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Bible Commentaries

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Deuteronomy 26



Verse 2

Deuteronomy 26:2 That thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit of the earth, which thou shalt bring of thy land that the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt put [it] in a basket, and shalt go unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to place his name there.

Ver. 2. Thou shalt take of the first, &c.] In token of homage, or as a chief rent due to God the true proprietary, of whom they held all.

Verse 5

Deuteronomy 26:5 And thou shalt speak and say before the LORD thy God, A Syrian ready to perish [was] my father, and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there with a few, and became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous:

Ver. 5. A Syrian ready to perish.] Jacob, whose original was from Haran in Syria, [Genesis 11:31] and whose abode had been with Laban the Syrian, in much poverty, affliction, and misery. [Hosea 12:12] How low and mean were we of this nation at first! Brith signifies blue-coloured, sc., with woad: hence we were called Britons. Instead of fine clothes our ancestors dyed their skins, and painted upon them sundry sorts of birds and beasts: for food they had barks of trees, &c. This should never be forgotten.

And became there a nation.] Consider we likewise what we were by nature, and should have been; what we are by grace, and shall be; and then take we up that most modest speech of that noble Athenian captain, Iphicrates, in the midst of all his glory, εξ οιων εις οια; (a) from how great baseness and misery, to what great blessedness and glory are we advanced; being "raised up together, and made to sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus" [Ephesians 2:9; Ephesians 2:11-13] {See Trapp on "Ephesians 2:11"} {See Trapp on "Ephesians 2:12"} {See Trapp on "Ephesians 2:13"} What was there in us, said Tamerlane to Bajazet the great Turk, now his prisoner, that God should set us over two great empires of Turks and Tartars, to command many more worthy than ourselves, you being blind of one eye, and I lame of a leg, &c.? (b) Peter Martyr told Queen Elizabeth in an epistle, that princes must be doubly thankful to God: (1.) As men; (2.) As eminent men, exalted above others. So must all God’s servants, who being his firstborn, are in that respect "higher than the kings of the earth," [Psalms 89:27] and being "the firstfruits of his revenue," are therefore "holiness to the Lord." [Jeremiah 2:3]

Verse 12

Deuteronomy 26:12 When thou hast made an end of tithing all the tithes of thine increase the third year, [which is] the year of tithing, and hast given [it] unto the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that they may eat within thy gates, and be filled;

Ver. 12. The stranger, the fatherless.] Thus God doth not only plead the poor man’s cause; [Deuteronomy 15:10-11] but he allots a portion of the third year’s tithe, not only to the Levite, who is never excluded, but to the stranger, fatherless, and widow, as Jerome observeth and calleth it πτωκοδεκαδη, the poor man’s tithe.

Verse 13

Deuteronomy 26:13 Then thou shalt say before the LORD thy God, I have brought away the hallowed things out of [mine] house, and also have given them unto the Levite, and unto the stranger, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all thy commandments which thou hast commanded me: I have not transgressed thy commandments, neither have I forgotten [them]:

Ver. 13. I have not transgressed.] This is spoken, not by way of Pharisaical boasting or opinion of merit, but public testification of entire obedience.

Verse 14

Deuteronomy 26:14 I have not eaten thereof in my mourning, neither have I taken away [ought] thereof for [any] unclean [use], nor given [ought] thereof for the dead: [but] I have hearkened to the voice of the LORD my God, [and] have done according to all that thou hast commanded me.

Ver. 14. I have not eaten thereof in my mourn, ing.] All God’s worships were to be celebrated with joy. [Deuteronomy 12:7] Sacrifices offered with mourning were abominated, [Hosea 9:4] yea, accursed. [Deuteronomy 28:47] None might come to the court of Persia in mourning weeds. [Esther 4:2]

For any unclean use.] Or, Common profane use. Common and unclean is one and the same in sundry languages; to teach us, that it is hard to deal in common businesses, and not defile ourselves, and that those that come to holy things with common affections and carriages profane them.

Nor given ought thereof for the dead.] To bury them, or buy provision for the funeral feast. [Jeremiah 16:7 Ezekiel 24:7 Hosea 9:4]

Ye have done according, &c.] It is a witty expression of Luther; By men’s boasting of what they have done, says he, Haec ego feci, haec ego feci, they become nothing else but faeces, dregs. But so did not these. {See Trapp on "Deuteronomy 26:13"}

Verse 17

Deuteronomy 26:17 Thou hast avouched the LORD this day to be thy God, and to walk in his ways, and to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and to hearken unto his voice:

Ver. 17. Thou hast avouched.] This we do, when with highest estimation, most vigorous affections, and utmost endeavours we bestow ourselves upon God, giving up our names and hearts to the profession of truth. And this our choosing God for our God, [Psalms 73:25] is a sign he first chose us. [1 John 4:19] Mary answers not "Rabboni," till Christ hath said "Mary" to her. It is he that brings us into the bonds of the covenant. [Ezekiel 20:37] He first cries out, Who is on my side? who? and then gives us to answer, {as Isaiah 44:5} "One says, I am the Lord’s; another calls himself by the name of Jacob; another subscribes," &c.

Verse 19

Deuteronomy 26:19 And to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the LORD thy God, as he hath spoken.

Ver. 19. And to make thee high.] "Assyria is the work of God’s hand," but "Israel is his inheritance." [Isaiah 19:25; Isaiah 43:3]


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 26:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. 1865-1868.

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