Bible study 183 – Deuteronomy 31

Moses finally ends his long speech, and declares that he will soon die, at the age of 120 (the maximum lifespan of humans since Noah). But first he writes down “the law” (“torah”) and has it put into the Ark of the Covenant next to the tablets with the ten commandments. This “law” is traditionally interpreted by Jews and Christians to mean either Deuteronomy or the entire Pentateuch (which is about to end); but that makes no sense, since the text would then be referencing its own creation in the past tense. Plus, the next chapter is explicitly stated to have been written down after writing “the law”. Plus, Moses will die in a few chapters. Plus… Look, the tradition that the following quote describes the creation of the entire Deuteronomy or Pentateuch, and not simply the speech that Moses just delivered, is just silly, and I cannot fathom why people would stick to it.

Deuteronomy 31:9
Then Moses wrote down this law, and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi, who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and to all the elders of Israel.

Full text.


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