Deuteronomy 31:19-22

19 “Now write down this song and teach it to the Israelites and have them sing it, so that it may be a witness for me against them.
20 When I have brought them into the land flowing with milk and honey, the land I promised on oath to their ancestors, and when they eat their fill and thrive, they will turn to other gods and worship them, rejecting me and breaking my covenant.
21 And when many disasters and calamities come on them, this song will testify against them, because it will not be forgotten by their descendants. I know what they are disposed to do, even before I bring them into the land I promised them on oath.”
22 So Moses wrote down this song that day and taught it to the Israelites.

Deuteronomy 31:19 in Other Translations

KJV
19 Now therefore write ye this song for you, and teach it the children of Israel: put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the children of Israel.
ESV
19 "Now therefore write this song and teach it to the people of Israel. Put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the people of Israel.
NLT
19 “So write down the words of this song, and teach it to the people of Israel. Help them learn it, so it may serve as a witness for me against them.
MSG
19 "But for right now, copy down this song and teach the People of Israel to sing it by heart. They'll have it then as my witness against them.
CSB
19 Therefore write down this song for yourselves and teach it to the Israelites; have them recite it, so that this song may be a witness for Me against the Israelites.

Deuteronomy 31:19-22 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO DEUTERONOMY 31

Moses being old, and knowing he should quickly die, and must not go over Jordan with the people of Israel, acquaints them with it, and encourages them and Joshua to go over notwithstanding, and not be afraid of their enemies, since the Lord would go with them, and deliver them into their hands, De 31:1-8; and having written the law, he delivered it to the priests, and ordered that it should be read at the end of every seven years before all the people, that they and theirs might learn it, and fear the Lord, De 31:9-13; and whereas the death of Moses was very near, and the Lord foreseeing the people would quickly fall into idolatry, which would bring great calamities upon them, he directed Moses to write a song, which should be a witness for him, and against them, in ages to come; which Moses accordingly did, De 31:14-22; and Moses having given a charge to Joshua, and finished the writing of the law in a book, gave it to the Levites to put it in the side of the ark, De 31:23-27; and then ordered the chief of the tribes to be gathered together, that he might deliver the song, which by the direction and under the inspiration of God he had written, De 31:28-30; which song is recorded in De 32:1-43.

Deuteronomy 31:19-22 In-Context

17 And in that day I will become angry with them and forsake them; I will hide my face from them, and they will be destroyed. Many disasters and calamities will come on them, and in that day they will ask, ‘Have not these disasters come on us because our God is not with us?’
18 And I will certainly hide my face in that day because of all their wickedness in turning to other gods.
19 “Now write down this song and teach it to the Israelites and have them sing it, so that it may be a witness for me against them.
20 When I have brought them into the land flowing with milk and honey, the land I promised on oath to their ancestors, and when they eat their fill and thrive, they will turn to other gods and worship them, rejecting me and breaking my covenant.
21 And when many disasters and calamities come on them, this song will testify against them, because it will not be forgotten by their descendants. I know what they are disposed to do, even before I bring them into the land I promised them on oath.”
22 So Moses wrote down this song that day and taught it to the Israelites.
23 The LORD gave this command to Joshua son of Nun: “Be strong and courageous, for you will bring the Israelites into the land I promised them on oath, and I myself will be with you.”
24 After Moses finished writing in a book the words of this law from beginning to end,

Cross References 9

  • 1. ver 22
  • 2. S Genesis 31:50
  • 3. Deuteronomy 6:10-12
  • 4. Deuteronomy 32:15-17; Psalms 4:2; Psalms 16:4; Psalms 40:4; Jeremiah 13:25; Daniel 3:28; Amos 2:4
  • 5. Deuteronomy 8:19; Deuteronomy 11:16-17
  • 6. ver 16
  • 7. ver 17; S Deuteronomy 4:30
  • 8. 1 Chronicles 28:9; Hosea 5:3; John 2:24-25
  • 9. ver 19
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