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Deuteronomy 4:7-8

Context
4:7 In fact, what other great nation has a god so near to them like the Lord our God whenever we call on him? 4:8 And what other great nation has statutes and ordinances as just 1  as this whole law 2  that I am about to share with 3  you today?

Deuteronomy 4:34-37

Context
4:34 Or has God 4  ever before tried to deliver 5  a nation from the middle of another nation, accompanied by judgments, 6  signs, wonders, war, strength, power, 7  and other very terrifying things like the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your very eyes? 4:35 You have been taught that the Lord alone is God – there is no other besides him. 4:36 From heaven he spoke to you in order to teach you, and on earth he showed you his great fire from which you also heard his words. 8  4:37 Moreover, because he loved 9  your ancestors, he chose their 10  descendants who followed them and personally brought you out of Egypt with his great power

1 tn Or “pure”; or “fair”; Heb “righteous.”

2 tn The Hebrew phrase הַתּוֹרָה הַזֹּאת (hattorah hazzot), in this context, refers specifically to the Book of Deuteronomy. That is, it is the collection of all the חֻקִּים (khuqqim, “statutes,” 4:1) and מִשְׁפָּטִים (mishpatim, “ordinances,” 4:1) to be included in the covenant text. In a full canonical sense, of course, it pertains to the entire Pentateuch or Torah.

3 tn Heb “place before.”

4 tn The translation assumes the reference is to Israel’s God in which case the point is this: God’s intervention in Israel’s experience is unique in the sense that he has never intervened in such power for any other people on earth. The focus is on the uniqueness of Israel’s experience. Some understand the divine name here in a generic sense, “a god,” or “any god.” In this case God’s incomparability is the focus (cf. v. 35, where this theme is expressed).

5 tn Heb “tried to go to take for himself.”

6 tn Heb “by testings.” The reference here is the judgments upon Pharaoh in the form of plagues. See Deut 7:19 (cf. v. 18) and 29:3 (cf. v. 2).

7 tn Heb “by strong hand and by outstretched arm.”

8 tn Heb “and his words you heard from the midst of the fire.”

9 tn The concept of love here is not primarily that of emotional affection but of commitment or devotion. This verse suggests that God chose Israel to be his special people because he loved the patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob) and had promised to bless their descendants. See as well Deut 7:7-9.

10 tc The LXX, Smr, Syriac, Targum, and Vulgate read a third person masculine plural suffix for the MT’s 3rd person masculine singular, “his descendants.” Cf. Deut 10:15. Quite likely the MT should be emended in this instance.



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