Deuteronomy 31 is a text of great historical value that teaches us that our ambition must always be compatible with God’s command and with humility we must accept our mission. Today we are going to show it to you in this article!
Deuteronomy 31, Bible kjv
Knowing the history of the great characters of the Bible is something fundamental and precious that helps us to understand the Word of God much more and gives us life lessons that we would hardly learn without their existence.
Moses was one of these great characters and, as it could not be otherwise, great teachings can be drawn from his texts and experiences. In this case we find Deuteronomy 31, one of the last chapters of his long life in which he shows us his faithful character to God.
In today’s article of Your Online Bible we are going to show you this beautiful biblical story, commenting on the most important facts of the final part of Moses’ life and reflecting on the lessons we can draw from it.
Deuteronomy 31 in English and large print
Now you can complete your first contact with Deuteronomy 31 by reading it at your own pace, enjoying every precious message you can find in the text. This is the 1960 King James Version chapter of the Bible, which is considered by many to be the best translation of the Bible today.
Joshua is installed as successor of Moses
1 Moses went and spoke these words to all Israel,
2 And he said unto them, This day I am an hundred and twenty years old; I can neither go out nor come in any more: moreover the LORD hath said unto me, Thou shalt not go over this Jordan.
3 The LORD thy God, he shall pass over before thee; he shall destroy these nations before thee, and thou shalt inherit them: Joshua shall be he that shall pass over before thee, as the LORD hath spoken.
4 And the LORD will do to them as he did to Sihon and Og, kings of the Amorites, and to their land, whom he destroyed.
5 And the LORD shall deliver them up before you, and you shall do unto them according to all that I have commanded you.
6 Be strong and of good courage; fear ye not, neither be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God is he that goeth with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
7 And Moses called Joshua, and said unto him in the presence of all Israel, Be strong and of good courage: for thou shalt go in with this people unto the land which the LORD sware unto their fathers to give them, and thou shalt cause them to inherit it.
8 And the LORD goes before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee; fear not, nor be dismayed.
9 And Moses wrote this law, and gave it to the priests the sons of Levi, who bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD, and to all the elders of Israel.
10 And Moses commanded them, saying, At the end of every seven years, in the year of release, in the feast of tabernacles,
11 When all Israel shall come to appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose, then thou shalt read this law before all Israel in their hearing.
12 Thou shalt gather the people together, both men and women and children, and thy strangers that are in thy cities, that they may hear and learn, and fear the LORD your God, and observe to do all the words of this law;
13 And let their children who have not known hear, and learn to fear the LORD your God all the days that you live in the land whither you go over Jordan, to possess it.
14 And the LORD said unto Moses, Behold, the day of thy death is at hand: call Joshua, and wait ye in the tabernacle of the congregation, that I may give him the charge. So Moses and Joshua went and waited in the tabernacle of the congregation.
15 And the LORD appeared in the tabernacle in the pillar of cloud; and the pillar of cloud stood over the door of the tabernacle.
16 And the LORD said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, and this people shall rise up and play the harlot after the strange gods of the land whither they go to be in the midst thereof; and they shall forsake me, and break my covenant which I have made with them;
17 And my wrath shall be kindled against him in that day; and I will forsake them, and will hide my face from them, and they shall be consumed; and many evils and troubles shall come upon them, and they shall say in that day, Are not these evils come upon me, because my God is not in the midst of me?
18 But I will surely hide my face in that day, because of all the evil that they will have done, because they have turned to other gods.
19 Now therefore write you this song, and teach it to the children of Israel; put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness to me against the children of Israel.
20 For I will bring them into the land which I swore to their fathers, which floweth with milk and honey; and they shall eat and be satisfied, and wax fat; and they shall turn unto other gods, and serve them, and shall be wroth with me, and break my covenant.
21 And when many evils and distresses come upon them, then this song shall answer in their face as a witness, for it shall be remembered by the mouth of their descendants; for I know what they intend beforehand, before I bring them into the land which I swore to give them.
22 And Moses wrote this song that day, and taught it to the children of Israel.
23 And he commanded Joshua the son of Nun, and said, Be strong and of good courage: for thou shalt bring the children of Israel into the land which I sware unto them, and I will be with thee.
Order to keep the law by the ark
24 And when Moses had finished writing the words of this law in a book until it was finished,
25 Moses gave orders to the Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of the LORD, saying:
26 Take this book of the law, and put it beside the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and let it be there for a witness against you.
27 For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck: behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye rebel against the LORD: how much more after my death?
28 Gather unto me all the elders of your tribes, and your officers, and I will speak these words in their ears, and will call heaven and earth to witness against them.
29 For I know that after my death ye shall surely corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you, and that evil shall come upon you in the latter days, because ye have done evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger with the work of your hands.
Canticle of Moses
30 Then Moses spoke in the ears of all the congregation of Israel the words of this song until it was finished.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Reflection
With this transcendent text of humility and encouragement, we hope we have given you some of the strength it conveys.
For the message to reach a little deeper into your heart, we invite you to watch the following video reflection on Deuteronomy 31:6, with which you will find the necessary desire to face your problems and move forward.
Explanation and meaning of Deuteronomy 31
In order to understand the chapter of Deuteronomy 31, we will make a detailed analysis of the most outstanding verses, those that are key to the development of the story and that you cannot miss.
With them, we will analyze the surrounding verses, so don’t worry because you won’t miss anything.
“And the LORD will do to them as he did to Sihon and to Og, kings of the Amorites, and to their
earth, whom he destroyed.”
The chapter begins as follows: an old Moses with an unbreakable will has managed to lead his people through the desert and reach the gates of the Promised Land, although it is not up to him to cross the Jordan River and take it, but to Joshua.
The Lord warns that the establishment of the Jews in the land of Canaan will not be an easy process, since the inhabitants of that time would act belligerently, driven by their beliefs in false and violent gods.
The victories over Sihon and Og are narrated in the book of Numbers which, as we have already told you, precedes Deuteronomy both in the Bible and in temporal order. These two kings prevented the passage of the people of Israel through their territory and attacked them with all their might.
Thus, nothing is imposed on the Lord’s desire, and the Israelites were to reach their promised land, just as we will reach eternal salvation if we follow God’s will, even if temptation and other evil people want to prevent it.
“Be strong and courageous, for God will fight for you; do not be afraid of those countries,
for God will not forsake them” (Deuteronomy 31:6 Present Language).
After this warning of the danger of entering the Promised Land, the Lord instills courage in his people and urges them onward with his support.
This message transcends its historical context and reaches out to us, to give us the will to go on living and to take away our fears about our future. The Lord is with you at all times and with his shield there is nothing to fear.
Our duty is to give all we can and strive to follow the Word of God and not fall into temptation, although it is truly difficult. And even in this way, do not be afraid if you do not succeed, accept with humility your error and the Lord will forgive you with all his love.
And Moses called Joshua, and said to him in the presence of all Israel, “Be strong and of good courage; for
you shall go in with this people to the land which the LORD swore to their fathers to give them, and you shall cause them to inherit it.”
In this precious verse, Moses hands over the leadership of his people to Joshua, one of the most faithful and best generals of Israel; this being the man who was to lead the Jews to the end, thus continuing Moses’ mission.
The most important thing to know here is that Moses, even in his advanced age, was still capable of going forward, but the Lord had already foreseen that his mission would have to be completed by the end of his life.
As a good believer, Moses had accepted his destiny and mission and did not hesitate to fulfill God’s command, unlike many other people who would have wanted to continue out of selfishness and fame.
From this verse we can learn that we have to let ourselves be guided by the Lord, listen to Him with our heart and His Word; and let Him proceed with His work. The personal ambitions must be in agreement with God and never exceed them, since it is He who must guide us and tell us when enough is enough.
“God himself will be your guide, and he will help you in everything; he will never forsake you. cast out fear and cowardice!” (Deuteronomy 31:8 tla).
Here we find the best known verse of Deuteronomy 31, which repeats in a clearer and more forceful way what we had already seen before: the Lord is your guide and with Him, you should fear nothing.
Our goals in life must have God in mind and must be dedicated to Him. Only in this way can we achieve true happiness and with his love live without fear of anything or anyone.
With faith, we can cry out from the depths of our being: Away with fear and cowardice! This conviction is only possible if we believe in Our Lord, since it is He who gives us the strength to have it.
“And the LORD said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, and this people shall rise up and play the harlot after the strange gods of the land whither they go to be in the midst thereof; and they shall meddle, and break my covenant which I have made with them.”
During the transfer of leadership between Moses and Joshua, the Lord warns them that his people, once settled and with all their needs met, will forget their covenant and begin to worship false gods.
To this end, he gives them a song that you can find in Deuteronomy 32 and that they were to remember when things went awry due to their weak will.
“But I will surely hide my face in that day, because of all the evil that they will have done, because they have turned to other gods.”
The Lord says that when the day comes that Israel betrays Him, He will no longer be there to protect them, and many misfortunes will befall them.
As it could not be otherwise, all this came to pass and many of these events are narrated in the books that followed them, such as the books of Jeremiah or Isaiah. This betrayal of the covenant was a recurring theme until the coming of Jesus Christ, who renewed the covenant and the laws of God.
“And when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book until it was finished.
Here we find the moment when Moses writes his five books by order of the Lord. The later chapters ending with Deuteronomy were added by Joshua, thus narrating the death of Moses and his subsequent ascension as leader.
These books were to be kept by the priests of Israel and their teachings were the prevailing new law for over a thousand years until the birth of Jesus.
Context of Deuteronomy 31
After knowing the text, it is logical that we place you in the proper context, both within the Bible and chronologically in the history of mankind.
To do this, you should know that the Bible is divided into two parts: the Old Testament and the New Testament. The first is the set of books written before the coming of Christ into the world, while the second are the books that narrate the life of Jesus and some later events that were a consequence of it.
The book of Deuteronomy is found in the Old Testament, being one of the oldest documented sacred texts, since in this case its author was Moses, who lived more than a thousand years before Jesus.
Deuteronomy is the last book of Moses and the one that narrates his death. It is preceded by Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers; also written by himself and which narrate the biblical history chronologically. So, if you want to understand the origin of Christianity, you know where to look!
In the analysis of the chapter, we will give more details, but you must situate Deuteronomy 31 just before the arrival of the Jews to the promised land after the exodus from Egypt. To enter, the Jews must cross the Jordan River, although this is already part of the book of Joshua, as you can see in this chapter.
God bless you and see you next time!