Deuteronomy 28

Blessings at Gerizim

1 "1Now it shall be, if you diligently obey * the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the LORD your God 2will set you high above all the nations of the earth.
2 "All these blessings will come upon you and 3overtake you if you obey * the LORD your God:
3 "Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be 4in the country.
4 "Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.
5 "Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl.
6 "Blessed shall you be 5when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out.
7 "The LORD shall cause your enemies who rise up against you to be defeated before you; they will come out against you one way and will flee before you seven ways.
8 "The LORD will command the blessing upon you in your barns and in 6all that you put your hand to, and He will bless you in the land which the LORD your God gives you.
9 "7The LORD will establish you as a holy people to Himself, as He swore to you, if you keep the commandments of the LORD your God and walk in His ways.
10 "So all the peoples of the earth will see that 8you are called by the name of the LORD, and they will be afraid of you.
11 "9The LORD will make you abound in prosperity, in the offspring of your body and in the offspring of your beast and in the produce of your ground, in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers to give you.
12 "The LORD will open for you His good storehouse, the heavens, to give rain to your land in its season and to bless all the work of your hand; and 10you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.
13 "11The LORD will make you the head and not the tail, and you only will be above, and you will not be underneath, if you listen to the commandments of the LORD your God, which I charge you today, to observe them carefully,
14 and 12do not turn aside from any of the words which I command you today, to the right or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.

Consequences of Disobedience

15 "13But it shall come about, if you do not obey * the LORD your God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes with which I charge you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:
16 "14Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country.
17 "15Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl.
18 "16Cursed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock.
19 "17Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out.
20 "18The LORD will send upon you curses, confusion, and 19rebuke, in all you undertake to do, until you are destroyed and until 20you perish quickly, on account * of the evil of your deeds, because you have forsaken Me.
21 "21The LORD will make the pestilence cling to you until He has consumed you from the land where * you are entering to possess it.
22 "22The LORD will smite you with consumption and with fever and with inflammation and with fiery heat and with the sword and 23with blight and with mildew, and they will pursue you until 24you perish.
23 "The heaven which is over your head shall be bronze, and the earth which is under you, iron.
24 "25The LORD will make the rain of your land powder and dust; from heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed.
25 "26The LORD shall cause you to be defeated before your enemies; you will go out one way against them, but you will flee seven ways before them, and you will 27be an example of terror to all the kingdoms of the earth.
26 "28Your carcasses will be food to all birds of the sky and to the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away.
27 "29The LORD will smite you with the boils of Egypt and with 30tumors and with the scab and with the itch, from which you cannot * be healed.
28 "The LORD will smite you with madness and with blindness and with bewilderment of heart;
29 and you will 31grope at noon, as the blind man gropes in darkness, and you will not prosper in your ways; but you shall only be oppressed and robbed continually *, with none to save you.
30 "32You shall betroth a wife, but another man will violate her; 33you shall build a house, but you will not live in it; you shall plant a vineyard, but you will not use its fruit.
31 "Your ox shall be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will not eat of it; your donkey shall be torn away from you, and will not be restored to you; your sheep shall be given to your enemies, and you will have none to save you.
32 "34Your sons and your daughters shall be given to another people, while your eyes look on and yearn for them continually *; but there will be nothing you can do.
33 "35A people whom you do not know shall eat up the produce of your ground and all your labors, and you will never be anything but oppressed and crushed continually *.
34 "You shall be driven mad by the sight of what you see.
35 "36The LORD will strike you on the knees and legs with sore boils, from which you cannot * be healed, from the sole of your foot to the crown of your head.
36 "37The LORD will bring you and your king, whom you set over you, to a nation which neither you nor your fathers have known, and there you shall serve other gods, 38wood and stone.
37 "39You shall become a horror, a proverb, and a taunt among all the people where * the LORD drives you.
38 "40You shall bring out much seed to the field but you will gather in little, for 41the locust will consume it.
39 "42You shall plant and cultivate vineyards, but you will neither drink of the wine nor gather the grapes, for the worm will devour them.
40 "43You shall have olive trees throughout your territory but you will not anoint yourself with the oil, for your olives will drop off.
41 "44You shall have sons and daughters but they will not be yours, for they will go into captivity.
42 "45The cricket shall possess all your trees and the produce of your ground.
43 "46The alien who is among you shall rise above you higher and higher, but you will go down lower and lower.
44 "47He shall lend to you, but you will not lend to him; 48he shall be the head, and you will be the tail.
45 "So all these curses shall come on you and pursue you and overtake you 49until you are destroyed, because you would not obey * the LORD your God by keeping His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you.
46 "They shall become 50a sign and a wonder on you and your descendants forever *.
47 "51Because * you did not serve the LORD your God with joy and a glad heart, for the abundance of all things;
48 therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the LORD will send against you, 52in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in the lack of all things; and He 53will put an iron yoke on your neck until He has destroyed you.
49 "54The LORD will bring a nation against you from afar, from the end of the earth, 55as the eagle swoops down, a nation whose language you shall not understand,
50 a nation of fierce countenance who will 56have no respect for the old, nor show favor to the young.
51 "Moreover, it shall eat the offspring of your herd and the produce of your ground until you are destroyed, who also leaves you no grain, new wine, or oil, nor the increase of your herd or the young of your flock until they have caused you to perish.
52 "57It shall besiege you in all your towns until your high and fortified walls in which you trusted come down throughout your land, and it shall besiege you in all your towns throughout your land which the LORD your God has given you.
53 "58Then you shall eat the offspring of your own body, the flesh of your sons and of your daughters whom the LORD your God has given you, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you.
54 "The man who is refined and very delicate among you shall be hostile toward his brother and toward the wife he cherishes and toward the rest of his children who remain,
55 so that he will not give even one of them any of the flesh of his children which he will eat, since he has nothing * else left, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you in all your towns.
56 "59The refined and delicate woman among you, who would not venture to set the sole of her foot on the ground for delicateness and refinement, shall be hostile toward the husband she cherishes and toward her son and daughter,
57 and toward her afterbirth which issues from between her legs and toward her children whom she bears; for 60she will eat them secretly for lack of anything else, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you in your towns.
58 "If you are not careful to observe all the words of this law which are written in this book, to 61fear this honored and awesome 62name, the LORD your God,
59 then the LORD will bring extraordinary plagues on you and your descendants, even severe and lasting plagues, and miserable and chronic sicknesses.
60 "63He will bring back on you all the diseases of Egypt of which you were afraid, and they will cling to you.
61 "Also every sickness and every plague which, not written in the book of this law, the LORD will bring on you 64until you are destroyed.
62 "Then you shall be left few in number, 65whereas * you were as numerous as the stars of heaven, because you did not obey * the LORD your God.
63 "It shall come about that as the LORD 66delighted over you to prosper you, and multiply you, so the LORD will 67delight over you to make you perish and destroy you; and you will be 68torn from the land where * you are entering to possess it.
64 "Moreover, the LORD will 69scatter you among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth; and there you shall 70serve other gods, wood and stone, which you or your fathers have not known.
65 "71Among those nations you shall find no rest, and there will be no resting place for the sole of your foot; but there 72the LORD will give you a trembling heart, failing of eyes, and despair of soul.
66 "So your life shall hang in doubt before you; and you will be in dread night and day, and shall have no assurance of your life.
67 "73In the morning you shall say, 'Would * that it were evening!' And at evening you shall say, 'Would * that it were morning!' because of the dread of your heart which you dread, and for the sight of your eyes which you will see.
68 "The LORD will bring you back to Egypt in ships, by the way about which I spoke to you, 'You will never see it again!' And there you will offer yourselves for sale to your enemies as male and female slaves *, but there will be no buyer."

Images for Deuteronomy 28

Deuteronomy 28 Commentary

Chapter 28

The blessings for obedience. (1-14) The curses for disobedience. (15-44) Their ruin, if disobedient. (45-68)

Verses 1-14 This chapter is a very large exposition of two words, the blessing and the curse. They are real things and have real effects. The blessings are here put before the curses. God is slow to anger, but swift to show mercy. It is his delight to bless. It is better that we should be drawn to what is good by a child-like hope of God's favour, than that we be frightened to it by a slavish fear of his wrath. The blessing is promised, upon condition that they diligently hearken to the voice of God. Let them keep up religion, the form and power of it, in their families and nation, then the providence of God would prosper all their outward concerns.

Verses 15-44 If we do not keep God's commandments, we not only come short of the blessing promised, but we lay ourselves under the curse, which includes all misery, as the blessing all happiness. Observe the justice of this curse. It is not a curse causeless, or for some light cause. The extent and power of this curse. Wherever the sinner goes, the curse of God follows; wherever he is, it rests upon him. Whatever he has is under a curse. All his enjoyments are made bitter; he cannot take any true comfort in them, for the wrath of God mixes itself with them. Many judgments are here stated, which would be the fruits of the curse, and with which God would punish the people of the Jews, for their apostacy and disobedience. We may observe the fulfilling of these threatenings in their present state. To complete their misery, it is threatened that by these troubles they should be bereaved of all comfort and hope, and left to utter despair. Those who walk by sight, and not by faith, are in danger of losing reason itself, when every thing about them looks frightful.

Verses 45-68 If God inflicts vengeance, what miseries his curse can bring upon mankind, even in this present world! Yet these are but the beginning of sorrows to those under the curse of God. What then will be the misery of that world where their worm dieth not, and their fire is not quenched! Observe what is here said of the wrath of God, which should come and remain upon the Israelites for their sins. It is amazing to think that a people so long the favourites of Heaven, should be so cast off; and yet that a people so scattered in all nations should be kept distinct, and not mixed with others. If they would not serve God with cheerfulness, they should be compelled to serve their enemies. We may justly expect from God, that if we do not fear his fearful name, we shall feel his fearful plagues; for one way or other God will be feared. The destruction threatened is described. They have, indeed, been plucked from off the land, ver. ( 63 ) . Not only by the Babylonish captivity, and when Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans; but afterwards, when they were forbidden to set foot in Jerusalem. They should have no rest; no rest of body, ver. 65, but be continually on the remove, either in hope of gain, or fear of persecution. No rest of the mind, which is much worse. They have been banished from city to city, from country to country; recalled, and banished again. These events, compared with the favour shown to Israel in ancient times, and with the prophecies about them, should not only excite astonishment, but turn unto us for a testimony, assuring us of the truth of Scripture. And when the other prophecies of their conversion to Christ shall come to pass, the whole will be a sign and a wonder to all the nations of the earth, and the forerunner of a general spread of true christianity. The fulfilling of these prophecies upon the Jewish nation, delivered more than three thousand years ago, shows that Moses spake by the Spirit of God; who not only foresees the ruin of sinners, but warns of it, that they may prevent it by a true and timely repentance, or else be left without excuse. And let us be thankful that Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, by being made a curse for us, and bearing in his own person all that punishment which our sins merit, and which we must otherwise have endured for ever. To this Refuge and salvation let sinners flee; therein let believers rejoice, and serve their reconciled God with gladness of heart, for the abundance of his spiritual blessings.

Cross References 73

  • 1. Exodus 15:26; Exodus 23:22-27; Leviticus 26:3-13; Deuteronomy 7:12-26; Deuteronomy 11:13
  • 2. Deuteronomy 28:13; Deuteronomy 26:19; 1 Chronicles 14:2
  • 3. Zechariah 1:6
  • 4. Genesis 39:5
  • 5. Psalms 121:8
  • 6. Deuteronomy 15:10
  • 7. Exodus 19:5
  • 8. 2 Chronicles 7:14
  • 9. Deuteronomy 28:4; Proverbs 10:22
  • 10. Deuteronomy 23:20
  • 11. Deuteronomy 28:1, 44
  • 12. Deuteronomy 5:32; Joshua 1:7
  • 13. Leviticus 26:14-43; Joshua 23:15; Daniel 9:11
  • 14. Deuteronomy 28:3
  • 15. Deuteronomy 28:5
  • 16. Deuteronomy 28:4
  • 17. Deuteronomy 28:6
  • 18. Deuteronomy 28:8; Malachi 2:2
  • 19. Psalms 80:16; Isaiah 51:20; Isaiah 66:15
  • 20. Deuteronomy 4:26
  • 21. Leviticus 26:25; Numbers 14:12; Jeremiah 24:10; Amos 4:10
  • 22. Leviticus 26:16
  • 23. Amos 4:9
  • 24. Deuteronomy 4:26
  • 25. Deuteronomy 11:17; Deuteronomy 28:12
  • 26. Deuteronomy 28:7; Isaiah 30:17
  • 27. 2 Chronicles 29:8; Jeremiah 15:4; Jeremiah 24:9; Ezekiel 23:46
  • 28. Jeremiah 7:33; Jeremiah 16:4; Jeremiah 19:7; Jeremiah 34:20
  • 29. Exodus 9:9; Deuteronomy 7:15; Deuteronomy 28:60, 61
  • 30. 1 Samuel 5:6
  • 31. Exodus 10:21
  • 32. Job 31:10; Jeremiah 8:10
  • 33. Amos 5:11
  • 34. Deuteronomy 28:41
  • 35. Jeremiah 5:15, 17
  • 36. Deuteronomy 28:27
  • 37. 2 Kings 17:4, 6; 2 Kings 24:12, 14; 2 Kings 25:7, 11; 2 Chronicles 36:1-21; Jeremiah 39:1-9
  • 38. Deuteronomy 4:28; Jeremiah 16:13
  • 39. 1 Kings 9:7, 8; Jeremiah 19:8; Jeremiah 24:9; Jeremiah 25:9; Jeremiah 29:18
  • 40. Isaiah 5:10; Micah 6:15; Haggai 1:6
  • 41. Exodus 10:4; Joel 1:4
  • 42. Isaiah 5:10; Isaiah 17:10, 11
  • 43. Jeremiah 11:16; Micah 6:15
  • 44. Deuteronomy 28:32
  • 45. Deuteronomy 28:38
  • 46. Deuteronomy 28:13
  • 47. Deuteronomy 28:12
  • 48. Deuteronomy 28:13
  • 49. Deuteronomy 4:25, 26
  • 50. Numbers 26:10; Isaiah 8:18; Ezekiel 5:15; Ezekiel 14:8
  • 51. Deuteronomy 12:7; Nehemiah 9:35-37
  • 52. Lamentations 4:4-6
  • 53. Jeremiah 28:13, 14
  • 54. Isaiah 5:26-30; Isaiah 7:18-20; Jeremiah 5:15; Jeremiah 6:22, 23
  • 55. Jeremiah 48:40; Jeremiah 49:22; Lamentations 4:19; Hosea 8:1
  • 56. Isaiah 47:6
  • 57. Jeremiah 10:17, 18; Zephaniah 1:15, 16
  • 58. Leviticus 26:29; 2 Kings 6:28, 29; Jeremiah 19:9; Lamentations 2:20; Lamentations 4:10
  • 59. Lamentations 4:10
  • 60. 2 Kings 6:28, 29; Lamentations 4:10
  • 61. Psalms 99:3; Malachi 1:14
  • 62. Isaiah 42:8
  • 63. Deuteronomy 28:27
  • 64. Deuteronomy 4:25, 26
  • 65. Deuteronomy 1:10; Nehemiah 9:23
  • 66. Jeremiah 32:41
  • 67. Proverbs 1:26
  • 68. Jeremiah 12:14; Jeremiah 45:4
  • 69. Leviticus 26:33; Deuteronomy 4:27; Nehemiah 1:8
  • 70. Deuteronomy 4:28; Deuteronomy 29:26; Deuteronomy 32:17
  • 71. Lamentations 1:3
  • 72. Leviticus 26:36
  • 73. Job 7:4

Footnotes 53

Chapter Summary


In this chapter Moses enlarges on the blessings and the curses which belong, the one to the doers, the other to the transgressors of the law; the blessings, De 28:1-14; the curses, some of which concern individual persons, others the whole nation and body of people, and that both under the former and present dispensations, and which had their fulfilment in their former captivities, and more especially in their present dispersion, De 28:15-68.

Deuteronomy 28 Commentaries

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