These are the final messages that Moses gave Yisharal while they were in the land of Moab, after conquering King Sihon of the Amorites and King Og of Bashan. And although it should only have taken eleven days to walk from Mount Sinai to Kadesh-Barnea (by way of the Mount Seir Road), Yisharal has been fart-arsing around in rebellion for 40 odd years since they left Egypt and now (on the first day of the eleventh month) Moses is finally giving them these instructions before they enter the promised land of Canaan.
IF YOU KNEW WITH CERTAINTY THAT YOUR TIME ON EARTH WAS ENDING IN A MATTER OF DAYS OR WEEKS, WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SAY TO THOSE YOU LOVE? WHAT HAS LIFE TAUGHT YOU THAT IS SO VALUABLE THAT YOU DESPERATELY WANT YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS TO KNOW AS THEY CARRY ON AFTER YOUR DEATH? WHAT WORDS WOULD YOU LIKE THEM TO PUT IN THEIR HEART, AND PUT INTO PRACTICE?
THIS IS THE CONTEXT OF MOSES' GRAND OPUS HERE IN DEUTERONOMY. HE'S LITERALLY PLEADING WITH THE GENERATION THAT WILL SUCCEED HIM TO CARRY ON WITH THE GOOD WORK THAT YAHUSHA HAS BEGUN AND NOT TO MAKE THE SAME MISTAKES THAT HE AND THEIR PARENTS MADE.
“People of Yisharal, 40 years ago when we were back at Mount Sinai, Yahuah our Alahim told us to `hit the road' and head into the land that belongs to the Amorites and their neighbours the Canaanites, telling us that their land would be ours, just as He promised our ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Finally, after being in Egypt for 400 years, it was time to go and receive our inheritance.
But I told all your parents that their bitching, winging and complaining was `doing my head in'. Yes that's right! Being their leader and carrying all the burdens of their strife was way too hard for me all by myself. Yahuah had blessed Yisharal abundantly and our nation wasn’t small anymore (but as numerous as the stars in the sky), so I told them all to choose experienced men from each tribe, who were known for their wisdom and understanding, and make them official leaders of their tribes. They thought this was a great idea, so I took these men (who were already wise and respected leaders) and made them your official leaders and some even became military men in charge of tens, hundreds and thousands while others became judges.
And for those who became judges, I told them to settle all their legal cases fairly, whether between two Yisharalites, or between a Yisharalite and a foreigner living in their community. And it doesn’t matter if one is helpless and the other is powerful. Don’t be afraid of anyone! No matter who shows up in court, Yahuah will help make a fair decision and if any case is too hard, bring the people to me, and I’ll make the decision. And after I gave these instructions to the judges, I taught you all of Yahuah’s Instructions.
EXPLORING THE LAND
Yahuah had instructed us to leave Mount Sinai and go to the hill country that belonged to the Amorites, so we started out into the huge wilderness. Some of you may remember how frightening it was, but soon we were at Kadesh-Barnea, and I told everyone, ‘We’ve reached the hill country now. It belongs to the Amorites, but Yahuah our Alahim is giving it to us. Don't forget He’s the same Alahim our ancestors worshiped, and He’s told us not to hesitate or be afraid but to strive forward and take over this land for ourselves.
But all of your folks came to me and said, ‘Before we go into the land, let’s send some men to explore it. And when they come back, they can tell us about the towns we’ll find and what roads we should take to get there.’ I thought it seemed like a good idea at the time and chose twelve men (one from each tribe) and they explored the hill country as far as Eshkol (CLUSTERS OF GRAPES) and even brought back some of the fruit. And they said, "Yahuah our Alahim is giving us a good land."
But Yisharal didn’t want to go and refused to obey Yahuah, instead they stewed in their tents, grumbling “Yahuah hates us! He just brought us out of Egypt so He could hand us over to the Amorites and get rid of us. We’re freaking out because the men who explored the land told us the cities are so large, with walls that reach to the sky, and the people who live there are taller and stronger than we are and some of them are giant-like Anakim. So now we have nowhere to go.”
And I told them to stop being so shocked and worried because Yahuah our Alahim will lead the way for us, fighting on our side, just as He did when we saw Him lay waste to the Egyptians. I reminded them that Yahuah had taken care of us the whole time we’d been in the wilderness, just like a parent would carry one of their own children. But they still wouldn’t listen or trust Yahuah even though He’d always been with us in the wilderness. During the daytime, He was in the cloud, leading us in the right direction and showing us where to camp, and at night, He was there in the fire. But Yisharal made Yahuah furious, and He said: "You people of this generation are evil, and I refuse to let you go into the good land that I promised your ancestors. Caleb is the only one of your generation that I will allow to go in. He obeyed Me completely, so I‘ll give him and his children the land he explored".
(CALEB & JOSHUA WERE THE ONLY TWO EXPLORERS WHO BROUGHT A GOOD REPORT OF THE LAND, FULL OF EXCITEMENT AND TRUST IN YAHUSHA'S PROMISES).
Yahuah was even angry with me because of you lot, saying "Moses, I'm not letting you go into the land either. Instead, I will let Joshua your assistant lead Yisharal into conquer the land. So encourage him please."
Then Yahuah spoke to your rebellious parents again: “People of Yisharal, you hissed and spat, complaining that your innocent young children would be taken prisoner in the battle for the land. But guess what? Someday I’ll let THEM go into the land, and with My help they’ll conquer it and live there! But the rest of you can get well and truly stuffed! Go on, turn around and bugger off back into the wilderness where you came from, Go on, head back to Red Sea now!”
Then the people told me, “We’ve behaved wickedly against Yahuah our Alahim, but now we want to obey Him. Let's go into the hill country and fight, just as He told us to do.”
And with that, they picked up their weapons, thinking it would be easy to take over the hill country. But Yahuah said, “Moses, warn them not to go into the hill country for I won’t be there to help them fight, and their enemies will surely defeat them.”
So I told them what Yahuah had said, but they `poo-pooed me' and paid no attention, heading into the hill country anyway, thinking they were so great and powerful! But when the Amorites in the hill country attacked, they were powerless and all ran away like crying bubbies fleeing from a swarm of bees. And the Amorites chased them into Seir, as far as Hormah, killing them as they went. Then the remaining survivors came back to join Yisharal at Kadesh-Barnea `with their tail between their legs’ and they wept bitterly, but Yahuah wouldn’t listen to them or entertain their madness anymore. And after we’d been in Kadesh for a few months, we obeyed Yahuah and headed back into the wilderness by way of the Red Sea.
THE POINT THAT WAS NOT LOST ON THIS NEW GENERATION OF YISHARALITES IS THAT THEY COULD HAVE BEEN BORN INSIDE A LAND OF MILK AND HONEY INSTEAD OF INSIDE A GOATSKIN TENT ON A DUSTY TRAIL NEXT TO A DESERT OASIS IF ONLY THEIR PARENTS HAD BEEN OBEDIENT. YISHARAL SHOULD HAVE ALREADY BEEN SETTLED IN CANAAN, ENJOYING THE FRUITS OF THE LAND, SOME 38 OR SO YEARS EARLIER. THE 1ST GENERATION BELIEVED IN YAHUSHA, BUT THEY DIDN’T TRUST HIM. THEY CONSTANTLY IRRITATED MOSES (AND YAHUSHA) BY ASKING THE RHETORICAL QUESTION: “WHY DID ALAHIM BRING US OUT HERE IN THE WILDERNESS JUST TO DIE?” THEY KNEW WHO YAHUSHA WAS; THEY BELIEVED HE EXISTED AND THAT HE WAS THEIR ALAHIM. BUT THEY DIDN’T TRUST IN HIS ABILITY TO CARE FOR THEM OR HIS DETERMINATION TO PROTECT AND GUIDE THEM. AND SO IT TOOK YISHARAL 40 YEARS TO GAIN WHAT THEY COULD HAVE HAD MUCH EARLIER.
James (brother of Yahusha) put this in another way: "You believe that Alahim is one. Fantastic, well done! The demons also believe that and shudder in fear. But are you willing to recognise (you foolish people) that belief without action (obedient behaviour) is useless? JAMES 2 BRS
THE 1ST GEN REBELLED BUT NOW THE 2ND GEN IS BEING OBEDIENT.
THE 1ST GEN WAS SENT SOUTHWARD BUT NOW THE 2ND GEN IS ORDERED TO MARCH NORTHWARD.
THE 1ST GEN WAS TO ENTER THE PROMISED LAND FROM THE SOUTHWEST BUT NOW THE 2ND GEN IS TO ENTER THE PROMISED LAND FROM THE SOUTHEAST.
THE 1ST GEN WAS TOLD THAT THEY HAD STAYED AT MT. HOREB LONG ENOUGH BUT NOW THE 2ND GEN IS TOLD THAT THEY HAD BEEN SKIRTING THE PROMISED LAND LONG ENOUGH.
THE 1ST GEN KNEW THEY WOULD DIE IN THE DESERT BUT NOW THE 2ND GEN KNEW THEY WOULD LIVE IN YAHUSHA’S SET APART LAND.
( CHAPTER 2 )
So we spent many years wandering around outside the hill country of Seir until Yahuah said: “Moses, Yisharal has wandered in these hills long enough. Turn and go north and tell the people to be very careful, because you will soon go through the land that belongs to your relatives, the descendants of Esau. And even though they’re afraid of you, don’t start a war with them for I’ve already given them the hill country of Seir, and this land is not for you, not even enough to set foot on. So as you go through their land, you will have to buy food and water from them.”
THE NATIONS YAHUSHA TELLS YISHARAL TO AVOID IS NOT ABOUT A FEAR WITHIN YISHARAL OR A WORRY THAT THEY MIGHT BE DEFEATED, BUT RATHER THAT THE TERRITORIES INHABITED BY THESE PEOPLE WERE NOT TO BE PART OF THE PROMISED LAND, AND THE ANCESTRY OF THE PEOPLE INVOLVED (AT LEAST THE PEOPLE WHO CURRENTLY OCCUPIED EACH TERRITORY) WERE RELATED TO ABRAHAM IN SOME WAY. THIS WHOLE QUEST WAS NOT FOR THE CREATION OF A HEBREW EMPIRE, ABOUT CONQUERING OR CONVERTING THE WORLD, OR GAINING AS MUCH WEALTH AND TREASURE AS POSSIBLE. IT WAS ABOUT THE RECLAIMING OF A SPECIFIC PIECE OF LAND THAT YAHUSHA DECLARED WAS HIS (NOT YISHARAL’S).
Indeed Yahuah has helped us and taken care of us during the past forty years that we have been in this giant sandpit. We’ve had everything we needed, and He’s blessed us and made us successful in everything we’ve done. So we travelled past the territory that belonged to the descendants of Esau our relatives and turned onto the desert road that leads to Moab. Then Yahuah told me, “Don’t try to start a war with Moab either. Leave them alone, because I gave that land to them, and you guys can’t have any of it.”
THE FIRST NATION THAT YISHARAL IS TO AVOID CONFLICT WITH IS EDOM (ANOTHER NAME FOR ESAU, JACOB’S TWIN BROTHER). SO THERE WAS A VERY CLOSE KINSHIP BETWEEN ESAU AND YISHARAL AND THE INSTRUCTION FROM YAHUSHA WAS TO “BE CAREFUL” WITH SEIR (ANOTHER NAME EDOM) AND THIS “BE CAREFUL” DOES NOT MEAN TO BE WARY OR AFRAID EITHER. YAHUSHA EXPLAINS THAT THE EDOMITES WILL BE VERY ALARMED AND AFRAID OF YISHARAL. WHAT IS NOT SAID, WAS ALREADY WELL UNDERSTOOD IN ANCIENT TIMES; THAT WHEN A PEOPLE YOU FEARED CAME TOO NEAR, YOU WENT OUT IN BATTLE TO TRY AND BRUISE THEM TO SHOW THAT PERHAPS A TREATY WOULD BE BETTER (A TREATY ALLOWING THE CURRENT KING TO REMAIN IN HIS POST) RATHER THAN AN ATTEMPT AT CONQUERING THEM OUTRIGHT.
THE IDEA IS THAT MOSES AND THE LEADERS OF YISHARAL NEED TO DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO MAKE IT CLEAR TO EDOM THAT THEY HAVE NO INTENTION OF EITHER TAKING THEIR TERRITORY, NOR EVEN TAKING FOOD OR WATER FROM THEM. THEREFORE YISHARAL SKIRTED THE LAND OF EDOM AND CONTINUED NORTHWARD TOWARDS THE ARABAH THAT WAS IN THE REGION OF MOAB.
THE MOABITES, TOO, HAD A KINSHIP WITH YISHARAL (ALTHOUGH NOT AS CLOSE ONE AS THEY HAD WITH THE DESCENDANTS OF ESAU). THE MOABITES WERE THE DESCENDANTS OF LOT, WHO WAS ABRAHAM’S NEPHEW. AND FOR THE SAKE OF THE PATRIARCH ABRAHAM WHO LOVED LOT, YAHUSHA HAD SET ASIDE LAND FOR LOT’S DESCENDANTS AND HE MAKES IT CRYSTAL CLEAR THAT THIS LAND IS NOT FOR YISHARAL EITHER. THEREFORE THEY ARE TO AVOID CONFLICT WITH MOAB.
WE CAN SEE FROM THIS THAT YAHUSHA WAS HONORING THE PROMISE OF LAND TO ALL OF ABRAHAM'S DESCENDANTS (& FAMILY), NOT JUST YISHARAL. HE IS TRUSTWORTHY AND TRUE AND FAVORS THOSE WHO HE CONSIDERS HIS FRIEND (THOSE WHO LOVE HIM AND WANT TO PLEASE HIM THROUGH THEIR OBEDIENT BEHAVIOUR)...
THE DESCENDANTS OF LOT & ESAU
You see before Yahuah gave the Moabites their land, a large and powerful tribe lived there called the Emim, and they were as tall as the Anakim (NEFILIM). The Moabites called them Emim, though others sometimes used the name Rephaim for both the Anakim and the Emim.
When we came to the Zered Gorge along the southern border of Moab, Yahuah told us to cross the gorge into Moab, and we did. This was thirty-eight years after we left Kadesh-Barnea, and by that time all the men who had been in the army at Kadesh-Barnea had died, just as Yahuah had said they would. Yahuah kept getting rid of them all until finally none of them were left.
Then Yahuah told me, “Moses, go past the town of Ar now and cross Moab’s northern border into Ammon. But don’t start a war with the Ammonites because I gave them their land, and I won’t give any of it to Yisharal.”
THE REPHAIM ARE THE POST-FLOOD VERSION OF THE NEPHILIM (FALLEN), A RACE OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED GIANTS (BUT NOT ALWAYS) THAT WERE THE RESULT OF FALLEN MESSENGERS (DEMONS) BREEDING WITH HUMAN WOMEN BEFORE THE GREAT FLOOD. A FEW CENTURIES AFTER THE TOWER OF BABEL INCIDENT WITH NIMROD (WHICH TOOK PLACE ABOUT 300 YEARS AFTER THE GREAT FLOOD), THE WORLD WAS POPULATED ENOUGH THAT IF A GROUP OF PEOPLE MIGRATED INTO A NEW LAND, THEY EITHER HAD TO TAKE THAT LAND FROM IT’S PREVIOUS OWNERS, OR THEY SETTLED THERE AND GREW INTO NUMBERS THAT EVENTUALLY DOMINATED THAT AREA.
And before the Ammonites conquered the land that Yahuah had given them, some of the Rephaim used to live there (although the Ammonites called them Zamzummim). The Zamzummim were a large and powerful tribe and were as tall as the Anakim. But Yahuah helped the Ammonites, and they killed many of the Zamzummim and forced the rest to leave. Then the Ammonites settled there and Yahuah helped them as He had helped the Edomites, who killed many of the Horites in Seir and forced the rest to leave before settling there themselves.
ZAMZUMMIM MEANS, “THE PEOPLE WHOSE SPEECH SOUNDS LIKE BUZZING (OF BEES)”. THAT’S PRETTY SPOOKY ON THE SURFACE, BUT IT JUST MEANS THAT THEIR MANNER OF SPEECH (TO THE HEBREW EAR) WAS ODD AND MUST HAVE BEEN A RATHER HIGH-PITCHED VOCALIZATION.
ARTIST'S IMPRESSIONS OF REPHAIM/ANAKIM (NEFILIM):
KING SIHON BITES THE DUST
And after we went through Ammon, Yahuah said: “Yisharal, pack up all your stuff, take down your tents, and cross the Arnon River gorge. The territory of the Amorite King Sihon of Heshbon lies on the other side of the river, but I’m giving you his land! So attack and take it! Today I will start making all other nations afraid of you. They will tremble with fear when anyone mentions you, and they will be terrified when you show up”.
So after we had crossed the Arnon and had set up camp in the Kedemoth Desert, I sent messengers to King Sihon of Heshbon, telling him that his nation and ours could be at peace. I asked him to please let Yisharal go across his country and that we would walk straight through, without turning off the road. He could even sell us food and water and we would pay with silver. We needed to reach the Jordan River and cross it, because Yahuah our Alahim was giving us the land on the west side. The Edomites and Moabites had already let us cross their land, so I asked King Sihon to please let us cross his land as well, but he refused, because Yahuah had hardened his heart and he stubbornly sought to fight us.
So Yahuah told me, “I'm going to help you defeat Sihon and take his land, so attack him!” And we met King Sihon and his army in battle at Jahaz, and Yahuah our Alahim helped us defeat them. We killed the King, his sons, and everyone else in his army, then captured and destroyed every town in Sihon’s kingdom, killing everyone, but kept all the livestock and everything else of value.
And Yahuah helped us capture every town from the Arnon River gorge north to the boundary of Gilead, including the town of Aroer on the edge of the gorge and the town in the middle of the gorge. However, we stayed away from all the Ammonite towns, both in the hill country and near the Jabbok River, just as Yahuah had instructed.
THE BEGINNING OF THIS WAR IS INTERESTING AS IT GREATLY MIRRORS WHAT HAPPENED WITH THE PHARAOH IN EGYPT. KING SIHON WAS OFFERED PEACE AND ALL HE HAD TO DO WAS LET YISHARAL MARCH THROUGH HIS LAND ON THE WAY TO CANAAN. HESHBON WAS ON THE EAST SIDE OF THE JORDAN RIVER AND AS SUCH WAS NOT PART OF THE LAND SET ASIDE FOR YISHARAL. THEREFORE THERE WAS NO NEED TO CONQUER THESE PEOPLE, HOWEVER KING SIHON REFUSED THE OFFER OF PEACE AND ATTACKED YISHARAL AND THE RESULT WAS THE ANNIHILATION OF THE AMORITES. YAHUSHA HARDENED THE HEART OF KING SIHON, JUST AS HE’D DONE WITH THE PHARAOH, BRINGING ABOUT HIS PLANS AND WONDERS AGAIN.
KING OG DONE & DUSTED
( CHAPTER 3 )
Next we turned and headed for the land of Bashan, where King Og and his entire army attacked us at Edrei. But Yahuah told me, "Don’t be afraid of him, for I’ve already given you victory over Og and his entire army, and I‘ll give you all his lands too. Treat him just as you treated King Sihon of the Amorites, who ruled in Heshbon."
So Yahuah our Alahim handed King Og and all his people over to us, and we killed them all and conquered all sixty of his towns too, which were all fortified with high walls and barred gates. We completely laid waste to the kingdom of Bashan, just as we had to King Sihon; men, women, and children alike were all destroyed, but we kept all the livestock for ourselves and took plunder from all the towns. And we took the land of the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River, all the way from the Arnon Gorge to Mount Hermon and we’d now conquered all the cities on the tablelands and all Gilead and Bashan, as far as the towns of Salecah and Edrei, which were part of Og’s kingdom in Bashan. (By the way, King Og of Bashan was the last survivor of the giant Rephaites and his bed was made of iron and was more than four metres long and two metres wide and it can still be seen in the Ammonite city of Rabbah.)
KING OG WAS ACTUALLY THE LAST OF THE REMNANT OF THE REPHAIM/NEPHILIM (AT LEAST IN HIS REGION). OF COURSE A DECENT BED IS ALWAYS BIGGER THAN THE MAN WHO USES IT, BUT IT STILL INDICATES HOW TALL KING OG WAS. AND COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT EGYPTIAN RECORDS FROM THAT SAME ERA ALSO MAKE MENTION OF THIS KING’S ENORMOUS BED, AND THE ASTOUNDING FINDING OF SEVERAL SKELETAL REMAINS OF MEN IN THE REGION OF BASHAN WHO WERE ABOUT 3 METRES TALL.
THIS IS BASICALLY A REPEAT OF THE NUMBERS 21 ACCOUNT OF THE VICTORY OVER OG AND WHAT HAPPENED AFTERWARDS BECAUSE REMEMBER MOSES IS SPEAKING TO THE NEW GEN OF HEBREWS, BECAUSE THE 1ST GEN OF THE EXODUS WAS NOW DEAD AND GONE AND THE MAJORITY OF THE GEN MOSES IS ADDRESSING IN DEUT IS GETTING A HISTORY LESSON BECAUSE THEY HAD EITHER BEEN BORN AFTER MOST OF THE GREAT EVENTS HE WAS SPEAKING ABOUT OR THEY WERE YOUNG CHILDREN WHEN THESE THINGS OCCURRED AND THEY REALLY DIDN’T COMPREHEND THE SIGNIFICANCE OF ALL THAT HAD HAPPENED.
And at that time I gave this command to the tribes of Gad, Reuben, and half of the tribe of Manasseh that wanted to live east of the Jordan: ‘Although Yahuah your Alahim has given you this land as your property, all your fighting men must cross the Jordan ahead of your Yisharalite relatives, armed and ready to assist them. Your wives, children, and numerous livestock however, may stay behind in the towns I have given you. And when Yahuah has given security to the rest of the Yisharalites and they're all settled, as He's done with you, and when they occupy the land Yahuah your Alahim is giving them across the Jordan River, then you may all return here to the land I have given you.’
And I gave Joshua this charge: ‘You have seen for yourself everything Yahuah your Alahim has done to these two kings. He will do the same to all the kingdoms on the west side of the Jordan too, SO DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE NATIONS THERE, FOR YAHUAH YOUR ALAHIM WILL FIGHT FOR YOU.’
And I pleaded with Yahuah and said, ‘O my master Yahuah, you have only begun to show your greatness and the strength of your hand to me, your servant. Is there any Alahim on the earth or in the sky who can perform such great and mighty deeds as You do? Please let me cross the Jordan to see the wonderful land on the other side, the beautiful hill-country and the Lebanon mountains.’ But Yahuah was angry with me because of you (HE’S BLAMING YISHARAL BUT YAHUSHA ISN’T HAVING IT), and He wouldn’t listen to me.
‘THAT’S ENOUGH SON!’ He declared. ‘SHUT UP ABOUT THIS AND DON'T MENTION IT AGAIN! Go up to Pisgah Peak, and look over the land in every direction. Take a good look because you’re not crossing the Jordan River. Instead, go and talk to Joshua and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead the people across the Jordan and give them all the land you now see before you as their possession.’