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Deuteronomy 5:6-7

Context
The Ten Commandments

5:6 “I am the Lord your God, he who brought you from the land of Egypt, from the place of slavery. 5:7 You must not have any other gods 1  besides me. 2 

1 tn Heb “there must not be for you other gods.” The expression “for you” indicates possession.

2 tn Heb “upon my face,” or “before me” (עַל־פָּנָיַ, ’al-panaya). Some understand this in a locative sense: “in my sight.” The translation assumes that the phrase indicates exclusion. The idea is that of placing any other god before the Lord in the sense of taking his place. Contrary to the view of some, this does not leave the door open for a henotheistic system where the Lord is the primary god among others. In its literary context the statement must be taken in a monotheistic sense. See, e.g., 4:39; 6:13-15.



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