Deu 29:29 “The secret matters belong to יהוה our Elohim, but what is revealed belongs to us and to our children forever, to do all the Words of this Torah.
Places and Place names in the scripture are very important. Moshe and Yisrael find themselves on the Wilderness side of the Yarden river. This is the same area where much of “Yochanan Matbil” or the “immerser’s” ministry took place.
Mat 3:1 And in those days Yoḥanan the Immerser came proclaiming in the wilderness of Yehuḏah,
Mat 3:2 and saying, “Repent, for the reign of the heavens has come near!”
Mat 3:3 For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Yeshayahu, saying, “A voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way of יהוה, make His paths straight.’ ”1 Footnote:1Isa. 40:3.
Even Yahshua after his mikvah (baptism) in the Yarden river went into the wilderness.
Luk 4:1 And יהושע, being filled with the Set-apart Spirit, returned from the Yardĕn and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,
Our Torah portion begins where Mosheh addresses Yisrael in the Wilderness beyond the Yarden river.
Deu 1:1 These are the words which Mosheh spoke to all Yisra’ĕl beyond the Yardĕn in the wilderness, in the desert plain opposite Suph, between Paran and Tophel, and Laḇan, and Ḥatsĕroth, and Di Zahaḇ,
The first two words of the book of Devarim are “these are the words” or in Hebrew “eleh ha devarim.”
We assume at some future time when the remaining tribes of Yisrael return to the land that the same pattern will follow – before the remnant of Yisrael can return to the land they too must hear and receive all the words of Torah.
1Co 10:11 And all these came upon them as examples, and they were written as a warning to us, on whom the ends of the ages have come,
1Co 10:12 so that he who thinks he stands, let him take heed lest he fall.
The prophecy from the haftarah may help us to better understand the context of vs 1.
Jer 30:4 And these are the words יהוה spoke concerning Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah.
Jer 30:5 “For this is what יהוה said, ‘We have heard a voice of trembling, of fear, and not of peace.
Jer 30:6 ‘Ask now, and see if a man is giving birth. Why do I see every man with his hands on his loins like a woman in labour, and all faces turned pale?
Jer 30:7 ‘Oh! For great is that day, there is none like it. And it is the time of Yaʽaqoḇ’s distress, but he shall be saved out of it.
Jer 30:8 ‘And it shall be in that day,’ declares יהוה of hosts, ‘that I break his yoke* from your neck, and tear off your bonds, and foreigners no more enslave them. *The yoke of religion caused by rejection of the Torah.
Jer 30:9 ‘And they shall serve יהוה their Elohim and Dawiḏ their sovereign, whom I raise up for them.
Jer 30:10 ‘And you, do not fear, O Yaʽaqoḇ My servant,’ declares יהוה, ‘nor be discouraged, O Yisra’ĕl. For look, I am saving you from afar, and your seed from the land of their captivity. And Yaʽaqoḇ shall return, and have rest and be at ease, with no one to trouble him.
Jer 30:11 ‘For I am with you,’ declares יהוה, ‘to save you. Though I make a complete end of all gentiles1 where I have scattered you, yet I do not make a complete end of you. But I shall reprove you in judgment, and by no means leave you unpunished.’ Footnote: 1See 46:28, Isa. 34:2, Isa. 45:17, Dan. 2:44, Amos 9:8, Hag. 2:22.
Jer 30:12 “For thus said יהוה, ‘Your breach is incurable, your wound is grievous.
Jer 30:13 ‘No one pleads your cause, to bind up. There are no healing medicines for you.
Jer 30:14 ‘All those loving you have forgotten you, they do not seek you. For I smote you as an enemy smites, with cruel chastisement, because your crookedness is great, your sins have increased.
Jer 30:15 ‘Why do you cry about your breach? Your pain is incurable. Because of your many crookednesses, because your sins have increased, I have done this to you.
Jer 30:24 The burning displeasure of יהוה shall not turn back until He has done and established the purposes of His heart. In the latter days you shall understand it1. Footnote: 1See 23:20.
Passuk Echad (vs 1) says these words were spoken to ALL Yisrael – “el kol Yisrael”
Rashi and others teach that the place names in vs 1 and 2 are code words for sins.
“Wilderness” – The Yisraelites continually complained about the wilderness because this was an uncomfortable place to be. Surely if YHVH saves us from Mitsrayim/Egypt we should experience peace and happiness? Today few believers ever seem to accept the fact that when we are delivered from sin and bondage, we are not delivered from experiencing hard times. The Torah is given and best understood in the wilderness.
Joh 16:33 “These words I have spoken to you, that in Me you might have peace. In the world you have pressure, but take courage, I have overcome the world.”
Act 14:22 strengthening the beings of the taught ones, encouraging them to continue in the belief, and that through many pressures we have to enter the reign of Elohim.
The desert plain – Jewish commentators say this is where the Yisraelite men were seduced by the Midianite woman. The Hebrew word for “desert plain” is “aravah” (ayin,reish,veit) This Hebrew word has several different meanings and can also mean “mixture.” When there is “mixture” in our covenant with YHVH there will also be mixture in our covenants with one another. Nowhere is this more evident than in our marriage relationships. Mixture always brings defilement. “Mixture” is the trademark of all religion.
“Opposite the sea of reeds” when the Yisraelites were hemmed in between the Mitsrites/Egyptians and the sea, they complained “were there no graves in Mitsraym/Egypt” (Ex 14:11). Maybe this tells us that it’s better to die in the desert embracing Torah than to die in Mitsrayim embracing pagan mixture. It’s better to be a “water walker” and almost drown, than to be a “dry boat sitter” and not respond to the call of the Master – Matt 14:22-33.
“Paran” – this was where the 10 spies were sent from. According to the sages this was in the ninth of Av – a day in Yisraels history where both temples were destroyed and many other tragedies occurred in history. “Paran” reminds us that ongoing disobedience can have devastating consequences. The sin of the 10 spies was likely the last sin that “broke the camel’s back” – that caused YHVH to act with extreme harshness to their ongoing rebellion and disobedience.
Heb 10:31 It is fearsome to fall into the hands of the living Elohim.
The continual rejection and disobedience to Torah can have sudden catastrophic consequences.
“Tophel and Laban” Rashi quotes R Yochanan – “We have reviewed all of scripture but have not found any place named “Tophel or Laban” both words refer to complaints about the manna (Num 10:12;11:6) Tophel can be rendered “calumny” and “Laban” white, these refer to the nature and colour of the manna.
Manna has deep symbolic ties to the Torah and to Yahshua – believers in YHVH have a very sad history of misrepresenting and displaying contempt and deep lack of appreciation for YHVH’s provision for the redemption of mankind – The Torah and Messiah.
“Chatzeroth” The sages quote Num 12:1-16 as the place where Miriam and Korach rebelled against Moshe and as a result of Korach’s rebellion resulted in many Yisraelites that also rebelling against YHVH. History clearly portrays a long list of Korach’s and Miriam’s rebellion. When the messenger of Torah is rejected so is the instruction of Torah rejected and the result is that many will be led astray.
“Di Zahav” means an abundance of gold. YHVH blessed Yisrael with an abundance of gold and they used it to make a golden calf and worshiped it. YHVH wanted the gold to be used for the tabernacle. Yisrael wanted the gold for a false religion. Wealth can either cause Torah to be established or Torah to be rejected.
Deu 8:18 “But you shall remember יהוה your Elohim, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, in order to establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is today.
How many believers today use their wealth to establish the Torah?
Our portion continues:
Deu 1:2 eleven days’ journey from Ḥorĕḇ by way of Mount Sĕʽir to Qaḏĕsh Barnĕa.
All of Yisraels sins can be linked to disobedience of YHVH’s Torah.
1Jn 3:4 Everyone doing sin also does lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
The journey from Mitsrayim/Egypt to the Promised Land was only an 11 day journey, yet it took the Yisraelites 40 years.
Deu 1:3 And it came to be in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, that Mosheh spoke to the children of Yisra’ĕl according to all that יהוה had commanded him concerning them,
Deu 1:4 after he had smitten Siḥon sovereign of the Amorites, who dwelt in Ḥeshbon, and Oḡ sovereign of Bashan, who dwelt at Ashtaroth in Eḏreʽi.
These were the then “Middle East Giants” and this was an extremely important victory which enabled Yisrael to cross over the Yarden. Will this happen again someday in the future?
Deu 1:5 Beyond the Yardĕn, in the land of Mo’aḇ, Mosheh undertook to declare this Torah, saying,…….
The sages believe that five weeks later on the 7th Adar Moshe died. This means that the whole book of Devarim took about five weeks to complete.
From vs 6- 46 are a basic summary of the entire desert wilderness experience of the Yisraelites. It was like going on a trip down memory lane. It was like Mosheh was asking them to consider the journey of their lives. The journey of their lives was not one that could ever be considered as being one of willing obedience to YHVH’s will because it ended for most having to reap the bitter consequences of disobedience to YHVH’s Torah. Sadly this also reflects the journey of almost all our lives.
Deu 1:6 “יהוה our Elohim spoke to us in Ḥorĕḇ, saying, ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain.
Deu 1:7 ‘Turn and set out on your way, and go into the mountains of the Amorites, and to all the neighbouring places in the desert plain, in the mountains and in the low country, and in the Negeḇ and on the seacoast, to the land of the Kenaʽanites and to Leḇanon, as far as the great river, the River Euphrates.
Deu 1:8 ‘See, I have set the land before you. Go in and possess the land which יהוה swore to your fathers, to Aḇraham, to Yitsḥaq, and to Yaʽaqoḇ, to give to them and their seed after them.’
Deu 1:9 “And I spoke to you at that time, saying, ‘I am unable to bear you by myself.
Deu 1:10 ‘יהוה your Elohim has increased you, and see, you are today as numerous as the stars of the heavens.
Deu 1:11 ‘יהוה Elohim of your fathers is going to add to you a thousand times more than you are, and bless you as He has spoken to you!
Deu 1:12 ‘How do I bear your pressure and your burden and your strife, by myself?
It was a very difficult task for Mosheh to lead a people who continually rebelled and disobeyed Torah.
Heb 13:17 Obey those leading you, and be subject to them, for they watch for your lives, as having to give account. Let them do so with joy and not groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.
Deu 1:13 ‘Choose men, wise and understanding, and known to your tribes, and let me appoint them as your heads.’
Deu 1:14 “And you answered me and said, ‘The word which you have spoken to us to do is good.’
Deu 1:15 “And I took the heads of your tribes, wise men and known, and made them heads over you, leaders of thousands, and leaders of hundreds, and leaders of fifties, and leaders of tens, and officers for your tribes.
Deu 1:16 “And I commanded your judges at that time, saying, ‘When hearing between your brothers, judge righteously between a man and his brother or the stranger who is with him.
Deu 1:17 ‘Do not show partiality in right-ruling, hear the small as well as the great. Do not be afraid of anyone’s face, for the right-ruling belongs to Elohim. And the case which is too hard for you, bring it to me, and I shall hear it.’
Even the choice men of these leaders led Yisrael astray.
Deu 1:18 “And I commanded you at that time all the words which you should do.
Deu 1:19 “Then we set out from Ḥorĕḇ, and went through all that great and awesome wilderness which you saw on the way to the mountains of the Amorites, as יהוה our Elohim had commanded us. And we came to Qaḏĕsh Barnĕa.
Deu 1:20 “And I said to you, ‘You have come to the mountains of the Amorites, which יהוה our Elohim is giving us.
Deu 1:21 ‘See, יהוה your Elohim has set the land before you. Go up and possess it, as יהוה Elohim of your fathers has spoken to you. Do not fear, nor be discouraged.’
Deu 1:22 “And all of you came near to me and said, ‘Let us send men before us, and let them search out the land for us, and bring back word to us of the way by which we should go up, and of the cities into which we would come.’
Deu 1:23 “And the matter was good in my eyes, so I took twelve of your men, one man from each tribe.
Deu 1:24 “And they turned and went up into the mountains, and came to the wadi Eshkol, and spied it out.
Deu 1:25 “And they took some of the fruit of the land in their hands and brought it down to us. And they brought back word to us, saying, ‘The land which יהוה our Elohim is giving us is good.’
Deu 1:26 “But you would not go up and rebelled against the mouth of יהוה your Elohim,
Deu 1:27 and grumbled in your tents, and said, ‘Because יהוה was hating us, He has brought us out of the land of Mitsrayim to give us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us.
Deu 1:28 ‘Where are we going to? Our brothers have made our hearts melt, saying, “The people are greater and taller than we, the cities are great and walled up to the heavens, and we saw the sons of the Anaqim there too.” ’
Deu 1:29 “Then I said to you, ‘Have no dread or fear of them.
Deu 1:30 ‘יהוה your Elohim, who is going before you, He does fight for you, according to all He did for you in Mitsrayim before your eyes,
Deu 1:31 and in the wilderness, where you saw how יהוה your Elohim has borne you, as a man bears his son, in all the way that you went until you came to this place.’
Deu 1:32 “Yet in this matter you are putting no trust in יהוה your Elohim,
Deu 1:33 who is going before you in the way to seek out a place for you to pitch your tents, to show you the way you should go, in fire by night and in a cloud by day.
Deu 1:34 “And יהוה heard the voice of your words, and was wroth, and took an oath, saying,
Deu 1:35 ‘Not one of these men of this evil generation shall see that good land of which I swore to give to your fathers,
Deu 1:36 except Kalĕḇ son of Yephunneh. He shall see it, and to him and his children I give the land on which he walked, because he followed יהוה completely.’
Deu 1:37 “And יהוה was enraged with me for your sakes, saying, ‘You do not go in there, either.
Deu 1:38 ‘Yehoshua the son of Nun, who stands before you, he shall go in there. Strengthen him, for he shall cause Yisra’ĕl to inherit.
Deu 1:39 ‘And your little ones and your children, who you say are for a prey, who today have no knowledge of good and evil, they are going in there. And to them I give it, and they are to possess it.
Deu 1:40 ‘But you, turn and take your journey into the wilderness by the Way of the Sea of Reeds.’
Deu 1:41 “Then you answered and said to me, ‘We have sinned against יהוה. We ourselves are going up, and we shall fight, as יהוה our Elohim commanded us.’ And when each one of you had girded on his battle gear, you were ready to go up into the mountain.
Deu 1:42 “And יהוה said to me, ‘Say to them, “Do not go up nor fight, for I am not in your midst, lest you be smitten before your enemies.” ’
Deu 1:43 “So I spoke to you, but you would not listen and rebelled against the mouth of יהוה, and acted proudly, and went up into the mountain.
Deu 1:44 “Then the Amorites who dwelt in that mountain came out against you and chased you as bees do, and drove you back from Sĕʽir to Ḥormah.
Deu 1:45 “And you returned and wept before יהוה, but יהוה would not listen to your voice nor give ear to you.
Deu 1:46 “So you dwelt in Qaḏĕsh many days, according to the days that you dwelt.
Maybe YHVH will give and end time Messianic people an opportunity to do enter into our promised land the proper way.
Please note these notes are under construction and are subject to correction and are in no way a final authority on any subject