(For you know how we have dwelled in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which you passed by;
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Ezekiel 20:7-8; Ezekiel 20:18.)Deuteronomy 29:16. Egypt — Where you have seen their idolatries, and learned too much of them, as the golden calf showed, and therefore have need to renew your covenant with God; where also we were in dreadful bondage, whence God alone hath delivered us; to whom therefore we are deeply obliged, and have all reason to renew our covenant with him. We came through the nations — With what hazard, if God had not appeared for us!In the land of Egypt, where you have seen their idolatries, and learned too much of them, as the golden calf showed, and therefore need to renew your covenant with God; where also we were in dreadful bondage, whence God alone hath delivered us, to whom therefore we are deeply obliged, and have all reason to renew our covenant with him.
How we came through the nations, i.e. with what hazards, if God had not appeared for us.
and how we came through the nations which ye passed by; as the Edomites, Ammonites, Moabites, and Midianites, as Aben Ezra observes, through whose borders they came, as they passed by their countries in their journeys in the wilderness.(For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which ye passed by;
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)16. for ye know, etc.] The necessity for such a covenant with Jehovah: viz. Israel’s experiences of the idolatry of other peoples, which otherwise might seduce them to itself. The Egyptian idolatry has not before been mentioned in Deut. Came through and passed are the same vb.: the idem per idem construction, see Deuteronomy 1:46.Verses 16-29. - The summons to renew the covenant is enforced by a fresh exposition of the evil and danger of apostasy from the Lord. This is introduced by a reference to the experience which the people already had of idolatry in Egypt, and among the nations with whom they had come in contact during their march through the wilderness, from which they must have learned the utter worthlessness of all idols, that they were no gods, but only wood and stone, Verses 16, 17. - These verses are not a parenthesis, as in the Authorized Version. Ver. 18 is connected, not with ver. 15, but with ver. 17; there should be a full stop at the end of ver. 15. Their idols; literally, their blocks or logs (גִלוּלִים, from גָלַל, to roll something too heavy to be carried), a term of contempt used frequently in Scripture of idols.
"To-day," when the covenant-law and covenant-right were laid before them, the whole nation stood before the Lord without a single exception - the heads and the tribes, the elders and the officers, all the men of Israel. The two members are parallel. The heads of the people are the elders and officers, and the tribes consist of all the men. The rendering given by the lxx and Syriac (also in the English version: Tr.), "heads (captains) of your tribes," is at variance with the language.
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