Date:         Fri, 9 Dec 1994 09:53:22 CET
Sender:       Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel
From:         Teus Benschop 
Subject:      Deuteronomy 5
     1.    Introduction
     2.    Explanation
     3.    Questions
  1. Introduction
  This is  an issue of a  continuous explanation of the  Bible-book Dvarim,
  that is  Deuteronomy. If  something is unclear  in the explanation  (they
  are not easy), you  are free to ask me. The Bible-text is  taken from the
  King James version.
  Deuteronomy 5.
  Title: Reminder on the giving of the Ten Commandments
  Short contents:
  Moshe speaks a  foreword, and after that he repeats  the Ten Commandments
  of God. The  nation is very  frightened because of  the hearing of  God's
  voice. Therefore  they ask Moshe  if they may  not hear the voice  of God
  anymore.  They asked if Moshe would speak to them. Moshe urges the people
  to obedience.
  2. Explanation
     1 And  Moshe called all Israel,  and said unto  them, Hear,  O Israel,
     the statutes and judgments  which I speak in your  ears this day, that
     ye may learn them, and keep, and do them.
  Moshe presents the statutes.  He also tells why  he presents them. It  is
  so that  they would  learn and  do  them. Moshe  does not  want that  the
  statutes are learnt to  speak only about  them. No, the  law must not  be
  only  in the  head. They  have  to learn  the laws  to keep  them in  the
  practice, and to do them.
     2 The LORD our God made a covenant with us in Chorev.
  Here, Moshe calls the law  a covenant. The nation is considered worthy to
  be in  a covenant not only with someone else, but with the holy God. This
  honour should spur on the nation the more to maintain the commandments.
     3 The LORD made  not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even
     us, who are all of us here alive this day.
  The  nation  is even  privileged  above  the fathers.  The  fathers  were
  already  obedient  to God,  without  the  covenant of  Chorev.  When  the
  fathers were already obedient,  how much the more  is the nation  obliged
  to  obey. This  privilege above  the fathers must  spur on  the nation to
  keep the commandments of God.
     4 The LORD talked with you face to face in the mount  out of the midst
     of the fire,
  The LORD talked face  to face. This means  that he spoke familiarly.  The
  nation did not need to doubt about the Giver of the commandments. It  was
  totally clear to  them that God  was the Giver.  In this way,  this verse
  again is a spur to the keeping of the commandments.
     5 (I  stood between the  LORD and you  at that time,  to shew  you the
     word of the LORD: for ye  were afraid by reason of the fire, and  went
     not up into the mount;) saying,
  Although  Moshe had  just said that  the LORD spoke  face to  face to the
  nation, here  he  adds something.  For in  reality Moshe  was a  mediator
  between the nation and the LORD.
     6 I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of  the land of Egypt,
     from the house of bondage.
  This  is  the introduction  to  the  law  of the  Ten  Commandments.  God
  mentions  three reasons,  why the  nation should  keep His  law. With the
  words "I am the  LORD", the LORD shows His authority on the nation. He is
  the  Creator, and  Lord of  all. God deserves  obedience. The  words "thy
  God" point  out that God  is especially the  God of the  Israelites. They
  must not be only spurred  on by the authority of the  LORD, but they must
  also be pulled  amiably by their own  God. Further, God says that  He has
  delivered  the  nation  out  of  the  house  of  bondage  of Egypt.  This
  benefaction shows the right, which God has on the nation.
     7 Thou shalt have none other gods before me.
  God  commands that  only He  must be  served. When  one would  have other
  gods,  this   would   be  superstition.   Therefore,   God  forbids   all
  superstition. The religion had  to be and to  stay purified from all  the
  human  additions. The religion has  always to be  purified from the human
  findings,  which   are  stealing  inwards.  This  needs  much  attention.
  Although  this is  a  prohibition  to serve  other  gods, yet  from  this
  results  a command. Which command? To serve  only God. That means that we
  ought to rely only on Hem. Who relies on  God will keep standing, but who
  relies on something  else will fall. Tanach teaches  us this. "Some trust
  in chariots,  and some in horses:  but we will  remember the name  of the
  LORD  our God. They  are brought down  and fallen: but we  are risen, and
  stand  upright," Thilliem  / Psalm  20:8,9.  Here we  see  it. They,  who
  trusted in  chariots and horses  are fallen. But  they, who rely  on God,
  keep standing upright.
     8 Thou shalt  not make thee any graven  image, or any likeness of  any
     thing that is in  heaven above,  or that is in  the earth beneath,  or
     that is in the waters beneath the earth:
  In verse seven is  commanded that only God  may be served. In this  verse
  is said in  which way God has to be served.  Not on the way of the graven
  image, or any likeness.  This is not  allowed, because God is  spiritual.
  Who  would  make an  image  of Him  should  change God's  spirituality in
  something corporally.  This would bring great  harm to God's  majesty and
  holiness.  Therefore we persist that God is spiritual, and not can be put
  for the  eyes.  Why are  mentioned in  this commandment  the heaven,  the
  earth and  the waters?  This  has a  cause. Somebody,  who  walks in  the
  nature  and looks on that, sees therein great beauty. This is good. Also,
  Davied saw that beauty.  "The heavens declare the  glory of God; and  the
  firmament sheweth  his handywork,"  Thilliem / Psalm  19:1. But it  could
  happen that the  the man wil  start worshipping the nature  as a god.  Or
  that  he wants to worship God in  the nature. And that he gets stuck with
  his  minds in the  nature, and not  rises to  God. It is  this, which God
  forbids  in  this  verse.  So we  see  that  all  nature-worshippers  are
  condemned here.
     9 Thou shalt  not bow  down thyself unto them,  nor serve them:  for I
     the LORD  thy  God am  a  jealous God,  visiting the  iniquity of  the
     fathers upon  the children  unto the  third and  fourth generation  of
     them that hate me,
  God forbids  the serving of  the idols.  Which reason  does the LORD  use
  before this?  In the  first place He  uses His  authority. The LORD  is a
  jealous God. Then He uses a threat. He is a  God, Who visits the iniquity
  to the offspring unto  the fourth generation. How  is this now? Must  the
  children die because of  the disobedience of  the parents? No, that  not,
  because God  does not  punish the innocent.  "The soul  that sinneth,  it
  shall  die. The son  shall not bear  the iniquity of  the father, neither
  shall the father bear the  iniquity of the son: the righteousness  of the
  righteous shall be upon  him, and the wickedness  of the wicked shall  be
  upon him," Jchezkeel  / Ezekiel 18:20.  Here is meant something  else. It
  will be in general  so, that the descendants  of the wicked fathers  also
  will  sin by  themselves. Because  the descendants  themselves sin  also,
  they are punished for  their own sins. Therefore,  in the Hebrew text  is
  written:  to thirds, and to the fourths, to  them that hate Me. With this
  is  meant that  God  will only  punish,  when the  third  and the  fourth
  generation will hate Him.
     10 And shewing mercy  unto thousands of them that love me and  keep my
  The LORD  has insisted his commandments  by His authority and  by threat,
  in the previous verse. In this verse, He adds  important instigation. God
  punished the  inequity only to the fourth  generation, but with His mercy
  it  is  totally different.  That  is  much  greater.  He shows  mercy  to
  thousands of  them that love  Him. Here you see  the great grace  of God.
  God is  indebted nothing  to the people;  nevertheless, He promises  them
  great things. His mercies go about thousands. Attend  that the people may
  not rest on God's  mercies, and meanwhile sin.  No, His mercies are  unto
  thousands, who  love Him and keep  His commandments. Herein  is something
  remarkable.  For who  keeps  God's commandments,  he  should deserve  the
  salvation.  In fact there  had to be  written: And give  pay to thousands
  from them, who keep My  commandments. But this is not written  there. God
  does not give pay  to them, who keep  His commandments and love  Him, but
  He is  merciful to them.  Hereof is  clear the  undeserved grace of  God.
  Even  they, who love Him,  have no claim on  pay. They receive all things
  in grace.  Why not in pay? Because there  is no man who  can serve God as
  it should be. There is nobody who not does sin. It is  therefore, that we
  must speak about mercy.
     11 Thou shalt not take the name of  Adonai thy God in vain: for Adonai
     will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.
  The Name of Adonai is  very holy. Therefore, God's  Name may not be  used
  in vain. This does not mean  that God's Name must be kept silent, because
  of  fear of  misuse. Tanach  teaches  us differently.  Davied teaches  in
  short how one can use God's Name. "Bless Adonai, o my soul:  and all that
  is within me, bless his  holy name," Thilliem / Psalm 103:1. Davied calls
  the  Name of God  holy to a  prevention against misuse.  However, he does
  not keep  silent God's  Name, but he  praises Him. So  we see  that God's
  Name may be  used, but not in vain. In vain, that is useless. The Name of
  God cannot be used for  every little thing. That is in  vain and useless.
  Where it is suitable, there God's Name may be  mentioned. But one forgets
  too  quickly not  to profane  God's  Name. Therefore,  God threatens  the
  transgressors with His punishment.
     12  Keep  the sabbath  day  to sanctify  it, as  Adonai  thy God  hath
     commanded thee.
  The intention  of the Sabbath  is that  the believers this  day specially
  set  apart for the service of God.  That is meant by sanctifying. Here is
  not commanded to serve God  only on the Sabbath. For elsewhere is written
  that  one has  to serve  God  all days.  "Adonai was  ready  to save  me:
  therefore we will sing my songs to the stringed  instruments all the days
  of our life in  the house of Adonai," Jeshajah  / Isaiah 38:20. There  is
  no permission to do during  the week as the lovers of the world  do. Here
  is commanded to keep the Sabbath  specially. This day is dedicated,  more
  then the others days, to the sanctification of God's Name.
     13 Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work:
  You  have six days for your work.  Surely, this is not asked too much, to
  specially dedicate only one day to God. Six days  you shall do your work,
  but on the seventh you shall do My work.
     14  But the seventh  day is the sabbath of  Adonai thy God: in it thou
     shalt not do  any work, thou,  nor thy son, nor thy  daughter, nor thy
     manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thine ox, nor thine ass, nor  any
     of  thy cattle,  nor thy stranger  that is within thy  gates; that thy
     manservant and thy maidservant may rest as well as thou.
  On the seventh  day man shall  not do any  work. Then men may  rest. What
  does this  mean?  Does this  mean that  you may  rest well,  and nice  do
  nothing?  Does  the service  of  God  consist therein,  in  idleness  and
  laziness? Many people  would want that. Doing nothing in  the name of the
  service of God.  God admonishes us not  to do such a  terrible thing. "If
  thou turn away thy foot from the  sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on  my
  holy  day;  and  call  the   sabbath  a  delight,  the  holy  of  Adonai,
  honourable; and shalt  honour him, not doing thine own  ways, nor finding
  thine own  pleasure, nor  speaking thine  own words",  Jeshajah /  Isaiah
  58:13. In  this text, we are  admonished not to do  our pleasure on God's
  holy day, not to do our own  ways, and not to speak a word of our desire,
  on God's day.  We have to call God's  day a delight, so  that Adonai will
  be sanctified. That is  the real goal of  the Sabbath. Not doing  our own
  desire, but sanctifying the Name  of God. From this we learn that we have
  to  deny  totally  our  own  pleasures.  And  that  we  totally  dedicate
  ourselves to the service  of God. Only when  our desires are denied,  and
  we devote  ourselves to God, only  then there is  a matter of  rest. Then
  you are no longer persecuted by your own desires. Then both the  body and
  the spirit rest in  God. That is why Jeshajah / Isaiah says, that we have
  to  "call  the  sabbath  a delight,  the  holy  of  Adonai,  honourable,"
  Jeshajah  / Isaiah 58:13. May we than  totally not have physical rest? Is
  there not a  matter of servants  and maidservants,  who may rest?  Truly.
  And when they  serve God on  that day, entirely,  after they have  worked
  hard during six days, than this is a blessed rest for them.
     15 And  remember that thou wast  a servant in  the land of Egypt,  and
     that Adonai  thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and
     by a  stretched out arm:  therefore Adonai thy  God commanded  thee to
     keep the sabbath day.
  Adonai uses an instigation  to keep the Sabbath. Adonai brought  them out
  of  Egypt, and therefore they have to serve Him.  So they do not keep the
  Sabbath to deserve  something with that. Here we see  that we do not keep
  God's  commandments to deserve something by that. Who is saved by God, he
  will keep God's commandments in thankfulness.
     16 Honour thy father and thy  mother, as Adonai thy God hath commanded
     thee; that  thy days may be  prolonged, and that  it may go well  with
     thee, in the land which Adonai thy God giveth thee.
  The  institution of the marriage  is from God.  Also the authority, which
  is therein, has  come from God. Now  the man is  commanded to honour  his
  father and mother.  He has to obey them and  show them all love. For that
  is pleasant  before God. Adonai  spurs us on  the more by  promising that
  our days  will be prolonged, and  that it will go  well with us.  By this
  promises, God wants  to make us the more willing that we obey our elders.
  The authority comes from God.  So who is disobedient to the authority, he
  fights directly against God.  Must you also obey  wicked elders? Yes,  as
  far as they do not  keep back their children from the other duties, which
  are  commanded by  God. The  obeying of  God is  more important  than the
  obeying of people.
     17 Thou shalt not kill.
  This forbids  not only  killing, but  also all  the  illegal violence  to
  others. The  foundation of this ban on killing is that the man is made in
  the image of God "Whoso  sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his  blood be
  shed: for in the image of God made he man,"  Bereshiet / Genesis 9:6. But
  have you answered to  God's law when you  only abstain yourself from  all
  injustice?  No, surely  not. In  the  commandment, not  only the  illegal
  killing is forbidden, but the  contrary is commanded. You have to protect
  your fellow man and  do him good. This prohibition is not  limited to the
  deed only.  It also forbids the  considerations to murder.  And wherewith
  begin such  considerations? They begin with  hatred and envy  against the
  fellow  man. See  this in  Kain,  who killed  Abel; in  Achav who  killed
  Navot; in Esau. "And  Esau hated Yaakov because of the blessing wherewith
  his father blessed him: and Esau said in  his heart: The days of mourning
  for  my father  are  at  hand;  then  will I  slay  my  brother  Yaakov,"
  Bereshiet / Genesis  27:41. There  are more  of such  examples. And  what
  says the Psalm? "Cease  from anger, and  forsake wrath: fret not  thyself
  in any  wise to do  evil," Thilliem /  Psalm 37:8. The Psalm  says: Cease
  from anger, which would  lead to doing evil.  In short, this  commandment
  forbids  killing,  forbids  hatred  and  envy  against  the  fellow  man,
  commands to  do well to the fellow  man and to protect  him, and commands
  to love him. They,  who think to keep God's commandments, but  do it only
  in deeds,  they are wrong. In reality they transgress the commandments in
  their mind and words.
     18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.
  Although only adultery  is mentioned here, clearly everybody is  urged to
  all purity. It  is not  enough that you  not transgress this  commandment
  with  the deed.  Also, unchaste  lusts are forbidden.  Iov /  Job says of
  this: "I made a  covenant with mine eyes; why then should I  think upon a
  maid?" Iov / Job 31:1.
     19 Neither shalt thou steal.
  What  does this command mean? It means  that the right will be maintained
  for  everybody. Not  only stealing  is  forbidden, but  also all  illegal
  profit.  Profit from  the misfortune of  others, profit  by all  kinds of
  tricks. In this way Amos  speaks of people, who not sanctify the Sabbath,
  s"aying: When will the  new moon be gone, that we may sell  corn? and the
  sabbath, that we  may set forth  wheat, making the  ephah small, and  the
  shekel great, and  falsifying the  balances by deceit,"  Amos 8:5. It  is
  not  enough to refrain from injustice. Above all it is necessary to treat
  the fellow-men just, and to help them.
     20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbour.
  Here,  Adonai takes care  that the good  name of the  other is preserved.
  Here, the false testifying before the court of justice  is forbidden. But
  also the  secret lying, or gossiping  together about others.  God forbids
  not  only the lying,  but with this  He also commands  all sincerity. Not
  only the  libelling is forbidden.  But on the  contrary the  promoting of
  the  good name of  others is commanded.  We must also  close our ears for
  others, when  they speak  ill. The  lying is  the own work  of Satan,  as
  appeared  in the  garden  of Eden.  For  God said:  "Of the  tree  of the
  knowledge of  good and evil,  thou shalt not  eat of it:  for in the  day
  that thou  eatest thereof  thou shalt  surely die,"  Bereshiet /  Genesis
  2:17. The  serpent perverted  this and  lied, because  "the serpent  said
  unto the woman, Ye  shall not surely die,"  Bereshiet / Genesis 3:4.  God
  said: You will surely  die. The serpent said:  You shall not surely  die.
  Something  results  from  this.  There are  people  who  boast  on  being
  Avrahams descendants. But they do not his works. They  lie and cheat, and
  in  this way  they do  the works  of  Satan. So  they are  descendants of
  Satan, not of Avraham.
     21 Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour's wife,  neither shalt thou
     covet thy  neighbour's house,  his field,  or his  manservant, or  his
     maidservant,   his  ox,  or  his  ass,  or   any  thing  that  is  thy
  The previous  commandments, in which wicked  deeds are forbidden,  are in
  the explanation always extended with wicked  considerations and words. In
  this commandment,  Adonai does  this also.  This is  necessary. It  could
  happen that someone hears: you  shall not kill, neither shall  you commit
  adultery,  neither shall you  steal. And he  would think that  he has not
  done  anything  of  this,  so  he  has  done  well.  Therefore,  in  this
  commandment, also all desire to  do this is forbidden. From this is clear
  that  the law  is  spiritual.  God,  Who  is a  Spirit,  must  be  served
  spiritually. When  one acts  well in the  appearance, not transgresses  a
  commandment,  that is not  enough. Also,  the heart must  be pure.  "If I
  regard iniquity in  my heart, Adonai will not hear  me," Thilliem / Psalm
     22 These words Adonai  spake unto all your assembly  in the mount  out
     of the midst of  the fire, of  the cloud, and of  the thick  darkness,
     with  a great voice: and  he added no more.  And he  wrote them in two
     tables of stone, and delivered them unto me.
  Adonai  has revealed Himself  so clearly in  the fire, the  cloud and the
  darkness, that  there cannot  be left  any doubt  about His  Majesty. God
  spoke  these words, and He added no more. This  means that the law of the
  ten commandments is a  complete guideline for us. It  contains, in short,
  the whole will of God about our life.
     23 And it  came to pass, when ye heard  the voice out  of the midst of
     the  darkness, (for  the mountain  did burn  with fire,) that  ye came
     near unto me, even all the heads of your tribes, and your elders;
     24  And ye said,  Behold, Adonai our God hath  shewed us his glory and
     his greatness,  and we have heard  his voice  out of the midst  of the
     fire:  we have  seen this  day that  God doth  talk with  man,  and he
  Truly this is a  great wonder. Having heard  God and staying alive.  Even
  the hardest rocks tremble  before Him, and the  hills do not continue  to
  exist. "The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth  is
  burned  at his  presence, yea,  the world, and  all that  dwell therein,"
  Nachum  /  Nahum 1:5.  And this  people, who  were  only flesh  and dust,
  stayed alive. Truly a great wonder.
     25 Now therefore why  should we die? for this  great fire will consume
     us:  if we hear the  voice of Adonai our  God any  more, then we shall
  This time the people kept alive, but who says  that this will also happen
  the next  time? They do not dare to try  this. They do not dear to listen
  directly to God.
     26  For who  is there of all  flesh, that hath heard  the voice of the
     living God  speaking out of  the midst of  the fire,  as we have,  and
  The flesh cannot  exist before God, so weak is  it. "The voice said, Cry.
  And he  said,  What  shall  I  cry? All  flesh  is  grass,  and  all  the
  goodliness thereof  is as the  flower of the field.  The grass withereth,
  the flower fadeth:  because the spirit of Adonai  bloweth upon it: surely
  the people is grass," Jeshajah / Isaiah 40:6,7.
     27 Go  thou near,  and hear  all that  Adonai our  God shall say:  and
     speak thou unto us all that  Adonai our God shall speak unto thee; and
     we will hear it, and do it.
  Now they ask  for a mediator  between them  and God. Moshe  has to  teach
  them and to convey  God's message to  them. From this  we learn that  God
  has appointed teachers to  explain God's words to us. When Moshe commands
  something to the nation, which  answer give the people then? We will hear
  it, and do it. Here, they promise to obey God.
     28  And Adonai heard the voice  of your words,  when ye spake unto me;
     and Adonai said unto me,  I have heard the voice of the words  of this
     people, which  they have  spoken unto  thee: they have  well said  all
     that they have spoken.
  Adonai approves  the words of  the people. They asked  Moshe as mediator.
  This is good. They promised to obey God. This also is good.
     29 O that there  were such an heart in them,  that they would fear me,
     and keep all my commandments always, that it might be  well with them,
     and with their children for ever!
  Adonai approves it that  the nation wants to obey Him. But  He knows that
  they  will not do  that. Therefore,  He says: "O  that there  was such an
  heart in  them that  they would fear  me." When  they would  fear me,  it
  might always be well with them.
     30 Go say to them, Get you into your tents again.
     31 But as for thee, stand  thou here by me, and I will speak unto thee
     all the commandments, and the statutes, and the  judgments, which thou
     shalt teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give  them
     to possess it.
     32 Ye  shall observe to do therefore as Adonai your God hath commanded
     you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.
     33 Ye shall walk in all the ways which Adonai your God  hath commanded
     you, that ye may live,  and that it may be well with you, and  that ye
     may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess
  "Moshe spurs  on the nation to obey God.  They have promised to obey. And
  now they  have to  do it. They  may not  deviate. That  is, they  may not
  serve  God  according to  their  own  thoughts. But  they  must keep  the
  commandments. When they obey, it will go well with them.
  In verse  seven is forbidden to  serve other gods. A  god is something or
  somebody whereon  we rely.  Observe Davied,  who entirely  relied on  his
  God. He says: "The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is  my shield,
  and the horn  of my salvation, my high tower,  and my refuge, my saviour;
  thou  savest me from violence," Shmueel /  Samuel B 22:3. All, whereon we
  put  our  trust, outside  God,  that  is  idolatry.  Many rely  on  their
  insurance, for example.  The whole house is  insured. Now they  are safe,
  they think.  But this is  idolatry, and resists  the command. Other  rely
  thereon,  that  they  go  to the  synagogue  each  Sabbath.  And  without
  trusting God. They do not look upon  God but on the synagogue. Also  this
  is  idolatry, though  in  a religious  name.  For all,  whereon  somebody
  relies outside  God, that harms Him.  Others rely thereon,  that they are
  circumcised.  They think that they now are  children of Avraham. But they
  have not  the faith of Avraham.  These people rely on  their circumcision
  but not on God. Many rely on  their good behaviour. But they do  not see,
  that  they  sin against  God  each day.  They  lean on  their  good deeds
  without looking  for God. Also  this is idolatry.  In this way  we commit
  idolatry in our hearts in all kinds of ways.  We do not see most of these
  sins; also others see them not,  but God does see them. "But Adonai  said
  unto Shmueel / Samuel: Look  not on his countenance, or on  the height of
  his stature;  because I have  refused him:  for Adonai  seeth not as  man
  seeth; for man  looketh on the outward appearance,  but Adonai looketh on
  the heart," Shmueel / Samuel A 16:7.  Adonai looks on the heart, but  the
  man looks  only on  the outward  appearance. Student, when  you also  see
  idolatry in yourself, ask Adonai for pardon. Do not  longer trust in your
  own good  behaviour.  This cannot  exist before  God.  But rely  only  on
  In  verse 21, the illegal desire is  forbidden. Who goes free herein? Let
  only speak  our conscience.  This desiring  is not  only about the  great
  things. Also, the  smaller is desire. Someone,  who always wants to  live
  nice and desirous, he wants to  satisfy his lusts. The result is that  he
  does not  worry  about God  anymore.  What does  Davied say  about  these
  careless people? "Arise,  O LORD, disappoint him, cast him  down: deliver
  my soul  from the  wicked, which  is thy  sword. From  men which  are thy
  hand, O  LORD, from men  of the world,  which have their  portion in this
  life, and whose belly thou  fillest with thy hid treasure: they  are full
  of children,  and leave  the  rest of  their substance  to their  babes,"
  Thilliem / Psalm  17:13,14. The sin has begun with  desire. "And when the
  woman saw that the tree  was good for food, and  that it was pleasant  to
  the eyes,  and a tree  to be desired  to make one  wise, she took  of the
  fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also  unto her husband with her; and
  he did eat,"  Bereshiet / Genesis 3:6. This commandment  warns us that we
  not  fulfil  our  own desires.  But  to  seek  above  all that,  what  is
  acceptable in the  sight of  God. "I delight  to do thy  will, O my  God:
  yea, thy  law is within my heart," Thilliem / Psalm 40:8. Not my will has
  to happen, but thy will, o God.
  In this chapter we read  that the fathers of then were very frightened of
  the fire of God.  That happened at the mountain Sinai. But what do we see
  that  has happened? When  they stood  at the mountain  and saw  the fire,
  they were  very frightened.  A short  time later  however, they  made the
  golden  calf. And  later  yet they  constantly  enraged Adonai  by  their
  ungrateful  grumbling in  the desert.  All  people, who  had sinned,  are
  knocked down in the  desert. From this we  learn that only the seeing  of
  God's holy law is not  enough. We will keep transgressing, just  like our
  forefathers. The prophet Jesajah speaks about  this. "The sinners in Zion
  are  afraid; fearfulness  hath  surprised the  hypocrites.  Who among  us
  shall dwell  with  the devouring  fire?  who among  us shall  dwell  with
  everlasting  burnings?" Jeshajah  / Isaiah  33:14.  It is  true that  the
  sinners and hypocrites were frightened, but  they kept sinning and making
  believe. Therefore, the law  alone will not save  us. We will not  praise
  God, because we have heard the law. Who hears the law, truly hears it  in
  his heart, he  cannot do anything else than being  frightened. For we are
  not able to keep  the law as it  should be. No, the law will  not make us
  praising  God. But the man, whose sins  are forgiven, he will praise God.
  The horror is  past then, and he praises  God. "Bless Adonai, O  my soul,
  and forget  not all his benefits."  "Who forgiveth all  thine iniquities;
  who healeth all thy diseases, "Thilliem / Psalm 103:2,3.
  From this we learn  some things. He, who hears the law for the first time
  in   his  heart,   he  will   become   very  frightened.   He  sees   his
  transgressions, and  knows that  the death sentence  is spoken out  about
  that.  But when  Adonai redeems  him from his  sins, then  he will praise
  Him. Because of  that redeeming, that  man gets loving Adonai  very much,
  and he  wants to  walk in His  law. In  this loving of  God, and in  this
  walking in His law, therein consist  the salvation on earth. "Blessed  is
  the man that walketh  not in the counsel of the ungodly,  nor standeth in
  the  way of sinners,  nor sitteth  in the seat  of the  scornful. But his
  delight is in the law of Adonai; and in his law doth he  meditate day and
  night," Thilliem / Psalm 1:1,2.
  3. Questions
  If  you  want  to  gain more  benefit  from  the  explanation,  you could
  consider to answer the questions and do the tasks. You  can send these to
  the editor.  He  will  look at  it,  and  return  them to  you  with  his
  1  Read verse six.  Which three arguments does  Adonai use here, to  spur
     on the nation to keep His law?
  2  Is idolatry only the having of images, or is idolatry still more?
  3  Read verse nine. Will the children be punished because of  the sins of
     their elders? Why or why not?
  4  Read verse nine and ten.
     a. How far does God's punishment stretch?
     b. How far does God's mercy stretch?
  5  a. May we spend the Sabbath in idleness?
     b. What does God want, that we do on the Sabbathday?
  6  Does God  forbid in  the ten commandments  only the  sinful deeds,  of
     also the sinful thoughts and words?
  7  a. What do the people promise in verse 27?
     b. What does Adonai say from that in verse 29?
     c. What does Moshe say from that in verse 32 and 33?
     d. Can you keep God's commandments?
  8  Mention some present idols, on which unfortunately many rely.
  1  In verse  27 the nation  promises to do  all God's  commandments. Seek
     the same in Shemot / Exodus 19, Shemot / Exodus   24  en  Jehoshua  /
     Joshua  1.  Write down  who promised,  what was  promised, and  if the
     promise is kept.
  2  In verse 29 Adonai wished,  to speak in  a human way, that the  nation
     would  fear Him.  Seek the  same in  Thilliem /  Psalm 81,  Jeshajah /
     Isaiah 48,  Jechezkeel 18. Explain  with all  these texts, what  would
     have happened, when the nation had walked in God's commandments.
    Chr-Exp, a Christian explanation of the Tanach and the New Testament
              Editor: Teus Benschop  -
       No copyrights on this publication  -  Translated by a Dutchman
           Institution Practical Bible-education, the Netherlands