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Deuteronomy 12 Commentary

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Deuteronomy 12:1-3 meaning

Moses commands the Israelites to utterly destroy all the religious sites where the Canaanites serve their gods. He commands them to cut down the engraved images of the Canaanite gods in order to erase them from memory.

Deuteronomy 12:4-7 meaning

Moses asks the Israelites to worship the Suzerain (Ruler) God at the place which He chooses for His name to dwell.

Deuteronomy 12:8-12 meaning

Moses instructs the Israelites on how they are to conduct their worship in the land of Canaan. They are to bring all their offerings in the place which the Suzerain God chooses, and they are to rejoice for God’s blessings.

Deuteronomy 12:13-14 meaning

The requirements for worshipping the LORD when living in the Promised Land are brought to a close. Moses emphasizes the importance of obeying these commands to the letter.

Deuteronomy 12:15-16 meaning

Moses gives guidelines concerning the slaughter of animals to be used for meals and not for sacrifices.

Deuteronomy 12:17-19 meaning

Moses warns Israel against eating sacrifices within their gates. This act is to be done before the Suzerain God in the sanctuary as a way of thanking Him for His provisions.

Deuteronomy 12:20-25 meaning

Moses again told the Israelites that they were allowed to slaughter of their herd and flock and eat their meat within their gates when the central sanctuary is too far from them. Also, the animal’s blood was to be poured out on the ground like water, because blood is the life of the flesh.

Deuteronomy 12:26-28 meaning

In contrast to allowing the eating of meat in the home, Moses commands the Israelites to take their holy things and their votive offerings to the central sanctuary in order to offer burnt offerings to the Suzerain (Ruler) God.

Deuteronomy 12:29-32 meaning

Moses warns the Israelites against behaving like the native Canaanites who burned their children in the fire as sacrifices to their gods.