The 365 Day Devotional Commentary



Deuteronomy is the fifth and last book written by Moses. Deuteronomy, placed historically about 1400 B.C., means “second (repeated) law.” It is written in the form of a second-millennium-B.C. treaty between a ruler and his people. The Israelites had been slaves in Egypt until God intervened about 1450 B.C. God set them free through a series of miracles and led them to Mount Sinai. There Moses, whom God had called to lead Israel, gave God’s people a Law, a priesthood, a sacrificial system, and a portable place of worship. But when the Exodus generation approached Canaan, a land God had promised to Israel’s ancestor Abraham, the Israelites rebelled.

For 40 years Israel wandered in circles in the desert, until every adult member of that first, rebellious generation had died. In Deuteronomy Moses is speaking to their children—a new generation that is now ready to obey God and about to conquer the land God has promised to His people. This review of the divine Law is given to this new generation of Israelites to explain the nature of their relationship with the Lord. At the end of the book this new generation, knowing the nature of the relationship God intends to have with Israel, is challenged to commit itself fully to the Lord. Deuteronomy reminds us that grace has always characterized God’s relationships with human beings.

God was motivated by love alone in choosing Israel. The Law showing Israel how to live in covenant relationship with Him is also an expression of love. Deuteronomy also teaches that love for God is the sole motive powerful enough to move human beings to respond obediently to the Lord. Deuteronomy, which is quoted some 80 times in the New Testament, has rightly been called the Old Testament’s “gospel of love.”


I.Moses’ Review of HistoryDeut. 1–4
A. What God has done for IsraelDeut. 1–3
B. How Israel is to respondDeut. 4
II.Moses’ Presentation of the Treaty with GodDeut. 5–28
A. Fundamental principles of relationshipDeut. 5–11
B. Specific examples of requirementsDeut. 12–26
C. Challenge to personal commitmentDeut. 27–28
III.Moses’ Exhortation to Complete CommitmentDeut. 29–30
IV.Moses’ Last ActsDeut. 31–34
(pge 106)

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