Deuteronomy 4:1-49

  • A call to obedience (1-14)

    • Do not forget God’s acts (9)

  • Jehovah requires exclusive devotion (15-31)

  • No other God besides Jehovah (32-40)

  • Cities of refuge east of the Jordan (41-43)

  • Introduction to the Law (44-49)

4  “Now, O Israel, listen to the regulations and the judicial decisions that I am teaching you to observe, so that you may live+ and go in and take possession of the land that Jehovah, the God of your forefathers, is giving you.  You must not add to the word that I am commanding you, neither must you take away from it,+ so as to keep the commandments of Jehovah your God that I am commanding you.  “Your own eyes have seen what Jehovah did in the case of the Baʹal of Peʹor; Jehovah your God annihilated from your midst every man who walked after the Baʹal of Peʹor.+  But you who are holding fast to Jehovah your God are all alive today.  See, I have taught you regulations and judicial decisions,+ just as Jehovah my God has commanded me, so that you may observe them in the land you will take possession of.  You must carefully follow them,+ because this will show wisdom+ and understanding+ on your part before the peoples who will hear about all these regulations, and they will say, ‘This great nation is undoubtedly a wise and understanding people.’+  For what great nation has gods as near to it as Jehovah our God is to us whenever we call on him?+  And what great nation has righteous regulations and judicial decisions like this entire Law that I am putting before you today?+  “Just be careful and watch yourself closely,* so that you may not forget the things that your eyes have seen and so that they may not depart from your heart all the days of your life. You must also make them known to your sons and to your grandsons.+ 10  On the day that you stood before Jehovah your God in Horʹeb, Jehovah said to me, ‘Congregate the people together to me so that I may let them hear my words,+ in order that they may learn to fear me+ all the days that they are alive on the ground and that they may teach their sons.’+ 11  “So you came near and stood at the base of the mountain, and the mountain was burning with fire up to the very heavens;* there was darkness, cloud, and thick gloom.+ 12  And Jehovah began to speak to you out of the fire.+ You heard the sound of words, but you saw no form+—there was only a voice.+ 13  And he declared his covenant to you,+ which he commanded you to observe—the Ten Commandments.*+ Afterward, he wrote them on two tablets of stone.+ 14  At that time Jehovah commanded me to teach you regulations and judicial decisions, which you are to observe in the land you will enter to take possession of. 15  “Therefore, watch yourselves closely*—since you did not see any form on the day Jehovah spoke to you in Horʹeb out of the middle of the fire— 16  that you may not act corruptly by making for yourselves any carved image having the form of any symbol, the representation of male or female,+ 17  the representation of any animal on the earth or the representation of any bird that flies in the sky,+ 18  the representation of anything creeping on the ground or the representation of any fish in the waters under the earth.+ 19  And when you raise your eyes to the heavens and see the sun and the moon and the stars—all the army of the heavens—do not get seduced and bow down to them and serve them.+ Jehovah your God has given them to all the peoples under the whole heavens. 20  But you are the ones Jehovah took and brought out of the iron-smelting furnace, out of Egypt, to become the people of his personal possession,*+ as you are today. 21  “Jehovah became angry with me because of you,+ and he swore that I should not cross the Jordan or go into the good land that Jehovah your God is giving you as an inheritance.+ 22  For I am to die in this land; I will not cross the Jordan,+ but you will cross over and take possession of this good land. 23  Be careful that you do not forget the covenant of Jehovah your God that he made with you,+ and do not make for yourselves a carved image, the form of anything forbidden to you by Jehovah your God.+ 24  For Jehovah your God is a consuming fire,+ a God who requires exclusive devotion.+ 25  “If you become father to sons and grandsons and you have lived a long time in the land and you act ruinously and make a carved image+ of any kind and you do what is evil in the eyes of Jehovah your God so as to offend him,+ 26  I do take the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you today that you will surely and quickly perish from the land that you are crossing the Jordan to take possession of. You will not last long on it, but you will be utterly annihilated.+ 27  Jehovah will scatter you among the peoples,+ and just a few of you will survive+ among the nations to which Jehovah will have driven you. 28  There you will have to serve gods of wood and stone made by human hands,+ gods that cannot see or hear or eat or smell. 29  “If you search for Jehovah your God from there, you will certainly find him,+ if you inquire for him with all your heart and with all your soul.*+ 30  When you are in great distress and all these things have happened to you in later times, then you will return to Jehovah your God and listen to his voice.+ 31  For Jehovah your God is a merciful God.+ He will not desert you or bring you to ruin or forget the covenant that he swore to your forefathers.+ 32  “Ask, now, about the former days before your time, from the day when God created man on the earth; search from one end of the heavens to the other end of the heavens. Has anything so great ever happened or has anything like it ever been heard of?+ 33  Have any other people heard the voice of God speaking out of the fire the way you have heard it and kept on living?+ 34  Or has God ever attempted to take for himself a nation out of the midst of another nation along with judgments,* with signs, with miracles,+ with war,+ with a mighty hand,+ with an outstretched arm, and with terrifying deeds,+ as Jehovah your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes? 35  You yourselves have been shown these things so you will know that Jehovah is the true God;+ there is no other besides him.+ 36  He made you hear his voice from the heavens to correct you, and on the earth he made you see his great fire, and his words you heard from out of the fire.+ 37  “Because he loved your forefathers and has chosen their offspring* after them,+ you were brought out of Egypt in his presence by his great power. 38  From before you he drove away nations greater and mightier than you, to bring you in and give you their land as an inheritance, as it is today.+ 39  Know, therefore, on this day, and take it to heart that Jehovah is the true God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath.+ There is no other.+ 40  You must keep his regulations and his commandments that I am commanding you today, in order that it may go well with you and your sons after you, so that you may long remain in the land that Jehovah your God is giving you.”+ 41  At that time Moses set apart three cities on the eastern side of the Jordan.+ 42  If any manslayer unintentionally kills his fellow man and he did not previously hate him,+ he must flee to one of these cities and live.+ 43  The cities are Beʹzer+ in the wilderness on the tableland* for the Reuʹben·ites, Raʹmoth+ in Gilʹe·ad for the Gadʹites, and Goʹlan+ in Baʹshan for the Ma·nasʹsites.+ 44  Now this is the Law+ that Moses set before the people of Israel. 45  These are the reminders, the regulations, and the judicial decisions that Moses gave to the Israelites after they came out of Egypt,+ 46  in the region of the Jordan, in the valley opposite Beth-peʹor,+ in the land of King Siʹhon of the Amʹor·ites, who was dwelling in Heshʹbon,+ whom Moses and the Israelites defeated after coming out of Egypt.+ 47  And they took possession of his land and of the land of King Og+ of Baʹshan, the two kings of the Amʹor·ites who were in the region east of the Jordan, 48  from A·roʹer,+ which is on the rim of the Arʹnon Valley,* up to Mount Siʹon, that is, Herʹmon,+ 49  and all the Arʹa·bah in the region east of the Jordan, and as far as the Sea of the Arʹa·bah,* at the base of the slopes of Pisʹgah.+


Or “and pay close attention to your soul.”
Lit., “up to the heart of the heavens.”
Lit., “the Ten Words.” Also known as the Decalogue.
Or “pay close attention to your souls.”
Or “of his inheritance.”
Or “trials.”
Lit., “seed.”
Or “plateau.”
Or “Wadi Arnon.”
That is, the Salt Sea, or the Dead Sea.