Today: [Deuteronomy Chapter Thirty-Three]: The Blessing of Moses. In the previous chapter we have the song of Moses warning the people to remain faithful. In this chapter is the blessing of Moses over the people. Interesting enough several tribes are left out of this blessing and the birth order of the tribes is completely ignored. God doesn’t do things according to our idea of fairness. He blesses according to purposes can be discovered however if you look deeply enough.
Today: [Deuteronomy Chapter Thirty-Three]: The Blessing of Moses. In the previous chapter we have the song of Moses warning the people to remain faithful. In this chapter is the blessing of Moses over the people. Interesting enough several tribes are left out of this blessing and the birth order of the tribes is completely ignored. God doesn’t do things according to our idea of fairness. He blesses according to purposes can be discovered however if you look deeply enough. [Deu 33:1-29 KJV] 1 And this [is] the blessing, wherewith Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death. 2 And he said, The LORD came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints: from his right hand [went] a fiery law for them. 3 Yea, he loved the people; all his saints [are] in thy hand: and they sat down at thy feet; [every one] shall receive of thy words. 4 Moses commanded us a law, [even] the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob. 5 And he was king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people [and] the tribes of Israel were gathered together. In reading this chapter you will notice the awkwardness of the references to Moses and the references to God. In researching this specific chapter you will see scholars suggest this is actually a collection of sayings attributed to Moses added in to the text of Deuteronomy over a period of time: “[Both] Genesis 49 and Deuteronomy 33 are thought to contain individual sayings, written at different times and places by different authors. The sayings originally circulated in oral form as folk literature and were then gathered in collections. “We may assume,” writes Frank Cross in his book Studies in Ancient Yahwistic Poetry “that groups of blessings, ascribed to Jacob and Moses, and perhaps others, circulated orally in the period of the Judges.”” Moses is uniquely called “the man of God” which was a common designation of a prophet in those days. In the New Covenant we are all men and women of God. The difference is that we have God IN US taking up His habitation in us. In those times God only visited men but did not live in their hearts through the New Birth. The mention of the Lord coming from Sinai is a metaphor for the Lord coming to the people in the same way that that sun rises. John the Baptist makes reference to this very passage in Luke 1:78 when he declares Jesus as the Dayspring from on high that visits us. The Lord comes with 10,000 of His saints. Enoch is said to have prophesied this same thing in a reference found in Jude 14 which interesting enough is a quote from the book of Enoch which is not accepted in the canon of scripture. An alternate reading of this phrase in De. 33 is that the Lord comes from “Meribah” which means “contention” and “combat” which implies that the Lord comes to fight for us as He did with Pharaoh in delivering the people of Egypt. 6 Let Reuben live, and not die; and let [not] his men be few. 7 And this [is the blessing] of Judah: and he said, Hear, LORD, the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people: let his hands be sufficient for him; and be thou an help [to him] from his enemies. 8 And of Levi he said, [Let] thy Thummim and thy Urim [be] with thy holy one, whom thou didst prove at Massah, [and with] whom thou didst strive at the waters of Meribah; 9 Who said unto his father and to his mother, I have not seen him; neither did he acknowledge his brethren, nor knew his own children: for they have observed thy word, and kept thy covenant. 10 They shall teach Jacob thy judgments, and Israel thy law: they shall put incense before thee, and whole burnt sacrifice upon thine altar. 11 Bless, LORD, his substance, and accept the work of his hands: smite through the loins of them that rise against him, and of them that hate him, that they rise not again. When you see the tribes mention always look at birth order. Reuben was the oldest but Judah was the fourth born. Reuben, Simeon and Levi were all denied their birthrights for different reasons leaving Judah to inherit the promise of the first born and thereby become the bloodline out of which Jesus was born. It is interesting that Simeon is not blessed by Moses in this passage. Remember that Simeon and Levi were rejected from the birthright because of an act of cruelty by which they brought defamation on Jacob their father. History tells us that the tribe of Simeon was absorbed into the tribe of Judah and disappears from history. Levi also was not given inheritance in Israel but rather the “Lord was their portion” and they were scattered through out Israel to serve as a caste of priests. This tells us that in the original transgression Levi must have truly repented because Simeon is eventually eliminated but Levi while facing consequences nonetheless in the midst of those consequences was given the opportunity to serve. This shows us that God chose the Levites to serve and produce a high priest not because they were the most qualified but because they where the least qualified. 12 [And] of Benjamin he said, The beloved of the LORD shall dwell in safety by him; [and the LORD] shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between his shoulders. 13 And of Joseph he said, Blessed of the LORD [be] his land, for the precious things of heaven, for the dew, and for the deep that coucheth beneath, 14 And for the precious fruits [brought forth] by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon, 15 And for the chief things of the ancient mountains, and for the precious things of the lasting hills, 16 And for the precious things of the earth and fulness thereof, and [for] the good will of him that dwelt in the bush: let [the blessing] come upon the head of Joseph, and upon the top of the head of him [that was] separated from his brethren. Next comes Joseph and Benjamin again completely out of the original birth order. Joseph and Benjamin were the children of Rachel. Benjamin was the son that consoled Jacob over the loss of Joseph. Joseph is a type of Jesus and Benjamin being the little brother represents you and I. Benjamin was an affront to the cruelty of his half brothers born of Leah thereby they would have been ashamed of him and ashamed to call him their brother. This is what Hebrews 2:11 refers to: [Heb 2:11 KJV] 11 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified [are] all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, We are not merely legally adopted into the family of God or mere half brothers or brothers in name only. We are the genuine and valid siblings of Jesus through His death burial and resurrection. The implication is that because of the New Birth His connection to us is deeper than His Jewish roots. This is an interesting question – was Jesus a Jew? Throughout Hebrew history up until two hundred years before Jesus the lineage was determined by the Father. Then two hundred years before Jesus in a Mishnah claiming to originate from Ezra’s time states that one’s “Jewish-ness” originates with the mother or is in fact matrilineal. So a Jewish person is Jewish through the bloodline of the mother. Our place in the promises of God to Abraham is established through our Father God in the new birth in the shed blood of Jesus. 17 His glory [is like] the firstling of his bullock, and his horns [are like] the horns of unicorns: with them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they [are] the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they [are] the thousands of Manasseh. 18 And of Zebulun he said, Rejoice, Zebulun, in thy going out; and, Issachar, in thy tents. 19 They shall call the people unto the mountain; there they shall offer sacrifices of righteousness: for they shall suck [of] the abundance of the seas, and [of] treasures hid in the sand. 20 And of Gad he said, Blessed [be] he that enlargeth Gad: he dwelleth as a lion, and teareth the arm with the crown of the head. 21 And he provided the first part for himself, because there, [in] a portion of the lawgiver, [was he] seated; and he came with the heads of the people, he executed the justice of the LORD, and his judgments with Israel. In this passage regarding Benjamin there is mentioned the connection between the visible glory of God and the appearance of horns. The light that came out of Moses face did not look like an omnidirectional light bulb shining in all directions. The descriptions of the glory in Moses face was more like beams or horns of light coming out of his temples. This is interesting since the devil choose to see to it that he is depicted with horns of flesh instead of light. In his letters to the Corinthians Paul refers to this (2 Cor. 11:18) that many want to glory after the flesh but that (1 Cor. 1:29) no flesh should glory in God’s presence. 22 And of Dan he said, Dan [is] a lion’s whelp: he shall leap from Bashan. 23 And of Naphtali he said, O Naphtali, satisfied with favour, and full with the blessing of the LORD: possess thou the west and the south. 24 And of Asher he said, [Let] Asher [be] blessed with children; let him be acceptable to his brethren, and let him dip his foot in oil. 25 Thy shoes [shall be] iron and brass; and as thy days, [so shall] thy strength [be]. 26 [There is] none like unto the God of Jeshurun, [who] rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. 27 The eternal God [is thy] refuge, and underneath [are] the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy [them]. 28 Israel then shall dwell in safety alone: the fountain of Jacob [shall be] upon a land of corn and wine; also his heavens shall drop down dew. 29 Happy [art] thou, O Israel: who [is] like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help, and who [is] the sword of thy excellency! and thine enemies shall be found liars unto thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places. The name of Dan means judgment. Dan is described here as coming from Bashan. There is a Messianic reference to the “strong bulls of Bashan” gaping on Jesus with their mouth. In the last chapter the enemies of Israel are described as judges. When we “mouth” on one another in judgment we are like the “bulls of Bashan” gaping upon Christ. This speaks of the brutality that God sees in judgmentalism. The reference to Asher dipping his foot in oil has fueled much oil speculation in the territory given to this tribe in the Promised Land. In the 90’s however another speculator financed by a Texas oil firm with no Arab ties discovered vast and profitable natural gas reserves that have put Israel on target to become a net exporter of oil as opposed to having to import it for their needs. God’s promise in verse 28 is that Israel shall dwell in safety. That applies to natural Israel and also to the church. No matter what is happening on the world scene we are not to be alarmed. The sky isn’t falling the kingdom is coming and in the end the Government of God is our hope and trust and mainstay.
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