And Moses called all Israel, and said to them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that you may learn them, and keep, and do them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And Moses called all Israel, and said.—What follows is thus presented to us as an actual exhortation, not merely a portion of a book.
The statutes and judgments.—The religious ordinances and institutions, and the general requirements. The mention of these is prefixed to the Decalogue, of which they are only the application—to a special people under special circumstances. More precisely, the words apply rather to what follows the Decalogue than to the Ten Commandments themselves. (See Deuteronomy 6:1.)Deuteronomy 5:1. Moses called all Israel — Moses having in his first discourse, by a general recapitulation of the mercies and providences which had attended them, prepared the minds of the Israelites for further impressions, summons them by their elders and representatives to a second meeting, in which, after repeating to the new generation the several laws which God had enjoined, he earnestly exhorts them to lay them to heart, and make them the rule of their spirit and conduct.Psalm 48:2.).
De 5:1-29. A Commemoration of the Covenant in Horeb.
1. Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments—Whether this rehearsal of the law was made in a solemn assembly, or as some think at a general meeting of the elders as representatives of the people, is of little moment; it was addressed either directly or indirectly to the Hebrew people as principles of their peculiar constitution as a nation; and hence, as has been well observed, "the Jewish law has no obligation upon Christians, unless so much of it as given or commanded by Jesus Christ; for whatever in this law is conformable to the laws of nature, obliges us, not as given by Moses, but by virtue of an antecedent law common to all rational beings" [Bishop Wilson].God, upon Mount Horeb, makes a covenant with Israel, Deu 5:1-5. The covenant or ten commandments is delivered to Moses in two tables, Deu 5:6-22. The Israelites desire that not God, but Moses, may speak to them, Deu 5:23-27; which God approves of, Deu 5:28-31. Moses exhorts them to obedience, with a pro mise of life, Deu 5:32,33.
and said unto them, hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day; the laws, moral, ceremonial, and judicial, which he was about to repeat, and afresh declare unto them, being what they had all a concern in, and under obligation to regard.And Moses called all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and keep, and do them.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)1. called unto] i.e. summoned together. So rightly LXX.
all Israel] D’s characteristic phrase for the people: see Deuteronomy 4:44.
Hear, O Israel] The verb is the only Sg. in this Pl. passage. So in the same association in other Pl. passages: Deuteronomy 4:1, Deuteronomy 20:3 (cp. Deuteronomy 1:8):
the statutes and the judgements] also characteristic of D.
observe to do] also characteristic of D; occurring some 20 times both with Sg. and Pl.; but many of the instances are editorial.Verse 1. - And Moses called all Israel [called to all Israel], and said. "The calling refers not to the publicity of the address, but to the clear voice which, breaking forth from the inmost heart of Moses, aimed at penetrating, as far as possible, to all (Genesis 49:1; John 7:37)" (Schroeder). (Cf. also Proverbs 8:4.) Deuteronomy 4:44, we have the general notice in the form of a heading: "This is the Thorah which Moses set before the children of Israel;" and then, in Deuteronomy 4:45, Deuteronomy 4:46, a fuller description of the Thorah according to its leading features, "testimonies, statutes, and rights" (see at Deuteronomy 4:1), together with a notice of the place and time at which Moses delivered this address. "On their coming out of Egypt," i.e., not "after they had come out," but during the march, before they had reached the goal of their journeyings, viz., (Deuteronomy 4:46) when they were still on the other side of the Jordan. "In the valley," as in Deuteronomy 3:29. "In the land of Sihon," and therefore already upon ground which the Lord had given them for a possession. The importance of this possession as the first-fruit and pledge of the fulfilment of the further promises of God, led Moses to mention again, though briefly, the defeat of the two kings of the Amorites, together with the conquest of their land, just as he had done before in Deuteronomy 2:32-36 and Deuteronomy 3:1-17. On Deuteronomy 4:48, cf. Deuteronomy 3:9, Deuteronomy 3:12-17. Sion, for Hermon (see at Deuteronomy 3:9).
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