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Chapter 26

Thanksgiving for the Harvest. (A)When you have come into the land which the Lord, your God, is giving you as a heritage, and have taken possession and settled in it, you shall take some first fruits(B) of the various products of the soil which you harvest from the land the Lord, your God, is giving you; put them in a basket and go to the place which the Lord, your God, will choose as the dwelling place for his name. There you shall go to the priest in office at that time and say to him, “Today I acknowledge to the Lord, my God, that I have indeed come into the land which the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.”(C) The priest shall then take the basket from your hands and set it in front of the altar of the Lord, your God. Then you shall declare in the presence of the Lord, your God, “My father was a refugee Aramean[a] who went down to Egypt with a small household and lived there as a resident alien.(D) But there he became a nation great, strong and numerous. (E)When the Egyptians maltreated and oppressed us, imposing harsh servitude upon us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our cry and saw our affliction, our toil and our oppression. Then the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a strong hand and outstretched arm, with terrifying power, with signs and wonders,(F) and brought us to this place, and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey.(G) 10 Now, therefore, I have brought the first fruits of the products of the soil which you, Lord, have given me.” You shall set them before the Lord, your God, and you shall bow down before the Lord, your God. 11 Then you and your household, together with the Levite and the resident aliens who live among you, shall celebrate with all these good things which the Lord, your God, has given you.(H)

Declaration Concerning Tithes. 12 When you have finished setting aside all the tithes of your produce in the third year,(I) the year of the tithes, and have given them to the Levite, the resident alien, the orphan and the widow, that they may eat and be satisfied in your own communities, 13 you shall declare before the Lord, your God, “I have purged my house of the sacred portion and I have given it to the Levite, the resident alien, the orphan and the widow, just as you have commanded me. I have not transgressed any of your commandments, nor forgotten any. 14 [b]I have not eaten any of the tithe while in mourning; I have not brought any of it while unclean; I have not offered any of it to the dead. I have thus obeyed the voice of the Lord, my God, and done just as you have commanded me.(J) 15 Look down, then, from heaven, your holy abode, and bless your people Israel and the fields you have given us, as you promised on oath to our ancestors, a land flowing with milk and honey.”(K)

The Covenant. 16 (L)This day the Lord, your God, is commanding you to observe these statutes and ordinances. Be careful, then, to observe them with your whole heart and with your whole being. 17 Today you have accepted the Lord’s agreement: he will be your God, and you will walk in his ways, observe his statutes, commandments, and ordinances, and obey his voice. 18 And today the Lord has accepted your agreement: you will be a people specially his own, as he promised you, you will keep all his commandments, 19 and he will set you high in praise and renown and glory above all nations he has made, and you will be a people holy to the Lord, your God, as he promised.

Footnotes

  1. 26:5 Aramean: probably in reference to the origin of the patriarchs from Aram Naharaim (cf. Gn 24:10; 25:20; 28:5; 31:20, 24).
  2. 26:14 These are allusions to foreign religious practices. To the dead: to feed the spirits of the dead, or perhaps to worship Baal.

Firstfruits and Tithes

26 When you have entered the land the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance and have taken possession of it and settled in it, take some of the firstfruits(A) of all that you produce from the soil of the land the Lord your God is giving you and put them in a basket. Then go to the place the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his Name(B) and say to the priest in office at the time, “I declare today to the Lord your God that I have come to the land the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.” The priest shall take the basket from your hands and set it down in front of the altar of the Lord your God. Then you shall declare before the Lord your God: “My father was a wandering(C) Aramean,(D) and he went down into Egypt with a few people(E) and lived there and became a great nation,(F) powerful and numerous. But the Egyptians mistreated us and made us suffer,(G) subjecting us to harsh labor.(H) Then we cried out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our voice(I) and saw(J) our misery,(K) toil and oppression.(L) So the Lord brought us out of Egypt(M) with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm,(N) with great terror and with signs and wonders.(O) He brought us to this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey;(P) 10 and now I bring the firstfruits of the soil that you, Lord, have given me.(Q)” Place the basket before the Lord your God and bow down before him. 11 Then you and the Levites(R) and the foreigners residing among you shall rejoice(S) in all the good things the Lord your God has given to you and your household.

12 When you have finished setting aside a tenth(T) of all your produce in the third year, the year of the tithe,(U) you shall give it to the Levite, the foreigner, the fatherless and the widow, so that they may eat in your towns and be satisfied. 13 Then say to the Lord your God: “I have removed from my house the sacred portion and have given it to the Levite, the foreigner, the fatherless and the widow, according to all you commanded. I have not turned aside from your commands nor have I forgotten any of them.(V) 14 I have not eaten any of the sacred portion while I was in mourning, nor have I removed any of it while I was unclean,(W) nor have I offered any of it to the dead. I have obeyed the Lord my God; I have done everything you commanded me. 15 Look down from heaven,(X) your holy dwelling place, and bless(Y) your people Israel and the land you have given us as you promised on oath to our ancestors, a land flowing with milk and honey.”

Follow the Lord’s Commands

16 The Lord your God commands you this day to follow these decrees and laws; carefully observe them with all your heart and with all your soul.(Z) 17 You have declared this day that the Lord is your God and that you will walk in obedience to him, that you will keep his decrees, commands and laws—that you will listen to him.(AA) 18 And the Lord has declared this day that you are his people, his treasured possession(AB) as he promised, and that you are to keep all his commands. 19 He has declared that he will set you in praise,(AC) fame and honor high above all the nations(AD) he has made and that you will be a people holy(AE) to the Lord your God, as he promised.

26 And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and possessest it, and dwellest therein;

That thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit of the earth, which thou shalt bring of thy land that the Lord thy God giveth thee, and shalt put it in a basket, and shalt go unto the place which the Lord thy God shall choose to place his name there.

And thou shalt go unto the priest that shall be in those days, and say unto him, I profess this day unto the Lord thy God, that I am come unto the country which the Lord sware unto our fathers for to give us.

And the priest shall take the basket out of thine hand, and set it down before the altar of the Lord thy God.

And thou shalt speak and say before the Lord thy God, A Syrian ready to perish was my father, and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there with a few, and became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous:

And the Egyptians evil entreated us, and afflicted us, and laid upon us hard bondage:

And when we cried unto the Lord God of our fathers, the Lord heard our voice, and looked on our affliction, and our labour, and our oppression:

And the Lord brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs, and with wonders:

And he hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, even a land that floweth with milk and honey.

10 And now, behold, I have brought the firstfruits of the land, which thou, O Lord, hast given me. And thou shalt set it before the Lord thy God, and worship before the Lord thy God:

11 And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the Lord thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thine house, thou, and the Levite, and the stranger that is among you.

12 When thou hast made an end of tithing all the tithes of thine increase the third year, which is the year of tithing, and hast given it unto the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that they may eat within thy gates, and be filled;

13 Then thou shalt say before the Lord thy God, I have brought away the hallowed things out of mine house, and also have given them unto the Levite, and unto the stranger, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all thy commandments which thou hast commanded me: I have not transgressed thy commandments, neither have I forgotten them.

14 I have not eaten thereof in my mourning, neither have I taken away ought thereof for any unclean use, nor given ought thereof for the dead: but I have hearkened to the voice of the Lord my God, and have done according to all that thou hast commanded me.

15 Look down from thy holy habitation, from heaven, and bless thy people Israel, and the land which thou hast given us, as thou swarest unto our fathers, a land that floweth with milk and honey.

16 This day the Lord thy God hath commanded thee to do these statutes and judgments: thou shalt therefore keep and do them with all thine heart, and with all thy soul.

17 Thou hast avouched the Lord this day to be thy God, and to walk in his ways, and to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and to hearken unto his voice:

18 And the Lord hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that thou shouldest keep all his commandments;

19 And to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the Lord thy God, as he hath spoken.

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