Home
Search Bible
Click for Help   Click for QuickNav   Click for Advanced Search Options
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVHCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow

Search a pre-defined list


OR Select a range of biblical books

From:

To:


OR Custom Selection:

Use semicolons to separate groups:
'Gen;Jdg;Psa-Mal' or 'Rom 3-12;Mat 1:15;Mat 5:12-22'

Your Bible Version is the KJV
Version Selector Up Arrow
KJV King James Version
NKJV New King James Version
NLT New Living Translation
NIV New International Version
ESV English Standard Version
HCSB Holman Christian Standard Bible
NASB New American Standard Bible
NET New English Translation
RSV Revised Standard Version
ASV American Standard Version
YLT Young's Literal Translation
DBY Darby Translation
WEB Webster's Bible
HNV Hebrew Names Version
RVR60 Reina-Valera 1960
VUL Latin Vulgate
WLC Westminster Leningrad Codex
LXX Septuagint
Go to Top
Link to This PageCite This Page
Version Selector Up Arrow
Version Selector Up Arrow

Cite this page

MLA format Copy link to clipboard

Note: MLA no longer requires the URL as part of their citation standard. Individual instructors or editors may still require the use of URLs.

APA format Copy link to clipboard
Chicago format Copy link to clipboard
Close
Share this pageFollow the BLB
Version Selector Up Arrow

Share this page using one of these tools:

facebooktwitter

googlepluspinterest

reddittumblrlinkedin


Or email this page to a friend:

Version Selector Up Arrow

Follow the Blue Letter Bible on:

facebooktwitter

pinterestgoogle+


Or subscribe to our Newsletter:

Printable Page
 
 
Left Contextbar EdgeLeft Contextbar Edge BackgroundRight Contextbar Edge2Prior BookPrior ChapterReturn to CommentariesReturn to Author BiographyNext ChapterNext BookRight Contextbar Edge2Right Contextbar Edge BackgroundRight Contextbar Edge1
Choose a new font size and typeface

Customize your font sizeIncrease your font sizeDecrease your font sizeReturn to default font size

Choose a Bible text color
Read the Bible in blackRead the Bible in dark blueRead the Bible in blue

Customize your text type
Arial font
Trebuchet MS font
Georgia font
Times New Roman font

Customize your Hebrew text type
SBL Hebrew font
Times New Roman font
Arial font

Customize your Greek text type
Gentium font
Times New Roman font
Arial font

Close font preferences
The Blue Letter Bible
BLB Searches
Search the Bible
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVHCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow
 [?]

Advanced Options

Search a pre-defined list


OR Select a range of biblical books

From:

To:


OR Custom Selection:

Use semicolons to separate groups: 'Gen;Jdg;Psa-Mal' or 'Rom 3-12;Mat 1:15;Mat 5:12-22'

LexiConc
 [?]
 

Advanced Options

Exact Match
Beginning of the Word
Any Part of the Word
Theological FAQs
 [?]
 
Multi-Verse Retrieval
x
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVHCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow

Line-By-Line Order:
Line-By-Line Verse-Reference  Verse-Reference
Line-By-Line Reference-Verse  Reference-Verse
Line-By-Line Separate Line  Separate Line
Line-By-Line Verse Only  Verse Only
Line-By-Line Reference Only  Reference Only
Reference Delimiters:
No Reference Delimiters  None — Jhn 1:1 KJV
Square Reference Delimiters  Square — [Jhn 1:1 KJV]
Curly Reference Delimiters  Curly — {Jhn 1:1 KJV}
Parenthesis Reference Delimiters  Parens — (Jhn 1:1 KJV)
Paragraph Order:
Paragraph Verse-Reference  Verse-Reference
Paragraph Reference-Verse  Reference-Verse
Paragraph Reference-Only  Reference-Only
Number Delimiters:*
No Verse Numbers  No Number
No Verse Delimeters  No Delimiter — 15
Square Verse Delimiters  Square — [15]
Curly Verse Delimiters  Curly — {15}
Parenthesis Verse Delimiters  Parens — (15)
Other Options:
Abbreviate Books  Abbreviate Books
Quotes Around Verses  Quotes around Verses
Remove Square Brackets  Remove Square Brackets
 
Sort Canonically  Sort Canonically

* 'Number Delimiters' only apply to 'Paragraph Order'

Let's Connect
x

Connect on TwitterConnect on FacebookConnect on InstagramConnect on PinterestConnect on Google Plus

Receive our Blue Letter Bible Newsletter

Daily Devotionals
x

Blue Letter Bible offers several daily devotional readings in order to help you refocus on Christ and the Gospel of His peace and righteousness.

Daily Bible Reading Plans
x

Recognizing the value of consistent reflection upon the Word of God in order to refocus one’s mind and heart upon Christ and His Gospel of peace, we provide several reading plans designed to cover the entire Bible in a year.

One-Year Plans

Two-Year Plan

David Guzik :: Study Guide for Deuteronomy 33

toggle collapse

Moses Blesses the Tribes

A. Introduction to the blessing of the tribes.

1. (Deu 33:1) Now this is the blessing …

Now this is the blessing with which Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death.

a. Moses the man of God: As he looked at Israel with a shepherd's heart, he could not leave them without blessing them. It must be this way. Moses could not leave this earth without a final blessing of the people he has loved and served in the LORD for these 40 years.

b. This chapter is similar in its effect to the blessing of Israel (Jacob) upon his twelve sons as recorded in Genesis 49. Since Moses was the one who recorded the blessing of Israel in Genesis 49, it is not a stretch to think he consciously modeled his blessing on Jacob's previous one.

2. (Deu 33:2-5) The context is set: The glory of God's revelation to Israel.

And he said:
"The LORD came from Sinai,
And dawned on them from Seir;
He shone forth from Mount Paran,
And He came with ten thousands of saints;
From His right hand Came a fiery law for them.
Yes, He loves the people;
All His saints are in Your hand;
They sit down at Your feet;
Everyone receives Your words.
Moses commanded a law for us,
A heritage of the congregation of Jacob.
And He was King in Jeshurun,
When the leaders of the people were gathered,
All the tribes of Israel together."

a. The LORD came from Sinai: In the midst of images of God's glory in revealing Himself and His word to Israel (He shone … with ten thousands of saints … a fiery law … He was King). This adds a sense of drama and grandeur to Moses' prophetic words to each tribe.

B. The blessing of the individual tribes.

1. (Deu 33:6) Reuben: Nor let his men be few.

Let Reuben live, and not die,
Nor let his men be few.

a. Let Reuben live: This is a general blessing for the tribe of Reuben. Moses prayed, "Nor let his men be few," asking that the tribe of Reuben be blessed with growth.

b. Live and not die: This tepid blessing is in line with Jacob's prophecy concerning the tribe of Reuben (you shall not excel, Genesis 49:4). The tribe of Reuben never did excel; as far as we know, there never came a prophet, a judge, or a king from the tribe of Reuben.

2. (Deu 33:7) Judah: May You be a help.

And this he said of Judah:
"Hear, LORD, the voice of Judah,
And bring him to his people;
Let his hands be sufficient for him,
And may You be a help against his enemies."

a. Hear, LORD, the voice of Judah: Since the name Judah means praise, Moses prayed that the LORD would hear the voice of praise.

b. Let his hands be sufficient: Essentially, Moses prayed for the blessing and sustaining of the tribe of Judah, no doubt until it could fulfill its prophetic destiny to bring forth the Messiah.

i. Moses knew this destiny for the tribe of Judah from Jacob's prophecy in Genesis 49:10: The scepter shall not depart from Judah.

3. (Deu 33:8-11) Levi: They shall teach … Israel Your law.

And of Levi he said:
"Let Your Thummim and Your Urim be with Your holy one,
Whom You tested at Massah,
And with whom You contended at the waters of Meribah,
Who says of his father and mother, 'I have not seen them';
Nor did he acknowledge his brothers,
Or know his own children;
For they have observed Your word
And kept Your covenant.
They shall teach Jacob Your judgments,
And Israel Your law.
They shall put incense before You,
And a whole burnt sacrifice on Your altar.
Bless his substance, LORD,
And accept the work of his hands;
Strike the loins of those who rise against him,
And of those who hate him, that they rise not again."

a. They have observed Your word and kept Your covenant: Because of this, Levi had a blessed place among the tribes of Israel. Moses prayed that the substance of Levi would be blessed and that their enemies would be defeated.

b. They shall teach Jacob Your judgments, and Israel Your law: Especially, Levi had the blessed place of teaching Israel the word of God. They would accomplish this as they were scattered in Israel, as Jacob had prophesied (Genesis 49:7).

i. The prophecy I will divide them in Jacob and scatter them in Israel (in Genesis 49:7) was given to both the tribes of Simeon and Levi. For the tribe of Levi it was a blessing, as they were scattered throughout the nation to minister to the people and to bring God's word to the whole nation. For the tribe of Simeon, the scattering was a significant curse; they are not even mentioned among the tribes being blessed here.

4. (Deu 33:12) Benjamin: The beloved of the LORD.

Of Benjamin he said:
"The beloved of the LORD shall dwell in safety by Him,
Who shelters him all the day long;
And he shall dwell between His shoulders."

a. The beloved of the LORD: The place of special love and blessing Benjamin had would be prophetically fulfilled in a Benjaminite city becoming the center of the nation - Jerusalem.

b. Shall dwell in safety by Him: Thus, though the tribe of Benjamin was indeed fierce and warlike (Jacob's prophecy described Benjamin as a ravenous wolf, Genesis 49:27), the tribe was greatly beloved of the LORD.

5. (Deu 33:13-17) Joseph: Let the blessing come.

And of Joseph he said:
"Blessed of the LORD is his land,
With the precious things of heaven, with the dew,
And the deep lying beneath,
With the precious fruits of the sun,
With the precious produce of the months,
With the best things of the ancient mountains,
With the precious things of the everlasting hills,
With the precious things of the earth and its fullness,
And the favor of Him who dwelt in the bush.
Let the blessing come 'on the head of Joseph,
And on the crown of the head of him who was separate from his brothers.'
His glory is like a firstborn bull,
And his horns like the horns of the wild ox;
Together with them He shall push the peoples
To the ends of the earth;
They are the ten thousands of Ephraim,
And they are the thousands of Manasseh."

a. Blessed of the LORD is his land: The two tribes of Joseph - Ephraim and Manasseh - were indeed blessed numerically in Israel. The descendants of this one son among twelve sons of Jacob were far more numerous than all the other tribes.

b. Ten thousands of Ephraim … thousands of Manasseh: This fulfilled Jacob's prophecy in Genesis 49:22 (Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a well; his branches run over the wall).

6. (Deu 33:18-19) Zebulun and Issachar: They shall partake of the abundance of the seas.

And of Zebulun he said:
"Rejoice, Zebulun, in your going out,
And Issachar in your tents!
They shall call the peoples to the mountain;
There they shall offer sacrifices of righteousness;
For they shall partake of the abundance of the seas
And of treasures hidden in the sand."

a. They shall partake of the abundance of the seas: Both the tribes of Zebulun and Issachar were in the Galilee region, and were blessed to take advantage of the Sea of Galilee.

b. Treasures hidden in the sand: This is consistent with what Jacob said of Zebulun in Genesis 49:13 (Zebulun shall dwell by the haven of the sea).

7. (Deu 33:20-21) Gad: He dwells as a lion.

And of Gad he said:
"Blessed is he who enlarges Gad;
He dwells as a lion,
And tears the arm and the crown of his head.
He provided the first part for himself,
Because a lawgiver's portion was reserved there.
He came with the heads of the people;
He administered the justice of the LORD,
And His judgments with Israel."

a. He dwells as a lion: The lion-like character of the tribe of Gad was shown by the fact that Gad furnished many fine troops for David (1 Chronicles 12:14). This is in fulfillment of Jacob's words in Genesis 49:19: he shall triumph at last.

8. (Deu 33:22) Dan: A lion's whelp.

And of Dan he said:
"Dan is a lion's whelp;
He shall leap from Bashan."

a. He shall leap from Bashan: This may not be a complimentary phrase. History records that Dan was a troublesome tribe. They were the tribe to introduce idolatry into Israel (Judges 18:30); Jeroboam set up one of his idolatrous golden calves in Dan (1 Kings 12:26-30), and later Dan became a center of idol worship in Israel (Amos 8:14). Indeed, Jacob said of Dan in Genesis 49:17, Dan shall be a serpent by the way.

b. From Bashan: The tribe of Dan originally was allotted land in the southern part of Israel, but migrated to the north hundreds of years after this (Judges 18). Moses' reference to Bashan (a region in northern Israel) prophetically anticipated this migration.

9. (Deu 33:23) Naphtali: Full of the blessing of the LORD.

And of Naphtali he said:
"O Naphtali, satisfied with favor,
And full of the blessing of the LORD,
Possess the west and the south."

a. O Naphtali, satisfied with favor: The tribe of Naphtali was indeed satisfied with favor. Naphtali's land was in a key portion near the Sea of Galilee, the region where Jesus did much of His teaching and ministry. No wonder Moses says this tribe is full of the blessing of the LORD, and that Jacob said of Naphtali in Genesis 49:21, he gives goodly words.

10. (Deu 33:24-25) Asher: Most blessed of sons.

And of Asher he said:
"Asher is most blessed of sons;
Let him be favored by his brothers,
And let him dip his foot in oil.
Your sandals shall be iron and bronze;
As your days, so shall your strength be."

a. Asher is most blessed of sons: The abundance of the tribe of Asher was also expressed by Jacob in Genesis 49:20 (he shall yield royal dainties).

11. (Deu 33:26-29) Conclusion: Happy are you, O Israel!

"There is no one like the God of Jeshurun,
Who rides the heavens to help you,
And in His excellency on the clouds.
The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;
He will thrust out the enemy from before you,
And will say, 'Destroy!'
Then Israel shall dwell in safety,
The fountain of Jacob alone,
In a land of grain and new wine;
His heavens shall also drop dew.
Happy are you, O Israel!
Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD,
The shield of your help
And the sword of your majesty!
Your enemies shall submit to you,
And you shall tread down their high places."

a. The eternal God is your refuge: What blessing God bestowed on Israel! As Paul said in Romans 3:2: To them were committed the oracles of God. The true greatness of Israel is the same as the greatness of the Christian: not in and of themselves, but in their God: There is no one like the God of Jeshurun.

b. Who rides the heavens to help you: God is great and uses His greatness on behalf of His people, upholding them with the everlasting arms. When we are a people saved by the LORD, it means that God is for us and heaven is on our side! If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31) He is the shield of your help.

© 2006 David Guzik - No distribution beyond personal use without permission

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.

Search

Bible Search

Multiverse Retrieval

LexiConc Search

FAQ Search

Browse Dictionary Topics

Bible Reference

Encyclopedias / Dictionaries

Introductions to the Bible

Topical Indexes

Charts and Outlines

Timelines

Maps / Images

Bible Commentaries

Text Commentaries

Audio & Video Commentaries

Theological Resources

Articles / Books

Women's Resources

Don Stewart

BLB Theological

Creeds, Catechisms, and Confessions

Multimedia

Video

Music

Products

Digital Books

Mobile Apps for iPhone / iPad

Mobile blb.org

BLB Offline CDs

Free Web Tools

Devotionals

Email Devotional Sign-Up

BLB Daily Promises

Day by Day by Grace

Morning and Evening

Daily Bible Reading Plan

Help

Video Tutorials

Support

Theological Questions

Website Support

iApp Support

General Questions

Ministries

Sowing Circle

Co-Laboring Ministries

About

About the BLB

Statement of Faith

History

Newsletter

Partnerships

Ministry FAQs

Donate

Donation Information

Contact the BLB

Hotjar - Unlimited insights from your web and mobile sites


BLB Institute

BLB Blog

Email Newsletters

Facebook

Twitter


Blue Letter Bible study tools make reading, searching and studying the Bible easy and rewarding.

Blue Letter Bible is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization

©2017 Blue Letter Bible

Loading...

Interlinear
Bibles
Cross-Refs
Commentaries
Dictionaries
Miscellaneous
Verse Tools Arrow
Login

Email / username or password was incorrect!

Check your email for password retrieval

Enter Your
Email or Username

Password

 [?]

 

Did you forget your password?


Register a new BLB account

Why won't my login from the old site work?

Complete the form below to register  [?]

Error: That Email is already registered

Error: Please provide a valid Email

Error: Passwords should have at least 6 characters

Error: Passwords do not match

Error: Please provide a valid first name

Error: That username is already taken

Error: Usernames should only contain letters, numbers, dots, dashes, or underscores

Enter Your EmailUsername

First Name

PasswordRe-enter

[ Cancel ]

 

Passwords should have at least 6 characters.
Usernames should only contain letters, numbers, dots, dashes, or underscores.

Thank you for registering. A verification email has been sent to the address you provided.

Error: That Email / Username is not registered

Enter Your Email or Username

 

Return to Login

Close Login