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Bible Commentaries
Deuteronomy 8

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy ScripturesEverett's Study Notes

Verses 1-20

Deuteronomy 8:1-20 A Warning to Remember the Lord in their Prosperity - In Deuteronomy 8:1-20 Moses describes the blessings of the Promised Land to the children of Israel. He speaks of “a good land, a land of brooks of water, of mountain springs, a land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey; a land of iron and brass, and a land without lack.” Much of this generation of people were born in the wilderness and had never seen prosperity. They only knew of a wilderness, of manna, and water from a rock. They had never slept in a house or kept beautiful gardens and herded flocks of animals. Therefore, the Lord has Moses take the time to paint for them a mental picture of the prosperity into which He wants to lead them. However, much of this chapter also reminds them of where He brought them from and a clear warning not to forsake Him in the midst of their prosperity.

Deuteronomy 8:2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.

Deuteronomy 8:2 “And thou shalt remember” Comments - The Pentateuch was written so that the children of Israel would “remember” the Law, as well as their wilderness journeys.

Deuteronomy 8:2 Comments - Joyce Meyer said the Lord spoke to her saying, “The children of Israel spent forty years in the wilderness making an eleven-day trip because they had a ‘wilderness mentality.’” [25]

[25] Joyce Meyer, “Monthly Partnership Letter,” November 2003 (Fenton, Missouri: Joyce Meyer Ministries).

Deuteronomy 8:3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.

Deuteronomy 8:3 Comments - Note these insightful words by Sadhu Sundar Singh.

“I have infused into man’s nature hunger and thirst, that he may not in sheer heedlessness regard himself as God, but that day by day he may be reminded of his needs and that his life is bound up with the life and existence of Someone who created him. Thus being made aware of his defects and necessities, he may abide in Me and I in him, and then he will ever find in Me his happiness and joy.” [26]

[26] Sadhu Sundar Singh, At the Master’s Feet, trans. Arthur Parker (London: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1922) [on-line]; accessed 26 October 2008; available from http://www.ccel.org/ccel/singh/feet.html; Internet, “III Prayer,” section 2, part 10.

Deuteronomy 8:3 Old Testament Quotes in the New Testament - Jesus made a reference to Deuteronomy 8:3 when rebuking Satan during His temptation in the wilderness.

Matthew 4:4, “But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”

Luke 4:4, “And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.”

Deuteronomy 8:9 A land wherein thou shalt eat bread without scarceness, thou shalt not lack any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass.

Deuteronomy 8:9 “a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass” Comments - Israel did not enjoyed the economic benefits of iron and brass until the reign of King David, over fie hundred years after this promise was given. The strength of the nation of Israel was in direct proportion to their ability to use these metals.

For example, the children of Israel were oppressed during the time of the Judges because their enemies were using iron and they were not able to do so (Judges 1:19; Judges 4:3).

Judges 1:19, “And the LORD was with Judah; and he drave out the inhabitants of the mountain; but could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley, because they had chariots of iron .”

Judges 4:3, “And the children of Israel cried unto the LORD: for he had nine hundred chariots of iron ; and twenty years he mightily oppressed the children of Israel.”

During the time of King Saul, the Philistines also oppressed the children of Israel because of the advantage of having iron weapons (1 Samuel 13:19-22).

1 Samuel 13:19-22, “ Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel : for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears: But all the Israelites went down to the Philistines, to sharpen every man his share, and his coulter, and his axe, and his mattock. Yet they had a file for the mattocks, and for the coulters, and for the forks, and for the axes, and to sharpen the goads. So it came to pass in the day of battle, that there was neither sword nor spear found in the hand of any of the people that were with Saul and Jonathan: but with Saul and with Jonathan his son was there found.”

Until King David led the nation of Israel in to obedience to the Laws of God, they lacked the wisdom to exploit these natural resources. Once God gave them the use of these metals, Israel began to rule in power and authority. In the building of the Temple, David had accumulated a tremendous amount of these metals (1 Chronicles 22:16).

1 Chronicles 22:16, “Of the gold, the silver, and the brass, and the iron, there is no number. Arise therefore, and be doing, and the LORD be with thee.”

Thus, we can see how iron represents strength. It is used as a symbol of strength and authority in Scripture in the phrase, “a rod of iron” (Psalms 2:9, Revelation 2:27; Revelation 12:5; Revelation 19:15).

Psalms 2:9, “Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron ; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.”

Revelation 2:27, “And he shall rule them with a rod of iron ; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.”

Revelation 12:5, “And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron : and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.”

Revelation 19:15, “And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron : and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.”

Deuteronomy 8:17 And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth.

Deuteronomy 8:17 Comments - When the supernatural work of prosperity in our lives becomes the norm, man tends to forget that it is God who is orchestrating his blessings. He is then in danger of giving himself credit for his prosperity and blessings. [27]

[27] Joseph Prince, “Sermon,” Destined to Reign, Lighthouse Television, Kampala, Uganda, 17 September 2009, television program.

Deuteronomy 8:18 But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.

Deuteronomy 8:18 Comments - Material wealth for God’s children has a redemptive purpose. Deuteronomy 8:18 tells us that God empowers His children to get wealth in order to fulfil His plans upon earth. Our primary purpose of obtaining wealth is to propagate the Gospel of Jesus Christ. God’s covenant is a covenant of blessing His children so that we can be a blessing to others (Genesis 12:2).

Genesis 12:2, “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:”

Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 8". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/deuteronomy-8.html. 2013.
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