Deuteronomy 18 21 22 meaning

Deuteronomy 18 21 22 meaning DEFAULT

Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

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Deuteronomy 18

When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord , if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.
New American Standard Version

Jump to: Adam Clarke CommentaryBridgeway Bible CommentaryCalvin's Commentary on the BibleChuck Smith Bible CommentaryExpository Notes of Dr. Thomas ConstableJohn Gill's Exposition of the Whole BibleMatthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Minister, Christian;   Thompson Chain Reference - False;   Leaders;   Prophets;   Religious;   Wicked, the;   The Topic Concordance - Prophecy and Prophets;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Presumption;   Prophecy;   Prophets, False;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Verse Deuteronomy 18:22. If the thing follow not — It is worthy of remark that the prophets in general predicted those things which were shortly to come to pass, that the people might have the fullest proof of their Divine mission, and of the existence of God's providence in the administration of the affairs of men.

THE promise contained in the Deuteronomy 18:15; Deuteronomy 18:15 and Deuteronomy 18:18; Deuteronomy 18:18 verses of this chapter has long been considered of the first importance in the controversies between the Christians and Jews. "Christ," says Ainsworth, "was to be a man, and of the stock of the Jews, by promise, because the people could not endure to hear the voice of GOD, Deuteronomy 18:16. And as in respect of his prophecy, so of the priesthood: for every high priest is taken from among men, Hebrews 5:1; and also of his kingdom, as in Deuteronomy 17:15: From among thy brethren shalt thou set a king over thee likeunto me.

"1. Christ alone was like unto Moses as a PROPHET; for it is written, There arose not a prophet in Israel like unto Moses, whomthe Lord knew face to face, in all the signs and wonders which theLord sent him to do, Deuteronomy 34:10-12. This therefore cannot be understood of the ordinary prophets which were raised up in Israel, but of Christ only, as the apostles expound it Acts 2:22-26.

2. Christ was like unto Moses in respect to his office of mediation between God and his people, Deuteronomy 5:5; 1 Timothy 2:5; but greater than Moses as being the mediator of a better covenant, (or testament,) which was established upon better promises, Hebrews 8:6.

3. Christ was like unto Moses in excellency; for as Moses excelled all the prophets in speaking to God mouth to mouth, Numbers 12:6-8, so Christ excelled him and all men in that being in the bosom of the Father, he hath come down from heaven and declared God unto us, John 1:18; John 3:13.

4. Christ was like to Moses in faithfulness, but therein also excelling; for Moses was faithful in God's house as a servant, but Christ as the son over his own house, Hebrews 3:2; Hebrews 3:5-6.

5. Christ was like to Moses in signs and wonders, wherein he also excelled Moses, as the history of the Gospel shows; for he was a prophetmighty in deed and word before God and all the people, Luke 24:19. A man approved of God among them, by miracles, signs, and wonders, which God did by him in the midst of them, Acts 2:22. For he did among them the works which no other man did, John 15:24. Unto him, that is, not unto the diviners, wizards, or any such like, but unto him, and him only; as Him thou shalt serve, Deuteronomy 6:13, is expounded, Him only, Matthew 4:10. And though this is principally meant of Christ in person, of whom God said, Hear him, Matthew 17:5; yet it implies also his ministers, as himself said, He that hearethyou heareth me, Luke 10:16." To these may be added,

6. As Moses was king among his people, in this respect Christ is like to him, but infinitely greater; for he is King of kings and Lord of lords, Revelation 19:16; 1 Timothy 6:15. And,

7. He was like to Moses as a legislator. Moses gave laws to Israel by the authority and commandment of God, which the Jews have ever acknowledged as coming from the immediate inspiration of the Almighty: these are contained in the Pentateuch. Christ gave a new law, the Gospel contained in the four Evangelists and Acts of the Apostles, on which the Christian Church is founded, and by which all genuine Christians are governed both in heart and life. To all which may be added,

8. That God never commissioned any human beings to give laws to mankind but Moses and Christ; and therefore, as a lawgiver, Christ alone resembles Moses; for to the present hour none but themselves have given laws in the name of God, which he has ratified and confirmed by the most indubitable and infallible signs, proofs, and miracles.

Dr. Jortin, in his Remarks on Ecclesiastical History, has drawn a parallel between Moses and Christ in a great number of particulars, which he concludes thus: "Let us search all the records of universal history, and see if we can find a man who was so like to Moses as Christ was, and so like to Christ as Moses was. If we cannot find such a one, then have we found HIM of whom Moses in the law and the prophets did write to be Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God." On this subject see Ainsworth, Calmet, and Dodd, who have all marked this striking correspondence between Moses and Christ.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/deuteronomy-18.html. 1832.

Bridgeway Bible Commentary


Spiritual guides, good and bad (18:1-22)

Further information is given concerning the support of priests (18:1-5; see notes on Numbers 18:8-20). If a Levite from the country sold his local possessions to move to the central place of worship, he could retain the money from the sale of his goods and still be financially supported by the people, the same as other Levites (6-8; see notes on Numbers 18:21-32).

Israel’s law prohibited all forms of witchcraft and magic, whether cruel practices in which children were burnt on the altar or made to walk through fire, or common everyday practices such as fortune-telling (9-13). Israelites would have no need to look for help and guidance from those who practised soothsaying, used spells and charms, or consulted the spirits of the dead. God would give the people his specially sent messengers, or prophets, to make his will known to them just as Moses had done (14-19). He would punish those who were not sent by him but set themselves up as prophets (20-22; see also 13:1-5).

Jesus Christ was the supreme prophet, the perfect messenger of God, whose life and ministry gave full meaning to the promise given here (cf. v. 18-19 with Acts 3:22-23; Acts 7:37).

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliographical Information
Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "Brideway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bbc/deuteronomy-18.html. 2005.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

22. The prophet hath spoken it presumptuously. He not only condemns the folly and vanity of those who advance their own inventions in the place of God’s commands, but also their arrogance; since doubtless, this is impious and intolerable audacity, to set forth the offspring of man’s earthly brain as if it were a divine revelation. And on this ground it is that their impiety is detestable, who fill the air with the fumes of their revelations in order to alarm the simple. Wherefore, he adds, that they should “not be afraid” of such a prophet; because, as nothing can be more arrogant than the ministers of Satan, they confidently utter their boastings, by which we may be easily moved and even overwhelmed, unless we had this buckler to protect us, viz., that their terrific noise may be safely despised. This doctrine is now-a-days very useful for us. We know how insolently the Papists boast of the Catholic Church; of the Apostolic See; how fiercely they rage in Peter’s name; how impetuously they fulminate their curses and anathemas; but, when it is ascertained that whatever they put forward as revelations of the Spirit are but the empty figments of men, it will be easy to dispel those terrors which flow from this same fountain of presumption.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliographical Information
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/deuteronomy-18.html. 1840-57.

Chuck Smith Bible Commentary

Chapter 18

Now again he repeats how the tribe of Levi is not to be given any portion of the land but they will eat the offerings that were given unto the Lord made by fire as their inheritance for the Lord is their inheritance. And thus the priest, when he offered a sacrifice, they were to give the priest the shoulder, and the two cheeks and the maw.

Also they were to give to the priest the first fruit of their corn, and of their wine, and of their oil and the first of the fleece of thy sheep shalt thou give to him ( Deuteronomy 18:4 ).

Now, God required really a tenth. He considered that as His. And the tenth was always to be the first tenth was to go unto God. Now when you would bring an offering that the priest would sacrifice the offering for you, the priest always got the shoulder and the cheeks and the maw. That was his, that was his sort of fee, or not really a fee but that was just his, his allotted share from the sacrifice.

Now later on in their history when Eli was the priest, he had some greedy sons. And the people would come to offer sacrifices and, hey, these greedy sons, they would put their hooks in and grab the tenderloins, the sirloins and the finest of the steaks and everything else. And if the people would go to object, you know, then they'd order them out of the place, so that they actually, by their greed caused people to begin to resent sacrificing unto God. And Eli would not actually correct his sons, and thus God dealt very harshly with Eli and his sons because of their greediness in the ministry caused people really to resent God. Seeking the best for themselves, looking out for themselves and more concerned with their own wants and selves than they were really with the people, and thus God dealt very severely with Eli and his sons.

But there was a portion that was to be given to the priest. And then the firstfruits of their fields, the firstfruits of their grapes and so forth, they were to be given unto the priest.

For the LORD thy God hath chosen him out of the tribes, to minister in the name of the LORD, and thus they shall have light portions to eat ( Deuteronomy 18:5 , Deuteronomy 18:8 ).

Now again God forbids that the people follow after the abominations and the practices of those people that were already living in the land that they were to drive out.

The practices were using divination, or an observer of times, [The observer of times is actually the practice of astrology, the use of horoscopes.] or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer or a consulter with familiar spirits, [so spiritism] or a wizard or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and it's because of these abominations that God is driving the people out of the land. Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God ( Deuteronomy 18:10-13 ).

The word perfect there is "Thou shalt be completely towards the Lord". You're not to have other gods in your life, so to speak. Your heart is to be completely towards God. Not to be divided with these other interests and issues, but just a heart that's completely towards God.

For the nations, which you are gonna possess, they hearkened unto these observers of times, to the diviners: but as for thee, the LORD thy God has not allowed thee to do it ( Deuteronomy 18:14 ).

Now here we find a great prophecy concerning the coming of Jesus Christ.

The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of your brothers, like unto me; unto him shall ye hearken; According to all that you desire of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not. And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken. I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth: and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him ( Deuteronomy 18:15-18 ).

Peter, in his message in the third chapter of the book of Acts, declares that this was a prophecy concerning Jesus Christ. Now the Jews knew the prophecy of Moses, and thus they were looking for their Messiah. They believe that this is a prophecy of the coming Messiah, that God is gonna raise up another spokesman to speak God's word to them. "I'll raise up another Prophet like unto myself". So that when they came to John the Baptist saying, "Who art thou?" they said, "Art thou that prophet?" And they were referring to this particular prophecy. "Are you that prophet, the prophet that we are to look for like unto Moses through whom God will speak his word to the people?" John said, "I am not". "Are you the Messiah?" "No." "Who are you?" "I'm just the voice of one and crying in the wilderness prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight his path".

Now, the Jews today are still looking for their Messiah and they are anticipating that He is coming very soon. But they told me, "We believe that the Messiah will be just like Moses". That's this prophecy they're referring to. That He will not be the Son of God. They say, "Now you say the Messiah or that Jesus was the Son of God. We do not believe that the Messiah will be the Son of God. We believe that the Messiah will be a man just like Moses was a man. A man from amongst us that God will raise up to speak God's word to us."

And so the Jews today are looking for a man, a Jew, who will be able to come and to help them to rebuild their temple and to bring them peace. And the minute that man arises on the scene and brings them peace and helps them build their temple, they are, all of them ready to acclaim him as their Messiah. Now of course, there are other scriptures that refer to the Messiah being "God with us, "Thou shalt call his name Emmanuel" which being interpreted is "God with us"( Matthew 1:23 ). "Behold, I'll give you a sign. A virgin shall conceive and bear a son and call his name Immanuel, God with us"( Isaiah 7:14 ). But the Jews are not looking for the Son of God; they are looking for a man.

Now, that man is coming and he is coming very soon and he will arise out of western Europe. He will make a covenant with the nation Israel whereby he will help them to rebuild their temple and they will acclaim him as their Messiah. We're right on the borders of these events. It's tragic but Israel will acknowledge this false leader as their Messiah. Jesus said, "I have come in my own name. You did not receive me." He said "I have come in my Father's name, you did not receive me. There's another one who's gonna be coming in his own name and him you will receive"( John 5:43 ).

They're gonna be deceived for three and a half years. But after three and a half years when they have rebuilt their temple, started again their daily prayers and sacrifices, he is going to come to Jerusalem. He's gonna stand in that rebuilt temple in the Holy of Holies and he's gonna proclaim to them that he is God. He's gonna stop their daily sacrifices, their daily prayers. He's gonna claim that he himself is God and demand that they worship him as God. At that point the Jews will realize that they have been deceived by this man, that he is not the Messiah. And those who are sharp in the scriptures will flee to Jordan to the Rock City of Petra where God will preserve them for three and a half years. Those that do not flee will be put under terrible persecution by this leader who comes to Jerusalem at this point.

So, it is interesting that if you talk to an Orthodox Jew today about his messiah he'll tell you that the Messiah is not the Son of God; he is a man. He'll be like Moses that God will raise up from among the people, but not the Son of God, just a man like Moses. And that's who they are looking for today to come and to lead them out of this current dilemma.

[Now, God declares] if a prophet presumes to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die. And if you say in your heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken? [Very easy] if a prophet prophesies something in the name of the LORD, and it doesn't come to pass, he's a false prophet ( Deuteronomy 18:20-22 ).

It's very easy to point out a false prophet. The simple rule to see if what he says comes to pass. If it doesn't come to pass then just mark him as a false prophet. Now there are some people who are so gullible that even though the Jehovah's Witnesses have prophesied about three or four different times when the Lord was gonna come and He hasn't come on any of those prophesied dates, yet they still don't have enough sense to realize that these leaders in New York are false prophets.

Now, my heart goes out to these people who come around door to door. These people are very sincere. I wish that, many times, Christians were as dedicated as they are. They are sincere in their dedication to God, but they have been deceived by their leaders in New York. And I cannot help but believe that it is deliberate deception by their leaders in New York, because of their-the mistranslations of the scriptures could not just be accidental. They are deliberate mistranslations of the scriptures by which they are deceiving these people. And thus, my heart goes out to the people who come door to door because of the fact that they've been deceived. Oh, that they would see the truth that is in Christ Jesus and they would come to know the grace of God and the love of God through Jesus Christ our Lord and would come to trust in Jesus for their salvation rather than their works for Jehovah.

Now, Peter gives us another sign of the false prophet. In second Peter, chapter two warning there of false prophets said, "Who through feigned words will seek to make merchandise of you"( 2 Peter 2:3 ). So whenever any man seeks to make merchandise of you, seeks through gimmicks to encourage you to give through pressure, through various antics, gets on big money kicks; he's a false prophet. Who uses computerized typewriters for their mailing lists so that it appears like the letter has been written personally to you with statements such as, "I have been thinking about you lately, wondering how you are", those are feigned words and the purpose is to make merchandise of you. And I have no hesitation declaring they are false prophets according to the word of God. You say, "Oh, but they've done so much good".

I may have a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill and someone may come to me and say, "Chuck, my family needs help. I lost my job, we don't have any money and my children are hungry". So I give him this counterfeit twenty-dollar bill, not knowing that it's counterfeit. So he goes down to the store and he uses the twenty-dollar bill to buy some hamburger and some bread and some milk and he feeds his hungry children. And the merchant, the store, who takes his twenty-dollar bill for the merchandise, goes down to the electric company and he pays his electric bill with the twenty-dollar bill.

And the electric company gives that twenty-dollar bill in change to you when you pay your electric bill. And you in turn use that twenty-dollar bill to go down and buy yourself a new sweater. And that merchant gives the twenty-dollar bill to the gas company to pay his gas bill. And the gas company goes to the bank to deposit the twenty-dollar bill and the teller says, "I'm sorry. I can't take this twenty-dollar bill; it's counterfeit." Wait a minute, that bill has done a lot of good. It's fed the poor, it's paid the light and gas bill, and it's bought a new sweater. Look at how much good it's done. "What do you mean you can't take it, it's counterfeit?" Well, it's counterfeit.

The argument that it is done so much good is not a valid argument. Now this is the argument that a lot of people use for false prophets or even false religious systems. But look at how much good they've done; they're counterfeit. When it comes to the final deposit, not gonna make it. So, God is warning against the false prophets. God had very little-well, really God doesn't appreciate it when a person comes along and says, "Thus saith the Lord" and he speaks out of his own heart and really isn't saying God's word.

I don't know. You know I think that the days of computerized typewriters were a great curse to the church. I've gotten more computerized letters from these. Someone's put me on the mailing list, I don't know who it was. But you got my name in the pot and these guys buy mailing lists from each other. And if they have a mailing list that they get a certain amount of percentage of returns then they sell your name. If you write in a check then your name is sold at a premium price to the others.

And I got this letter the other day, some guy named Popoff. And here's a personal prophecy in the thing, "Thus saith the Lord, I am pleased with thee and I am going to bless thee" you know, and just share the blessing kind of a thing, you know, and all of this stuff.

Well, I wrote him back a letter and I said, "Thus saith the Lord, I am against the false prophets that prophesy in my name saying 'Thus saith the Lord' when I have not spoken" and I knew that the Lord was saying it because I was just quoting him right out of the word. But then I added my own little appendage, I didn't put this under the 'thus saith the Lord'. But I put under my own little appendage "thy name has been Popoff but even as the name of Saul was changed to Paul so your name is to be changed from Popoff to Rip-off". No doubt my name will be deleted from his mailing list shortly.

But there are a lot of rip-off artists who are going around disguising themselves as prophets of God. And as I said, God doesn't appreciate a person speaking for him when he hasn't spoken. And thus the false prophets in those days were to be put to death.

"





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Copyright © 2014, Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, Ca.

Bibliographical Information
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "Chuck Smith Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/csc/deuteronomy-18.html. 2014.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Prophets 18:9-22

The context of this section is significant, as usual. Deuteronomy 18:1-8 deal with people who ministered to Yahweh in various ways for the people, and Deuteronomy 18:15-22 concern the delivery of God’s revelations to His people. Deuteronomy 18:9-14 contrast illegitimate types of religious personnel and practices with the legitimate kinds Moses dealt with in the surrounding sections.

"Of the three major institutions of ancient Israelite social and religious life-royalty, the priesthood, and prophetism-only the last was charismatic and nonsuccessive. Prophets were men and women raised up individually by God and called and empowered by him to communicate his purposes to the theocratic community. Frequently this ministry would take the form of a word of instruction or even rebuke to the leaders of the people as well as messages addressed to the present and future promises of covenant accomplishment and fulfillment." [Note: Merrill, Deuteronomy, p. 270.]

It is helpful to think of the prophets as preachers and worship leaders, and the priests as teachers.

Child burning (Deuteronomy 18:10) may have had some connection with determining or discovering the future course of events (cf. 2 Kings 3:26-27). However it was probably a separate type of abominable practice from divination. [Note: Miller, p. 151.] The pagans used various phenomena as instruments to divine (foretell) the future. These devices included the patterns of birds as they flew, the arrangement of the organs of an animal offered as a sacrifice, and the relationship of the heavenly bodies to one another. Witchcraft involved dealing with Satan and his demons to obtain desired ends. Omens were signs of coming events or conditions. Sorcerers cast spells. Mediums and spiritists called up the dead (cf. 1 Samuel 28:8-14). The precise distinction between some of the terms in Deuteronomy 18:10-11 is not certain. [Note: Craigie, The Book . . ., p. 260; Merrill, Deuteronomy, pp. 271-72.]

"While the New Testament use of Deuteronomy is pervasive (all but chapters 3, 12, 15, 16, 20, 26, 34 being cited at least once), it is striking that four passages stand out as being the clear centers of focus: Deuteronomy 6:4-5; Deuteronomy 18:15-19; Deuteronomy 21:22-23; and Deuteronomy 30:11-14." [Note: Idem, "Deuteronomy . . .," p. 23.]

This writer observed that of the 42 New Testament citations of this passage, 24 of them appear in John’s Gospel. [Note: Ibid., p. 27.]

In Deuteronomy 18:15-19, God promised that when Moses was dead He would provide guidance for the nation through other prophets like Moses, whom He would raise up as her needs demanded. Consequently the people should not try to discover knowledge of the future on their own, as idolatrous pagans did. Commonly they did this through various practices, all of which involved contact with the spirit world (Deuteronomy 18:10-11).

"Abraham is called a prophet in Genesis 20:7, and the existence of prophets is presupposed in the Pentateuch (Exodus 7:1; Numbers 11:29; Numbers 12:6; Deuteronomy 13:2-3). The present text, however, is the first to discuss the office of the prophet.

"The historical basis for the office is Israel’s request for a mediator at Sinai (Exodus 19:16-19; Exodus 20:19-21). Fearing to stand in God’s presence, the people asked Moses to go before the Lord and return God’s words to them. Thus the prophet was to be ’like Moses.’ This suggests that the office of the prophet was to play an important role in the further history of God’s dealings with Israel. Indeed, a major section of the OT canon is devoted to the work of the prophets (Isaiah-Malachi). The prophet was to be God’s mouthpiece to the people." [Note: Sailhamer, p. 456. Cf. Exodus 7:1.]

Was Moses predicting one coming prophet, many prophets, or both?

"This order [the prophetic order] is first spoken of in the singular-’a prophet like me’ and ’listen to him’-but the continuing context makes it clear that the term is being used in a collective sense to refer to prophetism as an institution (cf. ’a prophet’ and ’that prophet’ in Deuteronomy 18:20; Deuteronomy 18:22). There is nonetheless a lingering importance to the singular ’prophet,’ for in late Jewish and New Testament exegesis there was the expectation of an incomparable eschatological prophet who would be either a messianic figure or the announcer of the Messiah (cf. John 1:21; John 1:25; Acts 3:22; Acts 7:37). The ambiguity of the individual and collective being expressed in the grammatical singular is a common Old Testament device employed to afford multiple meanings or applications to prophetic texts. [Footnote 30:] This is seen most clearly in the singularity and plurality of the Servant in the ’Servant Songs’ of Isaiah (Isaiah 42:1-4; Isaiah 49:1-6; Isaiah 50:4-9; Isaiah 52:13 to Isaiah 53:12)." [Note: Merrill, "Deuteronomy . . .," p. 28. See H. Wheeler Robinson, Corporate Personality in Ancient Israel (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1964), pp. 15-17; Kline, "Deuteronomy," p. 181; R. P. Carroll, "The Elijah-Elisha Sagas: Some Remarks on Prophetic Succession in Ancient Israel," Vetus Testamentum 19:4 (October 1969):408-14; and Johnson, pp. 186-87.]

Another example is the word "seed," which can have a singular or plural referent.

Jesus Christ was one of the prophets that God raised up as promised here (Deuteronomy 18:15; Matthew 17:5; John 4:25; John 5:45-47; John 12:48-50; Acts 3:22-23; Acts 7:37).

"When finally Christ appeared upon earth, the promise was fulfilled in its highest and fullest sense. It is, therefore, a Messianic promise." [Note: Young, p. 35.]

"Jesus was like Moses in numerous ways. He was spared in infancy (Exodus 2; Matthew 2:13-23); He renounced a royal court (Hebrews 11:24-27; Philippians 2:5-8); had compassion for the people (Numbers 27:17; Matthew 9:36); made intercession (Deuteronomy 9:18; Hebrews 7:25); spoke with God face to face (Exodus 34:29-30; 2 Corinthians 3:7); and was the mediator of a covenant (Deuteronomy 29:1; Hebrews 8:6-7). The greatest revelation in the Old Testament era came through Moses. This revelation was only surpassed in the coming of Christ, who not only revealed God’s message but provided salvation through His death." [Note: Schultz, p. 64. See also David Moessner, "Luke 9:1-50: Luke’s Preview of the Journey of the Prophet Like Moses of Deuteronomy," Journal of Biblical Literature 102:4 (December 1983):575-605.]

Another important comparison is that both Moses and Jesus laid the foundation for the kingdom of God on earth and called on the Jewish people to prepare for it (cf. Matthew 4:17; Mark 1:15; Acts 3:22; Acts 7:37).

Jesus was superior to Moses in at least seven ways. He provided salvation through His death. He arose from the dead. He ascended into heaven. He continued to give revelation from God after His death (through the New Testament prophets). He presently intercedes for His own. He will return for us. And He will literally bring us into God’s presence.

God told His people how to distinguish true prophets from impostors because people could step forward in Israel with claims to be prophets with messages from God (Deuteronomy 18:20-22). The people could identify false prophets when their prophecies failed to materialize (Deuteronomy 18:22). If someone claimed to be a prophet but sought to lead the people away from the law, the people should recognize that God had not sent him (Deuteronomy 18:22; cf. Deuteronomy 13:1-5). During a prophet’s ministry it would become clear whether he was a false or true representative of Yahweh (cf. Matthew 7:15-16). [Note: See Young, pp. 20-37, for an exposition of this entire section (18:9-22).]

People who claimed to be prophets but distorted or misrepresented the Word of God were subject to execution in Israel. This shows the importance of presenting the Word of God accurately. Let preachers and Bible teachers take note!

PRIESTS AND PROPHETS IN ISRAEL

PriestsProphets
Their threefold task:Offer sacrifices for the peopleTeach God’s Word to the peopleLead the people in cultic worshipTheir threefold task:Receive messages from GodDeliver messages to the peopleLead them in heartfelt worship
Teachers of the peopleAppealed to the mindGoal: understanding by the peoplePreachers to the peopleAppealed to the emotions and willGoal: obedience by the people
Inherited their ministryWere called by God to their ministry
Didn’t foretell the futureForetold the future occasionally
Lived in assigned towns ideallyLived anywhere
Were very numerousWere not as numerous
Came from one tribe and familyCame from any tribe or family
Were males onlyWere males and females
Later were divided by "courses"Later lived in "schools"
Were gifts from God to the peopleWere gifts from God to the people

How does this chapter fit into the civil legislation of Israel? Priests, Levites, and prophets were important civil as well as religious leaders in the theocracy. They represented the people before Israel’s heavenly King and served as mediators between the King and the people.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliographical Information
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/deuteronomy-18.html. 2012.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord,.... Says he comes from God, is sent by him, and has a commission from him to say so:

if the thing follow not, nor come to pass; as the prophecy of Hananiah, Jeremiah 28:3 that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken; or otherwise it would have come to pass, unless when a condition is either expressed or implied, as the repentance or disobedience of a people; see Jeremiah 18:7

but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously; in a bold and daring manner, with great impiety and impudence, out of his own head and heart, being a mere device and imagination of his own, which, not having the fear of God, he delivered as coming from the Lord:

thou shall not be afraid of him; not only to reprove him for his wickedness, but also to punish him for it; showing no regard to the high character he assumes, nor to the great pretensions he makes to sanctity, knowledge, and familiarity with God.

Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/deuteronomy-18.html. 1999.

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary on the Bible

The Great Prophet; False Prophets. 1451.

      15 The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;   16 According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.   17 And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.   18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.   19 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.   20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.   21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?   22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

      Here is, I. The promise of the great prophet, with a command to receive him, and hearken to him. Now,

      1. Some think it is the promise of a succession of prophets, that should for many ages be kept up in Israel. Besides the priests and Levites, their ordinary ministers, whose office it was to teach Jacob God's law, they should have prophets, extraordinary ministers, to reprove them for their faults, remind them of their duty, and foretel things to come, judgments for warning and deliverances for their comfort. Having these prophets, (1.) They need not use divinations, nor consult with familiar spirits, for they might enquire of God's prophets even concerning their private affairs, as Saul did when he was in quest of his father's asses, 1 Samuel 9:6. (2.) They could not miss the way of their duty through ignorance or mistake, nor differ in their opinions about it, having prophets among them, whom, in every difficult doubtful case, they might advise with and appeal to. These prophets were like unto Moses in some respects, though far inferior to him, Deuteronomy 34:10.

      2. Whether a succession of prophets be included in this promise or not, we are sure that it is primarily intended as a promise of Christ, and it is the clearest promise of him that is in all the law of Moses. It is expressly applied to our Lord Jesus as the Messiah promised (Acts 3:22; Acts 7:37), and the people had an eye to this promise when they said concerning him, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world (John 6:14); and it was his Spirit that spoke in all the other prophets, 1 Peter 1:11. Observe,

      (1.) What it is that is here promised concerning Christ. What God promised Moses at Mount Sinai (which he relates, Deuteronomy 18:18; Deuteronomy 18:18), he promised the people (Deuteronomy 18:15; Deuteronomy 18:15) in God's name. [1.] That there should come a prophet, great above all the prophets, by whom God would make known himself and his will to the children of men more fully and clearly than ever he had done before. He is the light of the world, as prophecy was of the Jewish church, John 8:12. He is the Word, by whom God speaks to us, John 1:1; Hebrews 1:2. [2.] That God would raise him up from the midst of them. In his birth he should be one of that nation, should live among them and be sent to them. In his resurrection he should be raised up at Jerusalem, and thence his doctrine should go forth to all the world: thus God, having raised up his Son Christ Jesus, sent him to bless us. [3.] That he should be like unto Moses, only as much above him as the other prophets came short of him. Moses was such a prophet as was a law-giver to Israel and their deliverer out of Egypt, and so was Christ: he not only teaches, but rules and saves. Moses was the founder of a new dispensation by signs and wonders and mighty deeds, and so was Christ, by which he proved himself a teacher come from God. Was Moses faithful? So was Christ; Moses as a servant, but Christ as a Son. [4.] That God would put his words in his mouth, Deuteronomy 18:18; Deuteronomy 18:18. What messages God had to send to the children of men he would send them by him, and give him full instructions what to say and do as a prophet. Hence our Saviour says, My doctrine is not mine originally, but his that sent me,John 7:16. So that this great promise is performed; this Prophet has come, even Jesus; it is he that should come, and we are to look for no other.

      (2.) The agreeableness of this designed dispensation to the people's avowed choice and desire at Mount Sinai, Deuteronomy 18:16; Deuteronomy 18:17. There God had spoken to them in thunder and lightning, out of the midst of the fire and thick darkness. Every word made their ears tingle and their hearts tremble, so that the whole congregation was ready to die with fear. In this fright, they begged hard that God would not speak to them in this manner any more (they could not bear it, it would overwhelm and distract them), but that he would speak to them by men like themselves, by Moses now, and afterwards by other prophets like unto him. "Well," says God, "it shall be so; they shall be spoken to by men, whose terrors shall not make them afraid;" and, to crown the favour beyond what they were able to ask or think, in the fulness of time the Word itself was made flesh, and they saw his glory as of the only-begotten of the Father, not, as at Mount Sinai, full of majesty and terror, but full of grace and truth,John 1:14. Thus, in answer to the request of those who were struck with amazement by the law, God promised the incarnation of his Son, though we may suppose it far from the thoughts of those that made that request.

      (3.) A charge and command given to all people to hear and believe, hear and obey, this great prophet here promised: Unto him you shall hearken (Deuteronomy 18:15; Deuteronomy 18:15); and whoever will not hearken to him shall be surely and severely reckoned with for his contempt (Deuteronomy 18:19; Deuteronomy 18:19): I will require it of him. God himself applied this to our Lord Jesus in the voice that came out of the excellent glory,Matthew 17:5, Hear you him, that is, this is he concerning whom it was said by Moses of old, Unto him you shall hearken; and Moses and Elias then stood by and assented to it. The sentence here passed on those that hearken not to this prophet is repeated and ratified in the New Testament. He that believeth not the Son, the wrath of God abideth on him,John 3:36. And how shall we escape if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven?Hebrews 12:25. The Chaldee paraphrase here reads it, My Word shall require it of him, which can be no other than a divine person, Christ the eternal Word, to whom the Father has committed all judgement, and by whom he will at the last day judge the world. Whoever turns a deaf ear to Jesus Christ shall find that it is at his peril; the same that is the prophet is to be his judge, John 12:48.

      II. Here is a caution against false prophets, 1. By way of threatening against the pretenders themselves, Deuteronomy 18:20; Deuteronomy 18:20. Whoever sets up for a prophet, and produces either a commission from the true God, shall be deemed and adjudged guilty of high treason against the crown and dignity of the King of kings, and that traitor shall be put to death (Deuteronomy 18:20; Deuteronomy 18:20), namely, by the judgment of the great sanhedrim, which, in process of time, sat at Jerusalem; and therefore our Saviour says that a prophet could not perish but at Jerusalem, and lays the blood of the prophets at Jerusalem's door (Luke 13:33; Luke 13:34), whom therefore God himself would punish; yet there false prophets were supported. 2. By way of direction to the people, that they might not be imposed upon by pretenders, of which there were many, as appears, Jeremiah 23:25; Ezekiel 13:6; 1 Kings 22:6. It is a very proper question which they are supposed to ask, Deuteronomy 18:21; Deuteronomy 18:21. Since it is so great a duty to hearken to the true prophets, and yet there is so much danger of being misled by false prophets, how shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken? By what marks may we discover a cheat? Note, It highly concerns us to have a right touchstone wherewith to try the word we hear, that we may know what that word is which the Lord has not spoken. Whatever is directly repugnant to sense, to the light and law of nature, and to the plain meaning of the written word, we may be sure is not that which the Lord has spoken; nor that which gives countenance and encouragement to sin, or has a manifest tendency to the destruction of piety or charity: far be it from God that he should contradict himself. The rule here given in answer to this enquiry was adapted chiefly to that state, Deuteronomy 18:22; Deuteronomy 18:22. If there was any cause to suspect the sincerity of a prophet, let them observe that if he gave them any sign, or foretold something to come, and the event was not according to his prediction, they might be sure he was not sent of God. This does not refer so much to the foretelling of mercies and judgments (though as to these, and the difference between the predictions of mercies and judgments, there is a rule of discerning between truth and falsehood laid down by the prophet, Jeremiah 28:8; Jeremiah 28:9), but rather to the giving of signs on purpose to confirm their mission. Though the sign did come to pass, yet this would not serve to prove their mission if they called them to serve other gods; this point had been already settled, Deuteronomy 13:1-3. But, if the sign did not come to pass, this would serve to disprove their mission. "When Moses cast his rod upon the ground (it is bishop Patrick's explanation of this), and said it would become a serpent, if it had not accordingly been turned into a serpent, Moses had been a false prophet: if, when Elijah called for fire from heaven to consume the sacrifice, none had come, he had been no better than the prophets of Baal." Samuel's mission was proved by this, that God let none of his words fall to the ground,1 Samuel 3:19; 1 Samuel 3:20. And by the miracles Christ wrought, especially by that great sign he gave of his resurrection the third day, which came to pass as he foretold, it appeared that he was a teacher come from God. Lastly, They are directed not to be afraid of a false prophet; that is, not to be afraid of the judgments such a one might denounce to amuse people and strike terror upon them; nor to be afraid of executing the law upon him when, upon a strict and impartial scrutiny, it appeared that he was a false prophet. This command not to fear a false prophet implies that a true prophet, who proved his commission by clear and undeniable proofs, was to be feared, and it was at their peril if they offered him any violence or put any slight upon him.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliographical Information
Henry, Matthew. "Complete Commentary on Deuteronomy 18:22". "Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mhm/deuteronomy-18.html. 1706.

Sours: https://www.studylight.org/commentary/deuteronomy/18-22.html

Deuteronomy 18:22

Deuteronomy 18:22

When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord
Says he comes from God, is sent by him, and has a commission from him to say so:

if the thing follow not, nor come to pass;
as the prophecy of Hananiah, ( Jeremiah 28:3 ) that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken; or otherwise it would have come to pass, unless when a condition is either expressed or implied, as the repentance or disobedience of a people; see ( Jeremiah 18:7-10 )

but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously;
in a bold and daring manner, with great impiety and impudence, out of his own head and heart, being a mere device and imagination of his own, which, not having the fear of God, he delivered as coming from the Lord:

thou shall not be afraid of him;
not only to reprove him for his wickedness, but also to punish him for it; showing no regard to the high character he assumes, nor to the great pretensions he makes to sanctity, knowledge, and familiarity with God.

Sours: https://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/gills-exposition-of-the-bible/deuteronomy-18-22.html
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Deuteronomy 18:21–22

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21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word that the Lord has not spoken?’— 22 owhen a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; nthe prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.

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Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — The New International Version (NIV)

21 You may say to yourselves, “How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the Lord?” 22 If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously, so do not be alarmed.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — King James Version (KJV 1900)

21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the Lord hath not spoken? 22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — New Living Translation (NLT)

21 “But you may wonder, ‘How will we know whether or not a prophecy is from the Lord?’ 22 If the prophet speaks in the Lord’s name but his prediction does not happen or come true, you will know that the Lord did not give that message. That prophet has spoken without my authority and need not be feared.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — The New King James Version (NKJV)

21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’—22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — New Century Version (NCV)

21 You might be thinking, “How can we know if a message is not from the Lord?” 22 If what a prophet says in the name of the Lord does not happen, it is not the Lord’s message. That prophet was speaking his own ideas. Don’t be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — American Standard Version (ASV 1901)

21 And if thou say in thy heart, How shall we know the word which Jehovah hath not spoken? 22 when a prophet speaketh in the name of Jehovah, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which Jehovah hath not spoken: the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously, thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — 1890 Darby Bible (DARBY)

21 And if thou say in thy heart, How shall we know the word that Jehovah hath not spoken? 22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of Jehovah, and the thing followeth not, nor cometh to pass, that is the word which Jehovah hath not spoken; the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: be not afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

21 You may be wondering, “How can we recognize that the Lord didn’t speak this message?” 22 If a prophet speaks in the Lord’s name and what he says doesn’t happen or come true, then it didn’t come from the Lord. That prophet has spoken on his own authority. Never be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — The Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

21 You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the Lord has not spoken?’ 22 When a prophet speaks in the Lord’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

21 You may say to yourself, “How can we recognize a word that the Lord has not spoken?” 22 If a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord but the thing does not take place or prove true, it is a word that the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; do not be frightened by it.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — The Lexham English Bible (LEB)

21 And if you say to yourself, ‘How can we know the word that Yahweh has not spoken it?’ 22 Whenever what the prophet spoke in the name of Yahweh, the thing does not take place and does not come about, that is the thing that Yahweh has not spoken it. Presumptuously the prophet spoke it; you shall not fear him.”

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — New International Reader’s Version (NIrV)

21 You will say to yourselves, “How can we know when a message hasn’t been spoken by the Lord?” 22 Sometimes a prophet will announce something in the name of the Lord. And it won’t take place or come true. Then that’s a message the Lord hasn’t told him to speak. That prophet has dared to speak on his own authority. So don’t be afraid of him or what he says.

Deuteronomy 18:21–22 — New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (NASB95)

21 “You may say in your heart, ‘How will we know the wordwhich the Lord has not spoken?’

22 “When a prophetspeaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thingwhich the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.


A service of Faithlife / Logos Bible Software

Sours: https://biblia.com/bible/esv/deuteronomy/18/21-22
Deuteronomy 18:18 prophet like Moses

EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(22) If the thing follow not, nor come to pass.—This is one form of our Lord’s test for all prophets, “By their fruits (i.e., the ‘results,’ of their teaching, not its first impressions) ye shall know them.”

Benson Commentary

Deuteronomy 18:22. If the thing follow not — Which he gives as a sign of the truth of his prophecy. That is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken — The falsehood of his prediction shows him to be a false prophet. He hath spoken it presumptuously — Impudently ascribing his own vain and lying fancies to the God of truth. For though the mere fulfilling of a sign, or working of a bare miracle, was not to be considered as sufficient of itself to establish a false and wicked doctrine, as is stated Deuteronomy 13:1-3; yet, on the other hand, a man that pretended to work a miracle, or predict a future event, in confirmation of a message said to be received from Jehovah, or from some other god, and who failed in the performance of the miracle, or the thing foretold not coming to pass, evidently proved himself to be an impostor. Thou shalt not be afraid of him — That is, of his predictions or threatenings, so as to be deterred thereby from doing thy duty in bringing him to deserved punishment.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

18:15-22 It is here promised concerning Christ, that there should come a Prophet, great above all the prophets; by whom God would make known himself and his will to the children of men, more fully and clearly than he had ever done before. He is the Light of the world, Joh 8:12. He is the World by whom God speaks to us, Joh 1:1; Heb 1:2. In his birth he should be one of their nation. In his resurrection he should be raised up at Jerusalem, and from thence his doctrine should go forth to all the world. Thus God, having raised up his Son Christ Jesus, sent him to bless us. He should be like unto Moses, only above him. This prophet is come, even JESUS; and is He that should come, and we are to look for no other. The view of God which he gives, will not terrify or overwhelm, but encourages us. He speaks with fatherly affection and Divine authority united. Whoever refuses to listen to Jesus Christ, shall find it is at his peril; the same that is the Prophet is to be his Judge, Joh 12:48. Woe then to those who refuse to hearken to His voice, to accept His salvation, or yield obedience to His sway! But happy they who trust in Him, and obey Him. He will lead them in the paths of safety and peace, until He brings them to the land of perfect light, purity, and happiness. Here is a caution against false prophets. It highly concerns us to have a right touchstone wherewith to try the word we hear, that we may know what that word is which the Lord has not spoken. Whatever is against the plain sense of the written word, or which gives countenance or encouragement to sin, we may be sure is not that which the Lord has spoken.

Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And if thou say in thine heart, How ... - The passage evidently assumes such an occasion for consulting the prophet as was usual among the pagan, e. g., an impending battle or other such crisis (compare 1 Kings 22:11), in which his veracity would soon be put to the test. Failure of a prediction is set forth as a sure note of its being "presumptuous." But from Deuteronomy 13:2ff we see that the fulfillment of a prediction would not decisively accredit him who uttered it: for the prophet or dreamer of dreams who endeavoured on the strength of miracles to seduce to idolatry was to be rejected and punished. Nothing therefore contrary to the revealed truth of God was to be accepted under any circumstances.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

19. whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him—The direful consequences of unbelief in Christ, and disregard of His mission, the Jewish people have been experiencing during eighteen hundred years.

Matthew Poole's Commentary

If the thing follow not; which he gives as a sign of the truth of his prophecy. He means the prediction of some strange and wonderful event, as appears by comparing this with Deu 13:1,2.

The Lord hath not spoken:the falsehood of his prediction shows him to be a false prophet, though the truth and accomplishment of his prediction had not proved him to be a true prophet, as is evident from Deu 13:2,3.

Presumptuously; impudently ascribing his own vain and lying fancies to the God of truth.

Thou shalt not be afraid of him, i.e. of his predictions or threatenings, so as to be scared from doing thy duty in bringing him to deserved punishment.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord,.... Says he comes from God, is sent by him, and has a commission from him to say so:

if the thing follow not, nor come to pass; as the prophecy of Hananiah, Jeremiah 28:3 that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken; or otherwise it would have come to pass, unless when a condition is either expressed or implied, as the repentance or disobedience of a people; see Jeremiah 18:7.

but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously; in a bold and daring manner, with great impiety and impudence, out of his own head and heart, being a mere device and imagination of his own, which, not having the fear of God, he delivered as coming from the Lord:

thou shall not be afraid of him; not only to reprove him for his wickedness, but also to punish him for it; showing no regard to the high character he assumes, nor to the great pretensions he makes to sanctity, knowledge, and familiarity with God.

Geneva Study Bible

When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
Sours: https://biblehub.com/commentaries/deuteronomy/18-22.htm

18 meaning deuteronomy 21 22

EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

18:15-22 It is here promised concerning Christ, that there should come a Prophet, great above all the prophets; by whom God would make known himself and his will to the children of men, more fully and clearly than he had ever done before. He is the Light of the world, Joh 8:12. He is the World by whom God speaks to us, Joh 1:1; Heb 1:2. In his birth he should be one of their nation. In his resurrection he should be raised up at Jerusalem, and from thence his doctrine should go forth to all the world. Thus God, having raised up his Son Christ Jesus, sent him to bless us. He should be like unto Moses, only above him. This prophet is come, even JESUS; and is He that should come, and we are to look for no other. The view of God which he gives, will not terrify or overwhelm, but encourages us. He speaks with fatherly affection and Divine authority united. Whoever refuses to listen to Jesus Christ, shall find it is at his peril; the same that is the Prophet is to be his Judge, Joh 12:48. Woe then to those who refuse to hearken to His voice, to accept His salvation, or yield obedience to His sway! But happy they who trust in Him, and obey Him. He will lead them in the paths of safety and peace, until He brings them to the land of perfect light, purity, and happiness. Here is a caution against false prophets. It highly concerns us to have a right touchstone wherewith to try the word we hear, that we may know what that word is which the Lord has not spoken. Whatever is against the plain sense of the written word, or which gives countenance or encouragement to sin, we may be sure is not that which the Lord has spoken.

Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And if thou say in thine heart, How ... - The passage evidently assumes such an occasion for consulting the prophet as was usual among the pagan, e. g., an impending battle or other such crisis (compare 1 Kings 22:11), in which his veracity would soon be put to the test. Failure of a prediction is set forth as a sure note of its being "presumptuous." But from Deuteronomy 13:2ff we see that the fulfillment of a prediction would not decisively accredit him who uttered it: for the prophet or dreamer of dreams who endeavoured on the strength of miracles to seduce to idolatry was to be rejected and punished. Nothing therefore contrary to the revealed truth of God was to be accepted under any circumstances.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

19. whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him—The direful consequences of unbelief in Christ, and disregard of His mission, the Jewish people have been experiencing during eighteen hundred years.

Matthew Poole's Commentary

No text from Poole on this verse.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And if thou say in thine heart, &c. Such a thought arises in the mind, and it appears to be a difficulty, and a query is made upon it:

how shall we know the word which the Lord hath not spoken? What marks, signs, and criterions are those by which it may be known that it is not a word that comes from the Lord?

Geneva Study Bible

And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?
Sours: https://biblehub.com/commentaries/deuteronomy/18-21.htm
Deuteronomy 18:18 prophet like Moses

Deuteronomy 18 – Priests and Prophets

A. The provision for priests and Levites.

1. (1-2) The inheritance of the Levites.

The priests, the Levites; all the tribe of Levi; shall have no part nor inheritance with Israel; they shall eat the offerings of the LORD made by fire, and His portion. Therefore they shall have no inheritance among their brethren; the LORD is their inheritance, as He said to them.

a. The priests, the Levites; all the tribe of Levi; shall have no part nor inheritance with Israel: The Levites – those of the tribe of Levi, who were the paid ministers for the nation of Israel – shall have no inheritance among their brethren. In other words, they were not to have allotted portions of land for their own possession.

b. They shall eat the offerings of the LORD made by fire, and His portion: Instead, the Levites were to be supported by the gifts and offerings of God’s people. The Levites were permitted to receive at least a portion of most animals sacrificed to the LORD, and thus were provided with meat for food.

2. (3-5) The specific portions of the sacrificial animal set apart to the Levites.

And this shall be the priest’s due from the people, from those who offer a sacrifice, whether it is bull or sheep: they shall give to the priest the shoulder, the cheeks, and the stomach. The firstfruits of your grain and your new wine and your oil, and the first of the fleece of your sheep, you shall give him. For the LORD your God has chosen him out of all your tribes to stand to minister in the name of the LORD, him and his sons forever.

a. And this shall be the priest’s due from the people, from those who offer a sacrifice: From a typical sacrifice, the priests received the shoulder, the cheeks, and the stomach. The rest of the animal would either be burnt before the LORD or returned to the one bringing the sacrifice, so he could enjoy his own fellowship meal with the LORD.

b. Your grain and your new wine and your oil and the first of the fleece of your sheep: The priests also received these offerings of firstfruits from the people.

3. (6-8) All the Levites had equal rights to the offerings.

So if a Levite comes from any of your gates, from where he dwells among all Israel, and comes with all the desire of his mind to the place which the LORD chooses, then he may serve in the name of the LORD his God as all his brethren the Levites do, who stand there before the LORD. They shall have equal portions to eat, besides what comes from the sale of his inheritance.

B. Prescriptions for prophets.

1. (9-11) The command to reject all the occult practices of the Canaanites.

When you come into the land which the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.

a. You shall not learn: God knows that many people have a natural curiosity regarding the occult, and that curiosity often leads them to gain knowledge God commands them to leave alone.

b. Anyone who makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire: This refers to the debased worship of the Canaanite god Molech, to whom children were sacrificed by burning.

c. Or one who practices witchcraft: The word witchcraft here seems to be a broad word, describing a variety of occult activities. Basically, anything that makes contact with the demonic or dark spiritual world.

i. Thompson on practices witchcraft: “A variety of devices were in use in various lands, but all were designed to discern the will of the gods. The same word in Ezekiel 21:21 refers to the practice of whirling arrows in a quiver and deciding the answer to the question by the first arrow thrown out.”

ii. There is a modern revival of witchcraft, or Wicca, and many people claim that “white” witchcraft (as opposed to “black” witchcraft) is a use of spiritual powers for good, as well as being a more feminist, ecology-friendly understanding of god and spirituality. But whether a witch claims to be “white” or “black,” they are still using occultic powers.

iii. Some claim that white, or “right hand path” witches are in the majority today. They worship elements and nature deities, the “Mother Goddess,” Gaia, Ashtarte, Isis, Osiris, and a host of other names for the Goddess. Characteristically they are active in “Saving the earth” activities, due to the fact that they are pantheists (those who believe the divine life force is in everything: ever see the bumper sticker picturing a globe bearing the legend “Love Your Mother”?). They deny the existence of Satan, calling him an invention of the Christian Church. They claim to use their powers (and they do have powers) for good: sending healing energies to the sick, affirmations which bring prosperity, and loudly proclaiming their creed, “As it harm none, do as thou wilt.” It’s ironic how their creed sounds so similar to that of a man who referred to himself as “The Beast, 666” – Satanist Aleister Crowley, who wrote, “Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.”

iv. Of course, there are black, or “left hand path,” witches. These are witches who originally were into white witchcraft and got hungry for more power. As their teachers noticed this power lust, they were taken aside and told, “You are now ready to go after the higher power, and there is only one way to achieve this power. Satan is its source.” Thus, comes the white witch’s abrupt surprise: either give up your witchly ambitions, or go for the higher power. The bottom line is that the power behind all kinds of witchcraft is Satan. He is the author of all deception, and all rebellion. To practice or approve of witchcraft is to serve Satan.

v. And this Satanic power kills. Ronald Baker was a 21-year-old student at UCLA, and was found stabbed to death at the mouth of a railroad tunnel in the rocky hills above Chatsworth Park. Police first thought the mangled body was of a transient hit by a train; but they then found an occult connection in Baker’s death. The killing took place on the night of the summer solstice, and the tunnel near the park is known to police as a gathering place for devotees of the occult. Baker was involved with Wicca (described as “benevolent witchcraft”), often wore a pentagram pendant, and belonged to a UCLA metaphysical group known as Mystic Circle (from a July 1990 news article).

vi. Some who call themselves Christians are buying into this deception. Take the case of a woman who calls herself Starhawk, who is a practitioner of Wicca – a witch. She first learned about Wicca at an anthropology course at UCLA when she was 17, and she took the name Starhawk in 1975 when it came to her in a dream. After a master’s degree in psychology, she began teaching at universities. She is a licensed minister of the Covenant of the Goddess and performs marriages and other ceremonies. She views the earth as a sensitive, living organism which she calls “the Goddess.” Mary Elizabeth Moore of the Claremont School of Theology said of Starhawk: “Many Christians, especially women and others who are trying to reclaim creation-centered theology, find her work to be compatible with, or at least adaptable to, Christian teaching.” Starhawk was scheduled to speak at the First Christian Church in Santa Monica on a Friday evening (from a June, 1993 news article).

d. Or a soothsayer: This has reference to astrological-type divination, predicting the future or seeking guidance through the stars, planets, clouds, or weather.

i. Kalland says that the soothsayer: “Is… predicting the future by means of physical signs (astrology).” Thompson points out “it seems to refer to divination by reading clouds, or from a root which occurs in Arabic meaning ‘to make unusual noises’, ‘croon’, ‘hum’, in which case it may refer to some kind of incantation.”

ii. Even though Astrology is unscientific – it is based on the supposition that the sun circles the earth, and the positions of the planets and stars have shifted, and are never consistently uniform; therefore, the houses of the Zodiac have shifted – despite all that, thirty-two million Americans believe in Astrology! There are 10,000 full time and 200,000 part time astrologers in America. Three out of four American newspapers carry a horoscope column.

iii. So where does the real “power” of astrology come from? From what most astrologers call “intuition” – but is really psychic knowledge and ability. Astrology is idolatry and stems from the demonic. It leads people away from trusting in God and encourages them to put trust in what God created. And isn’t that Satan’s goal: To replace confidence in God with a dependence on anything else?

iv. Therefore, the Bible clearly forbids us to participate in astrology, which includes reading your horoscope, studying your sign, and computing a natal chart. It is an occult art, meaning that it involves “knowledge of hidden things”, seeking spiritual knowledge apart from God’s revelation. It is a foundational art, which means it is the building block for all occultists. It is studied by witches and magicians alike. Every Christian should renounce any involvement they have ever had with astrology!

e. Or one who interprets omens: The word comes from the root “to hiss” or “to whisper” and refers to psychics and fortune-tellers who use “aids” other than naturally created things to gain knowledge, tell the future, and cast spells.

i. Today, these people are the tarot card readers, crystal ball seers, tea-leaf readers, palm readers, Ouija board users, and the like. A Christian has no business participating or approving of any of these practices, because either they are money-grubbing frauds (at best!), or worse, they gain their knowledge from satanic, demonic, spiritual sources.

ii. This is why it is dangerous for people – especially kids – to break out the Ouija board, or do a little séance, or little “dark” magic tricks. They are tapping into a source of spiritual power that is real – yet evil, and unspeakably dangerous. Many, many people have been ruined on the rocks of “innocent” occult or fortune telling games, and the fact that there is a real power behind those things should make us all the more concerned.

iii. There is a demand for this kind of thing; why else would a homeless man in New York be arrested for stealing skulls from a Brooklyn cemetery and selling them for use in occult ceremonies? A skull can bring as much as $4,000 (from an August, 1991 news article).

iv. It is worth noting that Satan or his demons cannot absolutely know the future; but they can reasonably predict the future based on their superior knowledge of people and circumstances or predict events that they can have a hand in shaping through their own demonic influence.

f. Or a sorcerer: This has reference to those who use drugs or potions to cast spells, gain spiritual knowledge, or enter into altered states of consciousness. Modern drug abuse easily falls into this category, and the use of drugs has a definite occult connection that the drug taker may not want but is exposed to nonetheless.

i. Clarke says of sorcerer: “Those who by means of drugs, herbs, perfumes, and so forth, pretended to bring certain celestial influences to their aid.” Thompson adds, “derived from the root… ‘to cut up’, may denote one who cuts up herbs and brews them for magical purposes (cf. LXX pharmaka, drug). The term is used in Micah 5:12 for some such material as drugs or herbs used superstitiously to produce magical effects.”

g. Or one who conjures up spells: This is literally, “A charmer of charms” and refers to those who cast spells or charms for good or evil upon others with spiritual powers apart from God.

i. It is a glorious thing to bless another in the name of the LORD; or even to pray to God against the evil of another person. But it is always and forever wrong to use demonic, dark, pagan, or occult powers to cast spells or charms.

h. Or a medium: The idea is of someone who “stands between” the physical world and the psychic world; they channel knowledge from the psychic world into the physical world.

i. Thompson notes that the medium: “Spoke from within a person (Leviticus 20:27) with a twittering voice (Isaiah 29:4). Those who practiced this art called up the departed from the realm of the dead, or rather, professed to do so.”

ii. Those who practice such powers are really among us. In May of 1990, after a man died in the City of Industry, his corpse remained at the home of a spirit medium that had convinced his family that he could revive the man. Friday, LA County coroner’s investigators picked up the decomposing body at the home of the family. The unidentified medium apparently gave the corpse back after being unable to revive the deceased.

i. Or a spiritist: Literally, this word refers to the “knowing ones” – those who claim unique occult or psychic knowledge and powers – such as those on the many psychic hotlines that one can pay to call. Again, a Christian has no business participating or approving of any of these practices, because either they are money-grubbing frauds (at best!), or worse, they gain their knowledge from satanic, demonic, spiritual sources.

j. Or one who calls up the dead: This refers to the practice of necromancy, which is the conjuring up or the contacting of the dead.

i. This refers to “One who investigates, looks into, and seeks information from the dead.” (Kalland) This is much on the increase in our culture; “The proportion of adults who say they have been in touch with the dead has risen from 27% to 42% during the past 11 years. Close to 20 million Americans now report mystical experiences.” (McDowell, 1989)

2. (12-14) Why rejection of all these occult actions is commanded.

For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you. You shall be blameless before the LORD your God. For these nations which you will dispossess listened to soothsayers and diviners; but as for you, the LORD your God has not appointed such for you.

a. For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD: God did not take these occult actions lightly then, nor does He now. It is consorting with the power of darkness, and always to be rejected by Christians.

i. Our culture is becoming more and more accepting of these occult themes and practices, while it is becoming more and more intolerant of Biblical Christianity. In 1991, a ninth grade Junior High Student in Dickson, Tennessee, sued the school board because his teacher wouldn’t accept a research paper written on the life of Jesus. Students were allowed to write on topics such as the occult, reincarnation and spiritualism, and the teacher originally only said that the topics must be “decent.” The student was given a zero on her paper when the topic was declared unacceptable (from an August, 1991 news report).

ii. “It may be pertinent to comment that in our own day, when spiritualism, astrology, teacup reading and the like are widely practiced, these injunctions given to ancient Israel have a particular relevance. Not only is it impossible to discover the future by such practices, but the practices themselves are forbidden by God to men who call themselves members of the covenant family.” (Thompson)

b. Because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you: God’s judgment was upon the Canaanites because of these occult practices, and if Israel took up the same occult practices, they could also expect the judgment of God.

i. Yes, the Canaanites were sex-worshippers (in their service of the goddess Ashtaroth); and yes, they were money and success worshippers (in their service of the god Baal). But other peoples given over to sex and greed haven’t been judged as severely. What made the Canaanites particularly ripe for judgment was their occult practices, practices the people of God were strictly forbidden to imitate.

c. You shall be blameless: more than being a general call to a holy walk, this is a solemn warning to keep from any involvement with these detestable practices of the occult. The LORD your God has not appointed such for you!

i. We are to be blameless in regard to such things, even as the Ephesian Christians, who destroyed all things that marked the occult in their lives (Acts 19:19-20). This is why it is dangerous for people to seek or approve of the occult, even if they don’t really believe it – even if they just kind of think it is “cool.”

ii. For example, rock singer Ozzy Osbourne says that his satanic image is all an act. “We wrote a couple of songs about black magic, so what? I hammed it up, but I’m not the devil. I don’t put curses on people.” But in the same interview, Osbourne refers to “the him,” who is a “malevolent voice in his head that transmits destructive and self-loathing messages.” Osbourne said of this voice inside him, “He’s there all the time… I’ve always had a haunted head.” “Innocent” involvement with the occult didn’t protect him. Satan doesn’t really care if you are a true believer in him or not; just as long as he has you.

3. (15-19) The promise of a true Prophet to come.

The LORD your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear, according to all you desired of the LORD your God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, “Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, nor let me see this great fire anymore, lest I die.” And the LORD said to me: “What they have spoken is good. I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. And it shall be that whoever will not hear My words, which He speaks in My name, I will require it of him.”

a. The LORD your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me: Moses, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, promised a prophet to come; a prophet that would first be like me – that is, like Moses.

b. From your midst, from your brethren: Like Moses, this Prophet would be from the midst of Israel. This not only meant that He would be an Israelite, but that He would be a “man of the people” – He would be one of them.

c. Him you shall hear: Like Moses, this Prophet would command the attention of the nation. This means both that Israel should listen to this Prophet, and that they would listen to this Prophet.

d. According to all you desired of the LORD your God in Horeb: Like Moses, this Prophet would be a mediator, representing God to the people, and representing the people before God.

e. Will put My words in His mouth: Like Moses, this Prophet would speak God’s Word.

f. I will require it of him: Like Moses, this Prophet’s message would only be rejected at a great penalty.

g. I will raise up for them a Prophet: People looked for this Prophet in Jesus’ day (John 6:14, 7:40) and some thought that John the Baptist might be this Prophet (John 1:19-21). But the New Testament plainly tells us that Jesus is this Prophet (Acts 3:19-26, Acts 7:37).

4. (20-22) The penalty for a false prophet.

“But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.” And if you say in your heart, “How shall we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?”; when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.

a. But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My name: There are those who would presume to speak a wordin God’s name. Therefore we must always, always, guard against presumption when we say, “The LORD told me.”

i. “The difference was that, whereas the true prophet spoke for God, the false prophet spoke presumptuously, i.e. he blurted out personal opinions for which there was no backing from Yahweh.” (Thompson)

b. Which I have not commanded him to speak: Some may genuinely hear from the LORD, but it is not a word that He has commanded him to speak. Just because God tells us something doesn’t mean we should tell others.

c. Or speaks in the name of other gods: Obviously, those who presumed to “prophecy” in the name of Baal or Ashtoreth, or any number of the other false gods of the Canaanites were false prophets.

d. That prophet shall die: Simply stated, the penalty for false prophets was death. Presumptuous speaking in the name of the LORD, disobedient speaking in the name of the LORD, and speaking in the name of false gods was simply never to be tolerated in Israel.

e. How shall we know: It is easy to tell if a prophet speaks in the name of Baal or Ashtoreth; but how can one know if a prophet speaking in the name of the LORD is speaking presumptuously or disobediently? Simply by their accuracy.

f. If the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken: If a prophet says, “Thus says the LORD,” claiming that something will happen, and it does not happen, then that prophet must be held accountable for that false prophecy – and we are no longer to regard that person as a prophet.

i. Not too long ago there was a great emphasis on the “prophets” in some Christian circles, and many would prophesy that something would happen – and it did not. However, those people excused their false prophesies by saying they were “learning” and “experimenting” and “under grace,” therefore, we should not regard them as false prophets.

ii. While it is true that one may need to learn how to flow in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, no one should say something is from God unless they are assured that it is – and if they are wrong, then their own discernment and ability to hear from God are rightly called into question.

iii. Besides, if prophets were held to this standard under the Old Covenant, are we to have a lesser standard under the New Covenant? Is there more of an outpouring of the Holy Spirit now, or less? Under the New Covenant, are we more intimately guided by God, or less? It is true we are under grace, so we no longer stone false prophets – yet, we shouldn’t respect them or give them the title or position of “prophet” if they are false prophets.

iv. Instead, the New Testament says all prophecy – any time someone says, “The LORD told me” – all prophecy should be judged: Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge (1 Corinthians 14:29; see also 1 John 4:1). It is far better to be humble and say, “I think the LORD may have said to me” instead of being too confident in one’s ability to hear from the LORD.

v. Tom Stipe, in the foreword to Counterfeit Revival, speaks powerfully about the problem of false prophets in the church:

After only a couple of years, the prophets seemed to be speaking to just about everyone on just about everything. Hundreds of… members received the ‘gift’ of prophecy and began plying their trade among both leaders and parishioners. People began carrying around little notebooks filled with predictions that had been delivered to them by the prophets and seers. They flocked to the prophecy conferences that had begun to spring up everywhere. The notebook crowd would rush forward in hopes of being selected to receive more prophecies to add to their prophetic diaries.

Not long after ‘prophecy du jour’ became the primary source of direction, a trail of devastated believers began to line up outside our pastoral counseling offices. Young people promised teen success and stardom through prophecy were left picking up the pieces of their shattered hopes because God had apparently gone back on His promises. Leaders were deluged by angry church members who had received prophecies about the great ministries they would have but had been frustrated by local church leaders who failed to recognize and ‘facilitate’ their ‘new anointing.’

After a steady diet of the prophetic, some people were rapidly becoming biblically illiterate, choosing a ‘dial-a-prophet’ style of Christian living rather than studying God’s Word. Many were left to continually live from one prophetic ‘fix’ to the next, their hope always in danger of failing because God’s voice was so specific in pronouncement, yet so elusive in fulfillment. Possessing a prophet’s phone number was like having a storehouse of treasured guidance. Little clutched notebooks replaced Bibles as the preferred reading material during church services.

vi. We must always guard against letting an emphasis on the “prophetic” overshadow a simple emphasis on God’s Word: The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream; And he who has My word, let him speak My word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat?” says the LORD. (Jeremiah 23:28)

©2018 David Guzik – No distribution beyond personal use without permission

Sours: https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/deuteronomy-18/

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