Dave Burnette's Commentary

Deuteronomy Chapter 13

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Moses 
Date Penned: (1407 BC)
Overview: To Remind and Rededicate Israel to the Lord (c 1-34)
Theme: Principles for Godly Living (c 5-28)
Message: Warnings About Worshiping Other Gods (v 1-18)

Deuteronomy 13 Commentary

(13:1-3) Warnings of False Prophets - Attractive leaders are not always led by God. Moses warned the Israelites against false prophets who encouraged worship of other gods. New ideas from inspiring people may sound good, but we must judge them by whether they are consistent with God's Word. When people claim to speak for God today, check them in these areas: Are they speaking words that line up with the Bible's truth? Is their focus on God? Are their words consistent with what you already know to be true? Some people speak the truth while directing you toward God, but others speak persuasively while directing you toward themselves. It is even possible to say true words but still lead people in the wrong direction. God is not against new ideas, but he is in favor of discernment. When you hear a new, attractive idea, examine it carefully before getting too excited. False prophets are still around today. A wise person will carefully test ideas against the truth of God's Word.

(13:2-11) Those Who Lead Us Astray - The Israelites were warned not to listen to false prophets or to anyone else who tried to get them to worship other gods- even if that person was a close friend or family member. The temptation to abandon God's commands often sneaks up on us. It may come not with a loud shout but as a whispering doubt. And whispers can be very persuasive, especially if they come from loved ones. But love for friends or relatives should not take precedence over devotion to God. We can overcome whispered temptations by pouring out our hearts to God in prayer and by diligently studying his Word.

(13:12-16) Those Who Have Gone Astray - A city that completely rejected God was to be destroyed so as not to lead the rest of the nation astray. But Israel was not to take action against a city until the rumor about its rejecting God was proven true. This guideline later saved many lives when the leaders of Israel wrongly accused three tribes of falling away from their faith (Joshua 22). If we hear of friends who have wandered from the Lord or of entire congregations who have fallen away, we should check the facts and find out the truth before doing or saying anything that could prove harmful. At times, of course, God wants us to take action--to rebuke a wayward friend, to discipline a child, to reject false teaching-but first we must be sure we have all the facts straight.



Dave Burnette's Life Application


Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the book of Deuteronomy with Chapter 13 and we see Moses continues giving Principles to teach this new generation of Israel. After giving laws for proper worship and the pitfall for Idols in chapter 12. Here in chapter 13 we see Moses warning this new generation of Israel to watch for those who would entice them to worship Idols or false gods. These People or False Prophets of influence have the tendency to entice others to sin by following these gods which again the Bible describes as Idols. We learned that today Idols come in all forms from careers, success, power, finances, etc., as well as other gods like Mohammed, Buddha, etc. the list goes on and on but basically an Idol is anything that comes between you and The God of the Bible. Today, as in the day of the text, there are those who entice us to worship Idols are these People are ones we look up to and admire. In making application I am reminded of the leaders of business who would entice us to worship the Idol of success. They would use their position and financial gain to influence us to follow their Idols of putting our careers ahead of God. Another example is Hollywood and Americas obsession with the Actors that we lift up going them the title of "Stars" or "Movie Stars". We call them "Stars" because we lift them up as the stars of the sky and in doing so they have influence over many to worship their Idols of anything from money, to promiscuity, to drugs to alcohol, and this list too goes on and on. Even False Religions of Buddhism, Hinduism, and Scientology which have recently been in the news. It seems as every "Star" has some Idol and much influence to share it to their fans. How about you? Do you recognize those who would entice us to worship Idols? Let us learn from today's text staying away from Idols and those who entice us to worship them. 


Deuteronomy 13

Deuteronomy 13

 1If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,

 2And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;

 3Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

 4Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

 5And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

 6If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;

 7Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;

 8Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:

 9But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.

 10And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

 11And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is among you.

 12If thou shalt hear say in one of thy cities, which the LORD thy God hath given thee to dwell there, saying,

 13Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;

 14Then shalt thou enquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you;

 15Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.

 16And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for the LORD thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again.

 17And there shall cleave nought of the cursed thing to thine hand: that the LORD may turn from the fierceness of his anger, and shew thee mercy, and have compassion upon thee, and multiply thee, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers;

 18When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the LORD thy God.