Deuteronomy 28

Good things for people who obey God

1 Today, I am telling you this! You must obey the LORD your God. Be careful to obey all his rules. If you do that, he will make you very important. He will make you more important than any other nation of people in the world.

2 If you obey the LORD your God, all these good things will happen to you. And they will remain with you.

3 The LORD will give you many good things. He will be with you, both in the city and in the fields.

4 The LORD will give you many children, many cows and many sheep. He will make much food grow in your fields.

5 The LORD will give you many baskets of food from your fields. He will be with you as you make your bread. He will make you happy in your work.

6 The LORD will give you good things when you come into your homes. And he will give you good things when you leave them.

7 The LORD will beat your enemies when they attack you. They will come along one path to attack you, but they will run away in all directions.

8 The LORD will make all your work do well. He will fill your buildings with food. The LORD your God will give you many good things in the country that he is giving to you.

9 The LORD will make you his special people for all times, as he has promised. But you must obey his rules and give him pleasure. 10 So everyone in the world will see that the LORD has called you by his own name. And they will be afraid of you. 11 The LORD will give you many children, many animals and much good food. He will do this in the country that he promised to your ancestors.

12 The LORD will send a lot of rain on your country, at the right season. He stores the rain in the clouds. And, at the right season, he will cause it to fall on your land. So then all the food that you plant in your fields will grow well. You will lend to the people in many countries. But you will not need anyone to lend to you. 13 The LORD will make you the leader among the people in many countries. You must not do as they do. Be careful! Always obey the rules of the LORD your God which I give to you today. If you do that, you will always be leaders of the people in other countries. And you will never be their slaves. 14 Do not refuse any of the rules that I give you today. Do not do wrong things. It is wrong to want other gods. You must not have other gods or pray to them.

Bad things for those who do not obey

15 But if you do not obey the LORD your God, all these bad things will happen to you. Be careful! Obey all his rules and decrees that I give to you today. If you do not obey, this is what will happen to you:

16 Bad things will happen to you, whether you are in the city or in the fields.

17 Bad things will happen to the food that is growing in your fields. Even the bread that you make will not be good.

18 Bad things will happen to your children, the food that grows in your fields, your young cows and your sheep.

19 Bad things will happen to you when you come into your homes. And bad things will happen to you when you leave them.

20 If you do not obey the words of the LORD, he will cause bad things, troubles and difficulties for you. These will destroy you because you have done something very wrong. You have completely refused to remember the LORD and you have forgotten him. 21 The LORD will send bad illnesses to you until he has destroyed you in your country. 22 The LORD will cause you to have cruel illness. You will be very hot and have a lot of pain. He will send great heat and no rain. He will send bad things upon the food that is growing in your fields. These will destroy the food. So at last, you will die. 23 The sky above your head will be like hard metal. The ground under your feet will be like iron. 24 There will be no rain on your country. There will only be dry sand that is flying about in the air. It will come down from the sky until it has destroyed you.

25 The LORD will let your enemies beat you. You will attack them from one direction, but you will run from them in many directions. You will become like a very bad sign to all the people in every country. 26 Your dead bodies will be food for all the birds and the animals. No one will send them away. 27 The LORD will cause you to have hot, painful places on your bodies as he did to the people in Egypt. He will cause you to have many illnesses on your skin. You cannot become well from these illnesses. 28 The LORD will make you so that you cannot see. He will destroy your minds and he will make you confused. 29 You will fall as you walk at midday. You will be like someone who cannot see. You will not do well in anything. Every day, people will rob you and be cruel to you. No one will save you.

30 A woman may promise to marry you. But another man will take her and have sex with her. You will build a house, but you will not live in it. You will plant a garden, but you will never eat the fruit from it. 31 Someone will kill your cow in front of you, but you will not eat any of the meat. Someone will take away your donkey and will not send it back. Your enemies will take your sheep and no one will save them. 32 The people from another country will take your children for slaves. You will look for them every day, but you cannot bring them back to you. 33 Strangers will eat the food from your fields. People will be cruel to you all the days of your life. 34 The things that you see will destroy your minds. 35 The LORD will cause you to have painful hot places on your knees and on your legs. No one will be able to make them well again. They will soon cover the whole of your body.

36 The LORD will send you and your king away to a foreign country. Neither you nor your ancestors ever lived there. There you will pray to gods made from stone and wood. 37 The LORD will send you away to many countries. You will be like a very bad sign to all the people there. And they will not be sorry about your troubles and difficulties.

38 You will plant many seeds in your fields, but you will not bring in much food. Hungry insects will eat it. 39 You will plant gardens for grapes and be careful of them. But you will not drink the wine or bring in the grapes. Animals that are like small snakes will eat them. 40 Olive trees will grow everywhere in your country, but you will have no oil from them. The fruit will drop off the trees.

41 You will have sons and daughters, but you will lose them. Enemies will take them away from you and keep them. 42 Insects will eat all your trees and the food from your fields.

43 Foreign people who live in your country will become stronger and stronger. But you will become weaker and weaker. 44 They will lend money to you, but you will not lend money to them. And, in the end, they will rule over you.

45 All these bad things will happen to you. They will be like an enemy that runs after you and catches you. They will destroy you because you did not obey the LORD your God. You did not obey the rules and decrees that he gave to you. 46 The bad things that happen to you will be a sign to you and your children for always. They will show that God is very angry with you. 47 The LORD made all your work do well. But you were not happy or ready to work for him. 48 So now you must work for the enemies that the LORD will send against you. You will do this while you are without enough food and water, poor and without clothes. He will put cruel masters over you until he has destroyed you.

49 The LORD will bring against you people from a country that is far away. They will drop down on you like a large bird and you will not understand their language. 50 They will have cruel faces. They will neither do good things for your old people, nor be kind to your children. 51 They will eat your young animals and the food from your fields, until they have destroyed you. They will not leave any food, wine or oil for you. They will take all your young cows and your sheep until nothing remains. 52 They will attack all the cities in your country. You will build high walls to keep yourselves safe. But they will fall.

53 When your enemies attack your cities, you will have no food. You will become very, very hungry. Then you will eat the children that the LORD your God has given to you. 54 Even the best and kindest man among you will do this. He will be so hungry that he will not be sorry for any of his family. He will not even be sorry for his own brother. He will not be sorry for his wife that he loves. And he will not be sorry for his children. 55 He will not give to one of them any of the meat that he is eating. This meat is the body of his child. He will not give any to his brother, or to his wife, or to his children that remain alive. He will have nothing to eat except his children, because your enemies will take away your food. 56 Even the best and kindest woman, who never has to walk anywhere, will do the same thing. 57 She will become so hungry that she will eat her new baby. She will even eat the thing that came out of her body after the baby. She will do this as a secret thing. She will not give any of these things to her husband or to her other children. These things will happen to you when your enemies attack your cities.

58 Be careful! Obey all these rules that I have written in this scroll. Always remember with love, the great and powerful name of the LORD your God. 59 If you do not, the LORD will cause you and your descendants to have very bad illnesses. He will make bad and cruel things happen to you. These things will stay with you always. 60 He will cause you to have all the illnesses that made you afraid in Egypt. These illnesses will remain with you. You will not become well again.

61 The LORD will also cause you to have many illnesses and bad troubles that you do not understand. They are not written in this scroll of the Law but they will destroy you.

62 You were once as many as the stars in the sky. But you will become only a few people because you did not obey the LORD your God. 63 Once, the LORD was happy to give you good things and many children. But then he will be happy to destroy you. He will remove you from the country that will soon become your country.

64 Then the LORD will send you away into many other countries. He will send you from one end of the world to the other. There you will pray to other gods. You will pray to gods made from wood and gods made from stone. Neither you nor your fathers have prayed to these gods before. 65 You will not be happy there. You will not find any place to rest. The LORD will cause you to have a troubled mind and nothing to hope for. You will be very sad. 66 You will be afraid all the time, both in the day and at night. You will always be afraid of death. 67 Every morning you will say, ‘I want it to be evening very soon!’ And every evening you will say, ‘I want it to be morning very soon!’ You will be so afraid of everything that you see. 68 I told you that you would never return to Egypt. But the LORD will send you back to Egypt in ships. In Egypt, you will try to sell yourselves to your enemies, as slaves. But no one will buy you.