Deuteronomy means ‘second law’, but it is not a second giving of the law, but a reminder.
It is the fifth book of the Bible, and the last of the books of Moses. The number 5 speaks of human responsibility. The wilderness is reviewed and instructions and directions are given in relation to the promised land.
It is very interesting that Moses is the only biblical figure other than Christ to fill the three offices of prophet (Ch 24:10-12), priest (Ex 32:31-35) and king, although he was not, he functioned as a ruler of Israel (Deut 33:4-5).
Another interesting fact about Deuteronomy is that the Lord Jesus Christ Himself quoted this book when tempted by the devil in the wilderness (see Matthew 4). He quoted chapter 6:13 and 16, 8:3, and 10:20. Deuteronomy is also quoted several other times in the New Testament, so if we are going to ignore this book, we will not know where these quotations come from in the New Testament.
A picture of Christ is seen in Chapter 18:15 – see Peter preaching in Acts 3:20-26.
The book of Deuteronomy may be divided as follows:
- Chapters 1-4:40 the historical discourse of Moses – reviewing what God has done in the past.
- Chapter 4:41 – Chapter 30 the legal and prophetic discourse – what God expects and what He will do.
- Chapter 31 to the end a final discourse (conclusion and death of Moses).
Philippians corresponds to Deuteronomy – Israel had been pointed to the blessings in Canaan while in the wilderness. Likewise, we ought to be occupied in rejoicing with Christ the Lord in glory while still on earth.
Some of the features of Deuteronomy as follows – this is not an extensive list:
Chapter 27 – Gerizim and Ebal: blessings (for doing and living right) and cursing (for doing evil).
Chapter 33 – blessing of the children of Israel (in tribes). No mention of Simeon, but mentions of Ephraim and Manasseh. There is no birth order of Jacob’s sons here.
Compare to the blessings of Jacob to his sons in Gen 49 when he mentions his sons in birth order. Again, this is only a summary or outline of the book of Deuteronomy, with the view that the readers will study this wonderful book more closely.