Exodus 24:3
And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD has said will we do.
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(3) Moses . . . told the people all the words of the Lord.—Moses gave them an outline of the legislation which he subsequently committed to writing (Exodus 24:4) and formed into “the Book of the Covenant” (Exodus 24:7). Its general purport and main heads were communicated, but probably not all its details. Otherwise it would scarcely have been necessary to read the contents of the book to them. The people willingly gave in their adhesion, feeling the laws to be “holy, just, and good,” and not yet knowing how difficult they would find it to render a perfect obedience.

Exodus 24:3. Moses told the people all the words of the Lord — He laid before them all the precepts, in the foregoing chapters, and put it to them, whether they were willing to submit to these laws or not? And all the people answered, All the words which the Lord hath said will we do — They had before consented in general to be under God’s government; here they consent in particular to these laws now given.24:1-8 A solemn covenant was made between God and Israel. Very solemn it was, typifying the covenant of grace between God and believers, through Christ. As soon as God separated to himself a peculiar people, he governed them by a written word, as he has done ever since. God's covenants and commands are so just in themselves, and so much for our good, that the more we think of them, and the more plainly and fully they are set before us, the more reason we may see to comply with them. The blood of the sacrifice was sprinkled on the altar, on the book, and on the people. Neither their persons, their moral obedience, nor religious services, would meet with acceptance from a holy God, except through the shedding and sprinkling' of blood. Also the blessings granted unto them were all of mercy; and the Lord would deal with them in kindness. Thus the sinner, by faith in the blood of Christ, renders willing and acceptable obedience.Are placed by some with great probability between Exodus 24:8-9. 3, 4. Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord—The rehearsal of the foregoing laws and the ten commandments, together with the promises of special blessings in the event of their obedience, having drawn forth from the people a unanimous declaration of their consent, it was forthwith recorded as the conditions of the national covenant. The next day preparations were made for having it (the covenant) solemnly ratified, by building an altar and twelve pillars; the altar representing God, and the pillars the tribes of Israel—the two parties in this solemn compact—while Moses acted as typical mediator. Moses came down from the mount to the people, after he had received the laws from God.

All the words which the Lord hath said will we do: this they so readily and rashly promise, because they were not sensible of their own weakness, and because they did not understand the comprehensiveness, and spirituality, and strictness of God’s law, but thought it consisted only in the external performances and abstinences expressed. And Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord, and all the judgments,.... Which according to Jarchi were the seven commands given to the sons of Noah, the laws concerning the sabbath, and honouring parents, the red heifer, and the judgments at Marah; but all these they were acquainted with before, excepting that of the red heifer, and the law, for that was not yet delivered to Moses, nor were these the ten commands, for they had heard them from the Lord themselves; but they doubtless were the judgments, or judicial laws, which he was ordered to set before the people, contained in the two preceding chapters, which were chiefly of the judicial kind, and related to the civil polity of the people of Israel:

and all the people answered with one voice; one speaking for, and in the name of the rest, or they all lift up their voice together, and being unanimous in their sentiments, expressed them in the same words:

and said, all the words which the Lord hath said will we do; that is, they would be careful to observe all the laws, statutes, judgments, and commands which the Lord had enjoined them; and less than this they could not say, for they had promised Moses, that if he would draw nigh to God, and hear what he should say, and deliver it to them, they would hearken to it, and obey it, as if they had heard God himself speak it; only they entreated the Lord would speak no more to them, as he did the ten commands, it being so terrible to them.

{b} And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.

(b) When he had received these laws in mount Sinai.

3. the words … and the judgements] i.e. (see on Exodus 21:1) both the positive commands, and the ‘judgements,’ or decisions prescribing what is to be done in particular cases, contained in Exodus 20:22 to Exodus 23:33. The Decalogue, which the people had heard themselves, cannot be included in the terms used. The fact, however, that only the ‘words’ are referred to in clauseb suggests that ‘and the judgements’ in cl.a may be an addition of the redactor who placed the ‘judgements’ of Exodus 21:2 to Exodus 22:17 in their present position (cf. on v. 12).

3–8 (E). The sequel to Exodus 23:33. Moses communicates to the people the words which Jehovah has spoken; and upon their expressing their assent to them, solemnly concludes a covenant, on the basis of them, between Jehovah and the nation.Verse 3. - And Moses came. Moses descended from the mount, and reported to the people all the words of the Lord - all the legislation contained in the last three chapters and a half (Exodus 20:19, to Exodus 23:33), not perhaps in extenso, but as to its main provisions. And all the people answered with one voice, promising obedience. In times of excitement, a common impulse constantly animates an entire multitude, and an exaltation of feeling leads them to make pledges, which they are very unwilling to stand by afterwards. Hence Moses requires something more than a verbal assent. In addition to the fear of God, hornets (הצּרעה construed as a generic word with the collective article), a very large species of wasp, that was greatly dreaded both by man and beast on account of the acuteness of its sting, should come and drive out the Canaanites, of whom three tribes are mentioned instar omnium, from before the Israelites. Although it is true that Aelian (hist. anim. 11, 28) relates that the Phaselians, who dwelt near the Solymites, and therefore probably belonged to the Canaanites, were driven out of their country by wasps, and Bochart (Hieroz. iii. pp. 409ff.) has collected together accounts of different tribes that have been frightened away from their possessions by frogs, mice, and other vermin, "the sending of hornets before the Israelites" is hardly to be taken literally, not only because there is not a word in the book of Joshua about the Canaanites being overcome and exterminated in any such way, but chiefly on account of Joshua 24:12, where Joshua says that God sent the hornet before them, and drove out the two kings of the Amorites, referring thereby to their defeat and destruction by the Israelites through the miraculous interposition of God, and thus placing the figurative use of the term hornet beyond the possibility of doubt. These hornets, however, which are very aptly described in Wis. 12:8, on the basis of this passage, as προδρόμους, the pioneers of the army of Jehovah, do not denote merely varii generis mala, as Rosenmller supposes, but acerrimos timoris aculeos, quibus quodammodo volantibus rumoribus pungebantur, ut fugerent (Augustine, quaest. 27 in Jos.). If the fear of God which fell upon the Canaanites threw them into such confusion and helpless despair, that they could not stand before Israel, but turned their backs towards them, the stings of alarm which followed this fear would completely drive them away. Nevertheless God would not drive them away at once, "in one year," lest the land should become a desert for want of men to cultivate it, and the wild beasts should multiply against Israel; in other words, lest the beasts of prey should gain the upper hand and endanger the lives of man and beast (Leviticus 26:22; Ezekiel 14:15, Ezekiel 14:21), which actually was the case after the carrying away of the ten tribes (2 Kings 17:25-26). He would drive them out by degrees (מעט מעט, only used here and in Deuteronomy 7:22), until Israel was sufficiently increased to take possession of the land, i.e., to occupy the whole of the country. This promise was so far fulfilled, according to the books of Joshua and Judges, that after the subjugation of the Canaanites in the south and north of the land, when all the kings who fought against Israel had been smitten and slain and their cities captured, the entire land was divided among the tribes of Israel, in order that they might exterminate the remaining Canaanites, and take possession of those portions of the land that had not yet been conquered (Joshua 13:1-7). But the different tribes soon became weary of the task of exterminating the Canaanites, and began to enter into alliance with them, and were led astray by them to the worship of idols; whereupon God punished them by withdrawing His assistance, and they were oppressed and humiliated by the Canaanites because of their apostasy from the Lord (Judges 1 and 2).
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