Throughout the 2nd Exodus series and its sub-series on The Song of Moses, we have seen how Yahweh was faithful and righteous to Israel. The Song of Moses declared that Yahweh was also just and upright. Therefore He would judge Israel justly for the choices they’d make according to the Mosaic covenant blessings and curses.
Israel was reminded of Yahweh’s blessings on them throughout all their generations in the song. However, the majority would still rebel and reject Him. They would fail to be sons, they would forget their Father and abandon God Most High to worship other gods.
When Israel worshipped other gods it made Yahweh jealous therefore He was going to make Israel jealous with a foolish nation.
- How would Yahweh provoke Israel to jealousy and anger?
The Song of Moses continues:
v 21 So I will make them jealous with those who are no people;
I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.
Moses prophesied in verse 21 that a nation would be formed with another people who were not really a people at all. This foolish nation would make corrupt and crooked Israel jealous and angry. Oh, the irony!
You see this nation wasn’t foolish in Yahweh’s eyes – it was only perceived to be foolish in crooked Israel’s eyes.
The Parable of The Vineyard Tenants
In Part 1 of The Song of Moses I referred to the part of the parable of the Vineyard Tenants where Jesus asked the question: “When therefore the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?”
The answer the Pharisees gave Jesus was “He will put those wretches to a miserable death and let out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the fruits in their seasons.”
Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures “‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits. And the one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they perceived that he was speaking about them.
Jesus had just told the Pharisees that the Kingdom of God would be taken from them and given to another people.
These are Peter’s words from 1 Peter 2:1-10 describing the nation:
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. ~ 1 Peter 2: 9-10
I think the Apostle Paul summed it up so well:
For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are …~ 1 Corinthians 1: 25-28
The Apostle Paul even quoted the Song of Moses verse 21 in Romans 10:19-21 when he pointed out Israel’s disobedience:
But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says, “I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry.” Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, “I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.” But of Israel, he says, “All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.”
He also referred to making the Jews jealous again in Romans 11: 11,14.
So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather, through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. …in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them.
In conclusion, this segment of the Song of Moses prophesied that Israel would be provoked to jealously. That jealously would be manifested as anger and would be taken out on those who they perceived to be foolish – the New Testament believers.
A Change of Heart
But in spite of that anger, Paul constantly appealed to the Jews to embrace the gospel and to become the people of God again. This is because Paul saw hope in Deuteronomy and he saw references to the New Covenant! (see also Matthew 5:.8).
But from there you will seek the Lord your God and you will find him, if you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul. When you are in tribulation, and all these things come upon you in the latter days, you will return to the Lord your God and obey his voice. ~ Deuteronomy 4: 29-30
Now it shall come to pass, when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the Lord you God drives you. … And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul that you may live. ~ Deuteronomy 30:1-6
That is the very same message Jesus gave the Jews … choosing to live was all about changing your heart.
Jesus was asked: “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”
This is exactly what Paul preached to the Jews too: But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men but from God. ~ Romans 2:29
Yahweh would judge Israel in the last days but He would also save a remnant. Therefore, Paul consistently appealed to Deuteronomy especially in Romans 10 and 11 when he was speaking to Jews. He desired that many of his fellow Jews would believe and be saved.
In my next post, we will see how the Song of Moses prophesies that Israel will harden its heart.