Growing with God’s Word in Thankfulness and Praise
Deuteronomy 31:30—32:27: Moses’ song is presented in the form of a lawsuit. Earth and sky are summoned as witnesses (verse 1). God charges Israel with being unfaithful to their agreement (verses 32:5, 6). Despite God’s past blessings (32:7-14), Israel rebelled (32:15-18), and God was forced to punish them (32:19-27).
[Moses said]: “Your God is faithful and true; he does what is right and fair.
30Then Moses recited the entire song while all the people of Israel listened.
1“Earth and sky, hear my words,
listen closely to what I say.
2My teaching will fall like drops of rain
and form on the earth like dew.
My words will fall like showers on young plants,
like gentle rain on tender grass.
3I will praise the name of the Lord,
and his people will tell of his greatness.
4“The Lord is your mighty defender,
perfect and just in all his ways;
Your God is faithful and true;
he does what is right and fair.
5But you are unfaithful, unworthy to be his people,
a sinful and deceitful nation.
6Is this the way you should treat the Lord,
you foolish, senseless people?
He is your father, your Creator,
he made you into a nation.
7“Think of the past, of the time long ago;
ask your parents to tell you what happened,
ask the old people to tell of the past.
8 The Most High assigned nations their lands;
he determined where peoples should live.
He assigned to each nation a heavenly being,
9but Jacob's descendants he chose for himself.
10“He found them wandering through the desert,
a desolate, wind-swept wilderness.
He protected them and cared for them,
as he would protect himself.
11Like an eagle teaching its young to fly,
catching them safely on its spreading wings,
the Lord kept Israel from falling.
12The Lord alone led his people
without the help of a foreign god.
13“He let them rule the highlands,
and they ate what grew in the fields.
They found wild honey among the rocks;
their olive trees flourished in stony ground.
14Their cows and goats gave plenty of milk;
they had the best sheep, goats, and cattle,
the finest wheat, and the choicest wine.
15“The Lord's people grew rich, but rebellious;
they were fat and stuffed with food.
They abandoned God their Creator
and rejected their mighty savior.
16Their idolatry made the Lord jealous;
the evil they did made him angry.
17 They sacrificed to gods that are not real,
new gods their ancestors had never known,
gods that Israel had never obeyed.
18They forgot their God, their mighty savior,
the one who had given them life.
19“When the Lord saw this, he was angry
and rejected his sons and daughters.
20‘I will no longer help them,’ he said;
‘then I will see what happens to them,
those stubborn, unfaithful people.
21 With their idols they have made me angry,
jealous with their so-called gods,
gods that are really not gods.
So I will use a so-called nation to make them angry;
I will make them jealous with a nation of fools.
22My anger will flame up like fire
and burn everything on earth.
It will reach to the world below
and consume the roots of the mountains.
23“‘I will bring on them endless disasters
and use all my arrows against them.
24They will die from hunger and fever;
they will die from terrible diseases.
I will send wild animals to attack them,
and poisonous snakes to bite them.
25War will bring death in the streets;
terrors will strike in the homes.
Young men and young women will die;
neither babies nor old people will be spared.
26I would have destroyed them completely,
so that no one would remember them.
27But I could not let their enemies boast
that they had defeated my people,
when it was I myself who had crushed them.’
In 32:7, Moses tells the people to “think of the past.” What does he proceed to tell them? How did God provide for the people? How did the people rebel? How will they be punished?
Lord God, you are faithful and true; teach me to do what is right and fair. You are my Creator; I will praise your holy name and tell of greatness and serve you always. Amen.
Deuteronomy 32:28-44: Moses concludes his song.