Deuteronomy 30-31 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
The Israelites Will Return to Their Land
30 “Everything that I have mentioned will happen to you—both the blessings and the curses. And you will remember these words when the Lord your God sends you away to other nations. 2 Then you and your descendants will turn back to the Lord your God. You will follow him with all your heart and completely obey all his commands that I have given you today. 3 Then the Lord your God will be kind to you. The Lord your God will make you free again! He will bring you back from the nations where he sent you. 4 Even if you were sent to the farthest parts of the earth, the Lord your God will gather you from there and bring you back. 5 The Lord your God will bring you into the land your ancestors had, and the land will become yours. He will do good to you, and you will have more than your ancestors had. You will have more people in your nation than they ever had. 6 The Lord your God will make you and your descendants want to obey him.[a] Then you will love the Lord your God with all your heart. And you will live!
7 “Then the Lord your God will make all these bad things happen to your enemies, who hate you and cause you trouble. 8 And you will again obey the Lord. You will obey all his commands that I give you today. 9 The Lord your God will make you successful in everything you do. He will bless you with many children. He will bless your cows—they will have many calves. He will bless your fields—they will grow many good crops. He will be good to you. The Lord will again enjoy doing good for you, the same as he enjoyed doing good for your ancestors. 10 But you must do what the Lord your God tells you to do. You must obey his commands and follow the rules that are written in this Book of Teachings. You must obey the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. Then these good things will happen to you.
Life or Death
11 “This command that I give you today is not too hard for you. It is not a secret hidden in some far away land. 12 This command is not in heaven so that you should say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us and bring it to us, so that we can hear and do it?’ 13 This command is not on the other side of the sea so that you should say, ‘Who will go across the sea for us and bring it to us, so that we can hear it and do it?’ 14 No, the word is very near to you. It is in your mouth and in your heart. So you can obey it.
15 “Today I have given you a choice between life and death, success and disaster.[b] 16 I command you today to love the Lord your God. I command you to follow him and to obey his commands, laws, and rules. Then you will live, and your nation will grow larger. And the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to take for your own. 17 But if you turn away from your God and refuse to listen, if you are led away to worship and serve other gods, 18 you will be destroyed. I am warning you today, if you turn away from God, you will not live long in that land across the Jordan River that you are ready to enter and take for your own.
19 “Today I am giving you a choice of two ways. And I ask heaven and earth to be witnesses of your choice. You can choose life or death. The first choice will bring a blessing. The other choice will bring a curse. So choose life! Then you and your children will live. 20 You must love the Lord your God and obey him. Never leave him, because he is your life. And he will give you a long life in the land that he, the Lord, promised to give to your ancestors—Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”
Joshua Will Be the New Leader
31 Then Moses went and spoke these words to all the Israelites. 2 Moses said to them, “I am now 120 years old. I cannot lead you anymore. The Lord said to me, ‘You will not go across the Jordan River.’ 3 But the Lord your God will lead you people into that land. He will destroy these nations for you. You will take their land away from them. The Lord said that Joshua must lead you.
4 “The Lord destroyed Sihon and Og. He destroyed those Amorite kings and he will do the same thing for you again! 5 The Lord will help you defeat these nations. But you must do to them everything I told you to do. 6 Be strong and be brave. Don’t be afraid of those people because the Lord your God is with you. He will not fail you or leave you.”
7 Then Moses called Joshua. All the Israelites watched while Moses said to Joshua, “Be strong and brave. You will lead these people into the land that the Lord promised to give to their ancestors. You will help the Israelites take that land and divide it among them. 8 The Lord will lead you. He himself is with you. He will not fail you or leave you. Don’t worry. Don’t be afraid!”
Moses Writes the Book of Teachings
9 Then Moses wrote this Book of Teachings and gave it to the priests, who are from the tribe of Levi. They have the work of carrying the Lord’s Box of the Agreement. Moses also gave it to all the elders of Israel. 10 Then Moses spoke to the leaders. He said, “At the end of every seven years, in the Year of Freedom,[c] read these teachings at the Festival of Shelters. 11 At that time all the Israelites must come to meet with the Lord your God at the special place he will choose. Then you must read the teachings to the people so that they can hear them. 12 Bring together all the people—the men, the women, the little children, and the foreigners living in your cities. They will hear the teachings, and they will learn to respect the Lord your God. Then they will be able to do everything in this Book of Teachings. 13 If their descendants don’t know the teachings, they will hear them, and they will learn to respect the Lord your God. They will respect him as long as you live in your country. You will soon go across the Jordan River and take that land to be your own.”
The Lord Calls Moses and Joshua
14 The Lord said to Moses, “Now the time is near for you to die. Get Joshua and come to the Meeting Tent. I will tell Joshua what he must do.” So Moses and Joshua went to the Meeting Tent.
15 The Lord appeared at the Tent in a tall cloud. The tall cloud stood over the entrance of the Tent. 16 The Lord said to Moses, “You will die soon. And after you have gone to be with your ancestors, these people will not continue to be faithful to me. They will break the agreement I made with them. They will leave me and begin worshiping other gods—the false gods of the land where they are going. 17 At that time I will become very angry with them, and I will leave them. I will refuse to help them, and they will be destroyed. Terrible things will happen to them, and they will have many troubles. Then they will say, ‘These bad things happened to us because our God is not with us.’ 18 And I will refuse to help them, because they have done evil and worshiped other gods.
19 “So write down this song, and teach it to the Israelites. Teach them to sing this song. Then this song will be a witness for me against the Israelites. 20 I will take them into the land that I promised to give to their ancestors—a land filled with many good things.[d] And they will have all they want to eat. They will have a rich life. But then they will turn to other gods and serve them. They will turn away from me and break my agreement. 21 Then many terrible things will happen to them. They will have many troubles. At that time their descendants will still know this song, and it will show them how wrong they are. I have not yet taken them into the land I promised to give them. But I already know what they are planning to do there.”
22 So that same day Moses wrote down the song and taught it to the Israelites.
23 Then the Lord spoke to Joshua son of Nun and said, “Be strong and brave. You will lead the Israelites into the land I promised them, and I will be with you.”
Moses Warns the Israelites
24 Moses carefully wrote all these teachings in a book. When he finished, 25 he gave a command to the Levites. (These men carry the Lord’s Box of the Agreement.) Moses said, 26 “Take this Book of Teachings and put it by the side of the Box of the Agreement of the Lord your God. Then it will be a witness against you. 27 I know you are very stubborn. I know you want to live your own way. Look, you refused to obey the Lord while I was with you. So I know you will refuse to obey him after I die. 28 Bring together all the officers and leaders of your tribes. I will tell them these things. And I will call heaven and earth to be witnesses against them. 29 I know that after my death you will become evil. You will turn from the way I commanded you to follow. Terrible things will happen to you in the future, because you want to do what the Lord says is wrong. You will make him angry because of the evil things you do.”
The Song of Moses
30 All the Israelites were gathered together, and Moses sang this whole song for them: