STUDY OUTLINE OF DEUTERONOMY
“Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse: a blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God…and a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the Lord your God.” (11:26-28)
“Deuteronomy” is from a Greek word meaning “The Second Law.” This is not a book containing new laws, but is simply a copy of the original law. We have here a repetition of things already said, but with a new tone and emphasis. The whole book is a divine treatise upon obedience.
The fifth book of the Law is a majestic, fascinating, and practical book. It is primarily a book of oratory. It contains a series of discourses delivered by Moses to the Israelites in the plains of Moab during the brief interval (about forty days at the most) between the close of the wilderness wanderings and the entrance into the Land of Canaan.
In this discourse Moses constantly reminds the people of God’s gracious dealings with them and appeals to them to respond to God’s goodness by giving to Him their undivided love and loyalty.
Deuteronomy is a book which has great religious value for today. Love is the key to the divine life. God is due all the loyalty of the human heart because of His grace. Deuteronomy was a favorite of our Lord (Cf. Matthew 4:4, 7, 10; 22:37).
This book gives the spiritual significance of the facts recorded in the first four books.
Two key words are “remember” and “obey,” the one pointing back to the wilderness and the other pointing on to the Land.
The first part is Historical; the second part is Legislative; and the third part is Prophetical.
Deuteronomy is probably the most spiritual book of the Old Testament.
Deuteronomy is the Acts of the Old Testament – giving His people a second chance.
Its structure is simple:
1) Retrospective – looking back (1-11)
2) Prospective – looking forward
Cultural message: Divine faithfulness
Moses died at 120, 3 groups of 40:
1) Prince of Egypt
2) Shepherd in Midian
3) Leader in Israel
God buried Moses.
OUTLINE – THE DIVINE FAITHFULNESS
Looking Backward (chapters 1-11)
Review of the Way Since Sinai (1-3)
Review of the Law from Sinai (4-11)
Looking Forward (12-34)
Final Rules and Warnings to Israel Before Entering the Land (12-30)
Final Words and Actions of Moses Before Entering the Land (31-34)
DEUTERONOMY, A BOOK OF TRANSITION
Marks transition to a:
1) New Generation
2) New Possession – wilderness gives way to occupancy of Canaan
3) New Experience – new life; houses instead of tents, settled and not wandering
4) New Revelation of God – His love, from Genesis to Numbers the love of God is never spoken of
BASIC THINGS OF DEUTERONOMY
1) Basic Doctrine (6:4, 5) – Unitarianism; God is plural in Hebrew, Jehovah our God
Hebrew word “one” – one in the collective sense, a compound unity. This is the first article of Israel: religion.
2) Basic Fact (6:23) – The whole story in one sentence
3) Basic Requirement (10:12, 13) – “And now” Deuteronomy is a book of “and now”; after all God has done, now you do this
4) Basic Pledge – Israel entered Canaan under conditions of Sinai covenant; penalty: dispersion of present Israel, desolation of Canaan; but the Sinai Covenant is not God’s last word to Israel.
The Abrahamic Covenant stands outside, beyond this, nothing can destroy this covenant. Israel has never possessed Canaan under the unconditional Abrahamic Covenant. (Leviticus 26:33; Deuteronomy 4:27-31; 30:20) It is on the basis of the Abrahamic Covenant that God will still deal with Israel.
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