Joshua and Judges: Push to the Promised Land: Moses' departing song, part 5: Deu 32:1-43; Mat 21:33-46.

Class Outline:

Title: Joshua and Judges: Push to the Promised Land: Moses' departing song, part 5: DEU 32:1-43; MAT 21:33-46.  


Moses shows that although the Rock of the Jews was very different from the gods of the Gentiles, even according to the testimony of the heathen themselves, who were their foes, why the Jews were nevertheless to be put to flight by their enemies and sold into bondage.


And why did Jehovah sell them, namely, because their vine was of the vine of Sodom, i.e., of the very worst kind, resembling the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah, as if they were descended from them, and not from their holy patriarchs."


DEU 32:32-33

"For their vine is from the vine of Sodom, And from the fields of Gomorrah; Their grapes are grapes of poison, Their clusters, bitter. "Their wine is the venom of serpents, And the deadly poison of cobras.


MAT 7:17-18

"Even so, every good tree bears good fruit; but the bad tree bears bad fruit. "A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.

The order of thought is the following: Israel would have been able to smite its foes with very little difficulty, because the gods of the heathen are not a rock like Jehovah; but Jehovah had given up His people to the heathen, because it had brought forth fruits like Sodom, i.e., had resembled Sodom in its wickedness. The vine and its fruits are figurative terms, applied to the nation and its productions. "The nation was not only a degenerate, but also a poisonous vine, producing nothing but what was deadly" [Calvin]


The Lord took up the same figure in the parable of the landowner.


MAT 21:33 "Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard and put a wall around it and dug a wine press in it, and built a tower, and rented it out to vine-growers, and went on a journey. 


MAT 21:34 "And when the harvest time approached, he sent his slaves to the vine-growers to receive his produce.


The slaves are the prophets.


MAT 21:35 "And the vine-growers took his slaves and beat one, and killed another, and stoned a third.


MAT 21:36 "Again he sent another group of slaves larger than the first; and they did the same thing to them.


These culminated in John the Baptist.


MAT 21:37 "But afterward he sent his son to them, saying, 'They will respect my son.'


Mark adds that this was an only son and greatly beloved.


MAT 21:38 "But when the vine-growers saw the son, they said among themselves, 'This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and seize his inheritance.'


MAT 21:39 "And they took him, and threw him out of the vineyard [outside the walls], and killed him.


MAT 21:40 "Therefore when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?" 


The design of asking them this question was that they might condemn themselves, and admit the justice of the punishment that was soon to come upon them.


MAT 21:41 They said to Him, "He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers, who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons."


They answered according as they knew people would act, and would act justly in doing it. He would take away their privileges and confer them on others. This was the answer which Jesus wished. The case was so clear that they could not answer otherwise. He wished to show them the justice of taking away their national privileges, and punishing them in the destruction of their city and nation. Had he stated this at first they would not have heard him. He, however, by a parable, led them along to "state themselves" the very truth which he wished to communicate, and they had then nothing to answer.


This same tactic was used by Nathan the prophet to David after he had taken Bathsheba and had her husband killed. There was a rich man who had many flocks and herds and there was a poor man who had nothing but one little ewe lamb, which he bought and nourished; and it grew up together with him and his children. It would eat of his bread and drink of his cup and lie in his bosom, and was like a daughter to him. A traveler came to the rich man and he was unwilling to take from his own many animals to prepare for the wayfarer, so he took the poor man's ewe and prepared it for the man. David got angry and said that the rich man deserves to die and make restitution to the poor man fourfold. Nathan said to him, "You are the man." Unlike the Pharisees, David admitted his wrong and repented.


MAT 21:42 Jesus said to them, "Did you never read in the Scriptures [PSA 118:22-23],

'The stone which the builders rejected,

This became the chief corner stone;

This came about from the Lord,

And it is marvelous in our eyes'?


The builders expected to build a different house. They wanted the crown without the cross. Jesus wasn't the type of cornerstone that they expected and so they rejected Him. The builders lost sight of the proper blueprints.


DEU 32:4

"The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He.


DEU 32:18

"You neglected the Rock who begot you, And forgot the God who gave you birth.


DEU 32:31

"Indeed their rock is not like our Rock, Even our enemies themselves judge this.


"Became the chief cornerstone" - it's God's election alone that matters.


MAT 21:42 Jesus said to them, "Did you never read in the Scriptures [PSA 118:22-23],

'The stone which the builders rejected,

This became the chief corner stone;

This came about from the Lord,

And it is marvelous in our eyes'?


All who see the Son, that God Himself condescended to become the cornerstone, see this as marvelous.


MAT 21:43 "Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you, and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it.


DEU 32:21

'They have made Me jealous with what is not God;

They have provoked Me to anger with their idols.

So I will make them jealous with those who are not a people;

I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation,


During the Church age, the racial Jew would no longer be the elected people of God. Until the second coming election would come to the individual who believed in Christ, Jew or Gentile.


Jerusalem would be destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD. Yet the Jew would not be completely destroyed. The dispersion would guarantee their survival until the tribulation. The Rapture of the church will bring their jealousy to a zenith. Many Jews will come to faith in Christ during the seven year tribulation and they will enter with Christ into His kingdom.


MAT 21:44 "And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust." 


MAT 21:45 And when the chief priests and the Pharisees heard His parables, they understood that He was speaking about them.


MAT 21:46 And when they sought to seize Him, they feared the multitudes, because they held Him to be a prophet.


Finally, the righteousness of God is announced and depicted in the fulfillment of His purpose in which He judges His foes and has mercy on His people who believe in faith, verses 34-43.


DEU 32:32 "For their vine is from the vine of Sodom, And from the fields of Gomorrah; Their grapes are grapes of poison, Their clusters, bitter.


DEU 32:33 "Their wine is the venom of serpents, And the deadly poison of cobras.


Nothing could be worse or more abhorred than to be compared to Sodom and Gomorrah.


DEU 32:34 'Is it not laid up in store with Me, Sealed up in My treasuries?


All sin, all judgment, all apostasy and its punishment are all in the treasuries of God. He is both past and future and knows all. Nothing will unfold in time that He does not see and He will deal justly and righteously with all things.


DEU 32:35 'Vengeance is Mine, and retribution, In due time their foot will slip; For the day of their calamity is near, And the impending things are hastening upon them.'


The slipping foot refers to the commencement of a fall or stumbling.


At the right time the vengeance of the Lord which had been concealed in His treasury will come to the light, not complete destruction, but intense discipline that would be close.


We must be careful not to associate the physical with the spiritual. Israel is a picture of the believer's soul, but she is not the believer's soul. Her warfare was physical while the warfare of the church is spiritual. Some have associated the church with the physicality of the plan for Israel, which under the Law, was only a shadow of the real spiritual warfare to come. By wrong application some have come to believe that the church age believer who follows God will always have financial security, good health, strong families, productive careers, etc. This is not true. We are called to suffer as Christ suffered. The physical and material blessings were promised to Israel as a nation, meaning the whole nation. But within the nation the individual Jew who righteously followed God was persecuted by the ungodly.


HEB 11:35-38

Women received back their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, in order that they might obtain a better resurrection; and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, …


they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated (men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground.


We must distinguish between the elect nation of Israel which contains believers and unbelievers and the individual faithful believers within the nation. More often than not, the faithful were persecuted by the ungodly.


While Israel had unconditional covenants, the seed, the land, the future so the church age believer has a certain position in Christ. No matter what our decisions are that position is sure and cannot change. The spiritual life is always available to the church age believer and that is independent of the physical, material world. The believer may lose everything while being spiritually mature. This could not be true of the nation of Israel. Following God guarantees his spiritual maturity, but not his physical assets. In this, as in many other aspects the church is different from Israel. Therefore, we cannot ever judge the calamity of another to be divine discipline. We can never know this, and God has not, and will not ever, allow us to know this. You may see every indication that a person is under divine discipline, but you can never know it, and to assume that you do is to assume that God has allowed you to be a part of His personal relationship with another child of His. This is arrogant, misplaced, and not of agape love. Doctrine is for you and not for you to use to judge another.


The severe discipline of Israel is not complete destruction as the next verse reveals.


DEU 32:36 "For the Lord will vindicate His people, And will have compassion on His servants; When He sees that their strength is gone, And there is none remaining, bond or free.


In Israel there were the righteous and the wicked. The wicked were disciplined and the righteous were vindicated.