Summary: A look again at the 10 commandments - (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
The book of Deuteronomy is a series of farewell sermons from Moses to the Israelites:
• In these sermons he urges the people to love God, obey his laws;
• And follow the leadership of Joshua.
• The Jews call this book the “haddeborim”, which means "the words."
• Based on the opening words in chapter 1 verse 1.
• Ancient writings written on scrolls were not given names;
• But they were called after the first words you would read on the parchment.
• We get our English name Deuteronomy from two Greek words;
• ‘Deutero’ which means ‘Second’ and ‘nomos’ which means ‘law’
• This title comes from the Septuagint a Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament;
• In this edition, books of the Old Testament were given the names that we commonly use.
• Now although Deuteronomy means ‘Second Law’;
• Please note that this book is not a second Law;
• There is only one ‘Law’ that God gave to Moses on Mount Sinai;
• You can find it in Exodus chapter 20.
• Deuteronomy is a restatement and expansion of that Law;
• As recoded in the book of Exodus some 40 years earlier.
• The first two versions of the Ten Commandments;
• Can be found in Exodus chapter 20 and Exodus chapter 34.
• In Deuteronomy chapter 5 we find a third version of the Ten Commandments,
• But this is a restatement and expansion of that Law.
Question: Why does the Law need to be repeated?
• Remember when we are talking about the ‘Law’;
• We are not just talking about the ten commandments;
• There are 613 laws of Moses in total and many of them are repeated here.
Answer: Two main reasons:
• FIRST: The people –
• Deuteronomy was written forty years after the book of Exodus.
• During those forty years a whole generation died.
• This generation consisted of all the adults who came out of Egypt as slaves;
• These adults all crossed the Red Sea, and these adults all camped at Sinai;
• And heard the commandments the first time.
• Apart from Moses, Joshua and Caleb;
• That generation was now dead!
• The new generation who would receive this ‘second law’;
• Were only babies when their predecessors crossed the Red Sea,
• And camped at Sinai and heard the law.
• This new generation had no memories of when their families came out of slavery;
• They had no recollections of Moses reading the law.
• So it required Moses to read and explain the law a second time.
• At my own fellowship - Duncan Road Church;
• We have made the effort to teach our new converts;
• And also the new generations coming through into membership;
• The principles of how we operate as a Church and what makes us different;
• Or rather what are the key distinctions between ourselves and other denominations.
• i.e. Why do we have Elders and not a Vicar or a Pastor.