Article Index

Names of the Book


English:  Deuteronomy
Hebrew:  דברים
Transliterated:  Devarim ("Words")
Other names:   



Wrote the book:  Moses
Are the key people:  Moses, Aaron, Joshua
Is it written to:  The people of Israel



The LORD and the reminder of what He has done for Israel (Deuteronomy 1:1-4:43)
The Law and G-d's standard for holy living (Deuteronomy 4:44-26:68)
The Call to a life of holiness (Deuteronomy 29:1-30:20)
The Leadership is transferred to Yehoshua (Deuteronomy 31:1-34:12)



Was it written:  c 1450-1410 BCE
Did the events occur:  c 1437-1436 BCE
Was it canonized:  c 499-100 BCE
(see the Timeline of the Tanakh)



Was it written:  On the plains of Moav near Yericho (Deuteronomy 31:9)
Did the events occur:  The wilderness of Moab, the Land of Canaan, and Mt. Nebo



Deuteronomy was written to inform us that:
G-d is merciful.
G-d requires holy lives from His people.
G-d calls us to serve Him and live for Him.



Deuteronomy is a narrative that includes both history and law.  Deuteronomy means "second law" and it is the recounting (the "second giving") of G-d's Law from Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers that provides this name.  The book includes Moses' farewell message to a new generation of Israelites as they prepare to take possession of the Promised Land. Moses reminds them of G-d's faithfulness and love, but also of God's wrath on the previous generation of Israelites because of their rebellion. Moses repeatedly charges Israel to keep G-d's Law. The words of this book provide a solemn call to love and obey the one true G-d and outlines blessings for faithfulness and curses for unfaithfulness. The book concludes with the selection of Joshua as Israel's new leader and the death of Moses.




Chapter Description
1 Moses recounts the history of Israel including the incident of the twelve spies and their fear to enter the promised land.
2 Moses recounts the history of Israel and their travels by the sons of Esau at Mt. Seir, their pass through Kadesh-barnea and Moab, as well as the defeat of Sihon, king of Heshbon.
3 Moses recounts the history of Israel, how they defeated Og king of Bashan and how the Reubenites, Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh were given land east of the Jordan.
4 Moses recounts the history of Israel, how G-d made them a great nation and gave them the Ten Commandments.
Moses warns them against idolatry, urges them to obey G-d, and prophesies that G-d would scatter them among the nations.
Moses sets apart six cities of refuge: three east of the Jordan and three west of the Jordan.
5 Moses recounts the events at Mt. Sinai: G-d spoke and made a covenant with Israel, gave them the Ten Commandments, and Israel promised to obey His commands.
6 Moses recounts G-d's commandments, statutes, and judgments.
He exhorts them to keep, remember, and teach G-d's commands.
He proclaims "Hear, O Israel, the LORD your G-d is One. You shall love the LORD your G-d with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might."
He urges them to not forget G-d and to worship G-d alone.
7 Moses warns the Israelites not to make covenants with the nations of the Land nor to intermarry with them.
G-d chose Israel and G-d will bless them if they follow Him.
8 Moses cautions Israel to remember G-d's commands and do them.
G-d has protected Israel and G-d will give Israel a good land but they cannot forget G-d.
9 Moses informs Israel that G-d brought them into Canaan because of other nations' wickedness not because of Israel's righteousness.
10 Moses speaks to Israel and recounts tablets of stone, Israel's journeys, G-d of G-ds, and the commandment of G-d to serve Him and love strangers.
11 Moses speaks to Israel and reminds them of G-d's great power against Egypt.
He tells them about good things in the promised land.
He exhorts them to teach their children G-d's commandments and to choose to obey G-d.
12 Moses commands Israel to destroy the Canaanite's gods and to bring offerings to the place where G-d would choose to place His Name.
He warns them not to follow other gods.
13 Moses warns Israel about false gods, false worship, false prophets, false miracles, and false dreams.
They should kills the false prophet or dreamer of dreams who counsels rebellion against G-d and His commandments.
14 Moses speaks to Israel regarding the laws prohibiting cutting your body, eating unclean animals, and the requirement and use of tithes and offerings.
15 Moses speaks to Israel regarding the laws of hospitality, debt cancellation, the release of slaves after seven years, and the offering regarding the firstborn.
16 Moses reiterates the laws regarding the feasts of Passover, Weeks, and Tabernacles.
He gives them laws regarding judges and officers in their towns and cities.
He relates G-d's laws forbidding trees near G-d's altar and the prohibition of the use of images in worship.
17 Moses reiterates G-d's laws regarding pure sacrifices, false worship, judging difficult decisions, and the rulership of Israel's king.
18 Moses restates G-d's laws regarding Levite inheritance, prohibitions against occult practices, witches, and false prophets.
Moses promises that a prophet like him would come and that Israel should listen to him.
19 Moses reminds Israel regarding the three cities of refuge.
He reiterates legal matters must be established by 2 or 3 witnesses.
He relates G-d's commandments regarding false witnesses and proper judgment in controversies.
20 Moses speaks to Israel and gives them laws regarding wars & battles including the admonition to not fear the enemy, reasons for leaving the army, and rules of engagement.
21 Moses relates G-d's laws regarding mysterious deaths, marrying captive women, inheritance of the firstborn, rebellious sons, and death by hanging.
22 Moses reiterates G-d's laws regarding lost property, various household rules, virginity, engagement, marriage and sexual laws.
23 Moses speaks to Israel and restates G-d's laws regarding entering G-d's assembly, treaties, uncleanness, sanitation, money, property and promises.
24 Moses speaks to Israel and declares G-d's laws regarding marriage, divorce, leprosy, loans, oppression, punishment, judging, harvesting and sharing.
25 Moses speaks to Israel and provides G-d's laws regarding judges, levirate marriage, women involved in two men fighting, and honesty.
26 Moses delivers laws regarding the offerings of first fruits, the tithe, worship, and prayers of thanksgiving.
27 Moses gives Israel the command to build an altar to G-d.
Half the tribes of Israel are to stand on Mt. Ebal to answer "amen" for the blessings and half the tribes are to stand on Mt. Gerizim to answer "amen" for the curses.
The Levites pronounce the curses if Israel disobeys the commandments of G-d.
28 The Levites pronounce the blessings if Israel obeys the commandments of G-d.
The Levites pronounce a second set of curses if Israel disobeys G-d's commandments.
29 Moses speaks again to Israel and reviews their origin and history.
He explains G-d's covenant with them and the consequences for disobeying Him.
30 Moses speaks to Israel: after Israel disobeys & is scattered, G-d will bring them back to prosper; Israel chooses life or death
31 Moses declares that he is 120 years old and will not enter the promised land.
He exhorts Israel to be strong.
The LORD tells Moses that Israel will disobey Him and evil will come upon them.
The LORD gives Moses a song to teach to Israel as a witness against them.
The book of the law is placed inside the ark.
Joshua is commissioned to lead Israel.
32 Moses teaches G-d's song to Israel and encourages them to remain faithful to G-d.
The LORD tells Moses to go up on Mt Nebo, view the promised land, and die.
33 Moses blesses the nation of Israel before his death.
He names and prophesies about each tribe.
He reminds Israel that G-d is their refuge and strength.
34 Moses goes up to Mt Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, views promised land, and dies.
G-d buries Moses and Israel mourns for him.
Joshua succeeds Moses as Israel's leader.


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Yom Rishon, 28 Shevat, 5780

Sunday, February 23, 2020


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