Deuteronomy 31:21
New International Version
And when many disasters and calamities come on them, this song will testify against them, because it will not be forgotten by their descendants. I know what they are disposed to do, even before I bring them into the land I promised them on oath.”

New Living Translation
And when great disasters come down on them, this song will stand as evidence against them, for it will never be forgotten by their descendants. I know the intentions of these people, even now before they have entered the land I swore to give them.”

English Standard Version
And when many evils and troubles have come upon them, this song shall confront them as a witness (for it will live unforgotten in the mouths of their offspring). For I know what they are inclined to do even today, before I have brought them into the land that I swore to give.”

Berean Study Bible
And when many troubles and afflictions have come upon them, this song will testify against them, because it will not be forgotten from the lips of their descendants. For I know their inclination, even before I bring them into the land that I swore to give them.”

King James Bible
And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are befallen them, that this song shall testify against them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I sware.

New King James Version
Then it shall be, when many evils and troubles have come upon them, that this song will testify against them as a witness; for it will not be forgotten in the mouths of their descendants, for I know the inclination of their behavior today, even before I have brought them to the land of which I swore to give them.

New American Standard Bible
Then it will come about, when many evils and troubles find them, that this song will testify before them as a witness (for it shall not be forgotten from the mouth of their descendants); for I know their inclination which they are developing today, before I bring them into the land which I swore.”

NASB 1995
“Then it shall come about, when many evils and troubles have come upon them, that this song will testify before them as a witness (for it shall not be forgotten from the lips of their descendants); for I know their intent which they are developing today, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.”

NASB 1977
“Then it shall come about, when many evils and troubles have come upon them, that this song will testify before them as a witness (for it shall not be forgotten from the lips of their descendants); for I know their intent which they are developing today, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.”

Amplified Bible
Then it shall come about, when many evils and troubles have come on them, that this [sacred] song will confront them as a witness; for it will not be forgotten from the mouth of their descendants. For I know their inclination which is developing even now, before I bring them into the land which I have sworn to give them.”

Christian Standard Bible
And when many troubles and afflictions come to them, this song will testify against them, because their descendants will not have forgotten it. For I know what they are prone to do, even before I bring them into the land I swore to give them.”

Holman Christian Standard Bible
And when many troubles and afflictions come to them, this song will testify against them, because their descendants will not have forgotten it. For I know what they are prone to do, even before I bring them into the land I swore to give them.”

American Standard Version
And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are come upon them, that this song shall testify before them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they frame this day, before I have brought them into the land which I sware.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And whenever many evils and adversities have come upon them, read this song before them for a testimony, that it will not be forgotten from the mouth of their descendants, because I know their inclination and all that they are doing here today, until I bring them to the land that I swore to their fathers.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
And this song shall stand up to witness against them; for they shall not forget it out of their mouth, or out of the mouth of their seed; for I know their wickedness, what they are doing here this day, before I have brought them into the good land, which I sware to their fathers.

Contemporary English Version
When I punish the Israelites and their descendants with suffering and disasters, I will remind them that they know the words to this song, so they have no excuse for not obeying me. I will give them the land that I promised, but I know the way they are going to live later on.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And after many evils and afflictions shall have come upon them, this canticle shall answer them for a testimony, which no oblivion shall take away out of the mouth of their seed. For I know their thoughts, and what they are about to de this day, before that I bring them into the land which I have promised them.

English Revised Version
And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are come upon them, that this song shall testify before them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I sware.

Good News Translation
and many terrible disasters will come on them. But this song will still be sung, and it will stand as evidence against them. Even now, before I take them into the land that I promised to give them, I know what they are thinking."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When many terrible disasters happen to them, this song will testify against them, because it will never be forgotten by their descendants. I know what their hearts are set on doing, even now before I bring them into the land that I swore to give them."

International Standard Version
Then, when many evils and troubles will have come upon them, this song will serve as a witness against them, since their descendants won't fail to sing it. I know the plan that they are devising even before I bring them into the land that I promised them by an oath."

JPS Tanakh 1917
then it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are come upon them, that this song shall testify before them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed; for I know their imagination how they do even now, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.'

Literal Standard Version
then it has been, when many evils and distresses meet it, that this song has testified to its face for a witness; for it is not forgotten out of the mouth of its seed, for I have known its imagining which it is doing today, before I bring them into the land of which I have sworn.”

NET Bible
Then when many disasters and distresses overcome them this song will testify against them, for their descendants will not forget it. I know the intentions they have in mind today, even before I bring them to the land I have promised."

New Heart English Bible
It shall happen, when many evils and troubles have come on them, that this song shall testify before them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their descendants: for I know their imagination which they frame this day, before I have brought them into the land which I swore."

World English Bible
It shall happen, when many evils and troubles are come on them, that this song shall testify before them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they frame this day, before I have brought them into the land which I swore."

Young's Literal Translation
'And it hath been, when many evils and distresses do meet it, that this song hath testified to its face for a witness; for it is not forgotten out of the mouth of its seed, for I have known its imagining which it is doing to-day, before I bring them in unto the land of which I have sworn.'

Additional Translations ...
Context
God Commissions Joshua
20When I have brought them into the land that I swore to give their fathers, a land flowing with milk and honey, they will eat their fill and prosper. Then they will turn to other gods and worship them, and they will reject Me and break My covenant. 21 And when many troubles and afflictions have come upon them, this song will testify against them, because it will not be forgotten from the lips of their descendants. For I know their inclination, even before I bring them into the land that I swore to give them.” 22So that very day Moses wrote down this song and taught it to the Israelites.…

Cross References
John 2:24
But Jesus did not entrust Himself to them, for He knew them all.

John 2:25
He did not need any testimony about man, for He knew what was in a man.

Leviticus 26:41
and I acted with hostility toward them and brought them into the land of their enemies--and if their uncircumcised hearts will be humbled and they will make amends for their iniquity,

Deuteronomy 4:30
When you are in distress and all these things have happened to you, then in later days you will return to the LORD your God and listen to His voice.

1 Chronicles 28:9
As for you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve Him wholeheartedly and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands the intent of every thought. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.


Treasury of Scripture

And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are befallen them, that this song shall testify against them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.

Deuteronomy 31:19
Now therefore write ye this song for you, and teach it the children of Israel: put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the children of Israel.

against [heb] before

Genesis 6:5
And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

Genesis 8:21
And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.

Psalm 139:2
Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

go about [heb] do









(21) This song . . . shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed.--And it is not forgotten now. St. Paul made special use of it in the last days of the second Temple. This song is a favourite piece of Hebrew poetry to this day. Rashi observes: "This is a promise to Israel that the law shall not be utterly forgotten by their seed."

I know their imagination.--Heb., yetzer, the same word employed in Genesis 6:5; Genesis 8:21. It is the word commonly used in Rabbinical literature for the evil nature or good nature in any man. The nature which they are forming, or making, this day, would be a literal rendering of the sentence in this verse. And yet with all this, He made Balaam say, "He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob nor seen perverseness in Israel" (Numbers 23:21). Comp. 1Chronicles 28:9, "The Lord . . . understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts," and Psalm 103:14, "He knoweth our frame (yetzer); He remembereth that we are dust." . . .

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
And when
כִּֽי־ (kî-)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

many
רַבּוֹת֮ (rab·bō·wṯ)
Adjective - feminine plural
Strong's 7227: Much, many, great

troubles
רָע֣וֹת (rā·‘ō·wṯ)
Noun - feminine plural
Strong's 7451: Bad, evil

and afflictions
וְצָרוֹת֒ (wə·ṣā·rō·wṯ)
Conjunctive waw | Noun - feminine plural
Strong's 6869: Tightness, a female rival

have come upon them,
תִמְצֶ֨אןָ (ṯim·ṣe·nā)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person feminine plural
Strong's 4672: To come forth to, appear, exist, to attain, find, acquire, to occur, meet, be present

this
הַזֹּ֤את (haz·zōṯ)
Article | Pronoun - feminine singular
Strong's 2063: Hereby in it, likewise, the one other, same, she, so much, such deed, that,

song
הַשִּׁירָ֨ה (haš·šî·rāh)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's 7892: A song, singing

will testify
וְ֠עָנְתָה (wə·‘ā·nə·ṯāh)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Conjunctive perfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's 6030: To answer, respond

against them,
לְפָנָיו֙ (lə·p̄ā·nāw)
Preposition-l | Noun - common plural construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 6440: The face

because
כִּ֛י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

it will not be forgotten
תִשָּׁכַ֖ח (ṯiš·šā·ḵaḥ)
Verb - Nifal - Imperfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's 7911: To mislay, to be oblivious of, from want of memory, attention

from the lips
מִפִּ֣י (mip·pî)
Preposition-m | Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 6310: The mouth, edge, portion, side, according to

of their descendants.
זַרְע֑וֹ (zar·‘ōw)
Noun - masculine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 2233: Seed, fruit, plant, sowing-time, posterity

For
כִּ֧י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

I know
יָדַ֣עְתִּי (yā·ḏa‘·tî)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 3045: To know

their inclination,
יִצְר֗וֹ (yiṣ·rōw)
Noun - masculine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 3336: A form, framing, purpose

even before
בְּטֶ֣רֶם (bə·ṭe·rem)
Preposition-b | Adverb
Strong's 2962: Non-occurrence, not yet, before

I bring
אֲבִיאֶ֔נּוּ (’ă·ḇî·’en·nū)
Verb - Hifil - Imperfect - first person common singular | third person masculine singular
Strong's 935: To come in, come, go in, go

them into
אֶל־ (’el-)
Preposition
Strong's 413: Near, with, among, to

the land
הָאָ֖רֶץ (hā·’ā·reṣ)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's 776: Earth, land

I swore to give them.?
נִשְׁבָּֽעְתִּי׃ (niš·bā·‘ə·tî)
Verb - Nifal - Perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 7650: To seven oneself, swear


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OT Law: Deuteronomy 31:21 It shall happen when many evils (Deut. De Du)
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