Moses’ Farwell Address

The book of Deuteronomy is a sermon given by Moses just before the people cross the Jordan River and enter the promised land.  We can learn a lot from the man who met face to face with the Living God.  Here are a few things that stand out:

  • Moses intends to instruct and inspire the people that their God is both faithful and able to do what He says! Moses shows that God is faithful to a sinful people because of the promise that He made to Abraham. They are a people of His choosing, not because of their own effort, striving or obedience.
  • God’s sovereignty and grace are in focus. He is sovereign over all nations. He is gracious to those who do not deserve it.
  • Moses explains how the Law is the outflow of the Great Commandment given in 6:5 (Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might).
  • “Deuteronomy constantly addresses the “heart” of its audience: embracing this law, seeking the good of this people, is the right response to God’s grace and the embodiment of virtue.”  ESV Study Bible
  • Moses recognizes that God must act in the heart of the Israelites if they are to be faithful.
  • Israel exists to love God with every fiber of their being which is the means by which the world will learn of the one true God.
  • Remembering God’s faithfulness & the people’s unfaithfulness AND looking forward to God’s continued faithfulness & warning the people not to fall in to idolatry.  The theology of Deuteronomy provides the fuel for the reforms instituted by Josiah in 2 Kings 23.
  • The heart and the need for full embodiment of the Law through heart felt affection and obedience.  Deuteronomy recognizes that God must move in the hearts of men if they are to faithfully obey Him and His law.
  • The Sovereign hand of the Almighty is in focus.  God provides Egypt as provision in the midst of drought to Joseph (who acknowledges the sovereign hand of God by working out for good, what his brothers meant for bad), God protects and raises up Moses – even raising him under Pharaoh’s own roof.  Then God calls Moses, who is weak of speech, to lead the people out of Egypt.  God commands control over all things with the plagues, parting the sea and provisions for His rebellious people in the wilderness.  He continues His display of His sovereignty as the people take the land.  It is not because they were faithful or special of their own doing, it is because He is mighty and will glorify His name.