Listen, Love: Deuteronomy 6:4-9 Bible Study [Slideshow+]

The Greatest Commandment?

When Jesus is asked about the greatest commandment, what is the first thing He says?

29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. (Mk 12:29-30, NIV)

Jesus quotes the most fundamental confession of the Old Testament, the Shema (Dt. 6:4-9) — which devout Jews still recite daily every morning and night (in addition to Dt. 11:13-21 and Num 15:37-41).

Please see the main points, videos, slideshow, Hebrew text, author’s translation, and sources, below:

Main Points

  • Through Christ’s sacrifice, we are now God’s people under the New Covenant (Jer 31:31-33 cf. 1 Cor 11:25)
  • We are to be His kingdom of priests (Ex 19:6 cf. 1 Pet 2:9) – intermediaries between God and all nations
  • We belong to Him exclusively, therefore we should not cheat on Him. No shared loyalty; forsaking all others
  • We should love because of the LORD’s nature, work, and promise. An incredible God who has done incredible things and has promised incredible things deserves incredible devotion
  • Because God gave us everything through grace, we should love God with everything through faith
  • Let us all listen to and hide His words in our hearts (cf. Ps 119:11)
  • Let us all impress God’s commands onto the next generation – repeatedly
  • Let us all constantly remind ourselves and others of God’s commands and love – inwardly and outwardly

Videos

Listen!

I opened with this humorous clip as we began our discussion on what is means to listen. When a parent or someone in authority says “Listen!” it means more than merely “hear” — it generally means obey. This cupcake-craving kid has his roles reversed.

Feast of Unleavened Bread

The Feast of Unleavened Bread is celebrated seven days after Passover. Israel had to leave Egypt so quickly, they could not pack yeast (IVP; cf. Ex 12:14-20). I used this a clip of this video (1:00-1:26) as a comical example of people rushing out of town.

Context of Deuteronomy

Though I fast-tracked through Israelite history a bit in the early slides, I showed about half of this helpful, animated video that outlines Deuteronomy.

Slideshow

To download this PowerPoint, please visit the C4C Bible Study/Sunday School DropBox.

Hebrew Text (BHS)

4 שְׁמַ֖ע יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל יְהוָ֥ה אֱלֹהֵ֖ינוּ יְהוָ֥ה׀ אֶחָֽד׃

5 וְאָ֣הַבְתָּ֔ אֵ֖ת יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֶ֑יךָ בְּכָל־לְבָבְךָ֥ וּבְכָל־נַפְשְׁךָ֖ וּבְכָל־מְאֹדֶֽךָ׃

6 וְהָי֞וּ הַדְּבָרִ֣ים הָאֵ֗לֶּה אֲשֶׁ֨ר אָנֹכִ֧י מְצַוְּךָ֛ הַיּ֖וֹם עַל־לְבָבֶֽךָ׃

7 וְשִׁנַּנְתָּ֣ם לְבָנֶ֔יךָ וְדִבַּרְתָּ֖ בָּ֑ם בְּשִׁבְתְּךָ֤ בְּבֵיתֶ֨ךָ֙ וּבְלֶכְתְּךָ֣ בַדֶּ֔רֶךְ וּֽבְשָׁכְבְּךָ֖ וּבְקוּמֶֽךָ׃

8 וּקְשַׁרְתָּ֥ם לְא֖וֹת עַל־יָדֶ֑ךָ וְהָי֥וּ לְטֹטָפֹ֖ת בֵּ֥ין עֵינֶֽיךָ׃

9 וּכְתַבְתָּ֛ם עַל־מְזוּזֹ֥ת בֵּיתֶ֖ךָ וּבִשְׁעָרֶֽיךָ׃ ס1

Translation

4 Listen O Israel: The LORD our God is The LORD alone 2 5 And love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might 6 These words that I am commanding you today are to be upon your heart 7 And repeat them to your children. And talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk on the road, when you lie down and when you get up 8 And bind them as a sign on your hand, and let them be as a symbol on your forehead 9 And write them on the doorposts of your houses and on your gates

Sources

  • Brown, Francis, Samuel Rolles Driver, and Charles Augustus Briggs. Enhanced Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1977.
  • Brown, Raymond. The Message of Deuteronomy: Not by Bread Alone. Edited by J. A. Motyer and Derek Tidball. The Bible Speaks Today. England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1993.
  • Carpenter, Eugene in Walton, John H. Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary (Old Testament): Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy. Vol. 1. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2009.
  • Clines, David J. A., ed. The Dictionary of Classical Hebrew. Sheffield, England: Sheffield Academic Press; Sheffield Phoenix Press, 1993–2011.
  • Craigie, Peter C. The Book of Deuteronomy. The New International Commentary on the Old Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1976.
  • Futato, Mark D. OT101 Introducing the Old Testament: Its Structure and Story. Logos Mobile Education. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2013.
  • Hamilton, Victor P. The Book of Genesis, Chapters 18–50. The New International Commentary on the Old Testament. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1995.
  • Harris, R. Laird, Gleason L. Archer Jr., and Bruce K. Waltke, eds. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament. Chicago: Moody Press, 1999.
  • Kaiser Jr., Walter in Burge, Gary M., and Andrew E. Hill, eds. The Baker Illustrated Bible Commentary. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2012.
  • Koehler, Ludwig, Walter Baumgartner, M. E. J. Richardson, and Johann Jakob Stamm. The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament. Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1994–2000.
  • Matthews, Victor Harold, Mark W. Chavalas, and John H. Walton. The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament. Electronic ed. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000.
  • McConville, J. Gordon. “Deuteronomy.” In New Bible Commentary: 21st Century Edition, edited by D. A. Carson, R. T. France, J. A. Motyer, and G. J. Wenham, 4th ed., 198–232. Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994.
  • McConville, J. G. Deuteronomy. Edited by David W. Baker and Gordon J. Wenham. Vol. 5. Apollos Old Testament Commentary. Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: Apollos; InterVarsity Press, 2002.
  • McIntosh, Doug. Deuteronomy. Holman Old Testament Commentary, edited by Max Anders. Nashville, TN: Broadman and Holman Publishers, 2002.
  • Merrill, Eugene H. “Deuteronomy.” In Cornerstone Biblical Commentary: Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, edited by Philip W. Comfort, Vol. 2. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1996.
  • Merrill, Eugene H. Deuteronomy. Vol. 4. The New American Commentary. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1994.
  • Ryken, Leland, Jim Wilhoit, Tremper Longman, Colin Duriez, Douglas Penney, and Daniel G. Reid. Dictionary of Biblical Imagery. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000.
  • Sarna, Nahum M. Genesis. The JPS Torah Commentary. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1989.
  • Thompson, J. A. Deuteronomy: An Introduction and Commentary. Vol. 5. Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1974.
  • Tigay, Jeffrey H. Deuteronomy. The JPS Torah Commentary. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1996.
  • VanGemeren, Willem, ed. New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology & Exegesis. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1997.
  • Wiersbe, Warren. Be Equipped: Acquiring the Tools for Spiritual Success – An Old Testament Study — Deuteronomy. Colorado Springs, CO: Chariot Victor Publishing, 1999.
  • Woods, Edward J. Deuteronomy: An Introduction and Commentary. Edited by David G. Firth. Vol. 5. Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries. Nottingham, England: Inter-Varsity Press, 2011.
  • Wright, Christopher J. H. Deuteronomy. Edited by W. Ward Gasque, Robert L. Hubbard Jr., and Robert K. Johnston. Understanding the Bible Commentary Series. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2012.

Sources

  1. Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia: With Werkgroep Informatica, Vrije Universiteit Morphology; Bible. O.T. Hebrew. Werkgroep Informatica, Vrije Universiteit. (Logos Bible Software, 2006), Dt 6:4–9.
  2. see discussion on the various possible translations of this verse in slide 16
About @DannyScottonJr 157 Articles
Imperfect servant striving to be an unapologetically apologetic ambassador for Jesus the Christ. Princeton University Alum | Palmer Theological Seminary Student