Observe you that which I command you this day: behold, I drive out before you the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)The Amorite, and the Canaanite . . . —The same six nations are particularised in Exodus 3:8; Exodus 3:17, in Exodus 23:23, and also in Exodus 33:2. In Deuteronomy 7:1, and Joshua 3:10; Joshua 24:11, the Girgashites are added, and the number of the nations made seven.Exodus 34:11. Observe that which I command thee — We cannot expect the benefit of the promises unless we make conscience of the precepts. The two great precepts are, 1st, Thou shalt worship no other gods — A good reason is annexed; for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God — As tender in the matters of his worship as the husband is of the honour of the marriage bed. 2d, Thou shalt make thee no molten gods — Thou shalt not worship the true God by images. This was the sin they had lately fallen into, which therefore they are particularly cautioned against. That they might not be tempted to worship other gods, they must not join in affinity or friendship with those that did.2 Samuel 7:23; Psalm 77:14.
behold, I drive out before thee; not before Moses, but the people of Israel:
the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite; six nations are only mentioned, though there were seven, the Girgashites being omitted, because either they left the land before, as some think, or because they at once submitted; they are added in the Septuagint version.Observe thou that which I command thee this day: behold, I drive out before thee the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)11. that which I am commanding thee this day] viz. the injunction which follows (v. 12 ff.), to have no dealings with the Canaanites. The formula is one which is extremely common in Dt. (Deuteronomy 4:40, Deuteronomy 6:6, Deuteronomy 7:11, Deuteronomy 8:1; Deuteronomy 8:11 &c.).
behold, &c.] Jehovah Himself will make the way easy for such a command to be obeyed.
drive out] The promise, as Exodus 23:28-30, Exodus 33:2 : cf. the same word in a command, Exodus 23:31 b.
the Amorite, &c.] See on Exodus 3:8.
11–16. No alliance to be entered into with the Canaanites, lest intercourse with them seduce Israel into idolatry (comp. Exodus 23:24; Exodus 23:32 f., Deuteronomy 7:2-5).
11–26. The conditions of the covenant, i.e. the laws upon the acceptance of which its establishment depends. The laws themselves seem to have received parenetic additions from the compiler.Verse 11. - Observe thou that which I command thee this day. The precepts expressly given (vers. 12-26) are, as observed above, almost wholly positive. The moral law did not require recapitulation, because it was enjoined on the people afresh by the writing on the two tables (ver. 28). I drive out before thee. Compare Exodus 3:8, 17; Exodus 6:4, 8; Exodus 13:5, 11; Exodus 33:2. Exodus 33:14), he was directed by Jehovah to hew out two stones, like the former ones which he had broken, and to come with them the next morning up the mountain, and Jehovah would write upon them the same words as upon the first,
(Note: Namely, the ten words in Exodus 20:2-17, not the laws contained in Exodus 34:12-26 of this chapter, as Gthe and Hitzig suppose. See Hengstenberg, Dissertations ii. p. 319, and Kurtz on the Old Covenant iii.182ff.)
and thus restore the covenant record. It was also commanded, as in the former case (Exodus 19:12-13), that no one should go up the mountain with him, or be seen upon it, and that not even cattle should feed against the mountain, i.e., in the immediate neighbourhood (Exodus 34:3). The first tables of the covenant were called "tables of stone" (Exodus 24:12; Exodus 31:18); the second, on the other hand, which were hewn by Moses, are called "tables of stones" (Exodus 34:1 and Exodus 34:4); and the latter expression is applied indiscriminately to both of them in Deuteronomy 4:13; Deuteronomy 5:19; Deuteronomy 9:9-11; Deuteronomy 10:1-4. This difference does not indicate a diversity in the records, but may be explained very simply from the fact, that the tables prepared by Moses were hewn from two stones, and not both from the same block; whereas all that could be said of the former, which had been made by God Himself, was that they were of stone, since no one knew whether God had used one stone or two for the purpose. There is apparently far more importance in the following distinction, that the second tables were delivered by Moses and only written upon by God, whereas in the case of the former both the writing and the materials came from God. This cannot have been intended either as a punishment for the nation (Hengstenberg), or as "the sign of a higher stage of the covenant, inasmuch as the further the reciprocity extended, the firmer was the covenant" (Baumgarten). It is much more natural to seek for the cause, as Rashi does, in the fact, that Moses had broken the first in pieces; only we must not regard it as a sign that God disapproved of the manifestation of anger on the part of Moses, but rather as a recognition of his zealous exertions for the restoration of the covenant which had been broken by the sin of the nation. As Moses had restored the covenant through his energetic intercession, he should also provide the materials for the renewal of the covenant record, and bring them to God, for Him to complete and confirm the record by writing the covenant words upon the tables.
On the following morning, when Moses ascended the mountain, Jehovah granted him the promised manifestation of His glory (Exodus 34:5.). The description of this unparalleled occurrence is in perfect harmony with the mysterious and majestic character of the revelation. "Jehovah descended (from heaven) in the cloud, and stood by him there, and proclaimed the name of Jehovah; and Jehovah passed by in his sight, and proclaimed Jehovah, Jehovah God, merciful and gracious," etc. What Moses saw we are not told, but simply the words in which Jehovah proclaimed all the glory of His being; whilst it is recorded of Moses, that he bowed his head toward the earth and worshipped. This "sermon on the name of the Lord," as Luther calls it, disclosed to Moses the most hidden nature of Jehovah. It proclaimed that God is love, but that kind of love in which mercy, grace, long-suffering, goodness, and truth are united with holiness and justice. As the merciful One, who is great in goodness and truth, Jehovah shows mercy to the thousandth, forgiving sin and iniquity in long-suffering and grace; but He does not leave sin altogether unpunished, and in His justice visits the sin of the fathers upon the children and the children's children even unto the fourth generation. The Lord had already revealed Himself to the whole nation from Mount Sinai as visiting sin and showing mercy (Exodus 20:5.). But whereas on that occasion the burning zeal of Jehovah which visits sin stood in the foreground, and mercy only followed afterwards, here grace, mercy, and goodness are placed in the front. And accordingly all the words which the language contained to express the idea of grace in its varied manifestations to the sinner, are crowded together here, to reveal the fact that in His inmost being God is love. But in order that grace may not be perverted by sinners into a ground of wantonness, justice is not wanting even here with its solemn threatenings, although it only follows mercy, to show that mercy is mightier than wrath, and that holy love does not punish til sinners despise the riches of the goodness, patience, and long-suffering of God. As Jehovah here proclaimed His name, so did He continue to bear witness of it to the Israelites, from their departure from Sinai till their entrance into Canaan, and from that time forward till their dispersion among the heathen, and even now in their exile showing mercy to the thousandth, when they turn to the Redeemer who has come out of Zion.
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