Bible study 185 – Deuteronomy 33

Moses tells a poem right before he dies, where he oddly refers to himself in the third person. It is very similar to Jacob’s poem on his own deathbed at the end of Genesis, in that it describes each of Jacob’s children (each of the tribes of Israel). There are, however, some changes: The Reubenites are apparently on the brink of extinction, the role of leader is changed from Judah to Joseph, and Dan is changed from a snake to “a lion’s whelp”. Simeon is strangely left out altogether.

The poem’s description of God sounds like some kind of pagan war god.

Deuteronomy 33:26-27
There is none like God, O Jeshurun, who rides through the heavens to your
majestic through the skies.
He subdues the ancient gods, shatters the forces of old;
he drove out the enemy before you,
          and said, “Destroy!”

Full text.


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