Deuteronomy chapter 27

Build a stone altar on Mount Ebal. And declare twelve curses.





VERSE 1. Moses and the elders of Israel commanded the people, saying, “Keep all the commandment which I command you today.

Keep all the commandment. The commandments are to be acted upon. They are to be put into practice.


VERSE 2. It shall be on the day when you shall pass over the Jordan to the land which the LORD your God gives you, that you shall set yourself up great stones, and coat them with plaster.

set yourself up great stones. These will serve as a marker. A memorial.


VERSE 3. You shall write on them all the words of this law, when you have passed over, that you may go in to the land which the LORD your God gives you, a land flowing with milk and honey, as the LORD, the God of your fathers, has promised you.


VERSE 4. It shall be, when you have crossed over the Jordan, that you shall set up these stones, which I command you today, on Mount Ebal, and you shall coat them with plaster.

Mount Ebal. The Hebrew word is הר עיבל (“Har ‘Eival”).

It is one of the two mountains in the immediate vicinity of the city of Nablus in the northern part of the West Bank.

It is one of the highest peaks in the West Bank. It rises to 3,080 feet above sea level.


VERSE 5. There you shall build an altar to the LORD your God, an altar of stones. You shall not use any iron tool on them.

build an altar. They are to build an altar on a high place.


VERSE 6. You shall build the LORD your God’s altar of uncut stones. You shall offer burnt offerings on it to the LORD your God.

uncut stones. The altar is to be made of uncut stones. Essentially it is a stack of rocks.


VERSE 7. You shall sacrifice peace offerings, and shall eat there. You shall rejoice before the LORD your God.


VERSE 8. You shall write on the stones all the words of this law very plainly.”


VERSE 9. Moses and the Levitical priests spoke to all Israel, saying, “Be silent and listen, Israel! Today you have become the people of the LORD your God.

Be silent, and listen. This is the essence of Contemplative Prayer.

Today you have become the people of the LORD your God. Something has changed for them.

As of this moment, they are the people of the LORD God.

Previously, we take it, they had not been. What triggered this transformation?


VERSE 10. You shall therefore obey the LORD your God’s voice, and do his commandments and his statutes, which I command you today.”




VERSE 11. Moses commanded the people the same day, saying,


VERSE 12. “These shall stand on Mount Gerizim to bless the people, when you have crossed over the Jordan: Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin.

to bless the people. Are these tribes blessed?


VERSE 13. These shall stand on Mount Ebal for the curse: Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali.

for the curse. Are these tribes cursed?


VERSE 14. With a loud voice, the Levites shall say to all the men of Israel,

the Levites shall say. They will not be shouting.


VERSE 15. ‘Cursed is the man who makes an engraved or molten image, an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ All the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen.’

All the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen.’ This is the origin of the “call-and-response” form of preaching.

A preacher says a statement. Then the congregation says “Amen!” The pattern repeats.


VERSE 16. ‘Cursed is he who dishonors his father or his mother.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 17. ‘Cursed is he who removes his neighbor’s landmark.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 18. ‘Cursed is he who leads the blind astray on the road.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 19. ‘Cursed is he who withholds justice from the foreigner, fatherless, and widow.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

withholds justice from the foreigner. To withhold justice from a foreigner is a grave offense against the LORD God.


VERSE 20. ‘Cursed is he who lies with his father’s wife, because he dishonors his father’s bed.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

lies with his father’s wife. That is, has sexual relations with his father’s wife.


VERSE 21. ‘Cursed is he who lies with any kind of animal.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 22. ‘Cursed is he who lies with his sister, his father’s daughter or his mother’s daughter.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 23. ‘Cursed is he who lies with his mother-in-law.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 24. ‘Cursed is he who secretly kills his neighbor.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 25. ‘Cursed is he who takes a bribe to kill an innocent person.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’


VERSE 26. ‘Cursed is he who doesn’t uphold the words of this law by doing them.’ All the people shall say, ‘Amen.’ ”


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.


Author: todd

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