Ex. 12:37). The census of Num. 1 gives figures such as those in Num. 1:21 for Reuben, which could be rendered: "forty six families ['thousands'] and five hundred (men)". Although a "hundred" might also refer to an administrative division. The total in Num. 1 would then be 598 families with a total of 5550 men. The sum given in the second census in Num. 26 comes out as roughly the same, with 596 families amounting to 5730 men. On this basis, the total population (including women and children) would be anything between 20,000 to 40,000. This would enable us to make better sense of the statements that Israel were the smallest numerically of all the surrounding peoples (Dt. 7:1,7; 11:23; 20:1). If we insist upon taking "thousand" literally in Ex. 12:37, then 600,000 male foot soldiers would imply a total population of between two and six million. The population density would have been intense, and far greater than that of many modern nations. Estimates of global population at the time suggest it was only about 40 million, and the population of Egypt was a maximum of three million (probably far less). If the Israelites were smaller than the other nations, and they numbered say 5 million, then the total population of the seven peoples of Canaan would have been at least 40 million. The territory of Canaan could not have supported such numbers. Only 70 Israelites came into Egypt with Jacob. Expansion over 430 years to several million is not realistic. This approach helps us better understand how all the men of war marched around Jericho (Josh. 6:3). If there were literally 600,000 men then the city would have had to be many kilometers in circumference for them all to march around it seven times in one day. Archeaological evidence from Jericho simply doesn't support the idea of such a vast city. If Israel numbered say 5 million people, and recall there was also a "mixed multitude" with them, then if they marched 10 abreast this would require a column stretching around 1000 kilometers. Their promises to Edom and the Amorites to march only along a highway and not spill over it (Num. 20:17; 21:22) is unrealistic if they had such huge numbers. A figure of 600 family units leaving Egypt is more realistic; otherwise we start to wonder how ever all the Israelites, millions of them, came to be in one place at one time on Passover night.


Deu 11:24 Every place on which the sole of your foot shall tread shall be yours, from the wilderness and Lebanon, from the river Euphrates, to the hinder sea shall be your border-
This meant that according to their spiritual ambition, so would be their inheritance of the Kingdom. The temptation for them, as for us, was to consider that once we have our small inheritance, our farmstead and secure land, as it was for them- then we need have no wider vision. For to go onwards from that parochial mentality and tread upon the entire land up to the Euphrates was a vision only worth pursuing if they had a vision of collective inheritance of the Kingdom. To seek to get others there is a call which few really perceive. The entire territory promised to Abraham could’ve been given to them if they had bothered to go there; but they settled just for the fertile land along the Mediterranean coast. They, like us so often, lacked any sense of spiritual ambition.


Deu 11:25 No man will be able to stand before you. Yahweh your God will lay the fear of you and the dread of you on all the land that you will tread on, as He has spoken to you-

The command to subject the animals in Eden [the land promised to Abraham?] corresponds to later commands to subject the tribes living in the land (Gen. 1:28 = Num. 32:22,29; Josh. 18:1). The “fear and dread” of humans which fell on the animals after the flood is clearly linkable with the “fear and dread” which was to come upon the inhabitants of Canaan due to the Israelites (Gen. 9:2 = Dt. 1:21; 3:8; 11:25).


Deu 11:26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse:
Deu 11:27 the blessing, if you will listen to the commandments of Yahweh your God which I command you this day,
Deu 11:28 and the curse if you will not listen to the commandments of Yahweh your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods which you have not previously known.
Deu 11:29 When Yahweh your God brings you into the land where you go to possess it, you shall set the blessing on Mount Gerizim and the curse on Mount Ebal-
 
God repeated the promise of blessing to Abraham at Shechem (Gen. 12:6), where later Israel had to choose between blessing and cursing (Dt. 11:29,30)- as if they had to make the choice to appropriate the promised blessing to themselves, or not.


Deu 11:30 Aren’t they beyond the Jordan, behind the way of the going down of the sun, in the land of the Canaanites who dwell in the Arabah, over against Gilgal, beside the oaks of Moreh?-

Dt. 27:2-8 had commanded that "in the day" Israel passed over Jordan, they were to set up plastered stones with the law written upon them [perhaps just the ten commandments], and put them "in mount Ebal". The location was defined as near Gilgal (Dt. 11:30), where they camped after entering the land. Clearly enough, the ceremony of blessing and cursing ought to have been done immediately they entered the land. But they let secular concerns dominate their spritual obligation to be thankful as God had asked. For when Joshua fulfilled it in Josh. 8:30, this was not "in the day" that Israel passed over Jordan. They had indeed taken stones with them from the Jordan, but had not used them as intended. They didn't plaster them nor write the law upon them. And so perhaps God ammended His intention- which was initially that they would set those stones up in mount Ebal immediately. Instead, He sent the people against Jericho, and then against Ai. Perhaps an instant conquest of Jericho had been originally intended, so that they could proceed to mount Ebal immediately. For later in Joshua we will read of God giving His people unnaturally speedy progress against their enemies, all in the same day. Or maybe His intention was that firstly they ought to have gone to mount Ebal with the plastered stones, and only then attacked Jericho. But they didn't plaster the stones nor wish to proceed immediately to Ebal. And so He arranged the campaign against Jericho and then Ai. We see how God is so eager to accommodate His programs to the weakness of men.   


Deu 11:31 For you are to pass over the Jordan to go in to possess the land which Yahweh your God gives you, and you shall possess it, and dwell therein.
Deu 11:32 You shall observe all the statutes and the ordinances which I set before you this day-

The Hebrew mishpat, "ordinances", has a wide range of meaning. The idea is of judgment, as if God and His Angels gave these laws as their considered judgment after considering the human condition, and Israel were to abide by them. But the word also the idea of a right or privilege; and that is how we should see God's laws. They are only felt as a burden because of human hardness of neck towards God's ways. His laws are not of themselves burdensome, but rather a privilege and blessing. The law was indeed "holy, just and good" (Rom. 7:12), designed to inculcate a holy, just and good life (Tit. 1:8), a way in which a man should "walk" in daily life (Lev. 18:4), a culture of kindness and grace to others which reflected God's grace to man. If we dwell upon the idea of "rights" carried within the word mishpat, we note that the law begins in Ex. 21:1,2 (also Dt. 15:12-18) with the rights of a slave- those considered to have no rights in the society of that day. The "rights" to be afforded by us to others are the essence of God's rightness / justice.