Deut. 3-4

The Readers’ Digest version of the exodus continues in these two chapters, leading up to the Ten Commandments.  It does read like a stand alone work.  And, I agree with the commentators, it reads like a speech and is well written. I think it more engaging that the similar, more detailed, passages in the Priestly texts.

It captures the history of God being angry and then forgiving the Hebrews over and over.  The passage on idolatry is interesting because it does seem to suggest that what the Muslims say is right.  You are not supposed to make images of anything in heaven or on earth.  Although, there is some wiggle room because it does reference worshiping those things.

15 You saw no form of any kind the day the Lord spoke to you at Horeb out of the fire. Therefore watch yourselves very carefully, 16 so that you do not become corrupt and make for yourselves an idol, an image of any shape, whether formed like a man or a woman, 17 or like any animal on earth or any bird that flies in the air, 18 or like any creature that moves along the ground or any fish in the waters below. 19 And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars—all the heavenly array—do not be enticed into bowing down to them and worshiping things the Lord your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven. 20 But as for you, the Lord took you and brought you out of the iron-smelting furnace, out of Egypt, to be the people of his inheritance, as you now are.

Also, the radical monotheism seems to be in place to me. God is not just the best God, but “There is no other.”  Deut. 4:39. 

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