In a recent interview with Daniel I. Block he made the following very helpful comment on Deuteronomy;

Deuteronomy is all gospel. Front and center. Every thing is grounded in gospel. Chapter 4 is classic—he tells Israel’s story backwards. He ends with the rescue from Egypt. In chapter 4:30–40—it’s not hard to find gospel there! Which god has done for his people what the Lord has done for you? Then just before that you have the grace of covenant. Which god has entered relationship with his people like the Lord your God has? And he invited you to his personal presence. Never happens. And then the first eight verses are the grace of law. When people see what I’ve done, I think that’s the one that surprises them most, because since Luther, it’s been the law/gospel kind of dichotomy. I grew up in a dispensationalist world where we had a huge gulf between the Old and New Testaments. The “age of law” and the “age of grace” and all that, which I have come to see as quite nonsensical. It does not reflect the biblical message. Deuteronomy has far more in common with the Gospel of John than with Hammurabi’s Law Code. And if it’s not the Gospel of John, it is the book of Romans in the Old Testament. I think it’s actually a combination of the two. Because like John, he’s had twenty years to reflect on God’s grace. And Moses kept reminding them, “When you cross that river, don’t forget where you’ve come from!”

It’s all grace. Even the Decalogue starts with grace! “I am Yahweh your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt.” That’s gospel. And when you have laws—I rarely use that vocabulary for Deuteronomy—when you have these instructions on righteous living, it’s always in response to grace. So, it’s gospel in the beginning, and the book ends with gospel and grace in the end. The judgment will come; apparently rebellion is inevitable, but it’s not because the  law is the problem. It’s not because the old covenant is the problem. It’s because Israel is the problem. And even then, the judgement will not be the last word. Chapter 30 is brilliant gospel. It’s all gospel.

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