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The Review Continued Deuteronomy 2

Posted by adventbiblestudy on January 9, 2016


Did you know Moses taught about God’s Law of Context in Deuteronomy?

Deuteronomy 2:1-7 NLTse (1) “Then we turned around and headed back across the wilderness toward the Red Sea, just as the LORD had instructed me, and we wandered around in the region of Mount Seir for a long time. (2) “Then at last the LORD said to me, (3) ‘You have been wandering around in this hill country long enough; turn to the north. (4) Give these orders to the people: “You will pass through the country belonging to your relatives the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir. The Edomites will feel threatened, so be careful. (5) Do not bother them, for I have given them all the hill country around Mount Seir as their property, and I will not give you even one square foot of their land. (6) If you need food to eat or water to drink, pay them for it. (7) For the LORD your God has blessed you in everything you have done. He has watched your every step through this great wilderness. During these forty years, the LORD your God has been with you, and you have lacked nothing.”‘

Time for a quick rule of context. Look at the first word in this chapter. The word when is a linking word. It links chapter 2 to chapter 1 so we can see it is a continuation of the same story.

This may be difficult to comprehend, but that wilderness crossing is one long story. When we understand the entire story, new understanding begins to open up. You have to wonder why the second to fifth book in scripture tell one long story. Does God expect us to know all the details in that story? Well, God did include a few chapters reviewing previous events.

When we think about it, God kind of arranged His book like a text book you studied with in school. The chapter introduced what you were going to study in that chapter. The end of the chapter contained a summary of the important details covered in that chapter. And let’s face it, God’s Bible as a whole contains less pages then some of those books in school. So let’s roll up our sleeves, sharpen our pencils, put on our learning caps, and prepare to learn in God’s classroom.

Imagine what the scene was like. Moses stood in front of more than a million people. Somehow God arranged details so everyone could hear Moses. They didn’t have the amplified sound systems we have today, so we have no idea how God did it. But we also have to keep in mind, not everyone was there to listen to Moses.

Did Reuben and Gad leave their families behind? There was a reason why their location was in the first verse of the book. These are the words that Moses spoke to all the people of Israel while they were in the wilderness east of the Jordan River. They were camped in the Jordan Valley near Suph, between Paran on one side and Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth, and Di-zahab on the other. (Deuteronomy 1:1 NLTse).

We can look at this question with an open mind. On one hand, it was important for everyone to hear the last address Moses gave Israel before he climbed that mountain to die. On the other hand, leaving families behind may have been an advantage for Reuben and Gad, as well as a blessing in disguise.

If their families weren’t in that valley, the armed men from those two and a half tribes had to carefully listen and remember as much as they could, so when they returned, they could tell their families what they heard. Witnessing was a very important feature priests should have. By staying on the east side of the Jordan River, it may have been a way for them to take the role of the priesthood more seriously than those on the west side of the river who would tend to rely on the Levitical priesthood. Later stories will tell is that was true or not. Now is not the time to jump around looking for answers.

Moses had an advantage. How many people are able to give their finally epitaph? Moses gave thus final address with the mind set of making one final impression on the minds of the younger generation he came to know as his children. Moses had a personal stake in the matter. Moses really cared. The future of the nation he led was more important than his own life.

When we look at the personal level of each scene, we begin to understand how people like Moses pointed to aspects of Jesus’ ministry. When we look at symbolism, we see Moses was part of that symbolism. So was his brother Aaron. And his son Eleazar when he became high priest. Joshua had aspects pointing to Jesus, as well as king David, Samuel the prophet and high priest, and others. Not one person could properly represent Jesus and all the aspects of His ministry. Hence, now we can see how those four books of Moses should be studied as one story. And that story continued with Joshua and his book. And the story continued after Joshua. The more of that story we know, the better our chances of understanding. Just like those texts books we carried through school The better we understood all the chapters, the better chance we had of getting a passing grade.

Is salvation a passing grade? It may not be, but when we look at all the reviews Moses included, we have to ask why. Moses had a limited space to record those stories. So why was Moses directed to include all those reviews? What do they point to?

While writing books on the four Gospels, I kept asking why the disciples didn’t see or understand anything about Jesus, His ministry, and sacrifice. I saw how many times Jesus sent them back to scripture, and the example Jesus set in prayer. Jesus prayed to review the events of the day, as well as the past. And Jesus prayed for marching orders from God’s Spirit. Jesus shared those lessons with His disciples. The problem seemed to be, those disciples didn’t catch onto the power of prayer, listening to God, reviewing past events, and most important of all, reviewing scripture. What was their excuse?

Long before Jesus’ ministry, the world was flooded with Greek and Hebrew copies of scripture. For more than two hundred years, copies were distributed all over the known world. Like today, there were good and poor copies of scripture, but we can be assured, God’s Spirit is able to jump start people through some of the worst copies or translations. Why couldn’t, or why didn’t the Spirit reach the disciples?

After writing four books, I couldn’t find a definitive answer. The only thing I could see is, those disciples suffered a lot based on their lack of knowledge. I came to the conclusion, their suffering wasn’t for nothing, as long as one person learns from their mistake. How many of us are going to learn from that mistake?

Reviewing both scripture, personal, and world events may be one of the most important attributes a priest can have. It would have saved Jesus’ disciples and closet friends a world of hurt. To think, Jess sat in front of them face to face and told them which scripture to review, not one, not twice, but three times. Arguments about who was greatest not only clouded their minds, but blinded them to what we consider today, the most obvious truth. But then again, maybe that was part of God’s plan.

We’ve seen Moses explain few details about those spiritual symbols in the Tabernacle. That is a type of parallel between those people in the wilderness and Jesus’ disciples. There had to be good reasons for information to be withheld at one particular time and revealed in another.

That first covenant between God and Israel had regulations for worship and a place of worship here on earth. There were two rooms in that Tabernacle. In the first room were a lampstand, a table, and sacred loaves of bread on the table. This room was called the Holy Place. Then there was a curtain, and behind the curtain was the second room called the Most Holy Place. In that room were a gold incense altar and a wooden chest called the Ark of the Covenant, which was covered with gold on all sides. Inside the Ark were a gold jar containing manna, Aaron’s staff that sprouted leaves, and the stone tablets of the covenant. Above the Ark were the cherubim of divine glory, whose wings stretched out over the Ark’s cover, the place of atonement. But we cannot explain these things in detail now. (Hebrews 9:1-5 NLTse).

It seems we have much more to review than those people standing in the valley on the east side of the river. We have both the Old and New Testaments to review. We have world events, weather patterns, natural disasters, wars, and all kinds of other events to review. We have personal issues, family matters, job issues, and all kinds of other events to review. Talk about knowledge increasing in the last days. If we don’t see that today, we have to be totally blind. Time to look at the events Moses was told to record.

Moses took them on a journey in their minds to remind them of a long list of issues and events. What do you think the Red Sea reminded them of? Then Moses reminded them of their distant relatives. Esau and Jacob were brothers. But the blessing and promised land would only pass through Jacob. God reminded Israel, He gave Esau land. Esau’s descendants didn’t have to suffer as slaves like Israel did. That gave them something to think about.

After their suffering in bondage for four hundred years, God showed up, sending Moses in to be His mouthpiece. Some people accepted Moses, while many rejected him. God had to work long and hard to prove, He was with Moses. At best, that lesson didn’t last very long. It was easy for Moses to figure out, those people easily forgot details. God knew that was going to happen. It was a problem that was going to repeat itself time after time, until the end of this world.

  • The Moabites

    Deuteronomy 2:8-12 NLTse (8) “So we bypassed the territory of our relatives, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir. We avoided the road through the Arabah Valley that comes up from Elath and Ezion-geber. “Then as we turned north along the desert route through Moab, (9) the LORD warned us, ‘Do not bother the Moabites, the descendants of Lot, or start a war with them. I have given them Ar as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.'” (10) (A race of giants called the Emites had once lived in the area of Ar. They were as strong and numerous and tall as the Anakites, another race of giants. (11) Both the Emites and the Anakites are also known as the Rephaites, though the Moabites call them Emites. (12) In earlier times the Horites had lived in Seir, but they were driven out and displaced by the descendants of Esau, just as Israel drove out the people of Canaan when the LORD gave Israel their land.)

    Can you see the progression? Moses moved from Jacob’s brother to Abraham’s nephew. Moses is moving back over history in an attempt to let is us, this story is much bigger than us. That kind of sinks any preaching on being some kind of special, chosen church with all the truth. God still cared about Esau’s families, and everyone that came from Lot and his two daughters. What a twisted history that was. But look, Moses told us, God still remembers them. I hope all you priests are taking noted on this. Your ministry has to extend way past what you would expect. God is not going to leave you off from entering into a journey to unexpected places.

    Notice Moses pointed out visits to those places included explicit instructions. Another point you preachers have to make a note of and pray about. Those instructions are not going to be the same for each place your sent to.

    Moses pointed out another important detail. Esau’s relatives drove giants out of the land God gave them. Sort of a wake up call here. Why could Esau’s relatives trust God, but the so called chosen people not? This is another detail to note and pray about for all you priests out there.

  • Giants Destroyed

    Deuteronomy 2:13-23 NLTse (13) Moses continued, “Then the LORD said to us, ‘Get moving. Cross the Zered Brook.’ So we crossed the brook. (14) “Thirty-eight years passed from the time we first left Kadesh-barnea until we finally crossed the Zered Brook! By then, all the men old enough to fight in battle had died in the wilderness, as the LORD had vowed would happen. (15) The LORD struck them down until they had all been eliminated from the community. (16) “When all the men of fighting age had died, (17) the LORD said to me, (18) ‘Today you will cross the border of Moab at Ar (19) and enter the land of the Ammonites, the descendants of Lot. But do not bother them or start a war with them. I have given the land of Ammon to them as their property, and I will not give you any of their land.'” (20) (That area was once considered the land of the Rephaites, who had lived there, though the Ammonites call them Zamzummites. (21) They were also as strong and numerous and tall as the Anakites. But the LORD destroyed them so the Ammonites could occupy their land. (22) He had done the same for the descendants of Esau who lived in Seir, for he destroyed the Horites so they could settle there in their place. The descendants of Esau live there to this day. (23) A similar thing happened when the Caphtorites from Crete invaded and destroyed the Avvites, who had lived in villages in the area of Gaza.)

    It wasn’t by accident Moses repeated the conquest Esau had over giants. Israel heard stories about Esau and new the blessing went through Jacob. But Moses also pointed out how God destroyed giants in the land He gave to Esau. There are dozens of lessons we can learn from those stories. What did Israel learn from them?

    You’ll notice, Moses reminded those people about their parent who were afraid to go into the promised land because of a few giants. That was after Israel defeated a number of other nations on their way to the border. But that didn’t make any difference. Victories God gave them didn’t seem to matter much to them. As soon as the next trial came along, they cried like little babies.

    Let’s look at this on a personal level. What was that first generation concerned about, themselves or their children? When faces with a picture in their minds of facing a giant, they showed their true colors. They were concerned for their personal safety. They allowed Satan and his angels to place seeds of doubt in their minds that grew to trees bearing what kind of fruit?

    Those people used concern for their children as an excuse to give up. But God knew exactly what was on their minds and what was in their hearts. He knew that gold the carried around was worth more than their children. God knew they wanted to protect their own worthless hides and that gold they carried with them.

    It appears lessons taught and learned in Genesis were forgotten by the time they reached the promised land in Number 13.

    Moses gave them the materials donated by the people of Israel as sacred offerings for the completion of the sanctuary. But the people continued to bring additional gifts each morning. Finally the craftsmen who were working on the sanctuary left their work. They went to Moses and reported, “The people have given more than enough materials to complete the job the LORD has commanded us to do!” So Moses gave the command, and this message was sent throughout the camp: “Men and women, don’t prepare any more gifts for the sanctuary. We have enough!” So the people stopped bringing their sacred offerings. Their contributions were more than enough to complete the whole project. (Exodus 36:3-7 NLTse).

    The Amalekites live in the Negev, and the Hittites, Jebusites, and Amorites live in the hill country. The Canaanites live along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and along the Jordan Valley.” But Caleb tried to quiet the people as they stood before Moses. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” he said. “We can certainly conquer it!” But the other men who had explored the land with him disagreed. “We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are!” So they spread this bad report about the land among the Israelites: “The land we traveled through and explored will devour anyone who goes to live there. All the people we saw were huge. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too!” (Numbers 13:29-33 NLTse).

    Time for another important study lesson. What is Moses doing. They are his own books, but for us, Moses is sending us back to review scripture. You see, Moses is doing nothing less than teaching his children how to study scripture by establishing relationships between stories. Relationships they obviously missed and for all intents and purposes, almost every future generation would miss. Let’s add another story to make it easier to understand and place credit where it belongs.

    Then the LORD said to Moses, “Has my arm lost its power? Now you will see whether or not my word comes true!” So Moses went out and reported the LORD’s words to the people. He gathered the seventy elders and stationed them around the Tabernacle. And the LORD came down in the cloud and spoke to Moses. Then he gave the seventy elders the same Spirit that was upon Moses. And when the Spirit rested upon them, they prophesied. But this never happened again. (Numbers 11:23-25 NLTse).

    Didn’t Moses sent us back to review that little piece of scripture in chapter 1? Then why didn’t we look at it? I have to admit, I thought I knew the story well enough, I didn’t have to look at what Moses wrote. Moses talked about the burden being to great for one person, and God had a plan. But when we look at the details, we see how Moses was laying out a series of stories that reveal a far deeper spiritual lesson. The ONLY way we see that lesson is when we review the original scripture.

    Deuteronomy chapters 1 and 2 also show us another important law of context called repetition. Moses wrote in a particular pattern God established. To the untrained eye and mind, Moses recorded a series of events. Those events are related, but how? When we find the common thread, we unlock the spiritual meaning. In this example, we clearly see, all those stories are from previous books in the Bible. In other words, Moses is teaching how to review stories an inspired writer sends us back to.

    I have to admit, it took me a number of quotes before I caught onto the pattern in these two chapters in Deuteronomy. That’s shows us why God uses repetition to teach. God has to repeat things a number of times before His Spirit is able to make contact with us, and we’re willing to listen. After all, wasn’t that part of the lesson Moses was teaching? People had a difficult time listening. Moses did that, so he kept repeating the same lesson over and over again. Each lesson was presented in a different way. Moses used a series of different examples, but the lesson remained the same.

    Here we had to read a number of those lessons before our eyes and minds finally caught onto the spiritual lesson. Remember, there is a physical lesson we have to understand. The physical lesson is learned by looking at how people in the story were effected. What lesson was being taught in their time, and of course, how they reacted to it.

    Then there is the spiritual side of the lesson, how future generations reacted to the lesson. Did they learn from that lesson, or did they repeat the same mistakes? More often than not, people repeat the same mistakes. Why? That brings up another law of context. Maybe one of the more difficult to learn.

    God often teaches lessons using contrasts. More often than not, the reaction to the lesson in real time, in other words, the people that lesson was first given to was the wrong reaction. Their reaction to the lesson was not what God was looking for. Their reaction becomes a contrast for us to learn from, so we don’t repeat the same mistakes. The use of contrasts was what Moses was trying to teach that generation about to enter the promised land. In simple terms, Moses was telling them not to make the same mistakes their parent did.

    That’s why I keep pointing out the dangers of proof texts, that man made study concept that rips apart scripture to support man made ideas. How often is a single sentence taken from scripture and reshaped to make it support concepts NOT taught in the chapter? I ran across this example today.

    “Shout with the voice of a trumpet blast. Shout aloud! Don’t be timid. Tell my people Israel of their sins! (Isaiah 58:1 NLTse).

    A man online with a long history of tearing everyone and everything apart bases his attacks on this single sentence in Isaiah chapter 58. But he never read the rest of the chapter. The man posts dozens of time a day, always ripping people apart. That man see fault in everything. He makes comments about videos like, “after ten seconds I ….” He makes instant judgments to tear everything apart. He is an example of modern day Pharisees with the attitude of, “if God didn’t give me the message, it doesn’t matter what the message is, it is wrong.”

    If that man actually read Isaiah chapter 58, he would see that we’re not supposed to argue. We’re supposed to rebuild at God’s direction. “Share your food with the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help. “Then your salvation will come like the dawn, and your wounds will quickly heal. Your godliness will lead you forward, and the glory of the LORD will protect you from behind. Then when you call, the LORD will answer. ‘Yes, I am here,’ he will quickly reply. “Remove the heavy yoke of oppression. Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors! Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon. The LORD will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring. Some of you will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities. Then you will be known as a rebuilder of walls and a restorer of homes. (Isaiah 58:7-12 NLTse).

    What a contrast to what that man used one single sentence to justify and the true message in scripture. That is one example of people creating their own contrasts, where contrasts were never intended.

    Moses didn’t want that younger generation to repeat the same mistakes their parents made. So he sent them back to review those lessons. Moses repeated a few stories about giants to bring attention to another important lesson. What kind of giants do you have to face. If you let people that that man distorting Isaiah 58 get to you, he can become a giant. Don’t forget, Israel believed there were giants in the promised land based on words with no credible evidence. That man misusing Isaiah 58 has no credible words, but some people will make a giant out of him. Satan uses people like him to discourage God’s followers. Especially those still on a diet of milk. Don’t let that happen to you. Just ignore them. “Shout with the voice of a trumpet blast. Shout aloud! Don’t be timid. Tell my people Israel of their sins! Yet they act so pious! They come to the Temple every day and seem delighted to learn all about me. They act like a righteous nation that would never abandon the laws of its God. They ask me to take action on their behalf, pretending they want to be near me. (Isaiah 58:1-2 NLTse). Their concepts are all make believe. Nothing to be afraid of.

  • Victories God Gave Them

    Deuteronomy 2:24-35 NLTse (24) Moses continued, “Then the LORD said, ‘Now get moving! Cross the Arnon Gorge. Look, I will hand over to you Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and I will give you his land. Attack him and begin to occupy the land. (25) Beginning today I will make people throughout the earth terrified because of you. When they hear reports about you, they will tremble with dread and fear.'” (26) Moses continued, “From the wilderness of Kedemoth I sent ambassadors to King Sihon of Heshbon with this proposal of peace: (27) ‘Let us travel through your land. We will stay on the main road and won’t turn off into the fields on either side. (28) Sell us food to eat and water to drink, and we will pay for it. All we want is permission to pass through your land. (29) The descendants of Esau who live in Seir allowed us to go through their country, and so did the Moabites, who live in Ar. Let us pass through until we cross the Jordan into the land the LORD our God is giving us.’ (30) “But King Sihon of Heshbon refused to allow us to pass through, because the LORD your God made Sihon stubborn and defiant so he could help you defeat him, as he has now done. (31) “Then the LORD said to me, ‘Look, I have begun to hand King Sihon and his land over to you. Begin now to conquer and occupy his land.’ (32) “Then King Sihon declared war on us and mobilized his forces at Jahaz. (33) But the LORD our God handed him over to us, and we crushed him, his sons, and all his people. (34) We conquered all his towns and completely destroyed everyone–men, women, and children. Not a single person was spared. (35) We took all the livestock as plunder for ourselves, along with anything of value from the towns we ransacked.

    Since we just learned how Moses was teaching a rule of context, let’s put it to the test and see what it does for us. Today it is a simple task to find what scripture Moses referred to by using a chain reference. It only takes a few minutes, but we learn so much about the Infinite God when we follow His commands.

    Then they moved out and camped on the far side of the Arnon River, in the wilderness adjacent to the territory of the Amorites. The Arnon is the boundary line between the Moabites and the Amorites. For this reason The Book of the Wars of the LORD speaks of “the town of Waheb in the area of Suphah, and the ravines of the Arnon River, and the ravines that extend as far as the settlement of Ar on the border of Moab.” From there the Israelites traveled to Beer, which is the well where the LORD said to Moses, “Assemble the people, and I will give them water.” There the Israelites sang this song: “Spring up, O well! Yes, sing its praises! Sing of this well, which princes dug, which great leaders hollowed out with their scepters and staffs.” Then the Israelites left the wilderness and proceeded on through Mattanah, Nahaliel, and Bamoth.

    (Numbers 21:13-19 NLTse)

    After that they went to the valley in Moab where Pisgah Peak overlooks the wasteland. The Israelites then sent ambassadors to King Sihon of the Amorites with this message: “Let us travel through your land. We will be careful not to go through your fields and vineyards. We won’t even drink water from your wells. We will stay on the king’s road until we have passed through your territory.” But King Sihon refused to let them cross his territory. Instead, he mobilized his entire army and attacked Israel in the wilderness, engaging them in battle at Jahaz. But the Israelites slaughtered them with their swords and occupied their land from the Arnon River to the Jabbok River. They went only as far as the Ammonite border because the boundary of the Ammonites was fortified. So Israel captured all the towns of the Amorites and settled in them, including the city of Heshbon and its surrounding villages. Heshbon had been the capital of King Sihon of the Amorites. He had defeated a former Moabite king and seized all his land as far as the Arnon River. Therefore, the ancient poets wrote this about him: “Come to Heshbon and let it be rebuilt! Let the city of Sihon be restored. A fire flamed forth from Heshbon, a blaze from the city of Sihon. It burned the city of Ar in Moab; it destroyed the rulers of the Arnon heights. What sorrow awaits you, O people of Moab! You are finished, O worshipers of Chemosh! Chemosh has left his sons as refugees, his daughters as captives of Sihon, the Amorite king. We have utterly destroyed them, from Heshbon to Dibon. We have completely wiped them out as far away as Nophah and Medeba.” So the people of Israel occupied the territory of the Amorites.

    (Numbers 21:20-31 NLTse)

    We can see how one part of scripture explains some details, and other stories add more details. We now have a more complete explanation of the events and names. This included borders. This brings up another important law of context know as the law of first mention. That’s where we find where an event, name, or other reference is first mentioned in scripture. I’ve known people consistently use the law of context. Some of them find the most astounding details, but never knew what the rule they applied was called. That shows how God’s Spirit has the ability to teach.

    Can we be sure Moses knew what he was doing when Deuteronomy and those other books were recorded? Did Moses knew he was establishing basic laws of context by following patterns God instructed him to use? Proof positive of God’s ability to teach those laws of context.

    I have a great teacher in human form. Dr. Lee knows more about Bible Study than anyone I know. He wrote a number of books, one of them, Handbook of Bible Study, is a best seller. That book is a bit difficult for most people to understand, but after he wrote about theology rules and concepts, God showed him much easier ways to explain patterns found in scripture. So Dr. Less went all over the world teaching that simple concept of Bible Study. The more he taught, the more God showed him.

    By the time Dr. Less met me, he knew from experience, he only needed to teach a concept or two, then let God’s Spirit lead. That concept worked in the past, it is Biblical and it works. So Less showed me a few basic laws of context. The law of repetition and laws of introductions and summaries. From that point, God showed me over twenty laws of context. Some of them I already knew and used. Others left me in awe.

    I couldn’t wait to call Dr. Lee to share some of the things I discovered in scripture. Many times I felt like I was the first one on earth to see those details. That was kind of a Elijah syndrome. Dr. Lee would laugh, then tell me about a book someone wrote that has that information in it. Most of those books are 150 to 200 years old. That left me asking why no one teaches such wonderful truths these days. I guess Moses is teaching us that lesson in his review. People tend to forget way to often. Memory loss is a byproduct of sin. That’s why Jesus told His disciples what will happen when they made friends with God’s Spirit. “When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. God will give you the right words at the right time. For it is not you who will be speaking–it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (Matthew 10:19-20 NLTse). How close are those days, or has that been another lesson repeated throughout the ages?

  • The Summary

    Deuteronomy 2:35-37 NLTse (35) We took all the livestock as plunder for ourselves, along with anything of value from the towns we ransacked. (36) “The LORD our God also helped us conquer Aroer on the edge of the Arnon Gorge, and the town in the gorge, and the whole area as far as Gilead. No town had walls too strong for us. (37) However, we avoided the land of the Ammonites all along the Jabbok River and the towns in the hill country–all the places the LORD our God had commanded us to leave alone.

    Since I mentioned the law of introductions and summaries, I should use this chapter as an example. In a way, this puts God to the test. Did Moses use that law of introductions and summaries in this chapter? Let’s see if he did. To find out, we compare the introduction to the summary.

    Deuteronomy 2:1-7 NLTse (1) “Then we turned around and headed back across the wilderness toward the Red Sea, just as the LORD had instructed me, and we wandered around in the region of Mount Seir for a long time. (2) “Then at last the LORD said to me, (3) ‘You have been wandering around in this hill country long enough; turn to the north. (4) Give these orders to the people: “You will pass through the country belonging to your relatives the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, who live in Seir. The Edomites will feel threatened, so be careful. (5) Do not bother them, for I have given them all the hill country around Mount Seir as their property, and I will not give you even one square foot of their land. (6) If you need food to eat or water to drink, pay them for it. (7) For the LORD your God has blessed you in everything you have done. He has watched your every step through this great wilderness. During these forty years, the LORD your God has been with you, and you have lacked nothing.”‘

    The law of introductions and summaries tells us, every chapter in the Bible begins with a short explanation of the main theme taught in that chapter. That is the first few verses in the chapter. The last few verses in the chapter sum up the lesson. It is one of the easiest laws to learn and use. That law answers most questions people have about a text they find difficult to understand.

    In the summary we see Moses telling those people about one of the LORD’S commands. Notice how the word LORD has all capital letters. That is a sign of respect. Looking back to the introduction, we see Moses used capital letters for the LORD, followed by the words, ” Give these orders to the people …” We see obvious connections between the introduction and summation most people would miss.

    The introduction and summation verify, the main lesson deals with past experiences and journeys found throughout the chapter. Repetition led us to the fact, Moses was referring to scripture. We can see how one law of context led to another. That is a spiritual journey. Moses used physical journeys and physical events to led us on a spiritual journey, just the way it is supposed to happen.

    None of that would have occurred if we didn’t have God’s Spirit. Without God’s Spirit, we never would have seen those spiritual lessons. Without God’s Spirit, Moses would have never followed the sequence used to record those books. That’s why God’s order and commands were repeated, to draw our attention to the ONE who made all this possible.

    What happens when people stray away from God’s orders and commands? We see the results in those battles. When God said go, and they followed orders, they were victorious. When they wanted to follow their own feeling, or can we say fears, they sentenced themselves to wandering about the wilderness until they died.

    The same is true when people follow the laws of context. When God shows them the path, they can choose to follow, or not. People often say, “it is too hard. It takes too much time. I can’t do it.” I’ve heard more excuses than I care to count. Some people claim those laws of context don’t exist. They claim all they need to do is look at a sentence in scripture, and they know what it means. That guy quoting from Isaiah 58 uses that concept. He is like the spies with stories, but no evidence.

    The fact of the matter is, the choice is yours. If you don’t believe me, put God to the test. I’m sure He is up to the task, and is waiting for you. He already has everything in place to prove to you what little, or great of a lesson your ready to learn.

    If nothing else, this chapter has turned out to be a good collection of some of the major laws of context, and is easy to locate and refer to when required. I do have access to a program a friend developed that allows me to create files ready to be merged with E-Sword. His program will allow Bible students to read scripture in E-Sword, click in a verse, and look up references from different authors. The only problem is time required to transfer the files and find ways of offering them in the Internet. But God can make time if that is in His plans.

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