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Ki Tavo (when you enter in)

Deuteronomy 26:1 to 29:8(9), Isaiah 60:1-22


As mentioned in the sermon for Parasha Aykev, what is often called the "Covenant of Sinai" is actually two covenants. Verse 28:69(29:1) makes clear that a "Covenant of Moav" is being appended to the covenant made at Sinai. The text is not clear where in Deuteronomy this new covenant begins, but it is probably with verse 6:1.

In verse 29:3(4), Moshe says, "Nevertheless, to this day Adonai has not given you a heart to know, and eyes to see, or ears to hear." What does this mean? First, Moshe is telling this younger generation that they have not experienced the dramatic miracles their parents experienced in Egypt and at Sinai and so it lacks a healthy fear of Adonai (verse 5:26(29)). Second, Moshe is acknowledging that obedience is a complex activity to which both the individual and God contribute. This was also succinctly said by Sha'ul in Philippians 2:12-13:

...work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you both to will and to work, for his good pleasure.

How do we "work out our salvation"? We do not need to seek it, or Yeshua, for we have these things. What we need to do, as Yeshua taught, is to seek what it means to be citizens of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33). To Yeshua's listeners, a kingdom is defined by its boundaries, king, laws, and lifestyle.

Traditional Jewish Commentary

Note that verse 26:15 has the individual pray not for his own prosperity, but for the prosperity of the nation.

The rabbis taught that the first fruit to appear on a tree or vine should be marked with a thread, so that once it is ripe it can be identified as bikkurim (first fruit). The bikkurim were carried by the person who owned them: even the king had to carry his own basket to the Temple courtyard.

According to one interpretation, verse 26:5 is worded as if Lavan the Aramean did destroy Ya'akov, instead of being prevented by God in Genesis 31:24.

According to tradition, the stones of verses 27:2-3 had writing in seventy languages, so all the world could understand.

Note that verse 28:47 requires the prosperous Israelites to serve Adonai with joy and gladness in their hearts.