1) Listen to Podcast
2) GG Questions
The Bible Jesus Read: The End of an Era
1. Joshua’s Commission (31:1-29) : Having made his last great plea, Moses now makes concrete preparations for his death. He names as his successor Joshua, whom the Lord has commissioned (31:1-8, 14-15, 23; 34:9). What will be Joshua’s responsibilities, not just in terms of actions but also in terms of attitude? Why was it important for Israel that God be “with Joshua” as He was “with Moses” (Josh. 1:16-17; 3:7; 4:14)? How has God called us to relate to our spiritual authorities?
2. The Song (32:1-43) : The book of Deuteronomy concludes with two lengthy poems us modern westerners often struggle connecting to. Read the sections describing the purpose of this ‘Song of Moses’ (Deut. 31:16-18, 19-22; 32:44-47) and then read the song itself (32:1-43). Do you think this song accomplishes that purpose? How? What is the function of a “witness” against us and do we, or the world at large, have need of such a “witness” against us today?
3. The Blessing (33:1-29) : As with the song in chapter 32, the poetry here is often cryptic, and sometimes we are not certain how ‘blessed’ some of the tribes actually are (33:6, 22). Yet the overall tone emphasizes Israel’s deep privilege at having the Lord as their God. How does this text give specific expectations of blessedness to certain tribes? (consider comparing Moses’ blessing of the twelve tribes with Jacob’s blessing of his twelve sons in Gen. 49) Do you think that God has a special blessing, uniquely prepared for you (John 14:2; Rev. 2:17)?
4. The Death of Moses (32:48-52; 34:1-12) : Moses stands as a unique figure in the Old Testament (Num. 12:3). How do these verses emphasize the special relationship he shared with the Lord (Exod. 33:11; Deut. 34:10)? Moses’ unique life and role in God’s redemptive purposes established what some have called the ‘Moses Model’, the model against which Israel was to compare in search of that future “prophet like Moses” (Deut. 18:15, 18). What does Moses’ description in Deuteronomy of this “prophet like me” teach us about Jesus (John 6:14; 7:40)?