10 Deuteronomy 6-11 – What God ExpectsLeviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy - Life in the Desert
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Long ago God had promised Abraham that he would become the father of a great nation (Gn. 12:1–3). That nation would eventually dwell in a rich land ‘flowing with milk and honey’ (Ex. 3:17). The nation grew while in Egyptian slavery until being miraculously delivered by God (Ex. 14). He then met them at Mt Sinai and formally made a ‘covenant’ with them, which included various laws that they were to keep (Ex. 19–24). The next step was to march into the land, but they failed to do this straight away because they were overawed by the obstacles in the way. Because of their lack of faith, therefore, the Lord decided that the next generation should enter the promised land. In the meantime, they were condemned to forty years of living unsettled in the wilderness (Num 13–14; see especially Num 14:20–35).
Now the time of fulfillment is at hand. At the beginning of Deuteronomy, Moses, who himself will not enter the land, addresses the new generation. He reminds them of all the events that have brought them to this point, and prepares them to be faithful to their covenant with the Lord when they cross the River Jordan and receive the ‘inheritance’ which he has given them. New Bible Commentary
Deut 6 – The Great Commandment
6:1-3 Intro: Obedience and its Rewards
Continues the call to obey (Dt 5:22-33) and introduces Moses’ sermon on the first commandment, “You shall have no other gods.”
6:4-9 The Great Shema: “Hear, O Israel!”
The nature of God. Israel’s incumbent response.
Teach your sons these words diligently! Talk about them constantly!
Tefillin (“phylacteries”): Scripture boxes strapped to forehead and arm. Mezuzah: a Scripture box by the door, also to be placed on the gate.
Especially Ex 13:1-16; Deut 6:4-9; 11:13-21.
Matt 23:5 Pharisees made phylacteries broader, to impress others.
6:10-15 Remember, Fear, and Serve Him Only.
When God gives you all this abundance, do not forget him! Watch out!
6:13 – Jesus quoted this to Satan (Matt 4:10; Luke 4:10).
6:16-19 Do Not Test Him, but Keep His Commands.
6:16 – Jesus quoted this to Satan also (Matt 4:7; Luke 4:12).
6:20-25 Explain to Your Children.
When your son asks, “Why?” you respond, …
“This is what we were – this is what God did – this is who we are now – this is what God said – this is what we do.”
Deut 7 – God’s Chosen, Holy People
7:1-5 Destroy the Mighty, Idolatrous Canaanites.
Utterly. No mercy, covenant, or intermarriage.
Judgment for their wickedness and idolatry.
7:6-10 Because You are His, and He is Faithful.
Holy, chosen, treasured possession, loved.
7:11-16 Therefore, Obey and Be Blessed.
7:17-26 Do Not Fear Them. Remember Egypt.
As God defeated Pharaoh, He will defeat them.
Detest, destroy all idols, or else be destroyed yourselves.
Deut 8 – Lessons from the Wilderness
8:1-5 God Led, Humbled, Tested, Preserved, and Disciplined You.
8:3 – He let you be hungry, to teach “Man … not … bread alone …”
Jesus quoted this to Satan (Matt 4:4; Luke 4:4).
8:6 Therefore Keep His Commands.
8:7-10 Because of All He is Giving You.
Eat, be full, and bless the LORD your God.
8:11-20 Never Forget, Boast, or Serve Idols.
Dangers of abundance, complacency, and pride.
If you forget Yahweh and serve idols, you will perish.
Deut 9 – Self-Righteousness? No Way!
9:1-5 Cause: not Your Merit, but Their Evil and God’s Oath.
9:6-24 Your Track Record: Consistent Rebellion.
From leaving Egypt until now. Even at Horeb (Sinai).
The golden calf. Moses broke the tablets and lay prostrate 40 days to intercede and save Israel.
Taberah (Num 11), Massah (Ex 17) Kibroth-Hattaavah (Num 11). “From the day we met.”
9:25-29 Moses’ Intercession.
“God, … your people, your promise, and your reputation.”
Deut 10 – New Tablets, New Hearts
10:1-5 New Tablets of Stone.
God’s positive response to Moses’ intercession. “Let’s start over!”
10:6-9 Renewal of Priests’ and Levites’ Service.
Aaron died 40 years after the calf. Eleazar and Levites carried on.
10:10-11 Resumption of Journey.
Moses’ second 40-day period on the mountain with Yahweh.
10:12-22 New “Circumcised,” Obedient Hearts.
“Cut away” stubbornness and rebellion.
“What does the LORD require?” Cf. Mic 6:8.
Deut 11 – Exhortation: Love, Obey, Live
11:1-7 Consider God’s Discipline and Power.
Therefore – because He multiplied you (10:22).
Plagues, Red Sea, Dathan & Abiram, 40 yrs., etc.
11:8-17 Therefore, Obey and Be Blessed or Disobey and be Cursed.
11:18-25 Bind These Words: Heart, Hand, and Head. Teach Them!
11:26-32 Choose the Blessing, not the Curse.
Once in the land, place blessing on Mt. Gerizim, curse on Mt. Ebal.
Blessings and curses to be read. People to respond to each, “Amen!”
Read Deut 27:11-14; 28:1-14 (Gerizim), 15-68 (Ebal); Josh 8:33-35.
Samaritan woman: “this mountain” is Mt. Gerizim. John 4:20
When thinking about Deut 6:4-9, a number of things come to mind, but two are:
1. Unity of the Godhead – difference between ACHID “United One” and Yachid “Absolute One” and how
2. Even in Old Testament times it was about the “heart”. Most of Jewish rulers we focused on the physical and not the spiritual. God wanted them (as he wants us) to write his words on their hearts and minds so that they govern all that they do and did. Instead of them doing what God wanted them to do, they took a physical prospective by creating phylacteries and placing them on their foreheads and wrists. So, they could be seen of men.
Very thoughtful! Thanks for your reply and your encouragement, Greg.