Rewards of Obedience
1“Therefore you shall love the Lord your God, and always keep His charge, His statutes, His precepts, and His commandments [it is your obligation to Him]. 2 Know this day that I am not speaking to your children who have not known [by personal experience] and who have not seen [firsthand] the instruction and discipline of the Lord your God—His greatness, His mighty hand and His outstretched arm; 3 and His signs and His works which He did in the midst of Egypt to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and to all his land; 4 and what He did to the army of Egypt, to its horses and its chariots, when He made the water of the [a]Red Sea engulf them as they pursued you, and how the Lord [b]completely destroyed them; 5 and what He did to you in the wilderness until you came to this place; 6 and what He did to Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, the son of Reuben, when the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them, their households, their tents, and every living thing that [c]followed them, in the midst of all Israel. 7 For your eyes have seen all the great work of the Lord which He did.
8 “Therefore, you shall keep all the commandments which I am commanding you today, so that you may be strong and go in and take possession of the land which you are crossing over [the Jordan] to possess; 9 so that you may live long on the land which the Lord swore (solemnly promised) to your fathers to give to them and to their descendants, a land [of great abundance,] [d]flowing with milk and honey. 10 For the land which you are entering to possess is not like the land of Egypt from which you have come, where you sowed your seed and watered [e]it with your foot like a garden of vegetables. 11 But the land into which you are about to cross to possess, a land of hills and valleys, drinks water from the rain of heaven, 12 a land for which the Lord your God cares; the eyes of the Lord your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.
13 “It shall come about, if you listen obediently and pay attention to My commandments which I command you today—to love the Lord your God and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul [your choices, your thoughts, your whole being]— 14 that [f]He will give the rain for your land in its season, the early [fall] rain and the late [spring] rain, so that you may gather in your grain and your new wine and your [olive] oil. 15 And [g]He will give grass in your fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied. 16 Beware that your hearts are not deceived, and that you do not turn away [from the Lord] and serve other gods and worship them, 17 or [else] the Lord’s anger will be kindled and burn against you, and He will shut up the heavens so that there will be no rain and the land will not yield its fruit; and you will perish quickly from the good land which the Lord is giving you.
18 “Therefore, you shall impress these words of mine on your heart and on your soul, and tie them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as [h]bands (frontals, frontlets) on your forehead. 19 You shall teach them [diligently] to your [i]children [impressing God’s precepts on their minds and penetrating their hearts with His truths], speaking of them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up. 20 You shall write them on the [j]doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as [k]long as the heavens are above the earth. 22 For if you are careful to keep all this commandment which I am commanding you to do, to love the Lord your God, to walk [that is, to live each and every day] in all His ways and to hold tightly to Him— 23 then the Lord will drive out all these nations from before you, and you shall dispossess nations greater and mightier than you. 24 Every place on which the sole of your foot treads shall become yours; your territory shall be from the wilderness to Lebanon, and from the river, the river Euphrates, as far as the western sea (the Mediterranean). 25 No man will be able to stand before you; the Lord your God will lay the fear and the dread of you on all the land on which you set foot, just as He has spoken to you.
26 “Behold, today I am setting before you a blessing and a curse— 27 the blessing, if you listen to and obey the commandments of the Lord your God, which I am commanding you today; 28 and the curse, if you do not listen to and obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn aside from the way which I am commanding you today, by following (acknowledging, worshiping) other gods which you have not known.
29 “It shall come about, when the Lord your God brings you into the land which you are entering to possess, that you shall place the blessing on Mount Gerizim and the curse on Mount Ebal. 30 Are they not across the Jordan, west of the road, toward the sunset, in the land of the Canaanites who live in the Arabah, opposite Gilgal, beside the oaks of Moreh? 31 For you are about to cross the Jordan to go in to possess the land which the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall possess it and live in it, 32 and you shall be careful to do all the statutes and the judgments which I am setting before you today.
- Deuteronomy 11:4 Lit Sea of Reeds.
- Deuteronomy 11:4 Lit to this day.
- Deuteronomy 11:6 Lit was at their feet.
- Deuteronomy 11:9 This phrase referred to the abundant fertility of the land of Canaan. Milk (typically that of goats and sheep) was associated with abundance; “honey” referred mainly to syrups made from dates or grapes and was the epitome of sweetness. Bees’ honey was very rare and was considered the choicest of foods.
- Deuteronomy 11:10 Egyptian crops were watered by irrigation, so this may refer to a simple irrigation device that was operated by the foot, or to the practice of opening and closing small water channels with the foot.
- Deuteronomy 11:14 So some ancient versions; MT reads I.
- Deuteronomy 11:15 So some ancient versions; MT reads I.
- Deuteronomy 11:18 See note 6:8.
- Deuteronomy 11:19 Lit sons, also v 21.
- Deuteronomy 11:20 See note 6:9.
- Deuteronomy 11:21 Lit the days of.