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Now, Israel, listen to the statutes and to the ordinances which I teach you, to do them; that you may live, and go in and possess the land which Yahweh, the God of your fathers, gives you. You shall not add to the word which I command you, neither shall you take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of Yahweh your God which I command you. Your eyes have seen what Yahweh did because of Baal Peor; for Yahweh your God has destroyed all the men who followed Baal Peor from among you. But you who were faithful to Yahweh your God are all alive today. Behold, I have taught you statutes and ordinances, even as Yahweh my God commanded me, that you should do so in the middle of the land where you go in to possess it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who shall hear all these statutes and say, “Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.” For what great nation is there that has a god so near to them as Yahweh our God is whenever we call on him? What great nation is there that has statutes and ordinances so righteous as all this law which I set before you today?

Only be careful, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things which your eyes saw, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life; but make them known to your children and your children’s children— 10 the day that you stood before Yahweh your God in Horeb, when Yahweh said to me, “Assemble the people to me, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children.” 11 You came near and stood under the mountain. The mountain burned with fire to the heart of the sky, with darkness, cloud, and thick darkness. 12 Yahweh spoke to you out of the middle of the fire: you heard the voice of words, but you saw no form; you only heard a voice. 13 He declared to you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even the ten commandments. He wrote them on two stone tablets. 14 Yahweh commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and ordinances, that you might do them in the land where you go over to possess it. 15 Be very careful, for you saw no kind of form on the day that Yahweh spoke to you in Horeb out of the middle of the fire, 16 lest you corrupt yourselves, and make yourself a carved image in the form of any figure, the likeness of male or female, 17 the likeness of any animal that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged bird that flies in the sky, 18 the likeness of anything that creeps on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the water under the earth; 19 and lest you lift up your eyes to the sky, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, even all the army of the sky, you are drawn away and worship them, and serve them, which Yahweh your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole sky. 20 But Yahweh has taken you, and brought you out of the iron furnace, out of Egypt, to be to him a people of inheritance, as it is today. 21 Furthermore Yahweh was angry with me for your sakes, and swore that I should not go over the Jordan, and that I should not go in to that good land which Yahweh your God gives you for an inheritance; 22 but I must die in this land. I must not go over the Jordan, but you shall go over and possess that good land. 23 Be careful, lest you forget the covenant of Yahweh your God, which he made with you, and make yourselves a carved image in the form of anything which Yahweh your God has forbidden you. 24 For Yahweh your God is a devouring fire, a jealous God. 25 When you father children and children’s children, and you have been long in the land, and then corrupt yourselves, and make a carved image in the form of anything, and do that which is evil in Yahweh your God’s sight to provoke him to anger, 26 I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that you will soon utterly perish from off the land which you go over the Jordan to possess it. You will not prolong your days on it, but will utterly be destroyed. 27 Yahweh will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where Yahweh will lead you away. 28 There you will serve gods, the work of men’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell. 29 But from there you shall seek Yahweh your God, and you will find him when you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul. 30 When you are in oppression, and all these things have come on you, in the latter days you shall return to Yahweh your God and listen to his voice. 31 For Yahweh your God is a merciful God. He will not fail you nor destroy you, nor forget the covenant of your fathers which he swore to them. 32 For ask now of the days that are past, which were before you, since the day that God created man on the earth, and from the one end of the sky to the other, whether there has been anything as great as this thing is, or has been heard like it? 33 Did a people ever hear the voice of God speaking out of the middle of the fire, as you have heard, and live? 34 Or has God tried to go and take a nation for himself from among another nation, by trials, by signs, by wonders, by war, by a mighty hand, by an outstretched arm, and by great terrors, according to all that Yahweh your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? 35 It was shown to you so that you might know that Yahweh is God. There is no one else besides him. 36 Out of heaven he made you to hear his voice, that he might instruct you. On earth he made you to see his great fire; and you heard his words out of the middle of the fire. 37 Because he loved your fathers, therefore he chose their offspring after them, and brought you out with his presence, with his great power, out of Egypt; 38 to drive out nations from before you greater and mightier than you, to bring you in, to give you their land for an inheritance, as it is today. 39 Know therefore today, and take it to heart, that Yahweh himself is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath. There is no one else. 40 You shall keep his statutes and his commandments which I command you today, that it may go well with you and with your children after you, and that you may prolong your days in the land which Yahweh your God gives you for all time.

41 Then Moses set apart three cities beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise, 42 that the man slayer might flee there, who kills his neighbor unintentionally and didn’t hate him in time past, and that fleeing to one of these cities he might live: 43 Bezer in the wilderness, in the plain country, for the Reubenites; and Ramoth in Gilead for the Gadites; and Golan in Bashan for the Manassites.

44 This is the law which Moses set before the children of Israel. 45 These are the testimonies, and the statutes, and the ordinances which Moses spoke to the children of Israel when they came out of Egypt, 46 beyond the Jordan, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, in the land of Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived at Heshbon, whom Moses and the children of Israel struck when they came out of Egypt. 47 They took possession of his land and the land of Og king of Bashan, the two kings of the Amorites, who were beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise; 48 from Aroer, which is on the edge of the valley of the Arnon, even to Mount Sion (also called Hermon), 49 and all the Arabah beyond the Jordan eastward, even to the sea of the Arabah, under the slopes of Pisgah.

Obedience Commanded

Now, Israel, hear the decrees(A) and laws I am about to teach(B) you. Follow them so that you may live(C) and may go in and take possession of the land the Lord, the God of your ancestors, is giving you. Do not add(D) to what I command you and do not subtract(E) from it, but keep(F) the commands(G) of the Lord your God that I give you.

You saw with your own eyes what the Lord did at Baal Peor.(H) The Lord your God destroyed from among you everyone who followed the Baal of Peor, but all of you who held fast to the Lord your God are still alive today.

See, I have taught(I) you decrees and laws(J) as the Lord my God commanded(K) me, so that you may follow them in the land you are entering(L) to take possession of it. Observe(M) them carefully, for this will show your wisdom(N) and understanding to the nations, who will hear about all these decrees and say, “Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.”(O) What other nation is so great(P) as to have their gods near(Q) them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to him? And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws(R) as this body of laws I am setting before you today?

Only be careful,(S) and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. Teach(T) them to your children(U) and to their children after them. 10 Remember the day you stood before the Lord your God at Horeb,(V) when he said to me, “Assemble the people before me to hear my words so that they may learn(W) to revere(X) me as long as they live in the land(Y) and may teach(Z) them to their children.” 11 You came near and stood at the foot of the mountain(AA) while it blazed with fire(AB) to the very heavens, with black clouds and deep darkness.(AC) 12 Then the Lord spoke(AD) to you out of the fire. You heard the sound of words but saw no form;(AE) there was only a voice.(AF) 13 He declared to you his covenant,(AG) the Ten Commandments,(AH) which he commanded you to follow and then wrote them on two stone tablets. 14 And the Lord directed me at that time to teach you the decrees and laws(AI) you are to follow in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess.

Idolatry Forbidden

15 You saw no form(AJ) of any kind the day the Lord spoke to you at Horeb(AK) out of the fire. Therefore watch yourselves very carefully,(AL) 16 so that you do not become corrupt(AM) and make for yourselves an idol,(AN) an image of any shape, whether formed like a man or a woman, 17 or like any animal on earth or any bird that flies in the air,(AO) 18 or like any creature that moves along the ground or any fish in the waters below. 19 And when you look up to the sky and see the sun,(AP) the moon and the stars(AQ)—all the heavenly array(AR)—do not be enticed(AS) into bowing down to them and worshiping(AT) things the Lord your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven. 20 But as for you, the Lord took you and brought you out of the iron-smelting furnace,(AU) out of Egypt,(AV) to be the people of his inheritance,(AW) as you now are.

21 The Lord was angry with me(AX) because of you, and he solemnly swore that I would not cross the Jordan and enter the good land the Lord your God is giving you as your inheritance. 22 I will die in this land;(AY) I will not cross the Jordan; but you are about to cross over and take possession of that good land.(AZ) 23 Be careful not to forget the covenant(BA) of the Lord your God that he made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol(BB) in the form of anything the Lord your God has forbidden. 24 For the Lord your God is a consuming fire,(BC) a jealous God.(BD)

25 After you have had children and grandchildren and have lived in the land a long time—if you then become corrupt(BE) and make any kind of idol,(BF) doing evil(BG) in the eyes of the Lord your God and arousing his anger, 26 I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses(BH) against you(BI) this day that you will quickly perish(BJ) from the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess. You will not live there long but will certainly be destroyed. 27 The Lord will scatter(BK) you among the peoples, and only a few of you will survive(BL) among the nations to which the Lord will drive you. 28 There you will worship man-made gods(BM) of wood and stone,(BN) which cannot see or hear or eat or smell.(BO) 29 But if from there you seek(BP) the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart(BQ) and with all your soul.(BR) 30 When you are in distress(BS) and all these things have happened to you, then in later days(BT) you will return(BU) to the Lord your God and obey him. 31 For the Lord your God is a merciful(BV) God; he will not abandon(BW) or destroy(BX) you or forget(BY) the covenant with your ancestors, which he confirmed to them by oath.

The Lord Is God

32 Ask(BZ) now about the former days, long before your time, from the day God created human beings on the earth;(CA) ask from one end of the heavens to the other.(CB) Has anything so great(CC) as this ever happened, or has anything like it ever been heard of? 33 Has any other people heard the voice of God[a] speaking out of fire, as you have, and lived?(CD) 34 Has any god ever tried to take for himself one nation out of another nation,(CE) by testings,(CF) by signs(CG) and wonders,(CH) by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm,(CI) or by great and awesome deeds,(CJ) like all the things the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes?

35 You were shown these things so that you might know that the Lord is God; besides him there is no other.(CK) 36 From heaven he made you hear his voice(CL) to discipline(CM) you. On earth he showed you his great fire, and you heard his words from out of the fire. 37 Because he loved(CN) your ancestors and chose their descendants after them, he brought you out of Egypt by his Presence and his great strength,(CO) 38 to drive out before you nations greater and stronger than you and to bring you into their land to give it to you for your inheritance,(CP) as it is today.

39 Acknowledge(CQ) and take to heart this day that the Lord is God in heaven above and on the earth below. There is no other.(CR) 40 Keep(CS) his decrees and commands,(CT) which I am giving you today, so that it may go well(CU) with you and your children after you and that you may live long(CV) in the land the Lord your God gives you for all time.

Cities of Refuge(CW)

41 Then Moses set aside three cities east of the Jordan, 42 to which anyone who had killed a person could flee if they had unintentionally(CX) killed a neighbor without malice aforethought. They could flee into one of these cities and save their life. 43 The cities were these: Bezer in the wilderness plateau, for the Reubenites; Ramoth(CY) in Gilead, for the Gadites; and Golan in Bashan, for the Manassites.

Introduction to the Law

44 This is the law Moses set before the Israelites. 45 These are the stipulations, decrees and laws Moses gave them when they came out of Egypt 46 and were in the valley near Beth Peor east of the Jordan, in the land of Sihon(CZ) king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon and was defeated by Moses and the Israelites as they came out of Egypt. 47 They took possession of his land and the land of Og king of Bashan, the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan. 48 This land extended from Aroer(DA) on the rim of the Arnon Gorge to Mount Sirion[b](DB) (that is, Hermon(DC)), 49 and included all the Arabah east of the Jordan, as far as the Dead Sea,[c] below the slopes of Pisgah.

Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 4:33 Or of a god
  2. Deuteronomy 4:48 Syriac (see also 3:9); Hebrew Siyon
  3. Deuteronomy 4:49 Hebrew the Sea of the Arabah

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