Deuteronomy 5

Many have their consciences startled by the Law, who are not purified (v. 29).
Promises are made but the good principles are not rooted in them.
Oh, to be sincere in our covenant with God.

1 And Moses 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.

2 The LORD our God made a covenant with us in Horeb.

3 The LORD made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day.

4 The LORD talked with you face to face in the mount out of the midst of the fire,

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,

6 ¶ I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

7 Thou shalt have none other gods before me.

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:

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,

10 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

11 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

12 Keep the sabbath day to sanctify it, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee.

13 Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work:

14 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD 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.

15 And remember that thou wast a servant in the land of Egypt, and that the LORD thy God brought thee out thence through a mighty hand and by a stretched out arm: therefore the LORD thy God commanded thee to keep the sabbath day.

16 ¶ Honour thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

17 Thou shalt not kill.

18 Neither shalt thou commit adultery.

19 Neither shalt thou steal.

20 Neither shalt thou bear false witness against thy neighbour.

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 neighbour’s.

22 ¶ These words the LORD 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.

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, the LORD 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 liveth.

25 Now therefore why should we die? for this great fire will consume us: if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any more, then we shall die.

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 lived?

27 Go thou near, and hear all that the LORD our God shall say: and speak thou unto us all that the LORD our God shall speak unto thee; and we will hear it, and do it.

28 And the LORD heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and the LORD 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.

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!

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 the LORD 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 the LORD 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.

Deuteronomy 5:1-21 – The Decalogue Repeated

   The Law of God is for “all Israel” (Deuteronomy 5:1). None are exempt. “Not… with our fathers” (Deuteronomy 5:3) means not with them only; Moses also uses the expression because many of the references of the Decalogue were to the settled life of Canaan. “Face to face” (Deuteronomy 5:4), not in dark visions, but clearly and lucidly, Job 4:12-13. Our “face to face” vision is yet to come, I Corinthians 13:12; Revelation 22:4. Notice in Deuteronomy 5:5 the ideal mediator, Galatians 3:19; I Timothy 2:5.
   Every soul has two givings of the Law. First, we stand under Sinai to be judged, condemned, and shut up to Christ as our only hope; then we come to it a second time, asking that the Holy Spirit should write it in our hearts, and make us to walk in obedience to its precepts, Galatians 3:23; Romans 8:4.
   Adolphe Monod, on his death-bed, said: “Sin has two divisions; the evil that we have done and the good that we have left undone. As to the first, there is not a single command that I have not transgressed in letter or spirit; as to the second, it weighs on me even more than the first.” —Through the Bible Day by Day

Deuteronomy 5:22-33 – Moses between God and the People

   “He added no more”—i.e., the Law is perfect (Deuteronomy 5:22). It is written in stone, and therefore is permanent. When the conscience has not learned the efficacy of the blood of Jesus it shrinks from contact with God’s holiness, Deuteronomy 5:24-26. But such fear does not save us from going back to our calf-making and license.
   Turn from Moses to our blessed Lord, who went into the middle of the thunder and lightning which our sin had incurred. On Him the full force of the storm broke, and we were delivered. Adolphe Monod said: “I have a firm and peaceful confidence in the redemption of Jesus Christ, in His blood and sacrifice, accepted before God, taking the place of the good which I have not done and repairing the evil that I have done.”
   Note the yearning of Deuteronomy 5:29. It repeats itself elsewhere, Isaiah 48:18; Matthew 23:37. See also Ezekiel 36:26. —Through the Bible Day by Day

Deuteronomy 5:29—That it might be well with them.

   Here is a sigh from the Divine heart. It recalls the tears of the Lord Jesus over Jerusalem. The people insisted on their willingness to do all that was required of them, but they were destined to learn and teach that the will may be present, without the power; just as a sick man may have the will to walk across his bedroom, and will fall to the floor because he has no strength.
   God’s Commandments are for our Welfare.—We find men shrinking from consecration to complete obedience because they fear that it will mean loss and pain. There may be loss and pain; but only in the excision of things which they would be the first to put away, if they understood their nature and outworking as God does. Those who obey God most literally find the most blessedness in life, whether now or hereafter.
   We approve them with our Will.—More than once the people insisted that they would do as God commanded. We are not so destitute of moral perception as not to see the beauty of a life wholly yielded to God; but let us not rest content with this, or we may have yet to cry with the Apostle, The law is holy, just, and good; but I am carnal, sold under sin.
   God wants the Heart.—He will not trust Himself to us, so long as the heart is a stranger to the indwelling of the Divine Spirit. “O that there were such a heart in them”! We need to cry to Him to create in us a clean heart, to ask that He would exchange the heart of stone for one of flesh, to entreat that His love may be shed abroad in our heart, that we may perfectly love Him. “My son, give me thine heart” (Proverbs 23:26)! —Our Daily Homily