D E U T E R O N O M Y
This chapter is a very large exposition of two
words in the foregoing chapter, the blessing and the curse. Those
were pronounced blessed in general that were obedient, and those
cursed that were disobedient; but, because generals are not so
affecting, Moses here descends to particulars, and describes the
blessing and the curse, not in their fountains (these are out of
sight, and therefore the most considerable, yet least considered,
the favour of God the spring of all the blessings, and the wrath of
God the spring of all the curses), but in their streams, the
sensible effects of the blessing and the curse, for they are real
things and have real effects. I. He describes the blessings that
should come upon them if they were obedient; personal, family, and
especially national, for in that capacity especially they are here
treated with, ver. 1-14.
II. He more largely describes the curses which would come upon them
if they were disobedient; such as would be, 1. Their extreme
vexation, ver. 15-44. 2.
Their utter ruin and destruction at last, ver. 45-68. This chapter is much to the
same purport with Lev.
xxvi., setting before them life and death, good and
evil; and the promise, in the close of that chapter, of their
restoration, upon their repentance, is here likewise more largely
repeated, ch. xxx.
Thus, as they had precept upon precept in the repetition of the
law, so they had line upon line in the repetition of the promises
and threatenings. And these are both there and here delivered, not
only as sanctions of the law, what should be conditionally, but as
predictions of the event, what would be certainly, that for a while
the people of Israel would be happy in their obedience, but that at
length they would be undone by their disobedience; and therefore it
is said (ch. xxx. 1)
that all those things would come upon them, both the blessing and