The Death of Moses

MOSES was soon to die, and he was commanded      to gather the children of Israel together before his death and relate to them all the      journeyings of the Hebrew host since their departure from Egypt, and all the great      transgressions of their fathers, which brought His judgments upon them, and compelled Him      to say that they should not enter the Promised Land. Their fathers had died in the      wilderness, according to the word of the Lord. Their children had grown up, and to them      the promise was to be fulfilled of possessing the land of Canaan. Many of these were small      children when the law was given, and they had no remembrance of the grandeur of the event.      Others were born in the wilderness, and lest they should not realize the necessity of      their obeying the Ten Commandments and all the laws and judgments given to Moses, he was      instructed of God to recapitulate the Ten Commandments, and all the circumstances      connected with the giving of the law.

Moses had written in a book      all the laws and judgments given him of God, and had faithfully recorded all His      instructions given them by the way, and all the miracles which He had performed for them,      and all the murmurings of the children of

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Israel. Moses had also recorded his being      overcome in consequence of their murmurings.

Final      Instruction to Israel

All the people were assembled      before him, and he read the events of their past history out of the book which he had      written. He read also the promises of God to them if they would be obedient, and the      curses which would come upon them if they were disobedient.

Moses told them that, for      their rebellion, the Lord had several times purposed to destroy them, but he had      interceded for them so earnestly that God had graciously spared them. He reminded them of      the miracles which the Lord did unto Pharaoh and all the land of Egypt. He said to them,      “But your eyes have seen all the great acts of the Lord which He did. Therefore shall      ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go      in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it.” Deut. 11:7, 8.

Moses especially warned the      children of Israel against being seduced into idolatry. He earnestly charged them to obey      the commandments of God. If they would prove obedient and love the Lord and serve Him with      their undivided affections, He would give them rain in due season and cause their      vegetation to flourish, and increase their cattle. They should also enjoy especial and      exalted privileges, and should triumph over their enemies.

Moses instructed the children      of Israel in an earnest, impressive manner. He knew that it was his last opportunity to      address them. He then finished writing in a book all the laws, judgments, and statutes      which God had given him, also the various regulations

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respecting sacrificial offerings. He      placed the book in the hands of men in the sacred office and requested that, for safe      keeping, it should be put in the side of the ark, for God’s care was continually upon that      sacred chest. This book of Moses was to be preserved, that the judges of Israel might      refer to it if any case should come up to make it necessary. An erring people often      understand God’s requirements to suit their own case; therefore the book of Moses was      preserved in a most sacred place, for future reference.

Moses closed his last      instructions to the people by a most powerful, prophetic address. It was pathetic and      eloquent. By inspiration of God he blessed separately the tribes of Israel. In his closing      words he dwelt largely upon the majesty of God and the excellency of Israel, which would      ever continue if they would obey God and take hold of His strength.

The      Decease … of Moses

“And Moses went up from      the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against      Jericho. And the Lord shewed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan. And all Naphtali, and      the land of Ephraim, and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah, unto the utmost sea, and the      south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, unto Zoar. And the      Lord said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto      Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes,      but thou shalt not go over thither. So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the      land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. And He buried him in a valley in the land      of Moab, over against Beth-peor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day. And      

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Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his      natural force abated.” Deut. 34:1-7.

It was not the will of God      that anyone should go up with Moses to the top of Pisgah. There he stood, upon a high      prominence on Pisgah’s top, in the presence of God and heavenly angels. After he had      viewed Canaan to his satisfaction, he lay down, like a tired warrior, to rest. Sleep came      upon him, but it was the sleep of death. Angels took his body and buried it in the valley.      The Israelites could never find the place where he was buried. His secret burial was to      prevent the people from sinning against the Lord by committing idolatry over his body.

Satan exulted that he had      succeeded in causing Moses to sin against God. For this transgression Moses came under the      dominion of death. If he had continued faithful, and his life had not been marred with      that one transgression, in failing to give God the glory of bringing water from the rock,      he would have entered the Promised Land ….