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Deuteronomy - Chapter 32

1 Listen, heavens, while I speak; hear, earth, the words that I shall say!

2 May my teaching fall like the rain, may my word drop down like the dew, like showers on the grass, like light rain on the turf!

3 For I shall proclaim the name of Yahweh. Oh, tell the greatness of our God!

4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are equitable. A trustworthy God who does no wrong, he is the Honest, the Upright One!

5 They have acted perversely, those he fathered without blemish, a deceitful and underhand brood.

6 Is this the return you make to Yahweh? O people brainless and unwise! Is this not your father, who gave you being, who made you, by whom you subsist?

7 Think back on the days of old, think over the years, down the ages. Question your father, let him explain to you, your elders, and let them tell you!

8 When the Most High gave the nations each their heritage, when he partitioned out the human race, he assigned the boundaries of nations according to the number of the children of God,

9 but Yahweh's portion was his people, Jacob was to be the measure of his inheritance.

10 In the desert he finds him, in the howling expanses of the wastelands. He protects him, rears him, guards him as the pupil of his eye.

11 Like an eagle watching its nest, hovering over its young, he spreads out his wings to hold him, he supports him on his pinions.

12 Yahweh alone is his guide; no alien god for him!

13 He gives him the heights of the land to ride, he feeds him on the yield of the mountains, he gives him honey from the rock to taste, and oil from the flinty crag;

14 curds from the cattle, milk from the flock, and the richness of the pasture, rams of Bashan's breed, and goats, the richness of the wheat kernel; the fermented blood of the grape for drink.

15 Jacob has eaten to his heart's content, Jeshurun, grown fat, has now lashed out. (You have grown fat, gross, bloated.) He has disowned the God who made him, and dishonoured the Rock, his salvation,

16 whose jealousy they aroused with foreigners -- with things detestable they angered him.

17 They sacrificed to demons who are not God, to gods hitherto unknown to them, to newcomers of yesterday whom their ancestors had never respected.

18 (You forget the Rock who fathered you, the God who made you, you no longer remember.)

19 Yahweh saw it and, in anger, he spurned his sons and daughters.

20 'I shall hide my face from them,' he said, 'and see what will become of them. For they are a deceitful brood, children with no loyalty in them.

21 They have roused me to jealousy with a non-god, they have exasperated me with their idols. In my turn I shall rouse them to jealousy with a non-people, I shall exasperate them with a stupid nation.

22 Yes, a fire has blazed from my anger, it will burn right down to the depths of Sheol; it will devour the earth and all its produce, it will set fire to the footings of the mountains.

23 I shall hurl disasters on them, on them I shall use up all my arrows.

24 They will be weakened by hunger, eaten away by plague and the bitter scourge. Against them I shall send the fang of wild animals and the poison of snakes that glide in the dust.

25 Outside, the sword bereaves, while inside terror will reign. Young man and girl alike will perish, suckling and greybeard both together.

26 I should crush them to dust, I said, I should wipe out all memory of them,

27 did I not fear the boasting of the enemy.' But do not let their foes be mistaken! Do not let them say, 'We have got the upper hand and Yahweh plays no part in this.'

28 What a short-sighted nation this is, how thoroughly imperceptive!

29 Were they wise, they would succeed, they would be able to read their destiny.

30 How else could one man rout a thousand, how could two put ten thousand to flight, were it not that their Rock has sold them, that Yahweh has delivered them up?

31 But their rock is not like our Rock; our enemies cannot pray for us!

32 For their vine springs from the stock of Sodom and from the groves of Gomorrah: their grapes are poisonous grapes, their clusters are bitter;

33 their wine is snakes' poison, the vipers' cruel venom.

34 But he, is he not safe with me, sealed inside my treasury?

35 Vengeance is mine, I will pay them back, for the time when they make a false step. For the day of their ruin is close, doom is rushing towards them, for he will see to it that their power fails. that neither serf nor free man remains.

36 (For Yahweh will see his people righted, he will take pity on his servants.)

37 'Where are their gods then?' he will ask, 'the rock where they sought refuge,

38 who ate the fat of their sacrifices and drank the wine of their libations?' Let these arise and help you, let these be the shelter above you!

39 See now that I, I am he, and beside me there is no other god. It is I who deal death and life; when I have struck, it is I who heal (no one can rescue anyone from me).

40 Yes, I raise my hand to heaven, and I say, 'As surely as I live for ever,

41 When I have whetted my flashing sword, I shall enforce justice, I shall return vengeance to my foes, I shall take vengeance on my foes.

42 I shall make my arrows drunk with blood, and my sword will feed on flesh: the blood of the wounded and the prisoners, the dishevelled heads of the enemy!'

43 Heavens, rejoice with him, let all the children of God pay him homage! Nations, rejoice with his people, let God's envoys tell of his power! For he will avenge the blood of his servants, he will return vengeance to my foes, he will repay those who hate him and purify his people's country.

44 Moses came with Joshua son of Nun and recited all the words of this song in the people's hearing.

45 When Moses had finished reciting these words to all Israel,

46 he said to them, 'Take all these words to heart; I intend them today to be evidence against you. You must order your children to keep and observe all the words of this Law.

47 You must not think of this as empty words, for the Law is your life, and by its means you will live long in the country which you are crossing the Jordan to possess.'

48 Yahweh spoke to Moses that same day and said to him,

49 'Climb this mountain of the Abarim, Mount Nebo, in the country of Moab, opposite Jericho, and view the Canaan which I am giving to the Israelites as their domain.

50 Die on the mountain you have climbed, and be gathered to your people, as your brother Aaron died on Mount Hor and was gathered to his people.

51 Because, with the other Israelites, you broke faith with me at the Waters of Meribah-Kadesh in the desert of Zin, because you did not make my holiness clear to the Israelites;

52 you may only see the country from outside; you cannot enter it -- the country which I am giving to the Israelites.'

Book of Deuteronomy Chapters

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