Deuteronomy 25-26

Sunday Evening Bible Study

December 27, 1998


The name Deuteronomy means "second law". It is Moses’ final address to the people. It covers the last 1 ½ months of Moses’ life. He’s 120 years old. It’s God’s "review" for the people to make sure they understand His ways before they go into the land.

Deuteronomy 25

:1-3 Righteous judgment

:3 Forty stripes he may give him, and not exceed: lest, if he should exceed, and beat him above these with many stripes, then thy brother should seem vile unto thee.

The Jews actually would only give out 39 lashes, not because they were merciful, but in order to make sure they didn’t break the Law of Moses. Just in case someone miscounted, they were cautious not to break this law. Paul knew all about it.

(2 Cor 11:23-24 KJV) Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. {24} Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.


Punishment should match the crime.

This can apply to us as parents as we are trying to discipline our children.

We shouldn’t be over-doing our discipline or giving more than the behavior requires.

:4 Muzzling an ox

:4 Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn.

An ox would be used to thresh the grain by having it walk over the grain, separating the grain from the chaff. The idea is that if the ox is hungry, as he’s doing his work in your grain bin, let him eat.

Paul used this verse to say that a person who works hard in ministry ought to be able to make a living off of what he’s doing.

(1 Cor 9:9-11 KJV) For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen? {10} Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope should be partaker of his hope. {11} If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?

(1 Tim 5:18 KJV) For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.

:5-10 Levirate Law

This next section was known as the "levirate" law, the duty of a man to raise up a name for a deceased brother.

The Sadducees used this law to try and trap Jesus:

(Mat 22:23-33 KJV) The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, {24} Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. {25} Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother: {26} Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh. {27} And last of all the woman died also. {28} Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her. {29} Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. {30} For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. {31} But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, {32} I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. {33} And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.

:6 that his name be not put out of Israel.

This was the purpose behind the law, to keep the family line of the brother going and to keep the property within the family.

:9 loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face

loose his shoe from off his foot – This act signified that he had abandoned his duty.

spit in his face – A sign of contempt.

:10 And his name shall be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.

We see this played out in the book of Ruth when Boaz wants to take Ruth for his wife, fulfilling the levirate law, and there is another kinsman who agrees to not marry Ruth.

(Ruth 4:1-8 KJV) Then went Boaz up to the gate, and sat him down there: and, behold, the kinsman of whom Boaz spake came by; unto whom he said, Ho, such a one! turn aside, sit down here. And he turned aside, and sat down. {2} And he took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit ye down here. And they sat down. {3} And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech's: {4} And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it. {5} Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy it also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance. {6} And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it. {7} Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel. {8} Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy it for thee. So he drew off his shoe.

The kinsman didn’t mind acquiring the land, but when he saw that it came with a wife attached, he was quick to back out. Perhaps his own wife wasn’t too excited about the situation!

It seems that by Ruth’s time, the shoe bit wasn’t seen as something to be ashamed of, almost as if they had lost the meaning of the ritual.

:11-12 Out of bounds

:11 taketh him by the secrets:

secrets – genitals

:13-16 Impartiality

:13 Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small.

This has to do with measuring stuff. If you have a balance scale, you’d set a weight on one side, and pour whatever you were measuring on the other side until the scale balanced. If you had two different "weights" that were both supposedly one pound, and you were a sneaking thief, you would use the smaller weight for selling things and a larger weight for buying things. You could really make out that way.

:15 But thou shalt have a perfect and just weight

The point is that we need to handle all our transactions impartially. We need to use the same weight to sell things as we do to buy things.



We need to treat each person with the same standard that we treat others or how we would want to be treated ourselves.

:17-19 Destroy Amalek

:17 Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt;

The tribe of Amalek were descendants of Esau’s grandson (cf. Gen. 36:12)

For some, Amalek is a type of the flesh.

(Exo 17:8-16 KJV) Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. {9} And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand. {10} So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. {11} And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. {12} But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. {13} And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. {14} And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. {15} And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Jehovahnissi: {16} For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn that the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.

Jehovahnissi – "Yahweh is my banner"

:18 when thou wast faint and weary; and he feared not God.

God doesn’t take kindly to people who pick on the less fortunate.

This is also just how our flesh works, always picking on us when we’re at a weak moment.

:19 thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget it.

Israel was commanded that they would one day wipe out Amalek.

This would happen when Israel would have their first king:

(1 Sam 15:1-3 KJV) Samuel also said unto Saul, The LORD sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the LORD. {2} Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt. {3} Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

(1 Sam 15:7-9 KJV) And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt. {8} And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword. {9} But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.

(1 Sam 15:22-23 KJV) And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. {23} For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

Deuteronomy 26

The next chapter is a ritual that Israelites were to perform after they had come into the Promised Land. It’s all about remembering who they are, where they’ve come from, and who is responsible for their being in the land.

:1-11 First Firstfruits

:1 And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and possessest it, and dwellest therein;

It all sounds very close to home for us, as we’ve just begun to "occupy" our "land".

:5 A Syrian ready to perish was my father

Ryrie - Better, a wandering Aramean. A reference to Jacob, who resided for a long time in Syria (Mesopotamia; cf. Gen. 28:5) and whose family ties were for the most part with Paddan-aram.

:5 and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there with a few, and became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous:

Jacob came down to Egypt with seventy people and left four hundred years later with 600,000 fighting men.

:9 And he hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, even a land that floweth with milk and honey.

Remember where you’ve come from and where He’s brought you.

:11 And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the LORD thy God hath given unto thee


It’s okay to be happy!

When God has blessed you with good things, be glad! Sometimes, some of us sound down right guilty about enjoying what God has blessed us with. Give God thanks. Enjoy God’s blessings.

Of course, how rich you are is all a matter of perspective:

The Rich Family in Our Church

by Eddie Ogan

I'll never forget Easter, 1946. I was 14, my little sister Ocy 12, and my older sister Darlene 16. We lived at home with our mother, and the four of us knew what it was to do without many things. My dad had died 5 years before, leaving Mom with seven school kids to raise and no money. By 1946 my older sisters were married, and my brothers had left home.

A month before Easter, the pastor of our church announced that a special Easter offering would be taken to help a poor family. He asked everyone to save and give sacrificially. When we got home, we talked about what we could do. We decided to buy 50 pounds of potatoes and live on them for a month. This would allow us to save $20 of our grocery money for the offering.

When we thought that if we kept our electric lights turned out as much as possible and didn't listen to the radio, we'd save money on that month's electric bill. Darlene got as many house and yard cleaning jobs as possible, and both of us babysat for everyone we could. For 15 cents, we could buy enough cotton loops to make three pot holders to sell for $1. We made $20 on pot holders.

That month was one of the best of our lives. Every day we counted the money to see how much we had saved. At night we'd sit in the dark and talk about how the poor family was going to enjoy having the money the church would give them. We had about 80 people in church, so we figured that whatever amount of money we had to give, the offering would surely be 20 times that much. After all, every Sunday the pastor had reminded everyone to save for the sacrificial offering.

The day before Easter, Ocy and I walked to the grocery store and got the manager to give us three crisp $20 bills and one $10 bill for all our change. We ran all the way home to show Mom and Darlene. We had never had so much money be fore. That night we were so excited we could hardly sleep. We didn't care that we wouldn't have new clothes for Easter; we had $70 for the sacrificial offering. We could hardly wait to get to church!

On Sunday morning, rain was pouring. We didn't own an umbrella, and the church was over a mile from our home, but it didn't seem to matter how wet we got. Darlene had cardboard in her shoes to fill the holes. The cardboard came apart, and her feet got wet. But we sat in church proudly. I heard some teenagers talking about the Smith girls having on their old dresses. I looked at them in their new clothes, and I felt so rich.

When the sacrificial offering was taken, we were sitting on the second row from the front. Mom put in the $10 bill, and each of us girls put in a $20. As we walked home after church, we sang all the way. At lunch Mom had a surprise for us. She had bought a dozen eggs, and we had boiled Easter eggs with our fried potatoes! Late that afternoon the minister drove up in his car. Mom went to the door, talked with him for a moment, and then came back with an envelope in her hand. We asked what it was, but she didn't say a word. She opened the envelope and out fell a bunch of money. There were three crisp $20 bills, one $10 bill and seventeen $1 bills. Mom put the money back in the envelope. We didn't talk, just sat and stared at the floor. We had gone from feeling like millionaires to feeling like poor white trash.

We kids had had such a happy life that we felt sorry for anyone who didn't have our mom and dad for parents and a house full of brothers and sisters and other kids visiting constantly. We thought it was fun to share silverware and see whether we got the fork or the spoon that night. We had two knives which we passed around to whoever needed them. I knew we didn't have a lot of things that other people had, but I'd never thought we were poor. That Easter Day I found out we were. The minister had brought us the money for the poor family, so we must be poor. I didn't like being poor. I looked at my dress and worn-out shoes and felt so ashamed that I didn't want to go back to church. Everyone there probably already knew we were poor! I thought about school. I was in the ninth grade and at the top of my class of over 100 students. I wondered if the kids at school knew we were poor. I decided I could quit school since I had finished the eighth grade. That was all the law required at that time.

We sat in silence for a long time. Then it got dark, and we went to bed. All that week, we girls went to school and came home, and no one talked much. Finally on Saturday, Mom asked us what we wanted to do with the money. What did poor people do with money? We didn't know. We'd never known we were poor. We didn't want to go to church on Sunday, but Mom said we had to. Although it was a sunny day, we didn't talk on the way. Mom started to sing, but no one joined in and she only sang one verse. At church we had a missionary speaker. He talked about how churches in Africa made buildings out of sun-dried bricks, but they need money to buy roofs. He said $100 would put a roof on a church. The minister said, "Can't we all sacrifice to help these poor people?"

We looked at each other and smiled for the first time in a week. Mom reached into her purse and pulled out the envelope. She passed it to Darlene. Darlene gave it to me, and I handed it to Ocy. Ocy put it in the offering. When the offering was counted, the minister announced that it was a little over $100. The missionary was excited. He hadn't expected such a large offering from our small church. He said, "You must have some rich people in this church." Suddenly it struck us! We had given $87 of that "little over $100." We were the rich family in the church! Hadn't the missionary said so? From that day on I've never been poor again. I've always remembered how rich I am because I have Jesus.

:12-19 The Levite’s part

:12 When thou hast made an end of tithing all the tithes of thine increase the third year

This was a reminder of what they’ve already been told:

(Deu 14:28-29 KJV) At the end of three years thou shalt bring forth all the tithe of thine increase the same year, and shalt lay it up within thy gates: {29} And the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, which are within thy gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hand which thou doest.

:14 I have not eaten thereof in my mourning

I have not eaten thereof in my mourning – what belongs to God belongs to God. It’s about staying faithful to the Lord and giving Him what belongs to Him, instead of using it to indulge myself.

:17 Thou hast avouched the LORD this day to be thy God

avouched – declared