Deuteronomy 28 ...portrays the whole prophetic future history of Israel as a nation.
The Babylonian captivity, and the destruction by the Romans, are vividly pictured. The eagle (v. 49), was the ensign of the Roman army. In both the Babylonian and Roman sieges, children were eaten (verse 53). The Jews' dispersion, wanderings, unceasing persecutions: all are graphically foretold. This chapter, placed alongside Israel's history, constitutes one of the most indisputable evidences of the divine inspiration of the Bible. It is our blessing to see it!
Bro David Clubb
[Devarim 28 Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)]
1 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of Yahweh thy Elohim, to observe [be shomer] and to do all his commandments [mitzvot] which I command thee this day, that Yahweh thy Elohim will set thee on high above all nations [kol Goyei] of the earth [Ha'Aretz]:
cp. But take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law, which Moses the servant of the Yahweh charged you, to love Yahweh your Elohim, and to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and to CLEAVE unto him, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul. (Josh 22:5)
25 Yahweh shall cause thee to be smitten before thine enemies: thou shalt go out one way [derech echad] against them, and flee seven ways [shivah derakhim] before them: and shalt be removed [an object of horror] into [ unto] all the kingdoms of the earth.
Whether we take the inroads of the Amorites, Midianites, Philistines, etc., who repeatedly brought Israel into affliction because of their sins; or the formidable invasions of the Egyptian Necho or the Assyrian Shalmaneser, and Sennacherib; or the conquest effected by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon; or the final destruction of the Jewish polity by Vespasian and Titus of Rome; we know, as a matter of fact, that all these adversaries acted from an ordinary lust of spoil and military glory and without any idea of carrying out the purposes of Yahweh.
This is a matter of notoriety and need not be argued.
The Ways of Providence Ch 11.
49 Yahweh shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth [ ketzeh ha'aretz], as swift as the eagle [nesher] flieth; a nation whose tongue [lashon] thou shalt not understand;
But, what was represented by this great bird of prey? The original is quite emphatic - ho aetos ho megas, the Eagle which is the great one...Rome was the eagle's head; Italy, its body; and the Roman Africa and the regions of the Alps, Pyrennees, Britain, Bulgaria, Thrace, Asia Minor, and Armenia its wings or extremities. The eagle is the well-known symbol of the Roman Power.
This cannot refer to the Eagle of Nineveh and Babylon; because these eagle powers did not come "from the end of the earth" against Israel; and because they understood the tongue spoken by the Assyrians and Chaldeans.
"The end", not ends "of the earth" in regard to Palestine, was Chittim, or Italy; whose ships came against Asshur, when Antiochus, king of Assyria, invaded Egypt (Dan. 11:30). Israel did not understand the tongue of Chittim, which is known as that of the Roman Eagle, the Latin, between which and the Hebrew there is no family likeness.
This eagle nation was to come against them as a bird of prey to devour their body-politic, and to scatter them among all peoples, because they did not fear that glorious and fearful name, YAHWEH ELOHIM." This was accomplished by the Roman legions under Titus, A.D. 70; predictive of which, YAHWEH ELOHIM, in fleshly manifestation, said,
"wheresoever the carcass is, there shall the Eagles be gathered together" (Matt.24:38).
While occupying Palestine, the Carnal Israel were the kingdom of the Deity under the Mosaic Constitution; and the throne upon which David and Solomon reigned in Jerusalem was "the throne of Yahweh."
Deity permitted them to continue in the land so long as the constitution was respected; and there were enough "Israelites indeed" among them, to preserve the nation from putrefaction. These were the real, spiritual, life of the nation -- the salt of the land; and when they became insipid; or, when they, as the chosen generation, died off from the arena, the nation became "a carcase," fit only for the talons of the Roman Eagle, according to the predictions of Moses, Daniel and Christ (Deut. xxviii. 49; Dan. viii. 10-12,24; Matt. xxiv. 28).
58 If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, Yahweh thy Elohim;
This glorious and fearful name
The multitude, John says, no one is competent to compute. It is the multitude of "the redeemed from among men, the first-fruits unto the Deity and to the Lamb" (xiv. 4) the incorruptible and deathless seed promised to Abraham, who should be countless as the stars (Gen. xv. 5).
This human incompetency for the calculation shows that the number 144,000 is not the real, but only the representative, number of the redeemed. Every saved individual of the unknown number redeemed will be one of the 144,000 sealed ones; he will be an element of the 144 cubits; which embrace within their limits the 144,000 furlongs; for these are the square of the root within which the innumerable multitude is enclosed.
The glory of the Deity is intellectual, moral, and physical, all of which is covered by his name, which expresses what he really is. Thus, "His name is Jealous;" that is, "He is jealous;" "His name is holy;" that is, "He is holy;" and "His name is YAHWEH Tzavaoth;" that is, He who spoke to Jeremiah is He who shall be of armies, which is the meaning of the Name.
Thus, "the Name of the Deity" in scripture signifies every thing that He is as revealed therein. When Moses said, "I beseech thee, show me thy glory" -- it was replied, "I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim YAHWEH before thee by Name." When we read the proclamation, we therefore read the name or character, of the Deity (Exod. xxxiv. 6). He knows all things, and there is nothing too hard for him to do. This is what he is abstractly and essentially. As he is, so he has always been from everlasting, and will be without end.
But will he be thus abstract forever? This is the question, and one which can only be answered from the scriptures. This answer is in the negative, and finds a very pointed illustration in Jer. xiii. 11. In the parable of the girdle buried by Euphrates, the Spirit says, "For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith YAHWEH; that they might be unto me for a people, and FOR A NAME, and for a praise, and for a glory; but they would not hear." Now the argument contained in this testimony is, that if Israel and Judah had hearkened to Yahweh, they would have been to him "for a Name." But they would not hear; so they became like the girdle when dug up -- a name good for nothing. In consequence of this national worthlessness, Isaiah predicted, that "Adonai Yahweh should slay them, and for his servants proclaim another name; that he who blesseth himself in the earth shall bless himself in ELOHIM of truth; and he that sweareth in the earth shall swear by ELOHIM of truth; because the former troubles are forgotten, and because they are hid from mine eyes" (Isai. lxv. 15).
Here we have the idea presented of the whole Hebrew nation being a name of the Deity. But through the iniquity and falsehood of the tribes the idea was not perfected. The development of the idea was placed in abeyance. He had brought them out of Egypt under Moses "to make for himself a Name of Olahm;" he led them as a horse in the wilderness, "to make himself a Name of Honour;" and to no other people was the name proclaimed: but, although they were called gods, and all of them Sons of the Most High, yet they were not "Elohim of truth;" therefore the Spirit in David said,
"Surely as Adam ye shall die; and as one of the princes ye shall fall:" but to his faithful and truth-loving servants, he saith, "Arise, 0 Elohim, judge the earth; for thou shalt inherit among all the nations" (Psal. lxxxii. 7,8; Isai. lxiii. 12-19).
But though Israel and Judah under the law judged themselves unworthy of having the Name of the Deity written upon them, YAHWEH did not abandon his purpose. "Behold, saith he, I will bring Jerusalem health and cure, and I will cure them, and will reveal unto them abundance of peace and truth. And I will cause the captivity of Judah, and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them as at the first;" (Jer. xxxiii. 6). In performing this work he also says, "I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be to them for Elohim, and they shall be to me for a people ... And they shall all know me from the least of them to the greatest of them, saith YAHWEH; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more" (xxxi. 33,34).
When this is accomplished, they will be a truthful and righteous nation, and filled with the spirit as the apostles were of old. Thus anointed, they will be intelligent and wise, and the mightiest of the nations of the earth. The Hebrew nation has never attained to so high a position as this yet; nevertheless, it is the destiny that awaits their repentance, and acknowledgement of Jesus Anointed, as their Lord and King.
63 And it shall come to pass, that as Yahweh rejoiced over you to do you good, and to multiply you; so Yahweh will rejoice over you to destroy you, and to bring you to nought; and ye shall be plucked from off the land whither thou goest to possess it.
The condition of their tenancy was their good behaviour.
If they served God according to the law of the land He had given, He would bless them in their basket and store; but if they served other gods, He would let in the worshippers of those gods upon them, and expel them from the country. Israel has rebelled, and therefore they are in dispersion, until the time appointed shall come to remember the covenant made with the fathers, and, therefore to remember the land (Lev. 26:40-42).
The national tenancy of Canaan under the law being leasehold, no purchases of freehold estates could be made in the land. If Israel had been a freeholder, the case would have been different. But the land belonged to the Lord; and they had no more right to grant it away in parcels for ever, than the tenant under a twenty-one years' lease has to cut up his holding into lots, and sell them to purchasers forever.
Israel were the Lord's tenants; and the law said to them on the part of their Landlord, "the land shall not be sold for ever; for the land is Mine, and ye are strangers and sojourners with Me;" so that "in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land."
Hence, if poverty compelled a man to sell his farm, it was always redeemable by himself, or kin, according to certain conditions; but, if neither could raise the money to redeem, the estate was not lost to the original owner; for though it remained in the hands of the purchaser he was obliged to return it for nothing at the year of jubilee (Lev. 25:23-28).
Even under the new constitution, when the nation obtains everlasting possession, the servants of the Prince will have to surrender His territorial gifts at the year of liberty; while His sons will possess them for ever (Ezek. 46:16-18).
The covenant of promise confers a more extensive holding of the country than the law of Moses. At no time of their occupation did Israel possess all the land from the Euphrates to the Nile, as promised in the covenant; and even if they had, such holding would not have been in the sense of the covenant, for they have not held possession according to the limits defined "for ever."
"All the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession" is the promise; but the indisputable fact is, that Israel have only possessed a part of it for a limited and turbulent period. In Solomon's days when the nation was at its zenith under the law, the land was jointly possessed by Israel, the Tyrians, and the remains of the Hittites, Amorites, Perrizzites, Hivites, Jebusites, &c.; but when the age of the covenant arrives, Israel under Shiloh will possess it all; "and there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts" (2 Chron.8:7; Zech.14:21).
Elpis Israel II. 2.