Deuteronomy 31:2
And he said to them, I am an hundred and twenty years old this day; I can no more go out and come in: also the LORD has said to me, You shall not go over this Jordan.
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31:1-8 Moses assures Israel of the constant presence of God with them. This is applied by the apostle to all God's spiritual Israel, to encourage their faith and hope; unto us is this gospel preached, as well as unto them; he will never fail thee, nor forsake thee, Heb 13:5. Moses commends Joshua to them for a leader; one whose wisdom, and courage, and affection they had long known; one whom God had appointed to be their leader; and therefore would own and bless. Joshua is well pleased to be admonished by Moses to be strong and of good courage. Those shall speed well, who have God with them; therefore they ought to be of good courage. Through God let us do valiantly, for through him we shall do victoriously; if we resist the devil, he will flee from us.I am an hundred and twenty years old - The 40 years of the wandering had passed since Moses, then 80 years old, "spake unto Pharaoh" (Exodus 7:7; Compare Deuteronomy 34:7).

I can, no more go out and come in - Render I shall not longer be able to go out and come in: i. e., discharge my duties among you. There is no inconsistency with Deuteronomy 34:7. Moses here adverts to his own age as likely to render him in future unequal to the active discharge of his office as leader of the people: the writer of Deuteronomy 34:1-12, one of Moses' contemporaries, remarks of him that up to the close of life "his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated" Deuteronomy 31:7; i. e. that he was to the last, in the judgment of others, in full possession of faculties and strength.

2-8. also the Lord hath said—should be "for the Lord hath said" thou shalt not go over this Jordan. While taking a solemn leave of the people, Moses exhorted them not to be intimidated by the menacing opposition of enemies; to take encouragement from the continued presence of their covenanted God; and to rest assured that the same divine power, which had enabled them to discomfit their first assailants on the east of Jordan, would aid them not less effectually in the adventurous enterprise which they were about to undertake, and by which they would obtain possession of "the land which He had sworn unto their fathers to give them." Go out and come in, i.e. perform the office of a leader or governor, either because I now find a decay of my mind and body, which seems not well to agree with Deu 34:7, or because I foresee the time of my death approaches. And he said unto them, I am an hundred and twenty years old this day,.... Whether the meaning is, that that day precisely was his birthday, is a question; it may be the sense is only this, that he was now arrived to such an age; though Jarchi takes it in the first sense, to which are objected his words in Deuteronomy 31:14; yet it seems by Deuteronomy 32:48 that having delivered to the children of Israel the song he was ordered this day to write, on the selfsame day he was bid to go up to Mount Nebo and die: and it is a commonly received tradition with the Jews, that Moses died on the same day of the month he was born; See Gill on Deuteronomy 34:7.

I can no more go out and come in; not that he could no longer go out of his tent and return without great trouble and difficulty, being so decrepit; but that he could not perform his office as their ruler and governor, or go out to battle and return as their general; and this not through any incapacity of body or mind, both being vigorous, sound, and well, as is clear from Deuteronomy 34:7; but because it was the will of God that he should live no longer to exercise such an office, power, and authority:

also the Lord hath said unto me, or "for the Lord has said" (r), and so is a reason of the foregoing; the Targum is,"the Word of the Lord said:"

thou shalt not go over this Jordan: to which he and the people of Israel were nigh, and lay between them and the land of Canaan, over which it was necessary to pass in order to go into it; but Moses must not lead them there, this work was reserved for Joshua, a type of Christ; not Moses and his law, or obedience to it, is what introduces any into the heavenly Canaan only Jesus and his righteousness; see Deuteronomy 3:27.

(r) "praesertim cum et Dominus", V. L. sometimes signifies "for". See Noldius, p. 285. So Ainsworth and Patrick here.

And he said unto them, I am an hundred and twenty years old this day; I {a} can no more go out and come in: also the LORD hath said unto me, Thou shalt not go over this Jordan.

(a) I can no longer execute my office.

2. an hundred and twenty years old] So P Deuteronomy 34:7, cp. Exodus 7:7. As we have seen, dates in the Pent. are nearly all from P; 120 = 3 × 40, the usual round number for a generation.

go out and come in] See on Deuteronomy 13:13 (14) and Deuteronomy 28:6.

the Lord hath said, etc.] Deuteronomy 3:27.Verse 2. - I am an hundred and twenty years old this day. When Moses stood before Pharaoh he was eighty years old (Exodus 7:7); since then forty years had elapsed during the wanderings in the wilderness. I can no more go out and come in; I am no longer able to work among and for the nation as I have hitherto done (cf. Numbers 27:17). This does not conflict with the statement in Deuteronomy 34:7, that up to the time of his death his eyes were not dim nor his natural strength abated, for this is the statement of an observer, and it often happens that an individual feels himself to be failing, when to those around him he appears to possess unabated vigor. There is no need, therefore, for resorting, with Raschi and others, to the expedient of reading "for" instead of "and" in the following clause; as if the cause why Moses could no longer go in and out among the people was God's prohibition of his going over Jordan. This is simply another and collateral reason why he had now to retire flora his post as leader. In conclusion, Moses sums up the contents of the whole of this preaching of the law in the words, "life and good, and death and evil," as he had already done at Deuteronomy 11:26-27, in the first part of this address, to lay the people by a solemn adjuration under the obligation to be faithful to the Lord, and through this obligation to conclude the covenant afresh. He had set before them this day life and good ("good" equals prosperity and salvation), as well as death and evil (רע, adversity and destruction), by commanding them to love the Lord and walk in His ways. Love is placed first, as in Deuteronomy 6:5, as being the essential principle of the fulfilment of the commandments. Expounding the law was setting before them life and death, salvation and destruction, because the law, as the word of God, was living and powerful, and proved itself in every man a power of life or of death, according to the attitude which he assumed towards it (vid., Deuteronomy 32:47). נדּח, to permit oneself to be torn away to idolatry (as in Deuteronomy 4:19).
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