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14 But if you will not hearken to Me and will not do all these commandments,

15 And if you spurn and despise My statutes, and if your soul despises and rejects My ordinances, so that you will not do all My commandments, but break My covenant,

16 I will do this: I will appoint over you [sudden] terror (trembling, trouble), even consumption and fever that consume and waste the eyes and make the [physical] life pine away. You shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.

17 I [the Lord] will set My face against you and [a]you shall be defeated and slain before your enemies; they who hate you shall rule over you; you shall flee when no one pursues you.(A)

18 And if in spite of all this you still will not listen and be obedient to Me, then I will chastise and discipline you seven times more for your sins.

19 And I will break and humble your pride in your power, and I will make your heavens as iron [yielding no answer, no blessing, no rain] and your earth [as sterile] as brass.(B)

20 And your strength shall be spent in vain, for your land shall not yield its increase, neither shall the trees of the land yield their fruit.

21 If you walk contrary to Me and will not heed Me, I will bring seven times more plagues upon you, according to your sins.

22 I will loose the wild beasts of the field among you, which shall rob you of your children, destroy your livestock, and make you few so that your roads shall be deserted and desolate.(C)

23 If by these means you are not turned to Me but determine to walk contrary to Me,

24 I also will walk contrary to you, and I will smite you seven times for your sins.

25 And I will bring a sword upon you that shall execute the vengeance [for the breaking] of My covenant; and you shall be gathered together within your cities, and I will send the pestilence among you, and you shall be delivered into the hands of the enemy.(D)

26 When I break your staff of bread and cut off your supply of food, ten women shall bake your bread in one oven, and they shall ration your bread and deliver it again by weight; and you shall eat, and not be satisfied.(E)

27 And if in spite of all this you will not listen and give heed to Me but walk contrary to Me,

28 Then I will walk contrary to you in wrath, and I also will chastise you seven times for your sins.

29 You shall eat the flesh of your sons and of your daughters.(F)

30 And I will destroy your high places [devoted to idolatrous worship], and cut down your sun-images, and throw your dead bodies upon the [wrecked] bodies of your idols, and My soul shall abhor you [with deep and unutterable loathing].(G)

31 I will lay your cities waste, bring your sanctuaries to desolation, and I will not smell the fragrance of your sweet and soothing odors [of offerings made by fire].(H)

32 And I will bring the land into desolation, and your enemies who dwell in it shall be astonished at it.

33 I will scatter you among the nations and draw out [your enemies’] sword after you; and your land shall be desolate and your cities a waste.(I)

34 Then shall the land [of Israel have the opportunity to] enjoy its sabbaths as long as it lies desolate and you are in your enemies’ land; then shall the land rest, to enjoy and receive payments for its sabbaths [divinely ordained for it].

35 As long as it lies desolate and waste, it shall have rest, the rest it did not have in your sabbaths when you dwelt upon it.(J)

36 As for those who are left of you, I will send dejection (lack of courage, a faintness) into their hearts in the lands of their enemies; the sound of a driven leaf shall put them to hasty and tumultuous flight, and they shall flee as if from the sword, and fall when no one pursues them.

37 They shall stumble over one another as if to escape a sword when no one pursues them; and you shall have no power to stand before your enemies.

38 You shall perish among the nations; the land of your enemies shall eat you up.

39 And those of you who are left shall pine away in their iniquity in your enemies’ lands; also in the iniquities of their fathers shall they pine away like them.

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Footnotes

  1. Leviticus 26:17 This chapter abounds in prophecies of what God would do for, or against, His people if they did, or did not, meet His conditions. Each of these prophecies was literally fulfilled in the following centuries. The Scripture references indicate where these fulfillments are recorded; there are at least a dozen of them. Yet some people do not seem to have awakened to the fact that God keeps His word, whether for us or against us. It all depends on us.

15 But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord your God, being watchful to do all His commandments and His statutes which I command you this day, then all these curses shall come upon you and overtake you:

16 Cursed shall you be in the city and cursed shall you be in the field.

17 Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading trough.

18 Cursed shall be the fruit of your body, of your land, of the increase of your cattle and the young of your sheep.

19 Cursed shall you be when you come in and cursed shall you be when you go out.

20 The Lord shall send you curses, confusion, and rebuke in every enterprise to which you set your hand, until you are destroyed, perishing quickly because of the evil of your doings by which you have forsaken me [Moses and God as one].

21 The Lord will make the pestilence cling to you until He has consumed you from the land into which you go to possess.

22 The Lord will smite you with consumption, with fever and inflammation, fiery heat, sword and drought, blasting and mildew; they shall pursue you until you perish.

23 The heavens over your head shall be brass and the earth under you shall be iron.

24 The Lord shall make the rain of your land powdered soil and dust; from the heavens it shall come down upon you until you are destroyed.

25 The Lord shall cause you to be struck down before your enemies; you shall go out one way against them and flee seven ways before them, and you shall be tossed to and fro and be a terror among all the kingdoms of the earth. [Fulfilled in II Chron. 29:8.]

26 And your dead body shall be food for all the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and there shall be no one to frighten them away.

27 The Lord will smite you with the boils of Egypt and the tumors, the scurvy and the itch, from which you cannot be healed.

28 The Lord will smite you with madness and blindness and dismay of [mind and] heart.

29 And you shall grope at noonday as the blind grope in darkness. And you shall not prosper in your ways; and you shall be only oppressed and robbed continually, and there shall be no one to save you.

30 You shall betroth a wife, but another man shall lie with her; you shall build a house, but not live in it; you shall plant a vineyard, but not gather its grapes.

31 Your ox shall be slain before your eyes, but you shall not eat of it; your donkey shall be violently taken away before your face and not be restored to you; your sheep shall be given to your enemies, and you shall have no one to help you.

32 Your sons and daughters shall be given to another people, and your eyes shall look and fail with longing for them all the day; and there shall be no power in your hands to prevent it. [Fulfilled in II Chron. 29:9.]

33 A nation which you have not known shall eat up the fruit of your land and of all your labors, and you shall be only oppressed and crushed continually, [Fulfilled in Judg. 6:1-6; 13:1.]

34 So that you shall be driven mad by the sights which your eyes shall see.

35 The Lord will smite you on the knees and on the legs with a sore boil that cannot be healed, from the sole of your foot to the top of your head.

36 The Lord shall bring you and your king whom you have set over you to a nation which neither you nor your fathers have known, and there you shall [be forced to] serve other gods, of wood and stone. [Fulfilled in II Kings 17:4, 6; 24:12, 14; 25:7, 11; Dan. 6:11, 12.]

37 And you shall become an amazement, a proverb, and a byword among all the peoples to which the Lord will lead you.

38 You shall carry much seed out into the field and shall gather little in, for the locust shall consume it. [Fulfilled in Hag. 1:6.]

39 You shall plant vineyards and dress them but shall neither drink of the wine nor gather the grapes, for the worm shall eat them.

40 You shall have olive trees throughout all your territory but you shall not anoint yourselves with the oil, for your olive trees shall drop their fruit.

41 You shall beget sons and daughters but shall not enjoy them, for they shall go into captivity. [Fulfilled in Lam. 1:5.]

42 All your trees and the fruit of your ground shall the locust possess. [Fulfilled in Joel 1:4.]

43 The transient (stranger) among you shall mount up higher and higher above you, and you shall come down lower and lower.

44 He shall lend to you, but you shall not lend to him; he shall be the head, and you shall be the tail.

45 All these curses shall come upon you and shall pursue you and overtake you till you are destroyed, because you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to keep His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you.

46 They shall be upon you for a sign [of warning to other nations] and for a wonder, and upon your descendants forever.

47 Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joyfulness of [mind and] heart [in gratitude] for the abundance of all [with which He had blessed you],

48 Therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the Lord shall send against you, in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and in want of all things; and He will put a yoke of iron upon your neck until He has destroyed you.

49 The Lord will bring a nation against you from afar, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flies, a nation whose language you shall not understand,

50 A nation of unyielding countenance who will not regard the person of the old or show favor to the young,

51 And shall eat the fruit of your cattle and the fruit of your ground until you are destroyed, who also shall not leave you grain, new wine, oil, the increase of your cattle or the young of your sheep until they have caused you to perish.

52 They shall besiege you in all your towns until your high and fortified walls in which you trusted come down throughout all your land; and they shall besiege you in all your towns throughout all your land which the Lord your God has given you.

53 And you shall eat the fruit of your own body, the flesh of your sons and daughters whom the Lord your God has given you, in the siege and in the [pressing] misery with which your enemies shall distress you. [Fulfilled in II Kings 6:24-29.]

54 The man who is most tender among you and extremely particular and well-bred, his eye shall be cruel and grudging of food toward his brother and toward the wife of his bosom and toward those of his children still remaining,

55 So that he will not give to any of them any of the flesh of his children which he is eating, because he has nothing left to him in the siege and in the distress with which your enemies shall distress you in all your towns.

56 The most tender and daintily bred woman among you, who would not venture to set the sole of her foot upon the ground because she is so dainty and kind, will grudge to the husband of her bosom, to her son and to her daughter

57 Her afterbirth that comes out from her body and the children whom she shall bear. For she will eat them secretly for want of anything else in the siege and distress with which your enemies shall distress you in your towns.

58 If you will not be watchful to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that you may [reverently] fear this glorious and fearful name [and presence]—the lord your god—

59 Then the Lord will bring upon you and your descendants extraordinary strokes and blows, great plagues of long continuance, and grievous sicknesses of long duration.

60 Moreover, He will bring upon you all the diseases of Egypt of which you were afraid, and they shall cling to you.

61 Also every sickness and every affliction which is not written in this Book of the Law the Lord will bring upon you until you are destroyed.

62 And you shall be [a]left few in number, whereas you had been as the stars of the heavens for multitude, because you would not obey the voice of the Lord your God.

63 And as the Lord rejoiced over you to do you good and to multiply you, so the Lord will rejoice to bring ruin upon you and to destroy you; and you shall be [b]plucked from the land into which you go to possess.

64 And the Lord shall scatter you among all peoples from one end of the earth to the other; and there you shall [be forced to] serve other gods, of wood and stone, which neither you nor your fathers have known. [Fulfilled in Dan. 3:6.]

65 And among these nations you shall find no ease and there shall be no rest for the sole of your foot; but the Lord will give you there a trembling heart, failing of eyes [from disappointment of hope], fainting of mind, and languishing of spirit.

66 Your life shall hang in doubt before you; day and night you shall be worried, and have no assurance of your life.

67 In the morning you shall say, Would that it were evening! and at evening you shall say, Would that it were morning!—because of the anxiety and dread of your [minds and] hearts and the sights which you shall see with your [own] eyes.

68 And the Lord shall [c]bring you into Egypt again with ships by the way about which I said to you, You shall never see it again. And there you shall be sold to your enemies as bondmen and bondwomen, but no man shall buy you.(A)

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Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 28:62 The informed reader scarcely needs to be reminded of how literally fulfilled have been many of these predictions of evil made against the chosen people because of their idolatry and rebellion against God. Such verses as Deut. 28:25, 32, 33, 36, 38, 41, 42, and 53 foretell historical facts now recorded in Jewish history, both sacred and secular. Here Deut. 28:62 foretells how the Jewish race has been “thinned and kept down,” again and again.
  2. Deuteronomy 28:63 The Roman emperor Hadrian issued a proclamation forbidding any Jews to reside in Judea, or even to approach its confines (James C. Gray and George M. Adams, Bible Commentary).
  3. Deuteronomy 28:68 “Observe the contrast: you came out from bondage by God’s high hand, monuments of His grace and power; you shall be carried back into bondage in men’s slave ships. This was literally fulfilled under [the Roman emperor] Titus, and also under Hadrian” (James C. Gray and George M. Adams, Bible Commentary). The curses... were also fulfilled in a terrible manner during the Middle Ages, and are still in a course of fulfillment, though frequently less sensibly felt (J.P. Lange, A Commentary). “Here, then, are prophecies delivered above 3,000 years ago and yet being fulfilled in the world at this very time... I must acknowledge that they not only convince but amaze and astonish me beyond expression; they are truly as Moses foretold (Deut. 28:45, 46) they would be, ‘a sign and a wonder forever’” (Bishop Thomas Newton, cited by Robert Jamieson, A.R. Fausset and David Brown, A Commentary).

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