For the Lord’s portion is his people. Jacob is the lot of his inheritance. Deuteronomy 32:9
Moses Encourages the People
1 Moses went and spoke these words to all Israel. 2 He said to them, “I am 120 years old today. I can no longer come and go. The Lord has said to me, ‘You shall not go over this Jordan.’ 3 The Lord your God himself will go over ahead of you. He will destroy these nations from before you, and you shall dispossess them. Joshua will go over ahead of you, as the Lord has spoken. 4 The Lord will do to them as he did to Sihon and to Og, the kings of the Amorites, and to their land, when he destroyed them. 5 The Lord will deliver them up before you, and you shall do to them according to all the commandments which I have given you. 6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear nor be in dread of them; for it is the Lord your God himself is who goes with you. He will not fail you nor forsake you.”
Joshua to Succeed Moses
7 Moses called to Joshua, and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and courageous, for you shall go with this people into the land which the Lord has sworn to their fathers to give them; and you shall cause them to inherit it. 8 It is the Lord himself who goes before you. He will be with you. He will not fail you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid or discouraged.”
The Reading of the Law
9 Moses wrote this law and delivered it to the priests; the sons of Levi, who bore the ark of the Lord’s covenant, and to all the elders of Israel. 10 Moses commanded them, saying, “At the end of every seven years, in the set time of the year of release, in the feast of booths, 11 when all Israel has come to appear before the Lord your God in the place which he will choose, you shall read this law before all Israel in their hearing. 12 Assemble the people, the men and the women and the little ones, and the foreigners who are within your gates, that they may hear, learn, fear the Lord your God, and be careful to do all the words of this law, 13 and that their children, who have not known, may hear and learn to fear the Lord your God, as long as you live in the land where you are going over the Jordan to possess.”
God’s Charge to Joshua
14 The Lord said to Moses, “Your days are approaching when you will die. Call Joshua, and present yourselves in the Tent of Meeting, that I may commission him.”
Moses and Joshua went, and presented themselves in the Tent of Meeting.
15 The Lord appeared in the Tent in a pillar of cloud, and the pillar of cloud stood over the Tent’s door. 16 The Lord said to Moses, “You shall rest with your fathers. This people will rise up and play the prostitute after the strange gods of the land where they are going to be among them, and will forsake me and break my covenant which I have made with them. 17 Then my anger shall be kindled against them in that day, and I will forsake them, and I will hide my face from them, and they shall be devoured, and many disasters and troubles shall come on them; so that they will say in that day, ‘Haven’t these disasters come on us because our God is not among us?’ 18 I will surely hide my face in that day for all the evil which they have done, in that they have turned to other gods.
19 “Now therefore write this song for yourselves, and teach it to the Israelites. Put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the Israelites. 20 For when I have brought them into the land which I swore to their fathers, flowing with milk and honey, and they have eaten and filled themselves, and grown fat, then they will turn to other gods, and serve them, and despise me, and break my covenant. 21 It will happen, when many disasters and troubles have come on them, that this song will testify before them as a witness; for it will not be forgotten out of the mouths of their descendants; for I know their ways and what they are doing today, before I have brought them into the land which I promised them.”
22 So Moses wrote this song the same day, and taught it to the Israelites.
23 He commissioned Joshua the son of Nun, and said, “Be strong and courageous; for you shall bring the Israelites into the land which I swore to them. I will be with you.”
The Law Placed in the Ark
24 When Moses had finished writing the words of this law in a book, at its completion, 25 Moses commanded the Levites, who bore the ark of the Lord’s covenant, saying, 26 “Take this book of the law, and put it by the side of the ark of the Lord your God’s covenant, that it may be there as a witness against you. 27 For I know your rebellion and your stiff neck. While I am yet alive with you today, you have been rebellious against the Lord. How much more after my death? 28 Assemble to me all the elders of your tribes and your officers, that I may speak these words in their ears, and call heaven and earth to witness against them. 29 For I know that after my death you will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn away from the way which I have commanded you; and disaster will happen to you in the latter days, because you will do that which is evil in the Lord’s sight, to provoke him to anger through the work of your hands.”
Moses Begins his Song
30 Moses spoke in the ears of all the assembly of Israel the words of this song, until they were finished.
The Song of Moses
1 Give ear, you heavens, and I will speak.
Let the earth hear the words of my mouth.
2 My doctrine will drop as the rain.
My speech will condense as the dew,
as the misty rain on the tender grass,
as the showers on the herb.
3 For I will proclaim the Lord’s name.
Ascribe greatness to our God!
4 The Rock: his work is perfect,
for all his ways are just.
A God of faithfulness who does no wrong,
just and right is he.
5 They have dealt corruptly with him.
They are not his children, because of their defect.
They are a perverse and crooked generation.
6 Is this the way you repay the Lord,
foolish and unwise people?
Is he not your father who has bought you?
He has made you and established you.
7 Remember the days of old.
Consider the years of many generations.
Ask your father, and he will show you;
your elders, and they will tell you.
8 When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance,
when he separated the children of men,
he set the bounds of the peoples
according to the number of the Israelites.
9 For the Lord’s portion is his people.
Jacob is the lot of his inheritance.
10 He found him in a desert land,
in the waste howling wilderness.
He surrounded him.
He cared for him.
He kept him as the apple of his eye.
11 As an eagle that stirs up her nest,
that flutters over her young,
he spread abroad his wings,
he took them,
he bore them on his feathers.
12 The Lord alone led him.
There was no foreign god with him.
13 He made him ride on the high places of the earth.
He ate the increase of the field.
He caused him to suck honey out of the rock,
oil out of the flinty rock;
14 butter from the herd, and milk from the flock,
with fat of lambs,
rams of the breed of Bashan, and goats,
with the finest of the wheat.
From the blood of the grape, you drank wine.
15 But Jeshurun grew fat, and kicked.
You have grown fat.
You have grown thick.
You have become sleek.
Then he abandoned the God who made him,
and rejected the Rock of his salvation.
16 They moved him to jealousy with strange gods.
They provoked him to anger with abominations.
17 They sacrificed to demons, not God,
to gods that they did not know,
to new gods that came up recently,
which your fathers did not dread.
18 Of the Rock who became your father, you are unmindful,
and have forgotten the Lord who gave you birth.
19 The Lord saw and abhorred,
because of the provocation of his sons and his daughters.
20 He said, “I will hide my face from them.
I will see what their end will be;
for they are a very perverse generation,
children in whom is no faithfulness.
21 They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not a god.
They have provoked me to anger with their vanities.
Therefore I will move them to jealousy with those who are not a people.
I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.
22 For a fire is kindled in my anger,
that burns to the lowest Sheol,
devours the earth with its increase,
and sets the foundations of the mountains on fire.
23 “I will heap disasters on them.
I will spend my arrows on them.
24 They shall be wasted with hunger,
and devoured with burning heat
and bitter destruction.
I will send the teeth of animals on them,
with the venom of vipers that glide in the dust.
25 Outside the sword will bereave,
and in the rooms,
terror on both young man and virgin,
the nursing infant with the gray-haired man.
26 I said that I would scatter them afar.
I would make their memory to cease from among men;
27 were it not that I feared the provocation of the enemy,
lest their adversaries should judge wrongly,
lest they should say, ‘Our hand is exalted,
the Lord has not done all this.’ ”
28 For they are a nation void of counsel.
There is no understanding in them.
29 Oh that they were wise, that they understood this,
that they would consider their latter end!
30 How could one chase a thousand,
and two put 10,000 to flight,
unless their Rock had sold them,
and God had delivered them up?
31 For their rock is not as our Rock,
even our enemies themselves concede.
32 For their vine is of the vine of Sodom,
of the fields of Gomorrah.
Their grapes are poison grapes.
Their clusters are bitter.
33 Their wine is the poison of serpents,
the cruel venom of asps.
34 “Is this not laid up in store with me,
sealed up among my treasures?
35 Vengeance is mine; I wil repay them
at a time when their foot slips;
for the day of their calamity is at hand.
Their doom rushes at them.”
36 For the Lord will judge his people,
and have compassion on his servants,
when he sees that their power is gone;
that there is no one remaining, shut up or left at large.
37 He will say, “Where are their gods,
the rock in which they took refuge;
38 which ate the fat of their sacrifices,
and drank the wine of their drink offering?
Let them rise up and help you!
Let them be your protection.
39 “See now that I myself am he.
There is no other god with me.
I bring death and I give life.
I wound and I heal.
There is no one who can deliver out of my hand.
40 For I lift up my hand to heaven and declare,
as I live forever,
41 if I sharpen my glittering sword,
my hand grasps it in judgment;
I will take vengeance on my adversaries,
and will repay those who hate me.
42 I will make my arrows drunk with blood.
My sword shall devour flesh with the blood of the slain and the captives,
from the head of the leaders of the enemy.”
43 Rejoice, you nations, with his people,
for he will avenge the blood of his servants.
He will take vengeance on his adversaries,
and will make atonement for his land and for his people.
44 Moses came and spoke all the words of this song in the ears of the people, he and Joshua the son of Nun. 45 Moses finished reciting all these words to all Israel. 46 He said to them, “Set your heart to all the words which I am testifying to you today, which you shall command your children to be careful to do, all the words of this law. 47 For it is no empty thing for you; it is your life, and through this thing you shall prolong your days in the land, where you are crossing over the Jordan to possess.”
48 The Lord spoke to Moses that same day, saying, 49 “Go up into this mountain of Abarim, to Mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, that is across from Jericho; and see the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites as a possession.
50 Die on the mountain where you are going up, and be gathered to your people, as Aaron your brother died on Mount Hor, and was gathered to his people; 51 because you trespassed against me among the Israelites at the waters of Meribah of Kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin; because you did not uphold my holiness among the Israelites. 52 For you shall see the land from a distance; but you shall not go there into the land which I am giving the Israelites.”
Be Ready for Service
35 “Let your waist be dressed and your lamps burning. 36 Be like men watching for their master, when he returns from the wedding feast; that when he comes and knocks, they may immediately open to him. 37 Blessed are those servants, whom the master will find watching when he comes. Most certainly I tell you that he will dress himself, make them recline, and will come and serve them. 38 They will be blessed if he comes in the second or third watch, and finds them so. 39 But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what hour the thief was coming, he would have watched, and not allowed his house to be broken into. 40 Therefore be ready also, for the Son of Man is coming in an hour that you don’t expect him.”
41 Peter said to him, “Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everybody?”
42 The Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and wise steward, whom his master will set over his household, to give them their portion of food at the right times? 43 Blessed is that servant whom his master will find doing so when he comes. 44 Truly I tell you, that he will set him over all that he has. 45 But if that servant says in his heart, ‘My master delays his coming,’ and begins to beat the menservants and the maidservants, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken, 46 then the master of that servant will come in a day when he isn’t expecting him, and in an hour that he doesn’t know, and will cut him in two, and place his portion with the unfaithful. 47 That servant, who knew his master’s will, and didn’t prepare, nor do what he wanted, will be beaten with many stripes, 48 but he who didn’t know, and did things worthy of stripes, will be beaten with few stripes. To whomever much is given, of him will much be required; and to whom much was entrusted, of him more will be asked.
Peace, Not Division
49 “I came to throw fire on the earth. I wish it were already kindled. 50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how distressed I am until it is accomplished! 51 Do you think that I have come to give peace in the earth? I tell you, no, but rather division. 52 For from now on, there will be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. 53 They will be divided, father against son, and son against father; mother against daughter, and daughter against her mother; mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law, and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”
Interpreting the Present Time
54 He said to the crowds also, “When you see a cloud rising from the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming,’ and so it happens. 55 When a south wind blows, you say, ‘There will be a scorching heat,’ and it happens. 56 You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky, but how is it that you don’t interpret this time?
Reconciling with Your Adversary
57 Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right? 58 For when you are going with your adversary before the magistrate, try diligently on the way to be released from him, lest perhaps he drag you to the judge, and the judge deliver you to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. 59 I tell you, you will by no means get out of there, until you have paid the very last penny.”
56 Yet they tempted and rebelled against the Most High God,
and did not keep his testimonies,
57 but turned back, and dealt treacherously like their fathers.
They were twisted like a deceitful bow.
58 For they provoked him to anger with their high places,
and moved him to jealousy with their engraved images.
59 When God heard this, he was angry,
and greatly abhorred Israel,
60 so that he abandoned the tent of Shiloh,
the tent which he placed among men,
61 and delivered his strength into captivity,
his glory into the adversary’s hand.
62 He also gave his people over to the sword,
and was angry with his inheritance.
63 Fire devoured their young men.
Their virgins had no wedding song.
64 Their priests fell by the sword,
and their widows couldn’t weep.
24 The hands of the diligent ones shall rule,
but laziness ends in slave labor.