20 In the future, when your son asks you, “What is the meaning of the stipulations, decrees and laws the Lord our God has commanded you?” 21 tell him: “We were slaves of Pharaoh in Egypt, but the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand. 22 Before our eyes the Lord sent signs and wonders—great and terrible—on Egypt and Pharaoh and his whole household. 23 But He brought us out from there to bring us in and give us the land He promised on oath to our ancestors. 24 The Lord commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear the Lord our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive, as is the case today. 25 And if we are careful to obey all this law before the Lord our God, as He has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.”
Friday we looked at the first three verses of this chapter as we looked at the decrees and commands God had given to Moses to instruct the nation of Israel about. Then we looked at verses 5-9 describing how the people of Israel were to implement all Moses had instructed them. Today we come to the end this chapter with Moses once again how the Lord had freed them from slavery in Egypt and brought them into the land He had promised to their ancestors.
Before continuing on with comments on the final verses I would like to take a small detour and return to verses 4-5 – 4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. The reason for the detour is in Matthew and Mark, when Jesus is asked for the greatest commandment He gives this as His answer, but in both accounts the verses are modified.
‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’
‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind.’
‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
Notice in Matthew all your strength is left out as is Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one and all your mind is added. In Luke it is the same except all your strength is not left out. Then in Mark we have all of verses four and five with the addition here as well of all your mind. The addition in all versions is likely due to the influence of Greek culture. However, the original Hebrew for soul would have included both mind and soul as noted by Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon (first definition breath, then soul, then mind), but the Greek translation both are required to achieve the same meaning.
With our detour complete let’s return to our verses at the end of this chapter. The directions given for the instruction of the children are only an extension of the preceding counsel from Moses. This along with making note that the benefit of obedience is ours, not God’s and therefore our obedience is highly reasonable, and absolutely necessary (Matthew Poole). Then there are Gill’s comments from his exposition of the Bible:
And the Lord commanded us to do all these statutes,…. Some of which were designed on purpose to commemorate the wonderful deliverance out of Egypt, as particularly the passover; and all of them they were obliged in gratitude to obey, in consideration of such great favours bestowed upon them: to fear the Lord our God, for our good always: as it is always for the good of men, temporal, spiritual, and eternal, to fear the Lord; for there is no want to them that fear him, nor will the Lord withhold good things from them.
It’s Monday and I hope you have a Great Week knowing any righteousness we have comes from God.