Awesome Hands – part 159: “Moses blesses the tribes of Israel”

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Awesome Hands – part 159

“Moses blesses the tribes of Israel”

November 27, 2019


Before Moses’ death, Moses gave a blessing to Israel. This was after he had just given a warning to Israel concerning their sins and actions towards the Lord in the previous chapter.

In this study, we are going to explore the blessings mentioned, as they pertain to the “hands” mentioned within chapter 33.

The chapter starts off with an introduction:

Deu 33:1  And this is the blessing, wherewith Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death.
Deu 33:2  And he said, The LORD came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints: from his right hand went a fiery law for them.
Deu 33:3  Yea, he loved the people; all his saints are in thy hand: and they sat down at thy feet; every one shall receive of thy words.
Deu 33:4  Moses commanded us a law, even the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob.

This is an introduction that wants to make clear that the Lord came forth as Light and brought with Him the law. It is mentioned that He came forward with ten thousand saints, so we need to figure out what is being said here.

It also mentions that all His saints are in His hand and that they will sit down at His feet so that everyone shall receive of His words.

I think we can agree that there is certainly a lot of symbolism happening in these verses before the blessing even starts.

The author of this chapter wants to make sure everyone knows who it is that is giving the blessing, but also, how it is the blessing has any power or “weight” behind it.

Hebrew authors speak in the third person, from time to time, similar to when king David speaks about himself in third person in Psalms 21.

As is the focus for the “awesome hands” series, the first verse of this chapter that mentions the word “hand” is found in verse 3. This verse tells us that all the saints are in the hand of the Lord.

As we have studied in the last few studies, “work of the hand(s)” is a topic which informs us of what comes forth from the hand comes forth from the owner of that hand.

In this case, because we are in the hands of the Lord, we are His workmanship, and this shouldn’t come as a surprise since we are told this directly.

Eph 2:10  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

This verse says a lot and leaves no other conclusion for us than that we are His creation in Jesus Christ which have been ORDAINED to walk in His good works.

Given that we are ordained to walk in His good works, we can also conclude that others are not ordained to do so.

So, Moses continues to expound to Israel how this is all going to play out when he leaves them.

Deu 33:5  And he was king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people and the tribes of Israel were gathered together.

Contrary to what I have heard some say about this verse, this is not speaking about Moses being the king of Israel. He is never mentioned as a king, but only as a servant, and this verse (verse 5) hearkens back to the same “he” spoken about in verse 3.

Deu 33:3  Yea, he loved the people; all his saints are in thy hand: and they sat down at thy feet; every one shall receive of thy words.
Deu 33:4  Moses commanded us a law, even the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob.
Deu 33:5  And he was king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people and the tribes of Israel were gathered together.
Heb 3:5  And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;

Now that it is confirmed who is sending forth the blessing, even as it is spoken via Moses, Moses proceeds to dish out the blessings to the various tribes according to the inspiration he is getting from the Lord.

Deu 33:6  Let Reuben live, and not die; and let not his men be few.
Deu 33:7  And this is the blessing of Judah: and he said, Hear, LORD, the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people: let his hands be sufficient for him; and be thou an help to him from his enemies.

We know Jesus is a Lion from the tribe of Judah, so we are as He is, so verses 33:7 also is applicable to those who are in Christ and He in them.

We know from our past studies that “our hands” and the work that comes forth from them is something that comes from the Lord. These are the “good works” which glorify God because they are all His works. Moses blessing is type and shadow of the blessing we receive through the work of Jesus Christ in our lives. Notice that Moses prays the Lord to be a help to “him” from his enemies, including the “last” enemy.

Deu 33:8  And of Levi he said, Let thy Thummim and thy Urim be with thy holy one, whom thou didst prove at Massah, and with whom thou didst strive at the waters of Meribah;
Deu 33:9  Who said unto his father and to his mother, I have not seen him; neither did he acknowledge his brethren, nor knew his own children: for they have observed thy word, and kept thy covenant.
Deu 33:10  They shall teach Jacob thy judgments, and Israel thy law: they shall put incense before thee, and whole burnt sacrifice upon thine altar.
Deu 33:11  Bless, LORD, his substance, and accept the work of his hands: smite through the loins of them that rise against him, and of them that hate him, that they rise not again.

Again, we can see in type and shadow just how important the Levites are to the priesthood. They are given the portion to teach the judgments and law to Israel. They are given to create works with their hands which the Lord blesses, and of course they are blessed to fulfill the will that the Lord has caused them to fulfill.

There has been a lot written about this before, but I am going to read from an excerpt on another study that I did on this topic.

The innermost veil has cherubims embroidered right on the veil itself and this reveals to us the difference in who could enter into the holy of holies. In the room of the “holy place”, which was before the veil blocking the way to the holy of holies, we have the altar of incense, the table of shewbread and the golden candlestick.

I mention this because we are going to see a pattern immerge in the layout of the items that make up what the tabernacle is. There is what the tabernacle consists of and then there are those that SERVE the tabernacle.

What precisely does the tabernacle represent?

Joh 1:14  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt (G4637) among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.



Total KJV Occurrences: 5

dwell, 4

Rev_7:15, Rev_12:12, Rev_13:6, Rev_21:3

dwelt, 1


Strong’s defines “dwelt / skenoo” this way:




From G4636; to tent or encamp, that is, (figuratively) to occupy (as a mansion) or (specifically) to reside (as God did in the Tabernacle of old, a symbol of protection and communion): - dwell.

Total KJV occurrences: 5

Thayers defines this same word as:



Thayer Definition:

1) to fix one’s tabernacle, have one’s tabernacle, abide (or live) in a tabernacle (or tent), tabernacle

2) to dwell

Part of Speech: verb

A Related Word by Thayer’s/Strong’s Number: from G4636

Citing in TDNT: 7:385, 1040

Here is the root of “dwelt”:



Total KJV Occurrences: 20

tabernacle, 15

Act_7:43-44 (2), Act_15:16, Heb_8:2, Heb_8:5, Heb_9:2-3 (2), Heb_9:6, Heb_9:8, Heb_9:11, Heb_9:21, Heb_13:10, Rev_13:6, Rev_15:5, Rev_21:3

tabernacles, 4

Mar_9:3-5 (3), Luk_9:33, Heb_11:9

habitations, 1

Luk_16:9 (2)

Joh 1:14  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt (G4637) among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

So the Greek word for “dwelt”, tells us that Jesus Christ was MADE FLESH and tabernacled among us, was full of grace and truth. Doesn’t that sound just like the bride of Christ?

Joh 14:10  Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

Joh 14:18  I will not leave you comfortless: I WILL COME TO YOU.
Joh 14:19  Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
Joh 14:20  At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
Joh 14:21  He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

Joh 15:4  Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
Joh 15:5  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

What is the connection to Christ Jesus abiding in His Father and in us with the tabernacle dwelling among us?

1Jn 2:18  Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1Jn 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
1Jn 4:4  Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

2Jn 1:7  For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
2Jn 1:8  Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.

1Jn 2:22  Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

And a few verses later:

1Jn 2:25  And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.
1Jn 2:26  These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.

What then is eternal life?

Joh 17:1  These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
Joh 17:2  As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
Joh 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
Joh 17:4  I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.

So a part of glorifying God the Father is to DO HIS WORK and WILL!

The question that now begs to be answered is who is it that would at all consider denying Christ and being anti Christ by denying that He came in the flesh? After all, most Christians even celebrate Jesus’ BIRTHDAY as Christmas therefore they are celebrating Him PHYSICALLY coming to the earth in FLESH. However, is that what denying He has come in the flesh is?

Bringing this back around to the tabernacle we are studying in Exodus 26, why are the veils important?

The veils separate the rooms of the tabernacle and the even separate those that come from without the tabernacle from those that can approach the mercy seat.

There are three sets of veils. There is the outside veil that is on the walls of the outer court. This veil is hanging on 4 pillars. The next veil is hanging on 5 pillars and leads into the holy place. The final veil blocks the way to the ark of the covenant and mercy seat.

These veils show us in type and shadow the progression of the obedience of those that do what the Lord says to do versus not doing what the Lord says to do.

That excerpt is relevant to this study because it party shows that Levites and the priesthood are both equally important, but they both have their place in the will of God for the people of Israel.

What is fascinating for me is that we are all these types and shadows, and live them out, at some time in our walk with the Lord. We are Levites and priests at our appointed times among other things.

Sometimes we want to slay our brother, other times we step in and save our brother from our other brothers just as Reuben did with Joseph, etc. etc.

When Moses gives out the curses and blessings, we are all being given these curses and blessings at our appointed time.

There is a lot that can be said about the individual blessings that Moses proclaims for each of the sons of Israel, but the end of this chapter is revealing for the end game of who we are in the Lord.

Deu 33:29  Happy art thou, O Israel: who is like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help, and who is the sword of thy excellency! and thine enemies shall be found liars unto thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places.


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