Sermon #5                                         Through The Bible Series


     Title:                     Deuteronomy

                        Moses Brings Israel to Joshua

     Text:            Deuteronomy 33:26-34:10

     Subject:       Christ the End of the Law

     Date:            Tuesday Evening—February 18, 2003

     Tape #         X-46b

     Readings:     Bob Poncer and Rex Bartley



(Deuteronomy 1:1)  "These be the words which Moses spake unto all Israel on this side Jordan in the wilderness, in the plain over against the Red sea, between Paran, and Tophel, and Laban, and Hazeroth, and Dizahab."


We come now to the Book of Deuteronomy, the last of The Five Books of Moses. The name, “Deuteronomy,” means “second law.” This Book is called “Deuteronomy” because in this Book Moses gives Israel God’s law a second time.


Proposition: This is the thing I want you to see. Once Moses brought Israel to Joshua, once he put Israel into Joshua’s hands, he died, and Joshua brought Israel into possession of their divinely ordained inheritance in the land of Canaan. — Even so, the law is our schoolmaster unto Christ. Once the law has served that purpose, once we have come to Christ by faith, we are dead to the law and the law is dead to us, because “Christ is the end of the law.


Let’s begin by reading Deuteronomy 33:26-34:10


(Deuteronomy 33:26-29)  "There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. (27) The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them. (28) Israel then shall dwell in safety alone: the fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of corn and wine; also his heavens shall drop down dew. (29) Happy art thou, O Israel: who is like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help, and who is the sword of thy excellency! and thine enemies shall be found liars unto thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places."


(Deuteronomy 34:1-10)  "And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho. And the LORD showed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan, (2) And all Naphtali, and the land of Ephraim, and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah, unto the utmost sea, (3) And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, unto Zoar. (4) And the LORD said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither. (5) So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD. (6) And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Bethpeor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day. (7) And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated. (8) And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days: so the days of weeping and mourning for Moses were ended. (9) And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom; for Moses had laid his hands upon him: and the children of Israel hearkened unto him, and did as the LORD commanded Moses. (10) And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face."


Many who like to cast doubt upon the Word of God question, and others openly deny, that Moses wrote these first Books of the Bible. I will not honor their blasphemy with comment. There is no question that this book was written by Moses. Not only did Moses claim that he wrote it (De 1:1; 31:4, 9, 24), the Lord Jesus tells us plainly that Moses was the man used by God the Holy Spirit to write these thirty-four chapters of Inspiration (Matt. 19:7-9; John 5:45-47). The eight last verses, those describing Moses’ death and his remarkable character, were obviously written by someone else. We are not told who wrote them (perhaps Joshua or Samuel); but whoever it was, he, too, wrote by divine inspiration.


This is Moses’ last word to the people of Israel. This faithful prophet of God here delivers the last word from God he would ever speak on the earth. Unlike most, this prophet knew this was his last message. We should not be surprised, therefore, to see in the Book of Deuteronomy, a much more personal and intimate, even more passionate language than we have seen his earlier writings.


This Book was written during the very last month of Israel’s fortieth year in the wilderness (De. 1:1-5). It begins with a word about Moses and ends with the description of his death that we have read. Moses is very prominent throughout the Book. We find his name mentioned repeatedly in these chapters. But Moses is not the subject of the Book. The subject is Christ. Moses is only the messenger.


Let me remind you, again, that what we have before us in these first five Books of the Bible are divinely inspired visual aids that illustrate the experiences of our own lives. As God led Israel out of Egypt through the wilderness into the land of Canaan, they endured the same problems, met the same obstacles, faced the same enemies, and had the same trials, temptations and failures you and I encounter in our pilgrimage through this world.


The Key


The key to this book is in its name. As we have seen “Deuteronomy” means "the second law." The law was first given at Mt. Sinai in ten commandments (Ex. 20). Why was it needful for the Holy Spirit to give the law twice? What necessity was there for this second law, or second giving of the law?


The apostle Paul tells us plainly, in the Book of Romans and the Book of Galatians, that the law of God has two functions, two very clearly defined and distinct purposes.


Most people think God gave the law to keep us from doing wrong and to make us do right. If you ask the man on the street what was the purpose of the ten commandments, or ask most any religious legalist why God gave the law, he would probably say, "It is to keep us from doing wrong," or “The law was given to teach us how to live.” But that is not the reason God gave the law. He never intended, or even dreamed for a moment that the law would keep anybody from doing wrong. “Wherefore then serveth the law?


1.     The law was given to identify sin and condemn it in us personally (Rom. 3:197:6-9). Paul said, “I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.


(Romans 3:19)  "Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God."


The law was given to convince us of our own sinfulness and guilt. That is something of which we must be convinced by God. No one else can do it. We all have an amazing capacity for justifying ourselves and condemning one another. It is called “self-righteousness.” We never think that what we are doing is wrong. It is always what the other person does that is wrong. Is that not true? Let me illustrate.


We have a whole stack of words we use to describe the things we do, and another whole we use to describe what another person does. – Others have prejudices. We have convictions. – Other people are stingy. We’re very thrifty. – Others try to keep up with the Joneses. We’re just trying to get ahead. – He’s a brown-noser. I just try to be friendly. – She’s so flirtatious. I try to be nice to people. – That person is so unfriendly. I don’t want to intrude.


The law of God steps in and forces us to acknowledge our own guilt. Not only does the law force us to admit our own guilt…


2.     The law of God is graciously designed to force us into the arms of Christ.


Once we see what we are, guilty, helpless, depraved sinners, sinners who are utterly incapable of altering their condition, we are informed that the cross of Christ meets all our needs before the holy Lord God.


(Romans 3:19-26)  "Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. (20) Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. (21) But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; (22) Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: (23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (24) Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: (25) Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; (26) To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus."


That is what we see so clearly set forth in the Books of Exodus and Leviticus in the sacrifices of the lambs, the goats, the oxen, the calves and the other animals. They were pictures of the sin-atoning sacrifice of Christ in the shedding his precious blood for many for the remission of sins. There is no way a sinful man the holy Lord God can be brought together except by a justice satisfying payment being rendered to God for sin. And the only one who could make such a payment, the only one who could atone for our sins is the incarnate Son of God. Blessed be his name forever, he has done it!


(Galatians 3:13)  "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:"


(1 Peter 3:18)  "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:"



The law is our schoolmaster unto Christ (Gal. 3:19-25).


(Galatians 3:19-25)  "Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. (20) Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. (21) Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. (22) But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. (23) But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. (24) Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. (25) But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster."


Romans 7


In Romans 7 Paul takes up the matter of the law again. He assured us that we who are born of God are no longer under the law (Rom. 6:14-15). In chapter seven he tells us that the law is dead to us and we are now dead to the law, because we died with Christ. But there is more.


Though we are sinners, not only people who do sinful things, but by nature sinners at the very core of our inmost beings, Christ has forever freed us from all possibility of curse and condemnation, has made us perfectly righteous before God and his holy law, has made us free by his Spirit to walk with him in the newness of resurrection life by his Spirit, and assures us of our absolute security and everlasting salvation by his blood and grace (Rom. 8:1-4, 32-39; 5:10-11).


(Romans 8:1-4)  "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (2) For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (3) For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: (4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."


(Romans 8:32-39)  "He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? (33) Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. (34) Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. (35) Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? (36) As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. (37) Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. (38) For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, (39) Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."


(Romans 5:10-11)  "For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. (11) And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement."


Still, there is more. Since Christ has totally and absolutely met every demand of God’s holy law for us, as our Representative and Substitute, all that he is and has as our resurrected, exalted, glorified Savior is ours by the gift of God’s free grace, upon the grounds of perfect righteousness and strict justice. Here, while we live in this world, we are waiting for, living in anticipation of resurrection glory (Rom. 8:23).


(Romans 8:23)  "And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."


This is what the book of Deuteronomy is all about. As Moses delivered Israel into the hands of Joshua assuring them that Joshua would carry them into and make them possess all the fulness of Canaan (all that God promised by covenant to Abraham), the law of God delivers believing sinners into the hands of Christ assuring us of everlasting salvation by him. All the blessings of grace and glory that God promised us in his covenant with Christ shall be ours forever!


Two Themes


As we read the Book of Deuteronomy we find two themes running throughout this entire Book. They are not found in Leviticus or Exodus. The first is our utter weakness and inability. Though cleansed before God through the blood of Christ and the washing of regeneration by the Word, we have absolutely no ability to do anything in ourselves to please God. There is nothing we can do in ourselves. Our most sincere, dedicated efforts to please God avail nothing.


Right along with this is a second wonderful, parallel theme. The Lord our God is ever with us. God himself, in the person of his dear Son, is the answer to the demands of his law; and he dwells with us and in us unconditionally. We no longer live in the flesh, but in the Spirit. God himself has taken up residence in us. All that he demands of us he, himself supplies.


Let's go back to the Book of Deuteronomy. I want you to see these things for yourself. As the Book opens, the children of Israel are again camped on the border of Canaan They had been here before. But they could not enter into the land of promise because of unbelief. Because of their unbelief, they spent forty years roaming about in the wilderness (Num. 14:32-35).


(Numbers 14:32-35)  "But as for you, your carcasses, they shall fall in this wilderness. (33) And your children shall wander in the wilderness forty years, and bear your whoredoms, until your carcasses be wasted in the wilderness. (34) After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty years, and ye shall know my breach of promise. (35) I the LORD have said, I will surely do it unto all this evil congregation, that are gathered together against me: in this wilderness they shall be consumed, and there they shall die."


A Call to Obedience (De. 1:5-4:43)


In Deuteronomy chapters 1-4 Moses issues a call to obedience. The grace of God is not conditioned upon our obedience to him. Yet, obedience is a matter of personal responsibility. We are to obey our God in all things. And grace experienced in the heart makes obedience the inmost desire of the believing heart. And God’s people are obedient to him. His commandments are no longer grievous to us, but joyful (1 John 5:1-3). We should not fail to see three things particularly about this call to obedience.


1.     This call to obedience is issued upon the basis of God’s goodness, grace, and love in the experience of salvation.


Even back here in the giving of the law, obedience among believing sinners was not a legal thing. It was never God saying, “Obey me or I’ll get you.” Rather, the Lord God says, “Obey me because I have loved you and have been so good to you.”


Before he says a word about what we are to do, Moses reminds the children of Israel of what the Lord God had done for them (1:5-3:29). He reminds them of God’s wonderful, tender, fatherly care and love watching over them, as he led them with a pillar of fire by night and the cloud by day, and guided them through the trackless, howling desert. He reminds them of how God brought water out of the rock to quench their thirst in a vast and waterless desert. He reminds them of how the Lord had delivered them from their enemies again and again, how he fed them with manna that did not fail, day by day for forty years. Imagine that! For forty years God fed more than two million people (perhaps much more than two million) every day with manna that fell from heaven. What marvelous evidence of his loving concern for this people. He bought them. He brought them out. And he cared for them, all because he loved them and chose them to be his own peculiar people!


In a word, Moses says the same thing Paul did later. – “The love of Christ constraineth us.” Like Israel of old, we are always motivated to the obedience of faith by gratitude to our God for his great mercy, love and grace revealed and experienced in…

·        Election.

·        Redemption.

·        Deliverance.

·        Providence.


2.     Obedience is neither more nor less than faith in and submission to the revealed will of God in Holy Scripture, worshipping him alone as our God and Lord (4:1-14).


(Deuteronomy 4:2)  "Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you."


3.     The obedience of faith involves a renunciation of all the imaginary gods of men (4:15-40).


In this passage, Moses calls for Israel, calls for us, to worship the Lord Jehovah, alone as God, because he has proved himself to us to be God alone, sovereign, solitary, and great in grace.


(Deuteronomy 4:20)  "But the LORD hath taken you, and brought you forth out of the iron furnace, even out of Egypt, to be unto him a people of inheritance, as ye are this day."


(Deuteronomy 4:27-31)  "And the LORD shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen, whither the LORD shall lead you. (28) And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men's hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell. (29) But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. (30) When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice; (31) (For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them."


(Deuteronomy 4:35-40)  "Unto thee it was showed, that thou mightest know that the LORD he is God; there is none else beside him. (36) Out of heaven he made thee to hear his voice, that he might instruct thee: and upon earth he showed thee his great fire; and thou heardest his words out of the midst of the fire. (37) And because he loved thy fathers, therefore he chose their seed after them, and brought thee out in his sight with his mighty power out of Egypt; (38) To drive out nations from before thee greater and mightier than thou art, to bring thee in, to give thee their land for an inheritance, as it is this day. (39) Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the LORD he is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: there is none else. (40) Thou shalt keep therefore his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days upon the earth, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, for ever."


Moses’ Exposition of The Law (De. 4:44-28:68)


Beginning in chapter 4 at verse 44 and going through chapter 28, Moses gives us the law of God again. But, in these chapters, he does not simply repeat what was given at Sinai, he expounds it. He tells us its meaning. Remember, this exposition was not like my preaching, the thoughts of a fallible man, but an exposition given by divine inspiration, an infallible exposition of the law.


Here Moses deals with divorce, remarriage, fornication, idolatry, witchcraft and the like. It is essential to understand that the land of Canaan into which these people were coming was inhabited by pagans, morally degenerate idolaters, just like the society in which we live today. They were utterly given over to lewd and obscene practices. The book of Deuteronomy shows us that God expects his people to live in the midst of a sex-crazed, sex-saturated society, among people who were idolaters, completely committed to the most vile practices, as his people, for his glory. How does he inspire us in this matter?


In Deuteronomy 6 he shows us our weakness and inability to do so.


(Deuteronomy 6:20-21)  "And when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What mean the testimonies, and the statutes, and the judgments, which the LORD our God hath commanded you? (21) Then thou shalt say unto thy son, We were Pharaoh's bondmen in Egypt; and the LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand."


That is where we began, and that is where we are, sinners entirely dependent upon the goodness and grace of God in Christ.


(Deuteronomy 6:22-23)  "And the LORD showed signs and wonders, great and sore, upon Egypt, upon Pharaoh, and upon all his household, before our eyes: (23) And he brought us out from thence, that he might bring us in, to give us the land which he sware unto our fathers."


He brought us out so that he might bring us into the land. These ceremonies are all symbols by which God constantly reminds us what it takes to get us out of Egypt and into the land. That was the explanation they were to make to their sons.


Then, Moses inspires our devotion and consecration to our God and Savior by assuring us that we belong to him exclusively, not by anything we have done but by his own work of matchless, free, and sovereign grace.


(Deuteronomy 7:6-8)  "For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. (7) The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: (8) But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt."


(1 Corinthians 6:9-11)  "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, (10) Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (11) And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."


(1 Corinthians 6:19-20)  "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? (20) For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."


Throughout this Book Moses constantly reminded Israel that everything God had done for them, was doing for them, and would do for them was by grace.


(Deuteronomy 7:6-8)  "For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. (7) The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: (8) But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt."


The same is true of us. Will we ever really learn this? “Salvation is of the Lord!


(Romans 8:28-30)  "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (29) For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (30) Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."


(Ephesians 1:3-6)  "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (4) According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (5) Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, (6) To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved."


(Philippians 1:29)  "For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;"


Look at chapter 9


(Deuteronomy 9:4-6)  "Speak not thou in thine heart, after that the LORD thy God hath cast them out from before thee, saying, For my righteousness the LORD hath brought me in to possess this land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD doth drive them out from before thee. (5) Not for thy righteousness, or for the uprightness of thine heart, dost thou go to possess their land: but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee, and that he may perform the word which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. (6) Understand therefore, that the LORD thy God giveth thee not this good land to possess it for thy righteousness; for thou art a stiffnecked people."


After forty years of experiencing grace and learning from God in the wilderness he says, "As long as you live in this body of flesh, you will never get to the place where you can stand on your own. Never.” Only as we know our weakness can we walk in his strength (2 Cor. 12:2-10).


Illustration: My Conversation with Paul R____ Last Night


(2 Corinthians 12:2-10)  "I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. (3) And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) (4) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. (5) Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities. (6) For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me. (7) And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. (8) For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. (9) And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (10) Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."


Agreement with God


At the end of this section (chapter 27 and 28) Moses commanded the children of Israel to observe a ceremony, not at an appointed time, but from time to time, in the land of Canaan. It is very instructive. The children of Israel were to gather upon two mountains, Ebal and Gerizim, six tribes on one and six on the other, with the Levites (the priests) standing in the valley between the two mountains, calling out blessings and cursings. When the Levites called out a blessing in the name of God, as his priests, the tribes on one mountain would shout in unison, “Amen!” When they called out a curse, the tribes on the other mountain would shout, “Amen!”


I looked to see if there was any significance to the names of these mountains, and found nothing of importance. So, I have to ask, “What is the meaning of this ceremony?” Let me show you. God requires that we be in agreement with him, in all his righteous judgments, and we shall.


1.     In Conversion—David (Ps. 51).

2.     In Providence—Eli (1 Sam. 3:18).

3.     In Eternity—(Phil. 2:8-11; Rev. 19:1-6).


(Revelation 19:1-6)  "And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: (2) For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. (3) And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever. (4) And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia. (5) And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. (6) And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth."


God’s Appointed Deliverer (29:1-31:29)


God has fixed things the way they are, leaving us in this world in this body of flesh, constantly struggling with the world, the flesh and the devil, just as he did the children of Israel, that we might be compelled constantly to look to Christ, trusting him alone as our Savior, and thereby stand forever as monuments to his matchless, free, amazing grace, “that no flesh should glory in his presence.


(Deuteronomy 29:10-15)  "Ye stand this day all of you before the LORD your God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, with all the men of Israel, (11) Your little ones, your wives, and thy stranger that is in thy camp, from the hewer of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water: (12) That thou shouldest enter into covenant with the LORD thy God, and into his oath, which the LORD thy God maketh with thee this day: (13) That he may establish thee to day for a people unto himself, and that he may be unto thee a God, as he hath said unto thee, and as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. (14) Neither with you only do I make this covenant and this oath; (15) But with him that standeth here with us this day before the LORD our God, and also with him that is not here with us this day:"


(Deuteronomy 29:18-19)  "Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the LORD our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; (19) And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst:"


I will leave it to others to explain this mystery more fully. For my part, I am content to know that this is God’s wise and good purpose.


(Deuteronomy 29:29)  "The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law."


·        In chapter 18, Moses spoke of Christ as that Prophet God’s people would hear and obey.

·        In chapter 30, he declares that God would circumcise the hearts of all his covenant people, speaking of course of the new birth (Phil. 3:3; Col. 2:12-15).


(Deuteronomy 30:5-7)  "And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers. (6) And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live. (7) And the LORD thy God will put all these curses upon thine enemies, and on them that hate thee, which persecuted thee."


·        In the last part of chapter 30, Moses calls the nation to faith in Christ, using the very language Paul used many, many years later, in Romans 10.


(Deuteronomy 30:11-20)  "For this commandment which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee, neither is it far off. (12) It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? (13) Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? (14) But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it. (15) See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil; (16) In that I command thee this day to love the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the LORD thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it. (17) But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them; (18) I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it. (19) I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: (20) That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them."


(Romans 10:5-13)  "For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. (6) But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) (7) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) (8) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; (9) That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. (10) For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (11) For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. (12) For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. (13) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."


·        Then, in chapter 31, Moses tells the people that he must die and turns them over to Joshua, God’s appointed deliverer, promising that the Lord God would, by Joshua, bring them into the land of promise and fulfill all his covenant; and he did (Jos. 21:43-45).


(Joshua 21:43-45)  "And the LORD gave unto Israel all the land which he sware to give unto their fathers; and they possessed it, and dwelt therein. (44) And the LORD gave them rest round about, according to all that he sware unto their fathers: and there stood not a man of all their enemies before them; the LORD delivered all their enemies into their hand. (45) There failed not ought of any good thing which the LORD had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass."


What a picture this is of Christ!


Once Moses had done this, once he put the people in Joshua’s hands, he broke out into a song of praise to God (De. 31:30-32:43), which is still being sung by the redeemed in heaven (Rev. 15:3), and blessed the people (De. 32:44-33:29). In precisely the same way, the holy law of God, beholding us in Christ (our Joshua), pronounces upon us all the blessedness of heaven and everlasting glory, just as fully as the grace of God.


Moses’ Death (De. 34:1-12)


Then, Moses died. When he had done everything he was sent to do, when he fulfilled all his purpose, he died and was never seen upon the earth again, until he was seen with Christ upon the Mount of Transfiguration, talking about the death he should accomplish at Jerusalem. Once Joshua appeared to Israel as their deliverer, Moses’ work was done. And once Christ appears in the hearts of chosen sinners as their Savior, the law’s work is done (Rom. 10:4).


(Romans 10:4)  "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth."


Now saved sinners sing…


Free from the law, O happy condition!

Jesus hath bled and there is remission!

Cursed by the law and bruised by the fall,

Christ hath redeemed us, once for all!