|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:1-8 Moses spake to the people all the Lord had given him in commandment. Horeb was but eleven days distant from Kadesh-barnea. This was to remind them that their own bad conduct had occasioned their tedious wanderings; that they might the more readily understand the advantages of obedience. They must now go forward. Though God brings his people into trouble and affliction, he knows when they have been tried long enough. When God commands us to go forward in our Christian course, he sets the heavenly Canaan before us for our encouragement.
Verse 6. - With this verse begins Moses' first address to the people, which extends to the end of Deuteronomy 4. It is of an introductory character, and is occupied chiefly with a retrospective survey of the events that had occurred during the forty years of their wanderings. By this Moses reminded the people how God had fulfilled his promises to them, and at the same time, how they had by their rebellion drawn down on them his displeasure, which had caused their wanderings to be so much more protracted than they would otherwise have been. Verses 6-8. - The Lord's command to depart from Horeb, and his promise to the people. Verse 6. - The Lord our God - Jehovah our God. The use of this epithet implies the covenant union of Israel with Jehovah, and presupposes the existence of that covenant which was entered into at Sinai. In Horeb. This was the starting-point, so to speak, of Israel's being as the special people of God - his segullah (סְגֻּלָּה, Exodus 19:5), his special treasure. There he made himself known to them as Jehovah, the Eternal and Unchangeable, and entered into covenant with them; and there they received that Law, on the keeping of which depended their retention of the privileges to which they had been elected. At Horeb the Israelites had remained for about a year (comp. Exodus 19. I and Numbers 10:11, 12), and as the purpose for which they had been brought thither was answered, they were enjoined to move, not indeed by express command, but by the rising of the cloud from over the tabernacle, which was the signal of their march (Numbers 9:15, etc.; Numbers 10:11-13), preceded by the instructions they had received preparatory to their removal (Numbers 50:4-7). Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount. The Israelites remained at Sinai from the third month of the first year to the twentieth day of the second year after they came out of Egypt (cf. Exodus 19:1 and Numbers 10:11).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The Lord our God spoke unto us in Horeb,.... The same with Sinai, as Aben Ezra observes; while the Israelites lay encamped near this mountain, the Lord spoke unto them:
saying, ye have dwelt long enough in this mount: or near it; for hither they came on the first day of the third month from their departure out of Egypt, and they did not remove from thence until the twentieth day of the second month in the second year, Exodus 19:1 so that they were here a year wanting ten days; in which space of time the law was given them, the tabernacle and all things appertaining to it were made by them, rulers both ecclesiastical and civil were appointed over them, and they were numbered and marshalled in order under four standards, and so ready to march; and all this being done, they must stay no longer, but set forward for the land of Canaan. It is well for persons that they are not to stay long under the law, and the terrors of it, but are directed to Mount Zion; Hebrews 12:18.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
6. The Lord our God spake unto us in Horeb, saying, Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount—Horeb was the general name of a mountainous district; literally, "the parched" or "burnt region," whereas Sinai was the name appropriated to a particular peak [see on Ex 19:2]. About a year had been spent among the recesses of that wild solitude, in laying the foundation, under the immediate direction of God, of a new and peculiar community, as to its social, political, and, above all, religious character; and when this purpose had been accomplished, they were ordered to break up their encampment in Horeb. The command given them was to march straight to Canaan, and possess it [De 1:7].
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