Not Because of Israel’s Righteousness

Hear, Israel: You are now about to cross the Jordan(A) to go in and dispossess nations greater and stronger than you,(B) with large cities(C) that have walls up to the sky.(D) The people are strong and tall—Anakites! You know about them and have heard it said: “Who can stand up against the Anakites?”(E) But be assured today that the Lord your God is the one who goes across ahead of you(F) like a devouring fire.(G) He will destroy them; he will subdue them before you. And you will drive them out and annihilate them quickly,(H) as the Lord has promised you.

After the Lord your God has driven them out before you, do not say to yourself,(I) “The Lord has brought me here to take possession of this land because of my righteousness.” No, it is on account of the wickedness(J) of these nations(K) that the Lord is going to drive them out before you. It is not because of your righteousness or your integrity(L) that you are going in to take possession of their land; but on account of the wickedness(M) of these nations,(N) the Lord your God will drive them out(O) before you, to accomplish what he swore(P) to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.(Q) Understand, then, that it is not because of your righteousness that the Lord your God is giving you this good land to possess, for you are a stiff-necked people.(R)

The Golden Calf

Remember this and never forget how you aroused the anger(S) of the Lord your God in the wilderness. From the day you left Egypt until you arrived here, you have been rebellious(T) against the Lord.(U) At Horeb you aroused the Lord’s wrath(V) so that he was angry enough to destroy you.(W) When I went up on the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant(X) that the Lord had made with you, I stayed on the mountain forty days(Y) and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water.(Z) 10 The Lord gave me two stone tablets inscribed by the finger of God.(AA) On them were all the commandments the Lord proclaimed to you on the mountain out of the fire, on the day of the assembly.(AB)

11 At the end of the forty days and forty nights,(AC) the Lord gave me the two stone tablets,(AD) the tablets of the covenant. 12 Then the Lord told me, “Go down from here at once, because your people whom you brought out of Egypt have become corrupt.(AE) They have turned away quickly(AF) from what I commanded them and have made an idol for themselves.”

13 And the Lord said to me, “I have seen this people(AG), and they are a stiff-necked people indeed! 14 Let me alone,(AH) so that I may destroy them and blot out(AI) their name from under heaven.(AJ) And I will make you into a nation stronger and more numerous than they.”

15 So I turned and went down from the mountain while it was ablaze with fire. And the two tablets of the covenant were in my hands.(AK) 16 When I looked, I saw that you had sinned against the Lord your God; you had made for yourselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf.(AL) You had turned aside quickly from the way that the Lord had commanded you. 17 So I took the two tablets and threw them out of my hands, breaking them to pieces before your eyes.

18 Then once again I fell(AM) prostrate before the Lord for forty days and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water,(AN) because of all the sin you had committed,(AO) doing what was evil in the Lord’s sight and so arousing his anger. 19 I feared the anger and wrath of the Lord, for he was angry enough with you to destroy you.(AP) But again the Lord listened to me.(AQ) 20 And the Lord was angry enough with Aaron to destroy him, but at that time I prayed for Aaron too. 21 Also I took that sinful thing of yours, the calf you had made, and burned it in the fire. Then I crushed it and ground it to powder as fine as dust(AR) and threw the dust into a stream that flowed down the mountain.(AS)

22 You also made the Lord angry(AT) at Taberah,(AU) at Massah(AV) and at Kibroth Hattaavah.(AW)

23 And when the Lord sent you out from Kadesh Barnea,(AX) he said, “Go up and take possession(AY) of the land I have given you.” But you rebelled(AZ) against the command of the Lord your God. You did not trust(BA) him or obey him. 24 You have been rebellious against the Lord ever since I have known you.(BB)

25 I lay prostrate before the Lord those forty days and forty nights(BC) because the Lord had said he would destroy you.(BD) 26 I prayed to the Lord and said, “Sovereign Lord, do not destroy your people,(BE) your own inheritance(BF) that you redeemed(BG) by your great power and brought out of Egypt with a mighty hand.(BH) 27 Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Overlook the stubbornness(BI) of this people, their wickedness and their sin. 28 Otherwise, the country(BJ) from which you brought us will say, ‘Because the Lord was not able to take them into the land he had promised them, and because he hated them,(BK) he brought them out to put them to death in the wilderness.’(BL) 29 But they are your people,(BM) your inheritance(BN) that you brought out by your great power and your outstretched arm.(BO)

Tablets Like the First Ones

10 At that time the Lord said to me, “Chisel out two stone tablets(BP) like the first ones and come up to me on the mountain. Also make a wooden ark.[a] I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Then you are to put them in the ark.”(BQ)

So I made the ark out of acacia wood(BR) and chiseled(BS) out two stone tablets like the first ones, and I went up on the mountain with the two tablets in my hands. The Lord wrote on these tablets what he had written before, the Ten Commandments(BT) he had proclaimed(BU) to you on the mountain, out of the fire, on the day of the assembly.(BV) And the Lord gave them to me. Then I came back down the mountain(BW) and put the tablets in the ark(BX) I had made,(BY) as the Lord commanded me, and they are there now.(BZ)

(The Israelites traveled from the wells of Bene Jaakan to Moserah.(CA) There Aaron died(CB) and was buried, and Eleazar(CC) his son succeeded him as priest.(CD) From there they traveled to Gudgodah and on to Jotbathah, a land with streams of water.(CE) At that time the Lord set apart the tribe of Levi(CF) to carry the ark of the covenant(CG) of the Lord, to stand before the Lord to minister(CH) and to pronounce blessings(CI) in his name, as they still do today.(CJ) That is why the Levites have no share or inheritance among their fellow Israelites; the Lord is their inheritance,(CK) as the Lord your God told them.)

10 Now I had stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights, as I did the first time, and the Lord listened to me at this time also. It was not his will to destroy you.(CL) 11 “Go,” the Lord said to me, “and lead the people on their way, so that they may enter and possess the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.”

Fear the Lord

12 And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God ask of you(CM) but to fear(CN) the Lord your God, to walk(CO) in obedience to him, to love him,(CP) to serve the Lord(CQ) your God with all your heart(CR) and with all your soul,(CS) 13 and to observe the Lord’s commands(CT) and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good?(CU)

14 To the Lord your God belong the heavens,(CV) even the highest heavens,(CW) the earth and everything in it.(CX) 15 Yet the Lord set his affection on your ancestors and loved(CY) them, and he chose you,(CZ) their descendants, above all the nations—as it is today.(DA) 16 Circumcise(DB) your hearts,(DC) therefore, and do not be stiff-necked(DD) any longer. 17 For the Lord your God is God of gods(DE) and Lord of lords,(DF) the great God, mighty and awesome,(DG) who shows no partiality(DH) and accepts no bribes.(DI) 18 He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow,(DJ) and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing.(DK) 19 And you are to love(DL) those who are foreigners,(DM) for you yourselves were foreigners in Egypt.(DN) 20 Fear the Lord your God and serve him.(DO) Hold fast(DP) to him and take your oaths in his name.(DQ) 21 He is the one you praise;(DR) he is your God, who performed for you those great(DS) and awesome wonders(DT) you saw with your own eyes. 22 Your ancestors who went down into Egypt were seventy in all,(DU) and now the Lord your God has made you as numerous as the stars in the sky.(DV)

Love and Obey the Lord

11 Love(DW) the Lord your God and keep his requirements, his decrees, his laws and his commands always.(DX) Remember today that your children(DY) were not the ones who saw and experienced the discipline of the Lord your God:(DZ) his majesty,(EA) his mighty hand, his outstretched arm;(EB) the signs he performed and the things he did in the heart of Egypt, both to Pharaoh king of Egypt and to his whole country;(EC) what he did to the Egyptian army, to its horses and chariots,(ED) how he overwhelmed them with the waters of the Red Sea[b](EE) as they were pursuing you, and how the Lord brought lasting ruin on them. It was not your children who saw what he did for you in the wilderness until you arrived at this place, and what he did(EF) to Dathan and Abiram, sons of Eliab the Reubenite, when the earth opened(EG) its mouth right in the middle of all Israel and swallowed them up with their households, their tents and every living thing that belonged to them. But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the Lord has done.(EH)

Observe therefore all the commands(EI) I am giving you today, so that you may have the strength to go in and take over the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess,(EJ) and so that you may live long(EK) in the land the Lord swore(EL) to your ancestors to give to them and their descendants, a land flowing with milk and honey.(EM) 10 The land you are entering to take over is not like the land of Egypt,(EN) from which you have come, where you planted your seed and irrigated it by foot as in a vegetable garden. 11 But the land you are crossing the Jordan to take possession of is a land of mountains and valleys(EO) that drinks rain from heaven.(EP) 12 It is a land the Lord your God cares for; the eyes(EQ) of the Lord your God are continually on it from the beginning of the year to its end.

13 So if you faithfully obey(ER) the commands I am giving you today—to love(ES) the Lord your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul(ET) 14 then I will send rain(EU) on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains,(EV) so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and olive oil. 15 I will provide grass(EW) in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied.(EX)

16 Be careful, or you will be enticed to turn away and worship other gods and bow down to them.(EY) 17 Then the Lord’s anger(EZ) will burn against you, and he will shut up(FA) the heavens so that it will not rain and the ground will yield no produce,(FB) and you will soon perish(FC) from the good land the Lord is giving you. 18 Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.(FD) 19 Teach them to your children,(FE) talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.(FF) 20 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates,(FG) 21 so that your days and the days of your children may be many(FH) in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors, as many as the days that the heavens are above the earth.(FI)

22 If you carefully observe(FJ) all these commands I am giving you to follow—to love(FK) the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him and to hold fast(FL) to him— 23 then the Lord will drive out(FM) all these nations(FN) before you, and you will dispossess nations larger and stronger than you.(FO) 24 Every place where you set your foot will be yours:(FP) Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the Euphrates River(FQ) to the Mediterranean Sea. 25 No one will be able to stand against you. The Lord your God, as he promised you, will put the terror(FR) and fear of you on the whole land, wherever you go.(FS)

26 See, I am setting before you today a blessing(FT) and a curse(FU) 27 the blessing(FV) if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today; 28 the curse if you disobey(FW) the commands of the Lord your God and turn from the way that I command you today by following other gods,(FX) which you have not known. 29 When the Lord your God has brought you into the land you are entering to possess, you are to proclaim on Mount Gerizim(FY) the blessings, and on Mount Ebal(FZ) the curses.(GA) 30 As you know, these mountains are across the Jordan, westward, toward the setting sun, near the great trees of Moreh,(GB) in the territory of those Canaanites living in the Arabah in the vicinity of Gilgal.(GC) 31 You are about to cross the Jordan to enter and take possession(GD) of the land the Lord your God is giving(GE) you. When you have taken it over and are living there, 32 be sure that you obey all the decrees and laws I am setting before you today.


  1. Deuteronomy 10:1 That is, a chest
  2. Deuteronomy 11:4 Or the Sea of Reeds

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