New International Version
The bolts of your gates will be iron and bronze, and your strength will equal your days.
King James Bible
Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be.
Darby Bible Translation
Iron and brass shall be thy bolts; And thy rest as thy days.
World English Bible
Your bars shall be iron and brass. As your days, so your strength will be.
Young's Literal Translation
Iron and brass are thy shoes, And as thy days -- thy strength.
Deuteronomy 33:25 Parallel
CommentaryClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Thy shoes shall be iron and brass - Some suppose this may refer to the iron and copper mines in their territory; but it is more likely that it relates to their warlike disposition, as we know that greaves, boots, shoes, etc., of iron, brass, and tin, were used by ancient warriors. Goliath had greaves of brass on his legs, 1 Samuel 17:6; and the brazen-booted Greeks, χαλκοκνημιδες Αχαιοι, is one of the epithets given by Homer to his heroes; see Iliad. lib. viii., ver. 41.
And as thy days, so shall thy strength be - If we take this clause as it appears here, we have at once an easy sense; and the saying, I have no doubt, has comforted the souls of multitudes. The meaning is obvious: "Whatever thy trials or difficulties may be, I shall always give thee grace to support thee under and bring thee through them." The original is only two words, the latter of which has been translated in a great variety of ways, וכימיך דבאך ucheyameycha dobecha. Of the first term there can be no doubt, it literally means, and as thy days; the second word, דבא dobe, occurs nowhere else in the Hebrew Bible: the Septuagint have rendered it by ισχυς, strength, and most of the versions have followed them; but others have rendered it affliction, old age, fame, weakness, etc., etc. It would be almost endless to follow interpreters through their conjectures concerning its meaning. It is allowed among learned men, that where a word occurs not as a verb in the Hebrew Bible, its root may be legitimately sought in the Arabic. He who controverts this position knows little of the ground on which he stands. In this language the root is found; daba signifies he rested, was quiet. This gives a very good sense, and a very appropriate one; for as the borders of this tribe lay on the vicinity of the Phoenicians, it was naturally to be expected that they should be constantly exposed to irruptions, pillage, etc.; but God, to give them confidence in his protection, says, According to thy days - all circumstances and vicissitudes, so shall thy Rest be - while faithful to thy God no evil shall touch thee; thy days shall increase, and thy quiet be lengthened out. This is an unfailing promise of God: "I will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed upon me, because he trusteth in me;" therefore "trust ye in the Lord for ever, for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength;" Isaiah 26:4. Some derive it from dabi, he abounded in riches; the interpretation then would be, As thy days increase, so shall thy riches. This makes a very good sense also. See Rosenmuller.
Moses, having now finished what God gave him to predict concerning the twelve tribes, and what he was led in the fullness of his heart to pray for in their behalf, addresses all the tribes collectively under the names Jeshurun and Israel; and in an ode of astonishing energy and elegance describes this wondrous people, and their still more wonderful privileges. The reader will observe that, though the latter part of this chapter appears in the form of prose in our Bibles, yet it is written in hemistichs or short metrical lines in the original, which is the form in which all the Hebrew poetry is written; and as in other cases, so in this, it would contribute much to the easy understanding of the author's meaning, were the translation produced in lines corresponding to those of the original.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Thy shoes, etc. or, Under thy shoes shall be iron
and as thy
LibraryIsrael the Beloved
'The beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by Him; and the Lord shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between His shoulders.'--DEUT. xxxiii. 12. Benjamin was his father's favourite child, and the imagery of this promise is throughout drawn from the relations between such a child and its father. So far as the future history of the tribes is shadowed in these 'blessings' of this great ode, the reference of the text may be to the tribe of Benjamin, as specially distinguished by Saul …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
Shoes of Iron, and Strength Sufficient: a New Year's Promise
On Deut. xxxiii. Ii
The Best Things Work for Good to the Godly
"Asher's food will be rich; he will provide delicacies fit for a king.
Keep his decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the LORD your God gives you for all time.
They are not just idle words for you--they are your life. By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess."
He strengthens the bars of your gates and blesses your people within you.
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