DEUTERONOMY LESSON 14
We will begin this lesson in Deuteronomy 12:1 "These [are] the
statutes and judgments, which ye shall observe to do in the land,
which the LORD God of thy fathers giveth thee to possess it, all the
days that ye live upon the earth."
Moses has already given the ten commandments, again, to these
people. The chapter, here, is dedicated to giving the Levitical law
again. It is a little different from the earlier one in the book of
Leviticus, but basically it is the same.
Deuteronomy 12:2 "Ye shall utterly destroy all the places,
wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the
high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree:"
The purpose in utterly destroying these places is so the worship
of false gods will not spring up among the Israelites. The false gods
of the Canaanites, and their places of worship, must be totally done
Deuteronomy 12:3 "And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break
their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down
the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of
This is a detail of just exactly what was to be done to each of
these things. The worship in the high places seemed to be a physical
effort on their part, to be nearer their false gods.
Deuteronomy 12:4 "Ye shall not do so unto the LORD your God."
This is just another way of saying that, the LORD their God was
the only One to be worshipped.
Deuteronomy 12:5 "But unto the place which the LORD your God
shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, [even] unto
his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come:"
God had led them through the wilderness, and each time they
stopped was a campsite He had chosen. The LORD, Himself, will choose
the spot for His temple to be built. It is interesting when He does
choose, it is at the location where Abraham was to offer Isaac in
Deuteronomy 12:6 "And thither ye shall bring your burnt
offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings
of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the
firstlings of your herds and of your flocks:"
Their offerings to God could not be made at a place of their
choosing. Their offerings to God had to be made at a place He had
chosen for that purpose. The place where the offerings were to be made
had to be holy in the sight of God. Burnt offerings and sacrifices
were brought to the altar. We remember from a previous lesson, that
these were offered in conjunction with the meat offerings and the
drink offerings. The meat offering was the makings for bread. The
tithe was one tenth of whatever they are tithing. The heave offerings
were lifted and offered to God. Then, they belonged to the priesthood.
This and the freewill offerings were not requirements. They were given
in loving appreciation. The bloody sacrifices were for sins, and were
brought to the temple to sacrifice.
Deuteronomy 12:7 "And there ye shall eat before the LORD your
God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and
your households, wherein the LORD thy God hath blessed thee."
They shared with the altar. The priests and the person offering,
both, ate of the offering here.
Deuteronomy 12:8 "Ye shall not do after all [the things] that we
do here this day, every man whatsoever [is] right in his own eyes."
God has given instructions and laws on how they are to live. They
had been living as the rest of the world, doing what was right in
their own sight, until now. God wants Moses to inform them, they are
to begin this new life in the promised land with the law of God as
their law. They will be governed by God's law. In the wilderness, it
would have been difficult to establish these laws. Now that they are
to enter their promised land, they must establish them and keep them.
Deuteronomy 12:9 "For ye are not as yet come to the rest and to
the inheritance, which the LORD your God giveth you."
When Moses is speaking to them, they have not yet crossed over
Jordan. This is to be established, when they do go over.
Deuteronomy 12:10 "But [when] ye go over Jordan, and dwell in the
land which the LORD your God giveth you to inherit, and [when] he
giveth you rest from all your enemies round about, so that ye dwell in
God will keep His promise to take them into the land of promise
first. God will cause their enemies to live at peace with them. It is
the presence of God which brings the perfect peace mentioned here.
Deuteronomy 12:11 "Then there shall be a place which the LORD
your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there; thither shall
ye bring all that I command you; your burnt offerings, and your
sacrifices, your tithes, and the heave offering of your hand, and all
your choice vows which ye vow unto the LORD:"
These offerings are not to be made, until God establishes a place
to make them. The vows made to God are not of obligation, but
dedication. The burnt offerings, sacrifices, tithes, and heave
offerings are dealt with in detail in Leviticus.
Deuteronomy 12:12 "And ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God,
ye, and your sons, and your daughters, and your menservants, and your
maidservants, and the Levite that [is] within your gates; forasmuch as
he hath no part nor inheritance with you."
We know that the Levites were not counted among the twelve tribes
which inherited land in the promised land. They received cities with
boundaries to raise their families. The Levites belonged to God in
service. They were not herdsmen, or vineyard keepers. Notice, that all
were to worship God. The women, as well as the men, were expected to
join in this worship. To rejoice before the LORD was the obligation of
the twelve tribes and the Levitical tribe. We must be thankful for the
blessings God bestows upon us.
Deuteronomy 12:13 "Take heed to thyself that thou offer not thy
burnt offerings in every place that thou seest:"
We see a warning again, about offering places, other than the
place God has chosen. Offerings there would not be acceptable to God.
Deuteronomy 12:14 "But in the place which the LORD shall choose
in one of thy tribes, there thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, and
there thou shalt do all that I command thee."
The place of offering had to be a place where no earthly activity
took place. It must be a place that has been set aside and sanctified
for this specific purpose by God.
Deuteronomy 12:15 "Notwithstanding thou mayest kill and eat flesh
in all thy gates, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, according to the
blessing of the LORD thy God which he hath given thee: the unclean and
the clean may eat thereof, as of the roebuck, and as of the hart."
It appears from this, that they could eat or drink anything God
had blessed them with, and they were thankful for. There was only one
restriction to this, as we see in the following verse.
Deuteronomy 12:16 "Only ye shall not eat the blood; ye shall pour
it upon the earth as water."
Life is in the blood. The LORD specifically forbids the eating,
or drinking, of blood. The New Testament commandments given to the
Christians forbid the eating and drinking of blood. Acts 21:25 "As
touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written [and] concluded
that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves
from [things] offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled,
and from fornication." The blood of the animal was to be poured upon
the ground and covered with the dirt.
Deuteronomy 12:17 "Thou mayest not eat within thy gates the
tithe of thy corn, or of thy wine, or of thy oil, or the firstlings of
thy herds or of thy flock, nor any of thy vows which thou vowest, nor
thy freewill offerings, or heave offering of thine hand:"
These are things dedicated to the LORD, that must be eaten in the
tabernacle. These are not to stay as part of the wealth of the person
offering. They belong to the altar of God.
Deuteronomy 12:18 "But thou must eat them before the LORD thy God
in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose, thou, and thy son,
and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the
Levite that [is] within thy gates: and thou shalt rejoice before the
LORD thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto."
Some of the offerings may be shared with the altar and the
Levites. They must first be offered in the temple. Then, the priests
give back to the people the portion they are allowed to eat. All
things offered to God are holy. They must eat it in the order
prescribed by God.
Deuteronomy 12:19 "Take heed to thyself that thou forsake not the
Levite as long as thou livest upon the earth."
The Levite lives of the offerings brought to the church. To
forsake them, would leave them without food to sustain them.
Deuteronomy 12:20 "When the LORD thy God shall enlarge thy
border, as he hath promised thee, and thou shalt say, I will eat
flesh, because thy soul longeth to eat flesh; thou mayest eat flesh,
whatsoever thy soul lusteth after."
They will be blessed with abundant land. God will allow them to
eat flesh, as long as they do not eat the blood.
Deuteronomy 12:21 "If the place which the LORD thy God hath
chosen to put his name there be too far from thee, then thou shalt
kill of thy herd and of thy flock, which the LORD hath given thee, as
I have commanded thee, and thou shalt eat in thy gates whatsoever thy
soul lusteth after."
The temple in Jerusalem, perhaps, might be too far for them to
come. This is a provision made for that instance. Under no
circumstances, are they to eat, or drink, blood.
Deuteronomy 12:22 "Even as the roebuck and the hart is eaten, so
thou shalt eat them: the unclean and the clean shall eat [of] them
This seems to allow the eating of the unclean animal, as long as
the blood is completely drained, and not eaten.
Deuteronomy 12:23 "Only be sure that thou eat not the blood: for
the blood [is] the life; and thou mayest not eat the life with the
Throughout Scripture, the life is spoken of as being in the
blood. Abel's blood cried out from the earth, after Cain slew him.
Somehow, the blood atones for sin. Perhaps, it is like a life for a
life. It was the blood of Jesus which did away with our sin. His blood
atoned for our sin. He was our substitute on the cross.
Deuteronomy 12:24 "Thou shalt not eat it; thou shalt pour it upon
the earth as water."
Even blood that is shed for the killing of an animal to eat,
should not be eaten. It must soak into the earth as water does.
Deuteronomy 12:25 "Thou shalt not eat it; that it may go well
with thee, and with thy children after thee, when thou shalt do [that
which is] right in the sight of the LORD."
This is an ordinance that brings blessings to the person who
obeys the ordinance. Those, who want to be in the will of the LORD,
will observe this.
Deuteronomy 12:26 "Only thy holy things which thou hast, and thy
vows, thou shalt take, and go unto the place which the LORD shall
A vow, and the holy things, must not be taken lightly. They must
go to the place God has designated for this purpose.
Deuteronomy 12:27 "And thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, the
flesh and the blood, upon the altar of the LORD thy God: and the blood
of thy sacrifices shall be poured out upon the altar of the LORD thy
God, and thou shalt eat the flesh."
The burnt offerings must be at the brazen altar in the
tabernacle, or temple, that God has designated for this purpose. The
blood must be poured on the altar of the LORD. The person offering can
eat of the flesh of the animal, however.
Deuteronomy 12:28 "Observe and hear all these words which I
command thee, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children
after thee for ever, when thou doest [that which is] good and right in
the sight of the LORD thy God."
To be blessed of God, is conditional. They must be obedient to
God, to receive of His blessings. To keep the commandments of God,
brings abundant blessings. To break the commandments of God, brings
Deuteronomy 12:29 "When the LORD thy God shall cut off the
nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou
succeedest them, and dwellest in their land;"
When the ark of the covenant went with them into battles that the
Lord had sent them into, God blessed them. The enemies fled before
them, or were killed. God removes nations before Israel, so that
Israel can receive the land promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
Deuteronomy 12:30 "Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared
by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and
that thou inquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations
serve their gods? even so will I do likewise."
We see Moses is warning the people not to take any interest at
all in the false gods of these Canaanites. Usually, it is not good to
delve into other religions. It seems, we forget which is real, and
pick up some of the false religion, when we inquire. Christianity is
like a marriage to one husband. Being interested in someone else,
Deuteronomy 12:31 "Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God:
for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done
unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have
burnt in the fire to their gods."
It appears, their evil worship had included human sacrifice. The
things that were an abomination before God were some of the very
things they were involved in. The worship of false gods is spiritual
Deuteronomy 12:32 "What thing soever I command you, observe to do
it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it."
One of the terrible mistakes these Israelites made, just before
their Babylonian captivity, was the addition of the worship of false
gods to their worship of the One True God. To add to, or take away
from God's teachings, is as if we are saying God made a mistake. We,
as well as these Isrraelites, must do exactly as God has commanded, if
we are to be blessed of God.
Deuteronomy 14 Questions
1. What is this chapter dedicated to?
2. Where are the law and commandments listed the first time?
3. Why should they utterly destroy the places of worship of the false
4. In verse 3, what details of the destruction is given?
5. Why did they worship in high places?
6. What is verse 4 saying?
7. Where had they camped on their wilderness journey?
8. Who will choose the sight for the worship of God?
9. Where were they to bring their burnt offerings and sacrifices?
10. What were all of the people doing, before they received the law?
11. This new life in the promised land is to be governed by __________
12. When is this law to come into being?
13. The vows are not of obligation, but of ___________.
14. Who was to rejoice before the LORD?
15. Why did the Levites not inherit land?
16. What was given to the Levites?
17. Where were they to make their offerings?
18. Is it alright for them to kill and eat their animals?
19. What is forbidden to them to eat or drink?
20. Life is in the __________.
21. Quote Acts chapter 21 verse 25.
22. In verse 19, they are warned not to forsake the _________.
23. Abel's ________ cried out from the earth.
24. Blood should be poured upon the earth as ________.
25. Where were the burnt offerings burned?
26. Who cuts off the nations before them?
27. When the _______ of the ________ went with them into battle, they
28. What is Israel not to inquire of from these people?
29. What was one of the terrible practices of their worship?
30. Quote Deuteronomy chapter 12 verse 32.