St. Irenaeus Ministries
Scripture Studies brought to you by the St. Irenaeus Center.
St. Irenaeus Ministries - a center of orthodox Catholic mission and renewal in Rochester, NY

Moses is very old, and will not cross the Jordan; but the Lord will cross the Jordan and crush the Canaanites, with Joshua leading the people. Every seven years, the Law will be taught to the people by the priests. It will also be taught by elders and public officials. The Lord appears to Moses, warning him that the Israelites will rebel against Him, incurring His wrath. He knew this would happen even before making the agreement with the Israelites. This is not a failure of the Law, but just part of a plan that will be fulfilled by Christ. The Lord tells Moses to teach the Hebrews a song as a reminder of the Law after they have forsaken it. If the Hebrews try to argue that the Lord has not held up His end of the bargain, this song is a rebuttal.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture33.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

The Law of the Lord is not beyond our reach.  It is here, and accessible.  Therefore, we must decide to study it and follow it. We are given the choice of Life or Death, being For or Against the Lord. The New Testament repeats this message in reference to Christ. We have the freedom to choose either path, and while we live God's mercy beckons us to turn to the path of Life.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture32.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Moses expresses concern that despite knowing God's power, the Hebrews still do not have a mind for obedience.  In fact this wisdom does not come naturally, but is a gift from God, one that must be sought in faith. At this point in Deuteronomy, the Israelites truly become the People of God. Once again Moses warns against idolatry, which, even as an individual sin, can poison the entire nation. The nature of God is unsearchable, but God has revealed a great amount to His people in the scriptures that we may know Him better and love Him. Moses reiterates the generous mercy the Lord will provide to those who repent and return to Him.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture31.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

The Lord promises every good thing to the Israelites -- fruitful farms and families, safety and security, financial affluence, and a recognized place in the world as God's own people.  However, for this to pass, the Israelites must diligently obey the Word of God in its entirety. However, if the Israelites do not obey the Lord, He promises famine, pestilence, enslavement, and utter destruction. Deuteronomy Chapter 28 explores these blessings and cursings in gruesome detail. Finally this is tied into the New Testament discussion of sin and God's correction of His children.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture30.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Moses appears with the elders that will take his place to exhort the people one more time. The people are ordered to write the Law in a stone memorial when they cross the Jordan. They will sacrifice offerings to the Lord and share in a meal with one another to rejoice in the Lord. Each person in Israel has individually committed to serving and loving the Lord. They commit specifically to being cursed if they perform one of 12 violations of God's Law. Many of these violations can be perfomed away from human eyes, but God sees all. Atonement must be made for these sins, and if it is truly earnest than God will forgive.

In addition, your humble editor apologizes for missing an episode last week.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture29.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

This episode is a short meditation of the laws in the previous lessons, and how we take their message and incorporate these laws into our faith.  We need to correctly know and understand these laws, then digest them, pray on them, and let them into our hearts.  These laws are supported, expanded upon, and taught by Jesus and the writers of the New Testament.  These laws,rightly understood, are how we love God and love our neighbor.  Rather than just experiencing our faith through words and feelings, we can put it into action in service of the Lord.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture28.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

When harvesting crops, forgotten fruits are meant to be left for the poor and needy rather than carefully recovered. The property is the Lord's, and the Israelites are mere stewards of that property.

If a man dies without bearing a son, his brother is meant to marry the widow and bear a son for him. This is not only so that the man's heritage is preserved, but also so that the widow may be cared for by these sons. The younger brother does not profit from this arrangment, but serves his duty to their family and averts selfishness.

Finally, the firstfruits of crops are offered to the Lord and to the poor. All of this is written to remind us to constantly consider the Lord and the poor when we have abundance. Moreover we are called not to follow the minimum requirements, but extend them as FAR as our heart and soul can bear!

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture27.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Some laws of sexual purity are discussed, strongly punishing adultery and false accusations of adultery. Men cannot use women physically and then forsake them.

Some of the more curious legal codes should be interpreted in light of being God's revelation, created for our benefit. For example, loaning to one's brother at interest is banned. In this time period, loans were not for business investment, but for recovering from financial hardship. Charging interest is taking advantage of one's brother (as forbidden previously).

The law of divorce is discussed. Jesus forbids divorce among Christians, but for their 'hardness of heart' this law exists in the law of Moses. This law of divorce was provided by God in Mosaic Law as a practical consolation for the weakness of man, but in a people set alight by the Holy Spirit as the Christians are, it should be unnecessary. This law sets a lower bound, while a much loftier standard is sought.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture26.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

"You must love your neighbor as yourself." To the Hebrews this includes people who are not Hebrews. You must help prevent the loss of his animals, garments, or property; or take advantage of his loss. This must be done as a brotherly obligation without payment. This help must not be withheld. This is an obligation of LOVE. The law is bound together with the Lord's will that people love one another.

God reminds us of responsible care of life and to not carelessly let it be wasted.

Finally, several laws, seemingly arbitrarily, prevent mixtures of plowing animals and mingled clothing fibers. These boundaries are set in place to define proper pious witness in the Jewish faith.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture25.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

The Laws in these chapters describe particular situations, but seek to impart general principles. Laws regarding inheritance are discussed, and while not every permutation is accounted for, the proper procedure can be derived from what is provided. A particular case where a son with a criminal disregard for authority is discussed.  While it technically opens the possibility for punishing such a child with death, such a decision is practically impossible to reach.  Yet it puts a law on the books that this kind of rebellion is displeasing to the Lord. Finally, a law is laid out to limit the time executed criminals are "hung" on a tree, as this defiles the land.  When applied to Christ, this law highlights the gravity of His taking on our sin and hanging on the cross.

Direct download: DeuteronomyLecture24.mp3
Category:Biblical Study -- posted at: 6:00am EDT