Deuteronomy 11:18
Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes.
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(18) Therefore shall ye lay up these my words.—The same injunctions are found above (Deuteronomy 6:6-9). The Jewish commentator remarks, somewhat sadly, here, that they would remember them in their captivity, if not before. The “therefore” at the commencement of the verse is a simple “and,” so that the passage can be read in connection with what precedes: “Ye will perish quickly from off the good land, and ye will lay these my words to your hearts.” But the words of Deuteronomy 11:21 seem to show that this is not the primary meaning—only an application suggested, like many other applications of Scripture, by the actual event.

Deuteronomy 11:18. Lay up these my words — Let us all observe these three rules: 1st, Let our hearts be filled with the word of God; let it dwell in us richly, in all wisdom, (Colossians 3:16,) and be laid up within us as in a store- house, to be used upon all occasions. 2d, Let our eyes be fixed upon it: Bind these words for a sign upon your hand — Which is always in view; and as frontlets between your eyes — Which you cannot avoid the sight of. 3d, Let our tongues be employed about the word of God, especially with our children, who must be taught this, as far more needful than the rules of decency, any branch of human learning, or the calling they are to live by.

11:18-25 Let all be directed by the three rules here given. 1. Let our hearts be filled with the word of God. There will not be good practices in the life, unless there be good thoughts, good affections, and good principles in the heart. 2. Let our eyes be fixed upon the word of God, having constant regard to it as the guide of our way, as the rule of our work, Ps 119:30. 3. Let our tongues be employed about the word of God. Nor will any thing do more to cause prosperity, and keeping up religion in a nation, than the good education of children.The first rain and the latter rain - The former is the proper term for the autumn rain, falling about the time of sowing, and which may be named "the former," as occurring in the early part of the Hebrew civil year, namely, in October and November. The other word is applied to the spring rain, which falls in March and April, because it fits the earth for the ingathering of harvest. Between these two wet periods, and except them, there was little or no rain in Canaan. 18-25. lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them—(See on [124]De 6:1). No text from Poole on this verse.

Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart, and in your soul,.... Treasure up the laws of God delivered to them in their minds, retain them in their memories, and cherish a cordial affection for them; which would be an antidote against apostasy, idolatry, and other sins, Psalm 119:11.

and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes; of this and the two following verses; see Gill on Deuteronomy 6:7; see Gill on Deuteronomy 6:8; see Gill on Deuteronomy 6:9.

Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes.
18–25. The Pl. address is continued in a series of formulas, repeated with some variations from previous passages. The secondary nature of part of this section cannot be doubted. The emergence of the Sg. in Deuteronomy 11:19 shows that the passage is a quotation (slightly varied) of Deuteronomy 6:6-9; it has been partly adapted to the compiler’s Pl., while Deuteronomy 11:22 naturally follows on to Deuteronomy 11:17. The rest only partly repeats, and contains some matter peculiar to this section of Deut.

18–21. See on Deuteronomy 6:6-9. Besides the form of address, Sg. there, Pl. here, there are the following differences: Deuteronomy 6:6-9 has shall be upon thine heart, and wants and in your soul; takes next thou shalt teach them diligently to thy children (a more natural place and a sign of the originality of Deuteronomy 6:6-9), and wants Deuteronomy 11:21, which is repeated from other passages. See Deuteronomy 4:40, Deuteronomy 6:2, Deuteronomy 11:9. In Deuteronomy 11:19 read with Sam., LXX, in the house. Deuteronomy 11:18-21 break the connection: Deuteronomy 11:22 follows naturally on Deuteronomy 11:17.

21. as the days of the heavens above the earth] Not repeated in Deut.; the phrase is equivalent to for ever, cp. Psalm 89:29; Job 14:12. The eternity of the heavens was self-evident to primitive Israel, and for long it appeared that they could be shaken only by the appearance of God in His glory, 2 Samuel 22:8 (cp. Job 26:11). It was not till the later Apocalypse that the imagination became frequent of the passing away both of heaven and earth.

22. Repetitions of previous verses: diligently keep all this commandment, Deuteronomy 5:31, Deuteronomy 6:17 (the commandments), Deuteronomy 6:1, this is the commandment; to love, Deuteronomy 6:5; to walk, Deuteronomy 10:12; to cleave, Deuteronomy 10:20. To I command you, Sam., LXX add to-day.

23. drive out] Deuteronomy 4:38.

possess nations greater, etc.] Deuteronomy 9:1, but Sg.

24. whereon the sole of your foot shall tread] For the idiom see Deuteronomy 2:5; Joshua 1:3.

from the wilderness, and Lebanon] Joshua 1:4; perhaps we should read and unto Lebanon (Grätz, Dillm. and others).

and from the river, the river Euphrates] See on Deuteronomy 1:7.

unto the hinder sea] i.e. according to the Semitic orientation, the western sea, the Mediterranean. These limits are, of course, ideal, but observe how the promise is limited by the words every place whereon the sole of your foot shall tread.

25. There shall no man, etc.] So Deuteronomy 7:24, but Sg.

the fear of you and the dread of you] So Deuteronomy 2:25, but Sg.

Verses 18-20. - (Cf. Deuteronomy 6:7-9.) Deuteronomy 11:18But if, on the other hand, their heart was foolish to turn away from the Lord and serve other gods, the wrath of the Lord would burn against them, and God would shut up the heaven, that no rain should fall and the earth should yield no produce, and they would speedily perish (cf. Leviticus 26:19-20, and Deuteronomy 28:23-24). Let them therefore impress the words now set before them very deeply upon themselves and their children (Deuteronomy 11:18-21, in which there is in part a verbal repetition of Deuteronomy 6:6-9). The words, "as the days of the heaven above the earth," i.e., as long as the heaven continues above the earth, - in other words, to all eternity (cf. Psalm 89:30; Job. Deu 14:12), - belong to the main sentence, "that your days may be multiplied," etc. (Deuteronomy 11:21). "The promise to give the land to Israel for ever was not made unconditionally; an unconditional promise is precluded by the words, 'that your days may be multiplied'" (Schultz). (For further remarks, see at Deuteronomy 30:3-5.) For (Deuteronomy 11:22-25) if they adhered faithfully to the Lord, He would drive out before them all the nations that dwelt in the land, and would give them the land upon which they trod in all its length and breadth, and so fill the Canaanites with fear and terror before them, that no one should be able to stand against them. (On Deuteronomy 11:23, cf. Deuteronomy 7:1-2; Deuteronomy 9:1, and Deuteronomy 1:28.) The words, "every place whereon the soles of your feet shall tread shall be yours," are defined more precisely, and restricted to the land of Canaan on both sides of the Jordan by the boundaries which follow: "from the desert (of Arabia on the south), and Lebanon (on the north), and from the river Euphrates (on the east) to the hinder sea" (the Mediterranean on the west; see Numbers 34:6). The Euphrates is given as the eastern boundary, as in Deuteronomy 1:7, according to the promise in Genesis 15:18. (On Deuteronomy 11:25, cf. Deuteronomy 7:24; Deuteronomy 2:25, and Exodus 23:27.)
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