“Covenant Renewal”  

Deuteronomy 9:8-19, 10:1-11 

September 24, 2023 

Faith Presbyterian Church – Morning Service 

Pastor Nicoletti 

The Reading of the Word 

We return this morning to the Book of Deuteronomy, as Moses gives instruction to the people of Israel, after forty years in the desert, on the verge of the promised land. 

In our passage this morning, he continues to recount the events that occurred at Mount Sinai. 

Last week we looked at Deuteronomy chapter nine, and we focused there on Moses’s point that the favor and forgiveness that Israel had received from God was a result not of their own righteousness, but of the faithfulness and intercession of another. 

This week we will return to portions of chapter nine, and then extend our reading of Deuteronomy into chapter ten, with our focus more tuned to the covenantal nature of God’s relationship with his people, and the process of renewal when that covenant is broken. 

With that in mind, let’s turn to our text from Deuteronomy chapters nine and ten. 

Please do listen carefully, for this is God’s word for us this morning. 

Moses said to the people: 

9:8“Even at Horeb you provoked Yahweh to wrath, and Yahweh was so angry with you that he was ready to destroy you. 9 When I went up the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant that Yahweh made with you, I remained on the mountain forty days and forty nights. I neither ate bread nor drank water. 10 And Yahweh gave me the two tablets of stone written with the finger of God, and on them were all the words that Yahweh had spoken with you on the mountain out of the midst of the fire on the day of the assembly. 11 And at the end of forty days and forty nights Yahweh gave me the two tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant. 12 Then Yahweh said to me, ‘Arise, go down quickly from here, for your people whom you have brought from Egypt have acted corruptly. They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them; they have made themselves a metal image.’ 

13 “Furthermore, Yahweh said to me, ‘I have seen this people, and behold, it is a stubborn people. 14 Let me alone, that I may destroy them and blot out their name from under heaven. And I will make of you a nation mightier and greater than they.’ 15 So I turned and came down from the mountain, and the mountain was burning with fire. And the two tablets of the covenant were in my two hands. 16 And I looked, and behold, you had sinned against Yahweh your God. You had made yourselves a golden calf. You had turned aside quickly from the way that Yahweh had commanded you. 17 So I took hold of the two tablets and threw them out of my two hands and broke them before your eyes. 18 Then I lay prostrate before Yahweh as before, forty days and forty nights. I neither ate bread nor drank water, because of all the sin that you had committed, in doing what was evil in the sight of Yahweh to provoke him to anger. 19 For I was afraid of the anger and hot displeasure that Yahweh bore against you, so that he was ready to destroy you. But Yahweh listened to me that time also. 


10:1 “At that time Yahweh said to me, ‘Cut for yourself two tablets of stone like the first, and come up to me on the mountain and make an ark of wood. 2 And I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets that you broke, and you shall put them in the ark.’ 3 So I made an ark of acacia wood, and cut two tablets of stone like the first, and went up the mountain with the two tablets in my hand. 4 And he wrote on the tablets, in the same writing as before, the Ten Commandments that Yahweh had spoken to you on the mountain out of the midst of the fire on the day of the assembly. And Yahweh gave them to me. 5 Then I turned and came down from the mountain and put the tablets in the ark that I had made. And there they are, as Yahweh commanded me.” 

6 (The people of Israel journeyed from Beeroth Bene-jaakan to Moserah. There Aaron died, and there he was buried. And his son Eleazar ministered as priest in his place. 7 From there they journeyed to Gudgodah, and from Gudgodah to Jotbathah, a land with brooks of water. 8 At that time Yahweh set apart the tribe of Levi to carry the ark of the covenant of Yahweh to stand before Yahweh to minister to him and to bless in his name, to this day. 9 Therefore Levi has no portion or inheritance with his brothers. Yahweh is his inheritance, as Yahweh your God said to him.) 

10 “I myself stayed on the mountain, as at the first time, forty days and forty nights, and Yahweh listened to me that time also. Yahweh was unwilling to destroy you. 11 And Yahweh said to me, ‘Arise, go on your journey at the head of the people, so that they may go in and possess the land, which I swore to their fathers to give them.’ 

This is the Word of the Lord. (Thanks be to God.) 

“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” [1 Peter 1:24-25] 

Let’s pray … 

Prayer of Illumination 

Lord, you are our hiding place and our shield, 

we hope in your word. 

Help us to turn from all false ways, 

and keep instead the commandments of you, our God. 

Uphold us according to your promise, that we may live, 

and let us not be put to shame in our hope. 

Hold us up, that we may be safe 

and have regard for your statutes continually. 

For we know we will one day stand before you and give an account, 

and so, with that in mind, help us now to attend to your word. 

Grant this, we ask, in Jesus’s name. Amen. 

[Based on Psalm 119:114-117, 120] 


Our text this morning overlaps some with our text last week. There are some important themes we covered last week that will come up again this morning, though we won’t dig into them as deeply today. That sermon is available on the website if you missed it. 

But this morning, as we move into chapter ten, we also need to hear again from a portion of chapter nine, because there is a theme that we didn’t really talk about last week, and that comes into sharper focus in chapter ten. 

We talked about a lot of things in chapter nine last week, but if you were reading the text closely you might have noticed at least one significant aspect of the text that I said really nothing about: the tablets. Throughout chapter nine, Moses keeps giving us status updates about the two tablets of stone, which Moses refers to as “the tablets of the covenant.” That sounds important. And it is. And so those tablets will be our focus this morning. 

First, we’ll trace the status of those tablets throughout our text. Then we’ll consider what the story of the tablets means in that situation at Sinai. And finally, we’ll consider what the pattern we see there has to say about our salvation and our daily Christian lives. 

Follow the Tablets 

So first, let’s trace the story of the tablets in our text. 

They first show up in chapter nine, in verses nine through eleven. There Moses tells us that the two tablets had written upon them, by the finger of God, the Ten Words, or the Ten Commandments, that God had already spoken to Israel at Mount Sinai.  

Then, in verse fifteen, we read that when Moses heard of Israel’s unfaithfulness and sin – when he went to confront Israel – he brought the tablets with him. 

In verse seventeen, when Israel’s sin is confirmed, we read that before all of Israel, Moses took the tablets and threw them to the ground, breaking them before Israel’s eyes. 

Then, after Moses intercedes for the people, calling on God to forgive them, in response, in chapter ten, God calls Moses to cut out two new tablets of stone, like the first ones, and bring them up the mountain. Once there, God writes, once more, the same words on these new tablets that he had written on the original ones. He then calls on Moses to bring the tablets back to the camp of Israel, and place them in an ark that was specially made to contain them within the camp. And those same tablets, Moses highlights in verse five, have remained in Israel’s presence since that day. 

That is the basic storyline of the tablets. 

But what does it mean? 

The Significance of the Tablets 

What is the significance of the tablets? 

Here Moses’s description in 9:11 is especially helpful. There Moses says that these tablets were “the tablets of the covenant.” 

The tablets were a sign of the covenant between God and his people. But what exactly is the covenant? 

There’s a lot we can say to answer that question, but one way we might put it is that the covenant is the formal structure for the deeply personal relationship between God and his people. 

Now … modern people tend to think of “formal structure” and “deeply personal relationships” as things that are in opposition to each other. Formal structure is often seen as antagonistic to something that is deeply personal, and things that are deeply personal – especially deeply personal relationships – are understood as not really needing (or wanting) formal structures imposed on them. 

That perspective is one that comes to us very naturally: in a sense, it’s something that both the rationalistic thinking of the enlightenment and the idealistic thinking of romanticism can agree on. It’s a very modern, Western, individualistic way of thinking … but it’s not the way most people have thought throughout history … and it’s actually not very true to our own experience either. 

C.S. Lewis explains this well when it comes to romantic love. He writes: “Those who are in love have a natural inclination to bind themselves by promises. Love songs all over the world are full of vows of eternal constancy.” The formal structure of marriage then, “is not forcing upon the passion of love something which is foreign to that passion’s own true nature: it is demanding that lovers should take seriously something which their passion of itself impels them to do.” [Lewis, 98] 

Our deepest, most meaningful, most personal relationships naturally give birth to promises … promises which create a formal structure for the relationship in the future. This is not some artificial thing that is forced on the relationship from the outside, it’s the natural result of a deep and meaningful relationship. And its intention is to guard the relationship itself against changing circumstances – including momentary changes in the affection of our own hearts, which we know can be fickle. 

And so, when God pursues a deeply personal relationship with his people, that relationship includes a formal structure – the structure of a covenant. In that relationship, God first assures us of his constancy. He assures us that he will remain the same, that he will continue to love us, that he will be true to his promises. 

He also calls us to be faithful to him: not to turn away from him to worship other false gods, not worship him falsely, but rather to love him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love the people around us, who bear his image. These are our obligations in the covenant. 

It might be helpful to think of the similarities to marriage vows. In traditional marriage vows, a husband and wife promise to each other that they will be loving and faithful to one another “in plenty and in want, in joy and in sorrow, in sickness and in health; as long as [they] both shall live.” 

Those promises do not stifle love. They strengthen it. They give words to its deep longings. They fortify it for the challenges of life that are ahead. They articulate the nature of true love. 

In a similar way, God’s covenant with his people is meant to give words and structures to the love and faithfulness that is expected between God and his people. God promises to bless, to be with, to save, and to protect his people, and his people promise their faithful love and obedience to God – to worship him alone, and to live as he has called them to live. 

And that covenant was summarized and symbolized in the Ten Words, or the Ten Commandments, which begin by identifying God’s relationship to Israel – he says: “I am Yahweh, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.” 

Yahweh is Israel’s faithful and loving God. He has formed them, he has delivered them, and he will continue to be their faithful God and king. 

Then, in what follows, Israel’s obligations to the Lord are outlined, and the very first one is: “You shall have no other gods before me.” As Yahweh has been faithful to Israel, so Israel is called on to be faithful to Yahweh. 

After hearing these words and others from God, in Exodus 24, Israel responded by saying: “All the words that Yahweh has spoken we will do.” This is, in some sense, Israel’s “I do” to the covenant they have with Yahweh – their pledge to remain faithful to him. 

From there, God calls Moses up the mountain, so that he might give him tablets of stone with the Ten Words carved into them. And, these tablets were not just informational, though they did contain information. No, they also served as symbols of the covenant between Yahweh and his people – of the promises they had made to one another to establish and to protect the deeply personal relationship between them. 

The parallel is not perfect, but in our culture, the closest thing we have to this is probably wedding rings. Wedding rings are a symbol of the promises we have made to our spouse – of the commitment we have made to protect our deeply personal relationship with them. Something similar to that is what’s going on with the giving of the tablets in Deuteronomy 9:9-11. 

With that understanding in mind … what exactly is going on with the tablets here in chapters nine and ten? 

Covenant Renewal at Sinai 

At this point in the story, God has established his covenant with Israel. He has promised to be their faithful God, and they have promised to be his faithful people. 

But then, even while Moses is still on the mountain, receiving the tablets that are meant to symbolize Israel’s covenant with Yahweh – even as that is happening, Israel has already broken the covenant. And they haven’t done it in some subtle, accidental, way. They have gone right to the heart of it to betray the Lord. 

They have made an idol, and they have worshipped other gods. 

The opening commandment – the heart of their promise to God – was to worship him alone, to be faithful to him alone. Saying yes to Yahweh meant saying no to all the other false gods around them. But while Moses was still on the mountains, receiving the tablets that symbolized that promise, Israel had already fallen down in worship before a different god. 

It’s as if a couple is newly married. And before they leave for their honeymoon, one spouse runs out to the jeweler to pick up their wedding rings that they were having adjusted and fitted before their trip. And when they get back to their room from the jeweler, they already find their spouse in bed with someone else. 

That’s the level and the speed of shocking betrayal that we should see in the golden calf incident. It’s not just that Israel has broken some arbitrary law that deserves a fine. Israel has committed spiritual adultery just days after they pledged their exclusive faithfulness to the Lord. 

And when Moses, God’s representative to the people, comes down from the mountain, and sees what they have done, his response, we read in verse seventeen, is to take the two tablets in his hands, and to throw them to the ground before the people – shattering them to pieces. 

This is not simply an emotional outburst on Moses’s part – though he certainly was feeling very emotional. This was more than that. Moses was symbolically saying to Israel that they were not just guilty of a minor legal infraction … they had violated the heart of their relationship to Yahweh. They had broken the covenant, shattering their relationship with God. 

Imagine again the husband or wife coming home to their spouse to catch them in the very act of adultery. One response the innocent spouse might have in that moment could be to take off their wedding ring, and throw it to the ground, before storming out in anger and anguish. 

Removing their ring and throwing it to the ground is a symbolic act, charged with significance and emotion. The innocent spouse is saying “You have broken our covenant. You have shattered our relationship.” By removing their ring and throwing it down, the innocent spouse is not primarily stating their own final intention in the matter, as much as they are portraying what the adulterous spouse has already done by their unfaithfulness. 

In the same way, Moses here takes the tablets of the covenant – the symbol of Israel’s covenant with God – and throws them to the ground, shattering them. He too is portraying what the adulterous party has done in this relationship: they have broken their covenant with Yahweh by their unfaithfulness. 

The covenant has been broken. 

But the story doesn’t end there. Because the next thing that happens is sacrificial forgiveness through the mediation of Moses. 

Now we spoke more about this last week, so I’ll try not to repeat myself. 

But as Moses mediates between God and Israel, one of the things he says in the account as it’s recorded in Exodus is “I will go up to Yahweh; perhaps I can make atonement for your sin.” [Exodus 32:30] And as we noted last week, Moses seems to do this by taking on a picture of death before God. God says that Israel deserves death. But it’s Moses who lies in a death-like fast for forty days and forty nights. He takes on a form of suffering that Israel deserves, so that they might be forgiven. 

Now, as we said last week, on one level Moses carries out this act as Israel’s representative to God. 

But it’s helpful to remember that Moses didn’t just represent the people to God. He also represented God to the people. In fact, this aspect of his role is repeatedly highlighted in the Book of Exodus: Moses was God’s spokesperson and representative to Israel. He often spoke, and acted on God’s behalf. 

And we need to consider that when we see Moses suffering, sacrificially, so that Israel might be forgiven. 

Betrayal, unfaithfulness, and adultery always lead to pain and suffering. But the form, and intensity, and distribution of that pain and suffering can vary. 

One element in determining how that pain plays out is the level of repentance that is found in the adulterous spouse. But another element in how the pain is distributed is determined by how the innocent spouse decides to respond. 

Now, the Bible is clear that in such cases the innocent spouse is free to end the relationship. The guilty spouse has broken the covenant, and the innocent spouse is free to divorce them and to remarry. 

But the innocent spouse also has the option of seeking reconciliation. The innocent spouse can decide not only to forgive, but to pursue reconciliation and the renewal of the marriage covenant. 

And when they decide to do that – when the guilty spouse is repentant, and the innocent spouse decides to try to heal and renew the marriage, it can be a wonderful and beautiful thing. But it can also be an extremely painful thing. 

Again, in such betrayals, pain is inevitable and unavoidable. But when the innocent spouse decides to try to heal the marriage, one of the things they do is they choose to take on even more pain and suffering, with the goal of reconciliation, restoration, and renewal. 

Because real forgiveness, of real sins, is always painful. It always involves sacrificial suffering. When we decide not to exact punishment or payment from someone who has sinned against us, when we decide even to seek a renewed relationship with them, that process usually causes us internal pain. We choose to process that pain ourselves, rather than try to inflict that pain on them. That’s ordinarily a key component of forgiveness. 

Moses, in his symbolic suffering and death in verse seventeen, is not just serving as Israel’s representative to God. He’s also serving as God’s representative to Israel. He is showing them that by forgiving and restoring Israel, by moving forward in his relationship with them, God is going to take onto himself the suffering that Israel deserved. We’ll say more about that later. 

But what we see so far is that the covenant has been broken by Israel’s spiritual adultery, then God grants to Israel sacrificial forgiveness. 

But the text doesn’t stop there. Because the third major step is that once forgiveness is granted, the covenant is renewed. And the covenant renewal described here has three major components: we see a renewal of covenant obligations, a renewal of covenant presence, and a renewal of covenant progress. 

First, God renews the obligations of the covenant. 

In Deuteronomy 10:4 we are told that God made the tablets of the covenant over again, with the very same writing as before. 

There are a few things to note in that. 

One is that forgiveness did not mean that Israel no longer had to obey the commandments of God. Not at all. God wrote down and gave to them the very same commandments as before. 

But in doing that, God was not calling on Israel to earn forgiveness with him – but actually, giving those same commandments to Israel once again was a result of the fact that he had already forgiven them. 

Think again of a marriage broken by adultery. If the innocent spouse says to their adulterous spouse: “Fine, I don’t care who you sleep with from now on” – if they throw out the covenant obligations that had been broken, that is not a sign of forgiveness. It’s a sign that they have abandoned the relationship – whether formally, or in their heart. 

But if the innocent spouse looks at their adulterous spouse and says: “You can never do anything like that, ever again.” If they restate and renew that covenant obligation to their spouse … that is actually a sign of forgiveness and renewal and hope for the relationship going forward. 

It would be absurd to think that by obeying that obligation in the future the adulterous spouse somehow “earns” the relationship with the innocent spouse back – that’s not how it works. This is not about earning. Rather, the renewal of their covenant obligations is a gift that the innocent spouse gives to the guilty spouse: it’s a key aspect of the renewal of their relationship itself. 

So first, God renews the obligations of the covenant, by writing out again for them the Ten Commandments. 

Second, God renews the presence of the covenant. 

The tablets, remember, were not just an informational list of Israel’s obligations in the covenant. They were themselves a symbol of the covenant – a symbol of the formally structured, and also deeply personal, relationship between God and Israel. 

By giving them this symbol back, by telling them to build an ark to carry the tablets in, and by telling Moses to keep the tablets in the midst of his people, God is also reassuring Israel that he has renewed his covenant presence with them. He will not leave them. He will continue to dwell in their midst. They will continue to be his people, and he will continue to be their God. [See Exodus 33:3-15] 

Think again of the reconciliation between an innocent and an adulterous spouse. Think of the significance of the innocent spouse putting their wedding ring back on their finger, in the sight of the adulterous spouse, and instructing them to do the same. The act itself is a symbol of their ongoing presence in each other’s lives. It is a statement about their intent to remain together, united to one another. 

In the same way, when Yahweh places the tablets in the midst of Israel, he is renewing his covenantal presence with them. 

Third, and finally, God renews the progress of the covenant. 

We need to remember that Israel and Yahweh’s stop at Sinai was never meant to be permanent. Yahweh came and took Israel out of Egypt. Their trajectory, from the beginning, was the Promised Land. Sinai was meant to be a stop along the way. And now, Israel’s unfaithfulness calls that trajectory into question. 

But then, in verse ten, God calls on Moses to place the tablets in an ark designed for mobility [Exodus 25]. And in verse eleven God calls on the people to continue on their journey towards the Promised Land. 

Israel’s sin does not ultimately derail God’s plan for them. Because the third aspect of covenant renewal we see is that the Lord renews their covenantal progress, as they take up once again the journey that the Lord had begun with them. 

It is like the innocent spouse telling the adulterous spouse, that they can, in fact, speak again of the future plans they had made for their life together. Because in renewing their covenant together, they are also renewing the plans they had made and the progress they had pursued towards those goals. 

And so, in Deuteronomy nine and ten we first see the covenant broken by Israel’s spiritual adultery. We then see the covenant preserved through God’s sacrificial forgiveness. And finally, we see the covenant renewed, as God renews the obligations of the covenant, the presence of the covenant, and the progress of the covenant with his people. 

And in that picture, we see written small, in Israel’s history, the cosmic story of our own lives before God. 

Covenant Renewal in Our Salvation 

Because like Israel, God made us – he made all of humanity – for relationship with him. From our very creation, human beings were in covenant with God: we had a relationship with him that was both formally structured and deeply personal. 

But we broke that covenant. Our first parents broke it in the Garden, when they willfully ate of the forbidden fruit and broke faithfulness with the Lord. And ever since then, every human heart has continued to rebel and break covenant against God. 

And God could have abandoned us. He could have destroyed us. But instead, he interceded for us. He himself came among us, in the person of Jesus Christ, to serve as a faithful mediator between us and himself. 

And in his role as mediator, he suffered for our forgiveness. 

Sometimes people are perplexed by the cross. They wonder why God couldn’t just let it go – just forgive without anyone having to suffer. But as we said earlier, forgiving betrayal, and unfaithfulness, and adultery always hurts. When the innocent spouse decides to forgive – when they decide not to take their pain out on the offender – then they themselves suffer in the process of forgiving. That’s just how forgiveness works. And, as Tim Keller has pointed out, in many ways, the cross is an external playing out of that internal pain of sacrificial forgiveness within God. On the cross, we see God himself suffering in order to forgive us. We see it play out before our very eyes so that we cannot doubt that he really did take the suffering of forgiveness onto himself, so that we can have our relationship with him restored. [I do not remember the source of where I heard Keller say this.] 

And rooted in the cross, God then renewed his covenantal relationship with us. 

First, he renewed our obligations in the covenant. Jesus did not come to abolish the law but to establish it. He came to call us back to faithfulness. And that itself, rightly understood, is not a burden, but a grace. 

Christ’s renewed command that we be faithful to him is a sign that our relationship with him really is restored. And in response, we should desire to live as he has called us to – not to earn his love, but because he already has loved us, and we desire to love him in return. 

Second, Jesus renews his covenantal presence with us. He promises, through the Holy Spirit, to be in us and among us. He promises to be with us always to the very end of the age. He gives us his word and his sacraments as signs and as means of his presence. He promises to never leave us nor forsake us. 

And third, Jesus renews the progress of the covenant. In the gospel, Jesus continues to advance the promises he had made to his people long ago. He continues to move forward the promise he made to Abraham to bless all nations of the earth through him. [Genesis 12:2-3, 22:18] He even renews his covenantal purpose for Adam and Eve, to fill the earth with those who would bear and reflect his image. 

And so, in Christ, we have so much more than just the penalties for our sins averted. In Christ we have our covenant relationship with God restored and renewed – both as a formal structure, and also as a deeply personal relationship between us and our Maker. 

Covenant Renewal in Our Daily Lives 

But that pattern doesn’t just play out over the grand, comic scale of our salvation and world history. The very same pattern also plays out, again and again, in our week-to-week, and even day-to-day lives. 

Every week, as we gather in worship, we walk through this covenantal pattern again. 

Each week, the Lord calls us together to worship him – a reminder of his covenantal goodness and all he has done for us. 

Then, in our worship, we are confronted with the reality that this past week we have broken covenant with God. We have broken his laws in many ways. But at heart, we have given to other, created things, the kind of love and devotion that only God deserves. We have committed spiritual adultery. We have, as we confessed this morning “burned the incense of the soul before false gods that cannot deliver.” And so, in the second movement of our service, we confess our sins to God, and then God, in his great mercy, forgives our sin once again, through the sacrificial mercy of Christ. 

And then, God renews his covenant with us.  

He renews our covenant obligations, as he converses with us, and instructs us from his Word, in the sermon.  

He renews his covenant presence with us as he calls us to gather around his Table.  

And then he calls us to continue to progress in the callings he’s given us as he commissions and blesses us, and sends us out from here to do the work that he has called us to do in the week ahead. 

Every week in worship, we walk through the cosmic pattern of our salvation – the pattern of Deuteronomy nine and ten. 

And frankly, if we know ourselves, we know we need to walk through that pattern every day as well. 

We are not called to pray and to read the Scriptures just to check boxes on a spiritual to-do list. Rather, with such spiritual disciplines, we are, again, walking through this pattern, as we confess our sins, remember his promises, study his commands, experience his presence, and refocus on his calling for us. 

Our lives … on a grand cosmic scale, on a week-to-week scale, on a day-to-day scale, on a moment-to-moment scale – our lives are to be saturated with the pattern of covenant renewal that we see here in Deuteronomy nine and ten. 

Conclusion: They Journey’s End 

And as we repeat this pattern, we don’t run in circles … but we are moving forward to the day when we will arrive in the Promised Land: the day when Christ will return, when he will make all things new, and when we will dwell with him, in his perfect kingdom forever.  

And on that day, one of the great gifts we will receive is that our hearts will be so healed that we will never again break covenant with our God. We will be truly faithful from that moment on, forever. And we will spend all eternity faithfully loving the God who has shown us such mercy and grace: We will delight in perfectly fulfilling our obligations towards him in the covenant. We will rejoice in his perfect covenantal presence with us every moment. And we will glory to spend eternity, side by side, drawing closer and closer to our God and King, without ever reaching the end of his beauty and majesty.  

We will perfectly love him and perfectly love one another in his perfect kingdom through his perfectly renewed covenant. 

That is the promise of the gospel. 

That is the final goal of covenant renewal. 



This sermon draws on material from: 

Alter, Robert. The Five Books of Moses: A Translation with Commentary. New York, NY: Norton, 2004. 

Barker, Paul. Introduction and notes to Deuteronomy in The ESV Study Bible. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2008. 

Block, Daniel I. The NIV Application Commentary: Deuteronomy. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2012. 

Lewis, C.S. Mere Christianity. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, 1952 (1996 Edition). 

Theopolis Podcast. Episode 652: “New Tablets of Stone (Deuteronomy 9-10).” With Peter Leithart, Alastair Roberts, Jeff Meyers, and John Bejon. June 21, 2023. https://soundcloud.com/user-812874628/episode-652-new-tablets-of-stone-deuteronomy-9-10  

Wright, Christopher. Deuteronomy. NIBC. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1996. 

Note: In my preaching I often cite and draw from a range of sources, which includes material from Christians within my theological tradition, Christians outside my theological tradition (in keeping with our church’s core value of “Reformed Catholicity”), and also (following the Apostle Paul’s example in Acts 17) non-Christians who are well outside of Christian orthodoxy and orthopraxy. And so, when I cite an author or a source, that citation should not be understood or construed as me necessarily agreeing with, endorsing, or recommending to others anything else from that author or source, except for what I explicitly say I agree with, endorse, or recommend. When engaging with different materials and thinkers, all Christians must exercise wisdom and discernment to determine what is helpful, appropriate, and edifying for each person, taking into account their current needs, wisdom, and spiritual maturity. 

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