Israel’s Ingratitude and God’s Wrath

Sep 20, 2015

וַיִּשְׁמַן יְשֻׁרוּן וַיִּבְעָט שָׁמַנְתָּ עָבִיתָ כָּשִׂיתָ וַיִּטֹּשׁ אֱלוֹהַ עָשָׂהוּ וַיְנַבֵּל צוּר יְשֻׁעָתוֹ׃

So Jeshurun grew fat and kicked— You grew fat and gross and coarse— He forsook the God who made him And spurned the Rock of his support.

Deuteronomy 32:15

הַרְנִינוּ גוֹיִם עַמּוֹ כִּי דַם־עֲבָדָיו יִקּוֹם וְנָקָם יָשִׁיב לְצָרָיו וְכִפֶּר אַדְמָתוֹ עַמּוֹ׃

O nations, acclaim His people! For He'll avenge the blood of His servants, Wreak vengeance on His foes, And cleanse the land of His people.

Deuteronomy 32:43

In contrast to God’s steadfastness, Israel, Moses predicts, will become accustomed to God’s blessings and rebel. The nation will abandon God’s ways and provoke Him with idolatry. Then God will hide His face and cease to offer His protection for the threats of the outside world. Famine, suffering and war will besiege the people.

 

Moses says God will threaten to wipe out the nation, as he did during Moses’s own time, but ultimately He will refrain, if but to prevent the nations from believing they defeated God.

 

Moses then reminds the people there is always hope. God will relent of the suffering of His people, and turn against their enemies. He will demonstrate to the world that He alone possesses the power to alter the universe. He will rain havoc and death upon those who rose up against Israel and avenge them. Moses advises the nations of the world to sing the praises of the Children of Israel, for those who stand against the Israelites will ultimately suffer.

 

Virtual Classroom Discussion

Why do you think God will seek retribution from the nations if He is the one Who decided the Israelites should suffer at their hands?

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