Deuteronomy 29:10
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,
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(10) Ye stand this day all of you.—There is no limit to the blessing of following Jehovah and keeping His word. It is open to all, from the highest to the lowest, to take hold of His covenant.

Deuteronomy 29:10-12. Ye stand — before the Lord your God — They were assembled at the tabernacle, from whence he delivered these words to them by the priests and Levites, Deuteronomy 27:9; Deuteronomy 27:14. Thy stranger

Such strangers as had embraced their religion: all sorts of persons, yea, even the meanest of them. Into covenant, and into his oath — A covenant confirmed by a solemn oath. Hebrew, באלתו, bealatho, his adjuration, execration, or curse; for they entered into this covenant with imprecations upon themselves if they did not perform faithfully their engagements.

29:10-21 The national covenant made with Israel, not only typified the covenant of grace made with true believers, but also represented the outward dispensation of the gospel. Those who have been enabled to consent to the Lord's new covenant of mercy and grace in Jesus Christ, and to give up themselves to be his people, should embrace every opportunity of renewing their open profession of relation to him, and their obligation to him, as the God of salvation, walking according thereto. The sinner is described as one whose heart turns away from his God; there the mischief begins, in the evil heart of unbelief, which inclines men to depart from the living God to dead idols. Even to this sin men are now tempted, when drawn aside by their own lusts and fancies. Such men are roots that bear gall and wormwood. They are weeds which, if let alone, overspread the whole field. Satan may for a time disguise this bitter morsel, so that thou shalt not have the natural taste of it, but at the last day, if not before, the true taste shall be discerned. Notice the sinner's security in sin. Though he hears the words of the curse, yet even then he thinks himself safe from the wrath of God. There is scarcely a threatening in all the book of God more dreadful than this. Oh that presumptuous sinners would read it, and tremble! for it is a real declaration of the wrath of God, against ungodliness and unrighteousness of man.That ye may prosper - literally, "that ye may act wisely." The connection of the two ideas of wisdom in conduct and prosperity in circumstances is noteworthy. 10-29. Ye stand this day all of you before the Lord your God—The whole congregation of Israel, of all ages and conditions, all—young as well as old; menials as well as masters; native Israelites as well as naturalized strangers—all were assembled before the tabernacle to renew the Sinaitic covenant. None of them were allowed to consider themselves as exempt from the terms of that national compact, lest any lapsing into idolatry might prove a root of bitterness, spreading its noxious seed and corrupt influence all around (compare Heb 12:15). It was of the greatest consequence thus to reach the heart and conscience of everyone, for some might delude themselves with the vain idea that by taking the oath (De 29:12) by which they engaged themselves in covenant with God, they would surely secure its blessings. Then, even though they would not rigidly adhere to His worship and commands, but would follow the devices and inclinations of their own hearts, yet they would think that He would wink at such liberties and not punish them. It was of the greatest consequence to impress all with the strong and abiding conviction, that while the covenant of grace had special blessings belonging to it, it at the same time had curses in reserve for transgressors, the infliction of which would be as certain, as lasting and severe. This was the advantage contemplated in the law being rehearsed a second time. The picture of a once rich and flourishing region, blasted and doomed in consequence of the sins of its inhabitants, is very striking, and calculated to awaken awe in every reflecting mind. Such is, and long has been, the desolate state of Palestine; and, in looking at its ruined cities, its blasted coast, its naked mountains, its sterile and parched soil—all the sad and unmistakable evidences of a land lying under a curse—numbers of travellers from Europe, America, and the Indies ("strangers from a far country," De 29:22) in the present day see that the Lord has executed His threatening. Who can resist the conclusion that it has been inflicted "because the inhabitants had forsaken the covenant of the Lord God of their fathers. … and the anger of the Lord was kindled against this land, to bring upon it all the curses that are written in this book"? Before the Lord your God; in his presence, who sees your hearts and carriages; and before his tabernacle, where it is probable they were now called together, and assembled for this work. See Deu 29:2.

Ye stand this day all of you before the Lord your God,.... Being gathered together at the door of the tabernacle, at the summons of Moses. Aben Ezra interprets it round about the ark, which was the symbol of the divine Presence:

your captains of your tribes; the heads and rulers of them:

your elders and your officers, with all the men of Israel; not the seventy elders only, but their elders in their several tribes, cities, and families, men of gravity and prudence, as well as of age, and who were in some place of power and authority or another: and the "officers" may design such who attended the judges, and executed their orders; see Deuteronomy 16:18; and with them were the common people, the males, who were grown persons. Aben Ezra thinks they stood in the order in which they here are mentioned, which is not improbable; next to Moses the princes, then the elders, and after them the officers, and next every man of Israel, the males; and then the little ones with the males; after them the women, and last of all the proselytes.

Ye stand this day all of you before the LORD your {f} God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, with all the men of Israel,

(f) Who knows your hearts, and therefore you may not think to conceal from him.

10, 11. Ye stand] The Heb. is stronger, and probably reflexive: ye have taken your station or position.

all of you] This comprehensiveness, and the exhaustive definition by which it is followed are striking. Not only the representatives of the people—your heads, your judges (which read for tribes—there is only the difference of one letter—unless we read with LXX and Syr. heads of tribes, for LXX has judges as well after elders), your elders and your officers (for all of which except elders see Deuteronomy 1:13; Deuteronomy 1:15 f., and for elders Deuteronomy 16:18, Deuteronomy 19:12, Deuteronomy 21:2 f., etc.); and not only all the men of Israel, your little ones and1[149] your wives, but also thy gçr … from the gatherer (not hewer) of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water (Joshua 9:21 ff.)—appear before Jehovah to take the covenant. Cp. the Sabbath law, Deuteronomy 5:14, covering sons, daughters, servants and thy gçr; Deuteronomy 31:12, men, women, little ones and thy ger; the assembly which received the law under Joshua, Joshua 8:33; Joshua 8:35, gçr and home-born, women and little ones; and the covenant renewed under Nehemiah, Nehemiah 10:28, all the temple-servants, wives, sons, daughters, every one that had knowledge and understanding (see further Jerusalem i. 435 ff.). On the phrase in the midst of thy camp cp. Deuteronomy 2:14 f., Deuteronomy 23:14.

[149] So Sam. and Syr.

The conception of the gçr as a proselyte and as under the covenant, and the mention of the temple-drudges may be taken (as by many critics) for signs of the late date of the whole passage. Or since their introduction is coincident with a change of address to the Sg., it is possibly a later gloss on the rest. Yet again the Sg. of 11b may be due to the attraction of the Sg. in Deuteronomy 29:12 f., in which its use by a writer otherwise employing the Pl. may be explained on the ground that he is addressing the whole nation as one party to the Covenant; while in Deuteronomy 29:14 he resumes the Pl., because there he is addressing the individuals of the present generation in distinction from others not present. Here then is a case on which the changes between Sg. and Pl. are reasonably explicable as by the same writer and on logical grounds. Steuern. and Marti’s proposal to consider the whole of the Sg. clauses as an addition is thus unnecessary.

Verses 10-15. - Summons to enter into the covenant of the Lord with fresh ardor and cordiality. Verse 10. - Translate: Ye stand this day all of you before Jehovah your God, your chiefs, your tribes, your elders, and your officers, every man of Israel. The two members are parallel: the heads or chiefs are the elders and officers, the tribes are all Israel The Authorized Version follows the LXX., but against the idiom of the Hebrew. Ibn Ezra says ראשֵׁיכֵם is instead of ראֹשֵׁי, but this can hardly be. Deuteronomy 29:10Summons to enter into the covenant of the Lord, namely, to enter inwardly, to make the covenant an affair of the heart and life.

Deuteronomy 29:10

"To-day," when the covenant-law and covenant-right were laid before them, the whole nation stood before the Lord without a single exception - the heads and the tribes, the elders and the officers, all the men of Israel. The two members are parallel. The heads of the people are the elders and officers, and the tribes consist of all the men. The rendering given by the lxx and Syriac (also in the English version: Tr.), "heads (captains) of your tribes," is at variance with the language.

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