Deuteronomy 28

The Blessing for Obeying God

Deuteronomy 28:1-14

28:1-14
Notice the following considerations about the blessings:

First, the blessings of God are contingent upon our obedience. Notice the “if” of verses 1, 2, 9, 13, and 14.

Second, the blessings of obeying the covenant are many (28:3-6). Moses elaborated on those blessings in Deuteronomy 28:7-14. They include: military might (28:7), agricultural success (28:8, 11, 12), a great reputation among the nations (28:9-10), multiplying of family (28:11), and financial success (28:12).

Notice the comprehensive nature of the blessings that would result from living in obedience to God’s word:

Blessed shall you be in the city;
Blessed shall you be in the country.
Blessed shall be the offspring of your body,
produce of your ground,
offspring of your beasts,
increase of your herd.
Blessed shall be your basket
and your kneading bowl.
Blessed shall you be when you come in;
Blessed shall you be when you go out.

The Curses for Disobeying God Emphasized and Expanded

Deuteronomy 28:15-68 

28:15-68
Moses again emphasized the curses that would result from disobedience to God (28:15). He outlined those curses in verses 16-19. Notice how the curses outlined in these verses parallel the blessings outlined in verses 3-6.

Cursed shall you be in the city;
Cursed shall you be in the country.
Cursed shall be your basket
and your kneading bowl.
Cursed shall be the offspring of your body,
produce of your ground,
increase of your herd.
Cursed shall you be when you come in;
Cursed shall you be when you go out.

Moses also warned the people that disobeying God would ultimately lead to destruction (28:20). That destruction would come upon the people by disease (28:21-22), drought (28:23-24), military defeat (28:25-26), the physical and mental affliction that follows military defeat (28:27-35), exile (28:36-37), agricultural failure and the accompanying economic ruin (28:38-42), and a decline in status (28:43-44 in contrast to 28:12-13). Moses again reminded the people that they would experience the curses because of disobedience (28:45-47).

Deuteronomy 28:49-57 describe the terrible curse of being besieged by a strong (28:29), merciless (28:50) foreign army who would eat the produce of their land (28:51-52) while they (the Israelites) would be forced to resort to cannibalism to survive (28:53-57).

Deuteronomy 28:58-62 describe the curse of plagues and diseases that would result in their death.

Deuteronomy 28:63-68 describe the curse of being exiled (28:63) from the Promised Land to lands where they would serve other gods (28:64), experience no rest or hope (28:65), have no peace about the future (28:66), and be in constant misery (28:67-68).

Practical Consideration: It is foolish to persist in wrongdoing. The blessings and curses outlined by Moses clearly indicate that it is foolish to persist in wrongdoing. A man who persists in wrongdoing forfeits the blessings of God and brings only trouble upon himself. No man can sin with impunity. No man who sins can exempt himself from the consequences of his sin.

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