Deuteronomy 34:10

10 Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face.

Deuteronomy 34:10 Meaning and Commentary

Deuteronomy 34:10

And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto
Not in the times of Joshua, who wrote this chapter, at least the last eight verses, ( Deuteronomy 34:5-12 ) , as say the Jews F16; nor to the times of Samuel, whom others take to be the writer: of them; nor to the times of Ezra, as others; nor even throughout the whole Old Testament dispensation to the times of Christ, the great Prophet, like to Moses, that was to arise; and the Messiah is by the Jews owned, as by Maimonides F17, to be equal to him, and by others to be above him: it is a well known saying of theirs F18, that

``the Messiah shall be exalted above Abraham, and extolled above Moses, and made higher than the ministering: angels;''

but as to all other prophets he excels them, and therefore they call him the prince, master, and Father of the prophets, and say, that all prophesied from the fountain of his prophecy F19: the difference between him and them is observed, by Maimonides F20 to lie in many things; as that they prophesied by a dream or vision, but he awake and seeing; they prophesied by the means of an angel, and saw what they did in parables and dark sayings; but Moses not by means of an angel, but the Lord spake to him face to face; they trembled and astonished, but not so Moses; they could not prophesy when they would, but he at any time, nor did he need to dispose and prepare his mind for it; some of which will not hold good, especially the last; the instances in which he really exceeded them follow:

whom the Lord knew face to face;
owned, took notice of, and familiarly conversed with face to face, as a man with his friend; none were permitted to such familiarity with God as he; see ( Numbers 12:6-8 ) ( Exodus 33:11 ) ; the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem paraphrase it,

``whom the Word of the Lord knew.''


F16 T. Bab. Bava Bathra, fol. 15. 1.
F17 Hilchot Teshuvah, c. 9. sect. 2.
F18 Tanchuma in Yalkut in Isa. lii. 13.
F19 Maimon. Yesode Hatorah, c. 7. sect. 6. & Vorst. in ib.
F20 lb. sect. 6, 7, 8, 9.

Deuteronomy 34:10 In-Context

8 The Israelites wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days; then the period of mourning for Moses was ended.
9 Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, because Moses had laid his hands on him; and the Israelites obeyed him, doing as the Lord had commanded Moses.
10 Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face.
11 He was unequaled for all the signs and wonders that the Lord sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his servants and his entire land,
12 and for all the mighty deeds and all the terrifying displays of power that Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.