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The Wilderness

(Category 5 of 16)

Moses delivers his final words of warning and wisdom to the Israelites before they enter the promised land. This is the epic conclusion of the Torah! And, spoiler alert: Moses dies.

Explore Torah Series

The Book of Deuteronomy


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Law Concerning Divorce


1 “When a aman takes a wife and marries her, and it happens that she finds no favor in his eyes because he has found some 1uncleanness in her, and he writes her a bcertificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house,
2 “when she has departed from his house, and goes and becomes another man’s wife,
3 “if the latter husband detests her and writes her a certificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house, or if the latter husband dies who took her as his wife,
4 a“then her former husband who divorced her must not take her back to be his wife after she has been defiled; for that is 1an abomination before the LORD, and you shall not bring sin on the land which the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance.

Miscellaneous Laws

5 a“When a man has taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war or be charged with any business; he shall be free at home one year, and bbring happiness to his wife whom he has taken.
6 “No man shall take the lower or the upper millstone in pledge, for he takes 1one’s living in pledge.

CHAPTER 24 References

1 a[Matt. 5:31;
19:7; Mark
10:4] b[Jer.
3:8] 1indecency,
nakedness of
a thing
4 a[Jer. 3:1] 1a
5 aDeut. 20:7
bProv. 5:18
6 1life
7 aEx. 21:16
bDeut. 19:19
1Lit. stealing
8 aLev. 13:2;
9 a[1 Cor. 10:6] bNum. 12:10
10 aMatt. 5:42
12 1Lit. sleep
with his
13 aEx. 22:26;
Ezek. 18:7
bJob 29:11;
2 Tim. 1:18
cDeut. 6:25;
Ps. 106:31;
Dan. 4:27
14 aLev. 19:13;
Deut. 15:7–18;
[Prov. 14:31];
Amos 4:1;
[Mal. 3:5;
1 Tim. 5:18] 15 aLev. 19:13;
Jer. 22:13 bEx.
22:23; Deut.
15:9; Job 35:9;
James 5:4
16 a2 Kin. 14:6;
2 Chr. 25:4;
Jer. 31:29, 30;
Ezek. 18:20
17 aEx. 23:6
bEx. 22:26
18 aDeut. 24:22
19 aLev. 19:9,
10 bDeut.
15:10; Ps.
41:1; Prov.

7 “If a man is afound 1kidnapping any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and mistreats him or sells him, then that kidnapper shall die; band you shall put away the evil from among you.
8 “Take heed in aan outbreak of leprosy, that you carefully observe and do according to all that the priests, the Levites, shall teach you; just as I commanded them, so you shall be careful to do.
9 a“Remember what the LORD your God did bto Miriam on the way when you came out of Egypt!
10 “When you alend your brother anything, you shall not go into his house to get his pledge.
11 “You shall stand outside, and the man to whom you lend shall bring the pledge out to you.
12 “And if the man is poor, you shall not 1keep his pledge overnight.
13 a“You shall in any case return the pledge to him again when the sun goes down, that he may sleep in his own garment and bbless you; and cit shall be righteousness to you before the LORD your God.
14 “You shall not aoppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether one of your brethren or one of the aliens who is in your land within your gates.
15 “Each day ayou shall give him his wages, and not let the sun go down on it, for he is poor and has set his heart on it; blest he cry out against you to the LORD, and it be sin to you.
16 a“Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall children be put to death for their fathers; a person shall be put to death for his own sin.
17 a“You shall not pervert justice due the stranger or the fatherless, bnor take a widow’s garment as a pledge.
18 “But ayou shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt, and the LORD your God redeemed you from there; therefore I command you to do this thing.
19 a“When you reap your harvest in your field, and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that the LORD your God may bbless you in all the work of your hands.
20 “When you beat your olive trees, you shall not go over the boughs again; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow.
21 “When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not glean it afterward; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow.
22 “And you shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt;

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therefore I command you to do this thing.


1 “If there is a adispute between men, and they come to 1court, that the judges may judge them, and they bjustify the righteous and condemn the wicked,
2 “then it shall be, if the wicked man adeserves to be beaten, that the judge will cause him to lie down band be beaten in his presence, according to his guilt, with a certain number of blows.
3 a“Forty blows he may give him and no more, lest he should exceed this and beat him with many blows above these, and your brother bbe humiliated in your sight.
4 a“You shall not muzzle an ox while it 1treads out the grain.

Marriage Duty of the Surviving Brother

5 a“If brothers dwell together, and one of them dies and has no son, the widow of the dead man shall not be married to a stranger outside the family; her husband’s brother shall go in to her, take her as his wife, and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her.
6 “And it shall be that the firstborn son which she bears awill succeed to the name of his dead brother, that bhis name may not be blotted out of Israel.
7 “But if the man does not want to take his brother’s wife, then let his brother’s wife go up to the agate to the elders, and say, ‘My husband’s brother refuses to raise up a name to his brother in Israel; he will not perform the duty of my husband’s brother.’
8 “Then the elders of his city shall call him and speak to him. But if he stands firm and says, a‘I do not want to take her,’
9 “then his brother’s wife shall come to him in the presence of the elders, aremove his sandal from his foot, spit in his face, and answer and say, ‘So shall it be done to the man who will not bbuild up his brother’s house.’
10 “And his name shall be called in Israel, ‘The house of him who had his sandal removed.’

Miscellaneous Laws

11 “If two men fight together, and the wife of one draws near to rescue her husband from the hand of the one attacking him, and puts out her hand and seizes him by the genitals,
12 “then you shall cut off her hand; ayour eye shall not pity her.
13 a“You shall not have in your bag differing weights, a heavy and a light.
14 “You shall not have in your house differing measures, a large and a small

CHAPTER 25 References

1 aDeut.
17:8–13; 19:17
bProv. 17:15
1Lit. the judgment
2 aProv. 19:29
bMatt. 10:17
3 a2 Cor. 11:24
bJob 18:3
4 a[Prov.
12:10] 1threshes
5 aMatt. 22:24
6 aGen. 38:9
bRuth 4:5, 10
7 aRuth 4:1, 2
8 aRuth 4:6
9 aRuth 4:7, 8
bRuth 4:11
12 aDeut. 7:2;
13 aMic. 6:11
15 aEx. 20:12
16 aProv. 11:1
17 aEx.
18 aRom. 3:18
19 a1 Sam.
15:3 bEx.

CHAPTER 26 References

2 aEx. 22:29;
23:16, 19
bDeut. 12:5
3 1LXX my
5 aHos. 12:12
bGen. 43:1, 2;
45:7, 11 cActs
7:15 dDeut.
10:22 eDeut.
1:10 1Or
Aramean 2As
a resident
6 aEx. 1:8–11,
7 aEx. 2:23–25;
3:9; 4:31
8 aDeut. 5:15
bDeut. 4:34;
34:11, 12
9 aEx. 3:8, 17


15 “You shall have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure, athat your days may be lengthened in the land which the LORD your God is giving you.
16 “For aall who do such things, all who behave unrighteously, are 1an abomination to the LORD your God.

Destroy the Amalekites

17 a“Remember what Amalek did to you on the way as you were coming out of Egypt,
18 “how he met you on the way and attacked your rear ranks, all the stragglers at your rear, when you were tired and weary; and he adid not fear God.
19 “Therefore it shall be, awhen the LORD your God has given you rest from your enemies all around, in the land which the LORD your God is giving you to possess as an inheritance, that you will bblot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.You shall not forget.

Offerings of Firstfruits and Tithes


1 “And it shall be, when you come into the land which the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, and you possess it and dwell in it,
2 a“that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground, which you shall bring from your land that the LORD your God is giving you, and put it in a basket and bgo to the place where the LORD your God chooses to make His name abide.
3 “And you shall go to the one who is priest in those days, and say to him, ‘I declare today to the LORD 1your God that I have come to the country which the LORD swore to our fathers to give us.’
4 “Then the priest shall take the basket out of your hand and set it down before the altar of the LORD your God.
5 “And you shall answer and say before the LORD your God: ‘My father was aa 1Syrian, babout to perish, and che went down to Egypt and 2dwelt there, dfew in number; and there he became a nation, egreat, mighty, and populous.
6 ‘But the aEgyptians mistreated us, afflicted us, and laid hard bondage on us.
7 a‘Then we cried out to the LORD God of our fathers, and the LORD heard our voice and looked on our affliction and our labor and our oppression.
8 ‘So athe LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, bwith great terror and with signs and wonders.
9 ‘He has brought us to this place and has given us this land, a“a land flowing with milk and honey”;
10 ‘and now, behold, I have brought

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the firstfruits of the land which you, O LORD, have given me.’ Then you shall set it before the LORD your God, and worship before the LORD your God.
11 “So ayou shall rejoice in every good thing which the LORD your God has given to you and your house, you and the Levite and the stranger who is among you.
12 “When you have finished laying aside all the atithe of your increase in the third year—bthe year of tithing—and have given it to the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, so that they may eat within your gates and be filled,
13 “then you shall say before the LORD your God: ‘I have removed the 1holy tithe from my house, and also have given them to the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, according to all Your commandments which You have commanded me; I have not transgressed Your commandments, anor have I forgotten them.
14 a‘I have not eaten any of it 1when in mourning, nor have I removed any of it 2for an unclean use, nor given any of it for the dead. I have obeyed the voice of the LORD my God, and have done according to all that You have commanded me.
15 a‘Look down from Your holy 1habitation, from heaven, and bless Your people Israel and the land which You have given us, just as You swore to our fathers, b“a land flowing with milk and honey.” ’

A Special People of God

16 “This day the LORD your God commands you to observe these statutes and judgments; therefore you shall be careful to observe them with all your heart and with all your soul.
17 “Today you have aproclaimed the LORD to be your God, and that you will walk in His ways and keep His statutes, His commandments, and His judgments, and that you will bobey His voice.
18 “Also today athe LORD has proclaimed you to be His special people, just as He promised you, that you should keep all His commandments,
19 “and that He will set you ahigh above all nations which He has made, in praise, in name, and in honor, and that you may be ba 1holy people to the LORD your God, just as He has spoken.”

The Law Inscribed on Stones


1 Now Moses, with the elders of Israel, commanded the people, saying: “Keep all the commandments which I command you today.
2 “And it shall be, on the day awhen you cross over the Jordan to the land which the LORD your God

11 aDeut. 12:7;
16:11; Eccl.
3:12, 13;
12 aLev. 27:30;
Num. 18:24
bDeut. 14:28,
13 aPs.
119:141, 153,
176 1hallowed
14 aLev. 7:20;
Jer. 16:7; Hos.
9:4 1Lit. in my
mourning 1Or
while I was
15 aPs. 80:14;
Is. 63:15;
Zech. 2:13
bEx. 3:8
17 aEx. 20:19
bDeut. 15:5
18 aEx. 6:7;
19:5; Deut.
7:6; 14:2; 28:9;
[Titus 2:14;
1 Pet. 2:9] 19 aDeut. 4:7,
8; 28:1 bEx.
19:6; Deut.
7:6; 28:9; Is.
62:12; [1 Pet.
2:9] 1consecrated

CHAPTER 27 References

2 aJosh. 4:1
bJosh. 8:32
3 aEx. 3:8
4 aDeut. 11:29;
Josh. 8:30, 31
5 aEx. 20:25;
Josh. 8:31
6 1uncut
7 aDeut. 26:11
8 aJosh. 8:32
9 aDeut. 26:18
12 aDeut.
11:29; Josh.
8:33; Judg. 9:7
13 aDeut.
11:29; Josh.
14 aDeut.
33:10; Josh.
8:33; Dan.
15 aEx. 20:4,
23; 34:17; Lev.
19:4; 26:1;
Deut. 4:16, 23;
Is. 44:9; Hos.
13:2 bNum.
5:22; Jer. 11:5;
1 Cor. 14:16 1a
16 aEx. 20:12;
Lev. 19:3;
20:9; Deut.
5:16; 21:18–21;
Ezek. 22:7
17 aDeut.
19:14; Prov.
18 aLev. 19:14

is giving you, that byou shall set up for yourselves large stones, and whitewash them with lime.
3 “You shall write on them all the words of this law, when you have crossed over, that you may enter the land which the LORD your God is giving you, a‘a land flowing with milk and honey,’ just as the LORD God of your fathers promised you.
4 “Therefore it shall be, when you have crossed over the Jordan, that aon Mount Ebal you shall set up these stones, which I command you today, and you shall whitewash them with lime.
5 “And there you shall build an altar to the LORD your God, an altar of stones; ayou shall not use an iron tool on them.
6 “You shall build with 1whole stones the altar of the LORD your God, and offer burnt offerings on it to the LORD your God.
7 “You shall offer peace offerings, and shall eat there, and arejoice before the LORD your God.
8 “And you shall awrite very plainly on the stones all the words of this law.”
9 Then Moses and the priests, the Levites, spoke to all Israel, saying, “Take heed and listen, O Israel: aThis day you have become the people of the LORD your God.
10 “Therefore you shall obey the voice of the LORD your God, and observe His commandments and His statutes which I command you today.”

Curses Pronounced from Mount Ebal

11 And Moses commanded the people on the same day, saying,
12 “These shall stand aon Mount Gerizim to bless the people, when you have crossed over the Jordan: Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin;
13 “and athese shall stand on Mount Ebal to curse: Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali.
14 “And athe Levites shall speak with a loud voice and say to all the men of Israel:
15 a‘Cursed is the one who makes a carved or molded image, 1an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ a“And all the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen!’
16 a‘Cursed is the one who treats his father or his mother with contempt.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
17 a‘Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor’s landmark.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
18 a‘Cursed is the one who makes the blind to wander off the road.’

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“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
19 a‘Cursed is the one who perverts the justice due the stranger, the fatherless, and widow.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
20 a‘Cursed is the one who lies with his father’s wife, because he has uncovered his father’s bed.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
21 a‘Cursed is the one who lies with any kind of animal.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
22 a‘Cursed is the one who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
23 a‘Cursed is the one who lies with his mother-in-law.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
24 a‘Cursed is the one who attacks his neighbor secretly.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
25 a‘Cursed is the one who takes a bribe to slay an innocent person.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
26 a‘Cursed is the one who does not confirm all the words of this law by observing them.’ “And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’

19 aEx. 22:21,
22; 23:9; Lev.
19:33; Deut.
10:18; 24:17
20 aLev. 18:8;
20:11; Deut.
22:30; 1 Cor.
21 aEx. 22:19;
Lev. 18:23;
20:15, 16
22 aLev. 18:9
23 aLev. 18:17;
24 aEx. 20:13;
21:12; Lev.
24:17; Num.
35:30, 31
25 aEx. 23:7;
Ps. 15:5; Ezek.
26 aPs. 119:21;
Jer. 11:3; Gal.

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Assurance of God’s Eternal Protection

To the Chief Musician. On 1a stringed instrument. A Psalm of David.

1 HEAR my cry, O God; Attend to my prayer.
2 From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.

3 For You have been a shelter for me, aA strong tower from the enemy.
4 I will abide in Your 1tabernacle forever; aI will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah

PSALM 61 References

title 1Heb.
3 aProv. 18:10
4 aPs. 91:4
7 aPs. 40:11
1Lit. guard or

5 For You, O God, have heard my vows; You have given me the heritage of those who fear Your name.
6 You will prolong the king’s life, His years as many generations.
7 He shall abide before God forever. Oh, prepare mercy aand truth, which may 1preserve him!

8 So I will sing praise to Your name forever, That I may daily perform my vows.




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