Deuteronomy 33:14
And for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon,
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(14) And for the precious fruits.—The “increase of the sunand “precious things put forth from month to month” (or by night when the moon rules), are next alluded to.

33:6-23 The order in which the tribes are here blessed, is not the same as is observed elsewhere. The blessing of Judah may refer to the whole tribe in general, or to David as a type of Christ. Moses largely blesses the tribe of Levi. Acceptance with God is what we should all aim at, and desire, in all our devotions, whether men accept us or not, 2Co 5:9. This prayer is a prophecy, that God will keep up a ministry in his church to the end of time. The tribe of Benjamin had their inheritance close to mount Zion. To be situated near the ordinances, is a precious gift from the Lord, a privilege not to be exchanged for any worldly advantage, or indulgence. We should thankfully receive the earthly blessings sent to us, through the successive seasons. But those good gifts which come down from the Father of lights, through the rising of the Sun of righteousness, and the pouring out of his Spirit like the rain which makes fruitful, are infinitely more precious, as the tokens of his special love. The precious things here prayed for, are figures of spiritual blessing in heavenly things by Christ, the gifts, graces, and comforts of the Spirit. When Moses prays for the good will of Him that dwelt in the bush, he refers to the covenant, on which all our hopes of God's favour must be founded. The providence of God appoints men's habitations, and wisely disposes men to different employments for the public good. Whatever our place and business are, it is our wisdom and duty to apply thereto; and it is happiness to be well pleased therewith. We should not only invite others to the service of God, but abound in it. The blessing of Naphtali. The favour of God is the only favour satisfying to the soul. Those are happy indeed, who have the favour of God; and those shall have it, who reckon that in having it they have enough, and desire no more.Comparing the words of Moses with those of Jacob, it will be seen that the patriarch dwells with emphasis on the severe conflicts which Joseph, i. e., Ephraim and Manasseh, would undergo (compare Genesis 49:23-24); while the lawgiver seems to look beyond, and to behold the two triumphant and established in their power.13-17. of Joseph he said—The territory of this tribe, diversified by hill and dale, wood and water, would be rich in all the productions—olives, grapes, figs, &c., which are reared in a mountainous region, as well as in the grain and herbs that grow in the level fields. "The firstling of the bullock and the horns of the unicorn" (rhinoceros), indicate glory and strength, and it is supposed that under these emblems were shadowed forth the triumphs of Joshua and the new kingdom of Jeroboam, both of whom were of Ephraim (compare Ge 48:20). By the sun, which opens and warms the earth, cherisheth and improveth, and in due time ripeneth the seeds and fruits of the earth.

By the moon, which by its moisture refreshes and promotes them Heb. of the moons, or months, i.e. which it bringeth forth in the several months or seasons of the year.

And for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun,.... Which has a wonderful influence upon many and most of the fruits of the earth, to produce them out of their seeds in it, to bring them forward, to ripen and perfect them, and to make them rich and excellent. Jarchi says,"the land of Joseph lay open to the sun, and it sweetened the fruits of it;''it improved them, and made them more valuable; and this is spiritually true of Christ the sun of righteousness, to whose influence are owing the blessings of grace, redemption, peace, pardon, and justification, and the graces of the Spirit, faith, hope, and love, and by what believers are filled with, the fruits of righteousness, see Malachi 4:2,

and for the precious things put forth by the moon; the fruits which the moon helps forward by its coolness and moisture; and those the above Jewish writer says are cucumbers and gourds; and as various creatures are affected by the moon, it is observed by a naturalist (o), that onions, when the moon waxes old, increase, and flag when it is young; and Pliny says (p), that at the increase of the moon all sort of corn grows bigger and larger; but a late learned writer (q) remarks, that though upon the pressure of the moon on the globe many things depend, as the ebbing and flowing of the sea, epileptic and convulsive paroxysms, yet it does not appear that this pressure exerts its power on plants, so as to thrust them forth, and therefore thinks this respects the ejection or protrusion of monthly fruits; for the word here used is in the plural number, and signifies "months"; and so Onkelos paraphrases the words,"it produces precious fruits at the beginning of every month;''or ripe fruit at the beginning of every month, as the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem; for the spiritual meaning, see Revelation 22:2.

(o) Dalecamp. in Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 2. c. 41. (p) Nat. Hist. l. 18. c. 30. (q) Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 3. p. 437.

And for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon,
14. walketh] walketh up and down (also of God in J, Genesis 3:8, and 2 Samuel 7:6 f.). Cp. especially 1 Samuel 4:7, a god is come into the camp; and above Deuteronomy 20:1; Deuteronomy 20:4; Deuteronomy 20:13, Deuteronomy 21:10 of the presence of Jehovah with the host. On deliver cp. Deuteronomy 20:4; and to give up, before thee, see on Deuteronomy 1:8. Holy, set apart from anything unclean. He must not see the nakedness of anything, anything shameful or indecent. Here the idea is wider than that of ritual uncleanness, and indicates an advance of feeling on the more primitive sentiment. No sanitary reason is implied, but it is interesting that such religious or aesthetic motives produced sanitary results.

14. growth] Yield or drop, what is thrust forth, only here. LXX ἀπὸ συνόδων.

Deuteronomy 33:14Joseph. - Deuteronomy 33:13. "Blessed of the Lord be his land, of (in) the most precious things of heaven, the dew, and of the flood which lies beneath, (Deuteronomy 33:14) and of the most precious of the produce of the sun, and of the most precious of the growth of the moons, (Deuteronomy 33:15) and of the head of the mountains of olden time, and of the most precious thing of the everlasting hills, (Deuteronomy 33:16) and of the most precious thing of the earth, and of its fulness, and the good-will of Him that dwelt in the bush: let it come upon the head of Joseph, and upon the crown of him that is illustrious among his brethren." What Jacob desired and solicited for his son Joseph, Moses also desires for this tribe, namely, the greatest possible abundance of earthly blessing, and a vigorous manifestation of power in conflict with the nations. But however unmistakeable may be the connection between these words and the blessing of Jacob (Genesis 49:22.), not only in the things desired, but even in particular expression, there is an important difference which equally strikes us, namely, that in the case of Jacob the main point of the blessing is the growth of Joseph into a powerful tribe, whereas with Moses it is the development of power on the part of this tribe in the land of its inheritance, in perfect harmony with the different times at which the blessings were pronounced. Jacob described the growth of Joseph under the figure of the luxuriant branch of a fruit-tree planted by the water; whilst Moses fixes his eye primarily upon the land of Joseph, and desires for him the richest productions. "May his land be blessed by Jehovah from (מן of the cause of the blessing, whose author was Jehovah; vid., Psalm 28:7; Psalm 104:3) the most precious thing of the heaven." מגד, which only occurs again in the Sol 4:13, Sol 4:16, and Sol 7:13, is applied to precious fruits. The most precious fruit which the heaven yields to the land is the dew. The "productions of the sun," and גּרשׁ, ἅπ. λεγ. from גּרשׁ, "the produce of the moons," are the fruits of the earth, which are matured by the influence of the sun and moon, by their light, their warmth. At the same time, we can hardly so distinguish the one from the other as to understand by the former the fruits which ripen only once a year, and by the latter those which grow several times and in difference months; and Ezekiel 47:12 and Revelation 22:2 cannot be adduced as proofs of this. The plural "moons" in parallelism with the sun does not mean months, as in Exodus 2:2, but the different phases which the moon shows in its revolution round the earth. מראשׁ (from the head), in Deuteronomy 33:15, is a contracted expression signifying "from the most precious things of the head." The most precious things of the head of the mountains of old and the eternal hills, are the crops and forests with which the tops of the mountains and hills are covered. Moses sums up the whole in the words, "the earth, and the fulness thereof:" everything in the form of costly good that the earth and its productions can supply. - To the blessings of the heaven and earth there are to be added the good-will of the Lord, who appeared to Moses in the thorn-bush to redeem His people out of the bondage and oppression of Egypt and bring it into the land of Canaan, the land flowing with milk and honey (Exodus 3:2.). The expression "that dwells in the bush" is to be explained from the significance of this manifestation of God as shown at Exodus 3, which shadowed forth a permanent relation between the Lord and His people. The spiritual blessing of the covenant grace is very suitably added to the blessings of nature; and there is something no less suitable in the way in which the construction commencing with וּרצון is dropped, so that an anakolouthon ensues. This word cannot be taken as an accusative of more precise definition, as Schultz supposes; nor is מן to be supplied before it, as Knobel suggests. Grammatically considered, it is a nominative to which the verb תּבואתה properly belongs, although, as a matter of fact, not only the good-will, but the natural blessings, of the Lord were also to come upon the head of Joseph. Consequently we have not יבוא (masc.), which רצון would require, but the lengthened poetical feminine form תּבואתה (vid., Ewald, 191, c.), used in a neuter sense. It, i.e., everything mentioned before, shall come upon Joseph. On the expression, "illustrious among his brethren," see at Genesis 49:26. In the strength of this blessing, the tribe of Joseph would attain to such a development of power, that it would be able to tread down all nations.
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