So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD.
His thoughts would naturally be of two kinds. One class of them would make him reluctant to die; the other would tend to reconcile him to death.
I. HE WOULD BE UNWILLING TO DIE because —
1. He had nearly, but not quite, accomplished a great work. Many a patriot, many a philanthropist, many a leader of thought, has felt that life was of value to him only as it enabled him to carry to completion, or to place on a secure footing, the one work of his life.
2. He was still in the possession of health and vigour. The work he had in hand was of the noblest order. He seemed to be the only man capable of doing it. And he felt himself still adequate to its demands.
3. Think, too, of the prospect that lay stretched out before him, and judge what death must have seemed to him at such a moment. Never had he seen this earth so fair or so glorious. After all the toils and perils of the wilderness, is he not to grasp the prize, the hope of which had so much strengthened him to bear them?
4. Still more unwelcome would the summons be to quit the world thus early, because it was a sign of God's displeasure with him (Numbers 20:10-12; Deuteronomy 32:48-52). "The sting of death is sin." Moses knew that but for the displeasure of God he might have continued to live, and might have died long hence under happier auspices.
5. He had to die alone.
II. THINGS THAT WOULD GO FAR TO RECONCILE HIM TO DEATH.
1. He had the favour and presence of God. His fault was forgiven. Moreover, the presence of God was granted him.
2. His work, unfinished as it seemed, was really done. His successor was already named and consecrated.
3. He is leaving all sorrow, especially all sin, behind him. To die was, to him, gain.
4. He is about to enter a brighter world than that which he is leaving.
(B. P. Pratten, B. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD.