Deuteronomy 32:6
Do ye thus requite the LORD, O foolish people and unwise? is not he thy father that hath bought thee? hath he not made thee, and established thee?
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(6)“It is Jehovah that ye requite thus!

A people foolish and unwise!

Is not He thy Father that hath gotten thee?

He made thee and establisheth thee.”

The first line is an exclamatory question. A question and an exclamation have the same name in the Rabbinical writings. “Hath gotten” in the third line is the same expression which Eve used (in Genesis 4:1) at the birth of Cain, and occurs also in that magnificent saying in the history of Wisdom, Proverbs 8:22, “The Lord begat me (as) the beginning of his way.”

Deuteronomy 32:6. O foolish people and unwise! — Fools and double fools! Fools, indeed, to disoblige one on whom you so entirely depend! Who hath bewitched you to forsake your own mercies for lying vanities? Bought thee — That hath redeemed thee from Egyptian bondage. Made thee — Not only in a general, by creation, but in a peculiar manner, by making thee his peculiar people. Established — That is renewed and confirmed his favour to thee, and not taken it away, which thou hast provoked him to do.

32:3-6 He is a Rock. This is the first time God is called so in Scripture. The expression denotes that the Divine power, faithfulness, and love, as revealed in Christ and the gospel, form a foundation which cannot be changed or moved, on which we may build our hopes of happiness. And under his protection we may find refuge from all our enemies, and in all our troubles; as the rocks in those countries sheltered from the burning rays of the sun, and from tempests, or were fortresses from the enemy. His work is perfect: that of redemption and salvation, in which there is a display of all the Divine perfection, complete in all its parts. All God's dealings with his creatures are regulated by wisdom which cannot err, and perfect justice. He is indeed just and right; he takes care that none shall lose by him. A high charge is exhibited against Israel. Even God's children have their spots, while in this imperfect state; for if we say we have no sin, no spot, we deceive ourselves. But the sin of Israel was not habitual, notorious, unrepented sin; which is a certain mark of the children of Satan. They were fools to forsake their mercies for lying vanities. All wilful sinners, especially sinners in Israel, are unwise and ungrateful.Hath bought thee - Rather perhaps, "hath acquired thee for His own," or "possessed thee:" compare the expression "a peculiar people," margin "a purchased people," in 1 Peter 2:9.6. is not he thy father that hath bought thee—or emancipated thee from Egyptian bondage.

and made thee—advanced the nation to unprecedented and peculiar privileges.

Hath bought thee; that hath redeemed and rescued thee from Egyptian bondage.

Made thee, i.e. advanced thee, as that word is used, 1 Samuel 12:6 Esther 6:6 Psalm 95:6 149:2 Isaiah 43:7. Made thee, not only in a general and common way, by creation or production; but in a peculiar manner, by adoption, or making thee his peculiar people and children.

Established thee, i.e. renewed and confirmed his grace and favour to thee, and not taken it away from thee, which thou hast oft provoked him to do.

Do you thus requite the Lord, O foolish people and unwise,.... This is also a proper character of the Jews in the times of Christ, who are often by him called "fools", Matthew 23:17; being very ignorant of the Scriptures, and of the prophecies in them respecting him, setting up their own traditions on a level with the word of God, or above it; they were ignorant of the law of God, and the meaning of it; of the righteousness of God, of the righteousness of his nature, and of what the law required, as well as of the righteousness of Christ, and of him as a spiritual Redeemer, and of salvation by him; and a most egregious instance of their folly, and of want of wisdom, was their ingratitude to him, in disesteeming and rejecting him; which is what is here referred to and meant by ill-requiting him, though not expressed till Deuteronomy 32:15; and a most sad requital of him it was indeed, that he should come to them, his own, in so kind and gracious a manner, and yet be rejected by them; that he should become man, and yet for that reason be charged with blasphemy, for making himself God; horrid ingratitude, to infer the one from the other! and because he appeared as a servant, disowned him as the Son of God; and because he came in the likeness of sinful flesh to take away sin, they traduced him as a sinner:

is not he thy Father, that hath bought thee? hath he not made thee,

and established thee? Moses, in order to aggravate this their ingratitude, rehearses the various instances of divine goodness to them, from the beginning of them as nation; it was the Lord that was the founder of them as a nation, whose Son, when sent unto them, was rejected by them; it was he that bought them, or redeemed them from Egyptian bondage, that made or formed them into a body politic, or civil commonwealth, that established and settled them in the land of Canaan: this is expressed in general terms; particular instances of the goodness of God to them are after enumerated: or if this is to be understood of Christ himself, who was rejected by them, it is true of some among them, in a spiritual and evangelic sense, and so, by a figure, the whole is put for a part, as sometimes the part is for the whole: Christ, the everlasting Father of the world to come, had many children in the Jewish nation, for whose sake he became incarnate, and whom he came to seek and to save; and whom he "bought" with his precious blood, and whom, by his Spirit and grace, he "made" new creatures, the children of God, kings and priests unto God; and "established" them in the faith of him, and upon him, the sure foundation; or whom he fashioned, beautified, and adorned with his righteousness, and with the graces of his Spirit.

Do ye thus requite the LORD, O foolish people and unwise? is not he thy father that hath bought thee? hath he not {d} made thee, and established thee?

(d) Not according to the common creation, but he has made you a new creature by his Spirit.

6. Is it Jehovah ye thus requite] So the emphatic Heb. order.

foolish] See on Deuteronomy 22:21 : folly.

bought] Rather begat or produced, Genesis 4:1; Genesis 14:19; Genesis 14:22.

established] Or framed, set up, settled.

Verses 6, 7. - Instead of gratefully acknowledging the Divine beneficence, and dutifully obeying the Divine will, Israel had perversely and foolishly requited the Lord for all his benefits, by apostasy from him. Do ye thus requite? The verb here signifies primarily to do to any one either good or evil, whether in return for what he has done or not (cf. Genesis 1:15; 1 Samuel 24:18; Proverbs 3:30); then, as a secondary meaning, to reward, repay, requite, as here and Psalm 18:21. To bring more forcibly to their view the ingratitude and folly of their conduct, Moses dwells upon what God was and had been to the nation: their Father, in that he had, in his love, chosen, them to be his people (cf. Isaiah 63:16; Isaiah 64:7; Malachi 2:10); their Purchaser, who had acquired possession of them by delivering them out of Egypt (cf. Psalm 74:2); their Maker, who had constituted them a nation; and their Establisher, by whom they had been conducted through the wilderness and settled in Canaan. Days of old; the times of Israel's deliverance from bondage, and the times during which successive generations had lived and experienced the goodness of the Lord. The form of the word rendered "days" is poetical, and is found only here and in Psalm 90:15, which is also ascribed to Moses. The years of many generations; literally, years of generation and generation; "aetatum singularum annos" (Rosenmüller). Deuteronomy 32:6Expansion of the theme according to the thought expressed in Deuteronomy 32:5. The perversity of the rebellious generation manifested itself in the fact, that it repaid the Lord, to whom it owed existence and well-being, for all His benefits, with a foolish apostasy from its Creator and Father. This thought is expressed in Deuteronomy 32:6, in a reproachful question addressed to the people, and then supported in Deuteronomy 32:7-14 by an enumeration of the benefits conferred by God, and in Deuteronomy 32:15-18 by a description of the ingratitude of the people.

Deuteronomy 32:6

"Will ye thus repay the Lord? thou foolish people and unwise! Is He not thy Father, who hath founded thee, who hath made thee and prepared thee?" גּמל, the primary idea of which is doubtful, signifies properly to show, or do, for the most part good, but sometimes evil (vid., Psalm 7:5). For the purpose of painting the folly of their apostasy distinctly before the eyes of the people, Moses crowds words together to describe what God was to the nation - "thy Father," to whose love Israel was indebted for its elevation into an independent people: comp. Isaiah 63:16, where Father and Redeemer are synonymous terms, with Isaiah 64:7, God the Father, Israel the clay which He had formed, and Malachi 2:10, where God as Father is said to have created Israel; see also the remarks at Deuteronomy 14:1 on the notion of Israel's sonship. - קונך, He has acquired thee; קנה, κτᾶσθαι, to get, acquire (Genesis 4:1), then so as to involve the idea of κτίζειν (Genesis 14:9), though without being identical with בּרא. It denotes here the founding of Israel as a nation, by its deliverance out of the power of Pharaoh. The verbs which follow (made and established) refer to the elevation and preparation of the redeemed nation, as the nation of the Lord, by the conclusion of a covenant, the giving of the law, and their guidance through the desert.

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