Israel Told Never to Forget God

Be careful to obey every command I give you today. Then you will live, and your population will increase. You will enter and take possession of the land that the Lord promised to your ancestors with an oath.

Remember that for 40 years the Lord your God led you on your journey in the desert. He did this in order to humble you and test you. He wanted to know whether or not you would wholeheartedly obey his commands. So he made you suffer from hunger and then fed you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had seen before. He did this to teach you that a person cannot live on bread alone but on every word that the Lord speaks. Your clothes didn’t wear out, and your feet didn’t swell these past 40 years. Learn this lesson by heart: The Lord your God was disciplining you as parents discipline their children. Obey the commands of the Lord your God. Follow his directions, and fear him.

The Lord your God is bringing you into a good land. It is a land with rivers that don’t dry up. There are springs and underground streams flowing through the valleys and hills. The land has wheat and barley, grapevines, fig trees, and pomegranates. The land has honey and olive trees for olive oil. The land will have enough food for you, and you will have everything you need. The land has rocks with iron ore, and you will be able to mine copper ore in the hills. 10 When you have eaten all you want, thank the Lord your God for the good land he has given you.

11 Be careful that you don’t forget the Lord your God. Don’t fail to obey his commands, rules, and laws that I’m giving you today. 12 You will eat all you want. You will build nice houses and live in them. 13 Your herds and flocks, silver and gold, and everything else you have will increase. 14 When this happens, be careful that you don’t become arrogant and forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of slavery in Egypt. 15 He was the one who led you through that vast and dangerous desert—a thirsty and arid land, with poisonous snakes and scorpions. He was the one who made water come out of solid rock for you. 16 He was the one who fed you in the desert with manna, which your ancestors had never seen. He did this in order to humble you and test you. But he also did this so that things would go well for you in the end. 17 You may say to yourselves, “I became wealthy because of my own ability and strength.” 18 But remember the Lord your God is the one who makes you wealthy. He’s confirming the promise [a] which he swore to your ancestors. It’s still in effect today.

19 I warn you today that if you forget the Lord your God and follow other gods, and if you serve them and bow down to them, you will certainly be destroyed. 20 The Lord is going to destroy other nations as you enter the land. You will be destroyed like them if you don’t obey the Lord your God.


  1. 8:18 Or “covenant.”