Key verse: Deuteronomy 8:2-3

“Remember that the LORD your God led you on the entire journey these forty years in the wilderness, so that he might humble you and test you to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you by letting you go hungry; then he gave you manna to eat, which you and your fathers had not known, so that you might learn that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.” (CSB)

Monday, August 5 | Read Deuteronomy 8

From the Spirit-Filled Life Bible notes on vv. 1-3;

“In this chapter Moses emphasizes that the people are to remember the faithfulness of God. The purpose for the wilderness experience was divine discipline; they must not forget what they were taught. Heart refers to the basic attitudes of the people toward God and His commandments. It took testing to know such inner attitudes.

“The experience of manna allowed Israel to realize that their basic source of life was God. Jesus in His temptation experience (Matt. 4:4; Luke 4:4) quotes from v. 3.”

Tuesday, August 6 | Read Deuteronomy 9

From the note on vv. 1-6 in Deuteronomy, by John D. Currid, from the EP Study Commentary series:

“Moses begins this section with the introductory formula, ‘Hear, O Israel!’ (see 5:1; 6:4). It is a solemn charge, a singular imperative, designed to grab the attention of the covenanted people. Moses then repeats a theme that has already appeared in the book: Israel is ready to cross the Jordan and to conquer Canaan, yet the nations of the land are formidable opponents (1:28; cf. Num. 13:28-31). Using typical hyperbole, Moses describes the cities of Canaan as, literally, ‘fortified to the heavens’, or, as the Septuagint renders it, ‘walled up to the sky’. Such figures are employed to inculcate in the minds and hearts of the people the truth that they are unable to defeat these nations on their own. If they are to triumph, it must be the work of Yahweh.”

Wednesday, August 7 | Read Deuteronomy 10

From the KJV Names of God Bible note on v. 17;

Yah, Yahweh–LORD

“The name Yahweh occurs more than 6,800 times in the Old Testament. After the destruction of the temple in AD 70, this sacred, personal name of Israel’s God was not pronounced. Instead, Adonay was substituted for Yahweh whenever it appeared in the biblical text. Because of this, the correct pronunciation was eventually lost. English editions of the Bible usually translate Adonay as “Lord” and Yahweh as “LORD.”

“Afraid of profaning this covenant name of God, various rabbinical writers spoke of it as “The Name,” “The Great and Terrible Name,” “The Unutterable Name,” “The Ineffable Name,” “The Holy Name,” and “The Distinguished Name.” Also known as the Tetragrammaton, because it is formed by the four Hebrew consonants YHWH (JHVH in German), it was first rendered Jehovah in the Middle Ages and enshrined as such in the King James Version of the Bible (Exodus 6:3; Psalm 83:18; Isaiah 12:2; 26:4). This mispronunciation arose in the second half of the first millennium AD when Jewish scholars began supplying vowels to Hebrew that had formerly been written without them. Since Adonay was always substituted for Yahweh (pronounced yah-WEH, as scholars now think) in the biblical text, the Hebrew vowels for Adonay were inserted into the four letters of the Tetragrammaton: YaHoWaH.

“Unfortunately, the translation “LORD,” which is a title rather than a name, obscures the personal nature of this name for Go. Though the meaning of Yahweh is disputed, the mysterious self-description in Exodus 3:14, “I AM THAT I AM,” may convey the sense not only that God is self-existent but that he is always present with his people. Yahweh is not a God who is remote or aloof but One who is always near and who at times intervenes in history on behalf of his people. The ten plagues, the parting of the Red Sea, the manna in the desert–all these and more–were powerful acts that revealed him as a God of great faithfulness, holiness, compassion, and power.”

Thursday, August 8 | Read Deuteronomy 11

From the Message Devotional Bible note on vv. 1-17;

“The book of Deuteronomy takes the past and puts it together with the present in such a way that we can move into the future with a heightened expectation of having God’s promises fulfilled in our lives. Deuteronomy 11:1-17 does this in the transitional setting of moving from the old year to the new year. In the middle of the passage is this sentence: “It’s a land that GOD, your God, personally tends–he’s the gardener–he alone keeps his eye on it all year long” (11:12)–from the beginning of the year to the end of it. The entire calendar year is under the sweep of God’s caring eyes. Past and future are held together by his love and his promises. Because God sees the beginning of the year and the end of the year in a caring way, we’re able to link up our past with our future. Once we see God in the year past, we can respond to him properly in the year ahead.”

Friday, August 9 | Read Deuteronomy 12

From the NKJV Faithlife Illustrated Study Bible note on vv. 1-28;

“Deuteronomy 12 begins the main legal code in the book (chs. 12-26). The laws can be divided into three major sections: a collection of laws about worship and religious practices (12:1-16:17); a collection of laws about leadership of the community (16:18-18:22); and a collection of miscellaneous laws (chs. 19-26).

“This chapter opens the collection of laws about worship by emphasizing that upon entering the Promised Land Israel is to worship Yahweh at the one specific place of His choosing (vv. 1-7; compare John 4:19-26). Moses forbids the Israelites from setting up altars and worshiping anywhere, as the patriarchs did (Gen. 12:7-8; 13:4, 18; 22:9; 26:25; 35:1, 3, 7). Once they complete the conquest, they are to build a central sanctuary in a location that Yahweh will reveal (Deut. 12:11). Requiring a single, central place of worship would demand changes in the way the Israelites ordered their life, even to the point of changing the observance of holy days as described in the Book of Exodus. This passage of Deuteronomy seems to indicate that the purpose of the centralized sanctuary was to ensure that Israel worshiped Yahweh correctly.”

Saturday, August 10 | Read Deuteronomy 13

From the KJV Everyday Study Bible notes on vv. 2-8;

“The genuineness of prophets and dreamers cannot be determined by their ability to perform a sign or wonder (cp. 4:34), but by their commitment to the Lord and their faithfulness in proclaiming his word. The message must validate the works of signs and wonders, and not the reverse.

“The death sentence for false prophets within Israel reflects the severity of their offense. Acts of treason against human rulers and their governments are commonly capital offenses, how much more when seditious disloyalty is displayed against the King of Kings?

“Loyalty to the Lord outweighs loyalty to any other person, family members included. Jesus made this matter clear when he taught his disciples, “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me” (Matt. 10:37).”

Sunday, August 11 | Read Deuteronomy 14

From the NASB Life Application Study Bible note on vv. 3-21;

“Why was Israel forbidden to eat certain foods? There are several reasons: (1) Predatory animals ate the blood of other animals, and scavengers ate dead animals. Because the people could not eat blood or animals they found dead, they could not eat animals that did these things either. (2) Some forbidden animals had bad associations in the Israelite culture, as bats, snakes and spiders do for some people today. Some may have been used in pagan religious practices (Isaiah 66:17). To the Israelites, the unclean animals represented sin or unhealthy habits. (3) Perhaps some restrictions were given to Israel just to remind them continually that they were a different and separate people committed to God. Although we no longer must follow these laws about food (Acts 10:9-16), we can still learn from them the lesson that holiness is to be carried into all parts of life. We can’t restrict holiness only to the spiritual side; we must be holy in the everyday practical part of life as well. Health practices, finances, use of leisure–all provide opportunities to put holy living into daily living.”