I am making this covenant, with its oath, not only with you
who are standing here with us today in the presence of the LORD our God but also with those who are not here today.
You yourselves know how we lived in Egypt and how we passed through the countries on the way here.
You saw among them their detestable images and idols of wood and stone, of silver and gold.
Make sure there is no man or woman, clan or tribe among you today whose heart turns away from the LORD our God to go and worship the gods of those nations; make sure there is no root among you that produces such bitter poison.
When such a person hears the words of this oath, he invokes a blessing on himself and therefore thinks, "I will be safe, even though I persist in going my own way." This will bring disaster on the watered land as well as the dry.
The LORD will never be willing to forgive him; his wrath and zeal will burn against that man. All the curses written in this book will fall upon him, and the LORD will blot out his name from under heaven.
The LORD will single him out from all the tribes of Israel for disaster, according to all the curses of the covenant written in this Book of the Law.
Your children who follow you in later generations and foreigners who come from distant lands will see the calamities that have fallen on the land and the diseases with which the LORD has afflicted it.
The whole land will be a burning waste of salt and sulfur--nothing planted, nothing sprouting, no vegetation growing on it. It will be like the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboiim, which the LORD overthrew in fierce anger.
All the nations will ask: "Why has the LORD done this to this land? Why this fierce, burning anger?"
And the answer will be: "It is because this people abandoned the covenant of the LORD, the God of their fathers, the covenant he made with them when he brought them out of Egypt.
They went off and worshiped other gods and bowed down to them, gods they did not know, gods he had not given them.
Therefore the LORD's anger burned against this land, so that he brought on it all the curses written in this book.
In furious anger and in great wrath the LORD uprooted them from their land and thrust them into another land, as it is now."
The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.
When all these blessings and curses I have set before you come upon you and you take them to heart wherever the LORD your God disperses you among the nations,
and when you and your children return to the LORD your God and obey him with all your heart and with all your soul according to everything I command you today,
then the LORD your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you and gather you again from all the nations where he scattered you.
Even if you have been banished to the most distant land under the heavens, from there the LORD your God will gather you and bring you back.
He will bring you to the land that belonged to your fathers, and you will take possession of it. He will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers.
The LORD your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live.
The LORD your God will put all these curses on your enemies who hate and persecute you.
You will again obey the LORD and follow all his commands I am giving you today.
Then the LORD your God will make you most prosperous in all the work of your hands and in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your land. The LORD will again delight in you and make you prosperous, just as he delighted in your fathers,
if you obey the LORD your God and keep his commands and decrees that are written in this Book of the Law and turn to the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.
It is not up in heaven, so that you have to ask, "Who will ascend into heaven to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?"
Nor is it beyond the sea, so that you have to ask, "Who will cross the sea to get it and proclaim it to us so we may obey it?"
No, the word is very near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it.
See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction.
For I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the LORD your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.
But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them,
I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.
This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live