The Bible in Its Traditions

Deuteronomy 32:1–43

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Give ear, ye heavens, and I will speak; and let the earth hear the words of my mouth.

Attend, O heaven, and I will speak; and let the earth hear the words out of my mouth.

“Listen, O heavens, to what I am saying. Let the earth hear the words of my mouth.

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My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew; as the small rain upon the tender grass, and as the showers upon the herb.

Let my speech be looked for as the rain, and my words come down as dew, as the shower upon the herbage, and as snow upon the grass.

Let my doctrine accumulate like the rain. Let my eloquence form like the dew, like a mist upon the plants, and like water droplets upon the grass.

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For I will proclaim the name of YHWH; ascribe ye greatness unto our God.

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The Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice; a God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and right is He.

As for God, his works are true, and all his ways are judgement: God is faithful, and there is no unrighteousness in him; just and holy is the Lord.

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Is corruption His? No; His children's is the blemish; a generation crooked and perverse.

They have sinned, not pleasing him; spotted children, a froward and perverse generation.

They have corrupted themselves, and they are not his children because of blemish; they are a perverse and crooked generation.

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Do ye thus requite YHWH, O foolish people and unwise? is not He thy father that hath gotten thee? hath He not made thee, and established thee?

How can this be the return you would offer to the Lord, O foolish and senseless people? Is he himself not your Father, who has possessed you, and made you, and created you?

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Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations; ask thy father, and he will declare unto thee, thine elders, and they will tell thee.

Remember the days of antiquity. Consider each generation. Question your father, and he will declare it to you. Question your elders, and they will tell it to you.

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When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the children of men, He set the borders of the peoples according to the number of the children of Israel.

When the Most High divided the nations, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the nations according to the number of the angels of God.

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For the portion of YHWH is His people, Jacob the lot of His inheritance.

And his people Jacob became the portion of the Lord, Israel was the line of his inheritance.

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10  He found him in a desert land, and in the waste, a howling wilderness; He compassed him about, He cared for him, He kept him as the apple of His eye.

10  He maintained him in the wilderness, in burning thirst and a dry land: he led him about and instructed him, and kept him as the apple of an eye.

10  He discovered him in a desert land, in a place of horror and a vast wilderness. He led him around and taught him, and he guarded him like the pupil of his eye,

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11  As an eagle that stirreth up her nest, hovereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her pinions--

11  just as an eagle encourages its young to fly, and, flying above them, stretches out its wings, and takes them up, and carries them on its shoulders.

11  As an eagle encircles his nest, fluttering over his young, spreading out its wings, taking them, bearing them on the strength of his wings;

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12  YHWH alone did lead him, and there was no strange god with Him.

12  the Lord alone led them, there was no strange god with them.

12  So the LORD alone did lead Israel, and there was no strange god with him.

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13  He made him ride on the high places of the earth, and he did eat the fruitage of the field; and He made him to suck honey out of the crag, and oil out of the flinty rock;

13  He brought them up on the strength of the land; he fed them with the fruits of the fields; they sucked honey out of the rock, and oil out of the solid rock.

13  He stood him upon an exalted land, so that he might eat the fruits of the fields, so that he might eat honey from the rock, and oil from the hardest stone,

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14  Curd of kine, and milk of sheep, with fat of lambs, and rams of the breed of Bashan, and he-goats, with the kidney-fat of wheat; and of the blood of the grape thou drankest foaming wine.

14  butter from the herd, and milk from the sheep, with fat from the lambs, and with rams and goats from the sons of Bashan, with the kernel of the wheat, and so that he might drink the undiluted blood of the grape.

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15  But Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked--thou didst wax fat, thou didst grow thick, thou didst become gross--and he forsook God who made him, and contemned the Rock of his salvation.

15  So Jacob ate and was filled, and the beloved one kicked; he grew fat, he became thick and broad: then he forsook the God that made him, and departed from God his Saviour.

15  The beloved grew fat, and he kicked. Having grown fat and thick and wide, he abandoned God, his Maker, and he withdrew from God, his Savior.

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16  They roused Him to jealousy with strange gods, with abominations did they provoke Him.

16  They provoked me to anger with strange gods; with their abominations they bitterly angered me.

16  They provoked him to zealousness with strange gods, they made him angry with idols.

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17  They sacrificed unto demons, no-gods, gods that they knew not, new gods that came up of late, which your fathers dreaded not.

17  They immolated to demons and not to God, to gods whom they did not know, who were new and recent arrivals, whom their fathers did not worship.

17  They sacrificed to demons that were not gods; to gods whom they knew not, to new gods that were just made. whom your fathers had never worshipped.

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18  Of the Rock that begot thee thou wast unmindful, and didst forget God that bore thee.

18  You have forsaken the God who conceived you, and you have forgotten the Lord who created you.

18  But you forsook the Mighty One who bore you, and you forgot the God who made you glorious.

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19  And YHWH saw, and spurned, because of the provoking of His sons and His daughters.

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20  And He said: 'I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end shall be; for they are a very froward generation, children in whom is no faithfulness.

20  and said, I will turn away my face from them, and will show what shall happen to them in the last days; for it is a perverse generation, sons in whom is no faith.

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21  They have roused Me to jealousy with a no-god; they have provoked Me with their vanities; and I will rouse them to jealousy with a no-people; I will provoke them with a vile nation.

21  They have provoked me to jealousy with that which is not God, they have exasperated me with their idols; and I will provoke them to jealousy with them that are no nation, I will anger them with a nation void of understanding.

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22  For a fire is kindled in My nostril, and burneth unto the depths of the nether-world, and devoureth the earth with her produce, and setteth ablaze the foundations of the mountains.

22  For a fire has been kindled out of my wrath, it shall burn to hell below; it shall devour the land, and the fruits of it; it shall set on fire the foundations of the mountains.

22  A fire has been kindled in my fury, and it will burn even to the deepest Hell, and it will devour the earth with its produce, and it will burn the foundations of the mountains.

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23  I will heap evils upon them; I will spend Mine arrows upon them;

23  I will gather evils upon them, and will fight with my weapons against them.

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24  The wasting of hunger, and the devouring of the fiery bolt, and bitter destruction; and the teeth of beasts will I send upon them, with the venom of crawling things of the dust.

24  They shall be consumed with hunger and the devouring of birds, and there shall be irremediable destruction: I will send forth against them the teeth of wild beasts, with the rage of serpents creeping on the ground.

24  They shall be disabled with hunger, and I will deliver them to evil spirits, and I will deliver them to vultures; I will also stir up wild beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents which creep in the dust.

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25  Without shall the sword bereave, and in the chambers terror; slaying both young man and virgin, the suckling with the man of gray hairs.

25  Without, the sword shall bereave them of children, and terror shall issue out of the secret chambers; the young man shall perish with the virgin, the suckling with him who has grown old.

25  Outside, the sword will devastate them; and inside, there will be dread, as much for the young man as for the maiden, and as much for the newborn as for the old man.

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26  I thought I would make an end of them, I would make their memory cease from among men;

26  I said, I will scatter them, and I will cause their memorial to cease from among men.

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27  Were it not that I dreaded the enemy's provocation, lest their adversaries should misdeem, lest they should say: Our hand is exalted, and not YHWH hath wrought all this.'

27  Had it not been for the wrath of the enemy, who had become strong, and had it not been for the boasting of the adversary, who would say, It is our hand that has prevailed, and the LORD has not done all this, I would have blotted them out.

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28  For they are a nation void of counsel, and there is no understanding in them.

28  It is a nation that has lost counsel, neither is there understanding in them.

28  They are a nation without counsel and without prudence.

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29  If they were wise, they would understand this, they would discern their latter end.

29  They had not sense to understand: let them reserve these things against the time to come.

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30  How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had given them over and YHWH had delivered them up?

30  How should one pursue a thousand, and two rout tens of thousands, if God had not sold them, and the Lord delivered them up?

30  How is it that one pursues a thousand, and two chases ten thousand? Is it not because their God has sold them, and because the Lord has enclosed them?

31  For their rock is not as our Rock, even our enemies themselves being judges.

31  For their gods are not as our God, but our enemies are void of understanding.

31  For our God is not like their gods. And our enemies are judges.

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32  For their vine is of the vine of Sodom, and of the fields of Gomorrah; their grapes are grapes of gall, their clusters are bitter;

32  Their vines are of the vines of Sodom, but from the suburbs of Gomorrah. Their grapes are the grapes of gall, and their grape clusters are most bitter.

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33  Their wine is the venom of serpents, and the cruel poison of asps.

33  Their venom is the venom of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps.

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34  'Is not this laid up in store with Me, sealed up in My treasuries?

34  Lo! are not these things stored up by me, and sealed among my treasures?

34  ‘Have not these things been stored up with me, and sealed up amid my treasures?

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35  Vengeance is Mine, and recompense, against the time when their foot shall slip; for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that are to come upon them shall make haste.

35  In the day of vengeance I will recompense, whensoever their foot shall be tripped up; for the day of their destruction is near to them, and the judgements at hand are close upon you.

35  To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.

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36  For YHWH will judge His people, and repent Himself for His servants; when He seeth that their stay is gone, and there is none remaining, shut up or left at large.

36  For the Lord shall judge his people, and shall be comforted over his servants; for he saw that they were utterly weakened, and failed in the hostile invasion, and were become feeble

36  The Lord will judge his people, and he will take pity on his servants. He will see that their hand has been weakened, and that those who have been enclosed have likewise failed, and that those who have been left behind have been consumed.

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37  And it is said: Where are their gods, the rock in whom they trusted;

37  and the Lord said, Where are their gods on whom they trusted?

37  And he shall say: ‘Where are their gods, in whom they had confidence?

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38  Who did eat the fat of their sacrifices, and drank the wine of their drink-offering? let him rise up and help you, let him be your protection.

38  the fat of whose sacrifices ye ate, and ye drank the wine of their drink-offerings? let them arise and help you, and be your protectors.

38  They ate the fat of their victims, and they drank the wine of their libations. So let these rise up, and bring relief to you, and protect you in your distress.

39  See now that I, even I, am He, and there is no god with Me; I kill, and I make alive; I have wounded, and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of My hand.

39  Behold, behold that I am he, and there is no god beside me: I kill, and I will make to live: I will smite, and I will heal; and there is none who shall deliver out of my hands.

39  See that I am alone, and there is no other god beside me. I will kill, and I will cause to live. I will strike, and I will heal. And there is no one who is able to rescue from my hand.

40  For I lift up My hand to heaven, and say: As I live for ever,

40  For I will lift up my hand to heaven, and swear by my right hand, and I will say, I live for ever.

40  I will lift up my hand to heaven, and I will say: I live in eternity.

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41  If I whet My glittering sword, and My hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to Mine adversaries, and will recompense them that hate Me.

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42  I will make Mine arrows drunk with blood, and My sword shall devour flesh; with the blood of the slain and the captives, from the long-haired heads of the enemy.'

42  I will make my weapons drunk with blood, and my sword shall devour flesh, it shall glut itself with the blood of the wounded, and from the captivity of the heads of their enemies that rule over them.

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43  Sing aloud, O ye nations, of His people; for He doth avenge the blood of His servants, and doth render vengeance to His adversaries, and doth make expiation for the land of His people.

43  Rejoice, ye heavens, with him, and let all the angels of God worship him; rejoice ye Gentiles, with his people, and let all the sons of God strengthen themselves in him; for he will avenge the blood of his sons, and he will render vengeance, and recompense justice to his enemies, and will reward them that hate him; and the Lord shall purge the land of his people.

43  You nations, praise his people! For he will avenge the blood of his servants. And he will distribute vengeance to their enemies. And he will be merciful to the land of his people.”