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It is preparatory to the appeal to obey, as though one might say ‘’ (cf. (Ibid) God's past faithfulness should encourage present obedience.David Larson - The purpose of those (Ed: Like Moses) who share the “oracles of God” is not primarily to help people with their problems; it is to speak for God Who is ultimately the only Help (cp Ps 121:1-8-note). Confess (1 Jn 1:9-note) and He will give ear to your prayers.Keep on listening to the statutes and the judgments all the days of your life.Now - This marks a new direction in Moses' discourse of instruction, exhortation and warning, which as discussed below is one that is based on the truths in the previous review of Israel's 40 year wilderness journey from Deuteronomy 1:6 to Deuteronomy ("in the valley opposite Beth-peor"). (Tyndale Bible Commentary - OT) Eugene Merrill adds that "The connection between Dt 4:1–40 and what precedes it is clear from the introductory formula wĕ‘attâ - 06258 (lit., “and now”), a use of the logical particle or adverb that builds the argument of the present passage on what has gone before.It is notable that this instruction is given 40 years and more than 1 millions corpses later!One would think they would be motivated to listen carefully.
” That statement is found at least eight times in the Gospels, so it must be important. “Keep my decrees and laws, for the man who obeys them will live by them. (Be Equipped) C H Mc Intosh - “Hearken” and “do,” that ye may “live” and “possess.” This is a universal and abiding principle. The pathway of life and the true secret of possession is simple obedience to the holy commandments of God.
In this discourse we see God's faithfulness and omnipotence to bring His possession (Dt , Ex 19:5) to the precipice of entering the Promised Land. That is, the exhortation is not delivered in a vacuum but finds its orientation in the historical review.
John Thompson notes that "The introductory word And now (wě‘attâ - 06258) refers back to the previous recitation. What has already transpired is gone forever, but the lessons of history must not be forgotten and, in fact, must serve as the springboard for future thought and action.
This generation to whom Moses speaks was at Mt Sinai but they were only children at that time, so Moses begins by recounting the awe filled terrifying scene lest they despise the holiness of Yahweh (Dt ff).
As noted (shama) is a command in Dt 4:1 and in the Septuagint is a command in the present imperative, calling for continuing attention.