Targum Jonathan on Deuteronomy

Section 53

Chapters 32:1-32:52


Chapter 32


And when the last end of Mosheh the prophet was at hand, that he should be gathered from among the world, he said in his heart: I will not attest against this people with witnesses that taste of death in this world, behold, I attest against them with witnesses which do not taste of death in this world, and whose destination is to be renewed in the world to come. Isaiah the prophet, when he prophesied in the congregation of Israel, attributed hearing to the heavens, and attentiveness to the earth; because (in his case) earth was nearest and heaven more remote: but Mosheh the prophet, when he now prophesied in the congregation of Israel, attributed hearing to the earth, and attentiveness to the heavens; because (in his case) heaven was nearest and earth more remote; for so it is written, Attend, ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth.

My doctrine shall smite the rebellious like heavy rain; but shall be enjoyed with pleasantness by those who receive instruction, as the dew: my words shall be like the down falling rain of the wind that breathes upon the grass in the month of Marchesvan, and as the droppings of the latter rain which water the springing herbage of the earth in Nisan.

Woe to the wicked who make memorial of the Holy Name with blasphemies. Wherefore Mosheh, who was the Doctor of Israel, would not permit himself to pronounce the Holy Name until he had dedicated his mouth at the beginning of his hymn with eighty and five letters, making twenty and one words, and afterwards be spake: In the Name of Yahuah I invoke you, O house of Israel, to ascribe glory and greatness before our Elohim.

Mosheh the prophet said: When I ascended the mountain of Sinai, I beheld Yahuah of all the worlds, Yahuah, dividing the day into four portions; three hours employed in the law, three with judgment, three in making marriage bonds between man and woman, and appointing to elevate or to abase, and three hours in the care of every created thing: for so it is written: The Mighty One whose works are perfect, for all His ways are judgment, a faithful Elohim before whom no iniquity comes forth, pure and upright is He.

The beloved children have corrupted their good works, a blemish is found upon them; a perverse generation which have altered their works; so shall the order of this world’s judgment be altered upon them.

Can you indeed so requite the Name of the Word of Yahuah, O foolish people, and receive the law, yet not be made wise? Is He not your Father who bought you, who created you and established you?

Remember the days of old; consider the years of every generation; read the books of the law, and they will teach you, and the books of the prophets, and they will tell you.

When the Most High made allotment of the world unto the nations which proceeded from the sons of Noach, in the separation of the writings and languages of the children of men at the time of the division, He cast the lot among the seventy angels, the princes of the nations with whom is the revelation to oversee the city, even at that time He established the limits of the nations according to the sum of the number of the seventy souls of Israel who went down into Mizraim.

And when the holy people fell to the lot of Yahuah of all the world, Michael opened his lips and said: Let the good portion of the Name of Yahuah’s Word be with Him. Gabriel opened his lips with thanksgivings, and said, Let the house of Jakob be the lot of His inheritance.

He found them dwelling in the wilderness, in the solitude, the place of howling demons and thorns, the place of thirsting; He overspread them with His seven glorious clouds; He taught them His law; He kept them as the Shekinah keepeth the apple of His eye.

As an eagle stirreth up and careth for his nest, and hovereth over his young, so did His Shekinah stir up the tents of Israel, and the shadow of His Shekinah overspread them; and as an eagle outstretcheth his wings over his young ones, beareth them and carrieth them upon his wings, so bare He them and carried them, and made them dwell upon the strong places of the land of Israel.

The Word of Yahuah made them to dwell in His land, nor suffered any among them to be the followers of strange worship.

He made them to dwell in the strong places of the land of Israel, and gave them to eat of the goodly produce of His field, and nourished them with the honey of its fruits which grow even upon the rocks with the oil of its olive trees, and from branches (growing) out of the rocks.

He gave them rich butter of kine from the spoil of their kings, and the fat of the firstlings of the sheep from the prey of their sultans, with the choice rams and goats of the flocks of Mathnan. Mosheh the prophet said: If the people of Israel will observe the precepts of the law, it is foretold that their wheat granary shall be like the kidneys of oxen, and that from one bunch of grapes shall come forth a kor of red wine.

But the house of Israel grew rich and wicked; they prospered much and possessed wealth, and forsook the worship of Eloah who created them, and provoked Him to anger who redeemed them.

They moved Him to jealousy with strange worship, by their abominations they made Him angry.

They sacrificed to idols, resembling devils, in whom there is no profit, to idols which they had not known, new Elohims lately made, with which your fathers had nothing to do;

But the adorable Strong One who created you have you forgotten; of the word of Eloha who strengthened you so often have you been forgetful.

And when it was manifest before Yahuah, He was wroth, provoked thereto by His beloved children who were called upon His Name son and daughters.

And He said, I will take away from them the favour of My countenance; it will be seen what will be the end; for they are a perverse generation, children who have not faith.

They have made Me jealous by that which is not Elohim, they have angered Me by their vanities: I also will provoke them to jealousy by a people which hath not been a people, by the foolish Babylonian people will I provoke them.

For an east wind strong as fire shall go out before Me, and blaze in the might of My anger, and burn to the lowest hell; it shall consume the land with its produce, and set the foundations of the mountains in flame.

And when they dwell in Babel they will serve their idols; for I have spoken in My Word to array calamities against them, the plague-arrows of My vengeance to destroy them,

I will make them go into captivity in Media and Elam, in the captivity of Babel, the house of Agag who are like demons gaping with famine, and to corpses devoured by birds, and to stricken evil spirits of the noon, to Lillin and to spirits big with evil. And the Javanaee (Greeks) who bite with their teeth like wild beasts will I send against them, and will shake them by the hand of the Syrians venomous as basilisks, the serpents of the dust.

A people who will come from beyond the land of Israel shall consume them with the stroke of the sword, and those who are left in the land of Israel will I throw into the terror of death, in the chambers here and there where they sleep; their young men shall perish, their maidens, their sucklings, with their men and their elders.

I have spoken in My Word to withhold from them My Holy Spirit; I will make them weak; as a man who reaps his field leaveth but one upon the ground, so will I abolish their memory from the book of the genealogy of mankind;

but for the wrath of the enemy, and that their oppressors would glorify themselves against Me, and say, Our hand hath taken vengeance upon our adversaries, and all this hath not been decreed by Yahuah;

for they are a people lost to good counsel and void of understanding.

O that they were intelligent in the law, and that they understood what they will become in their latter end!

How will one foe pursue a thousand of them, and two put ten thousand of them to flight, unless He who is their strength deliver them, and Yahuah avenge them!

For the idols of the Gentiles are not as He who is the Strength of Israel; for the Strength of Israel, when they have sinned, bringeth punishment upon them; but when they stretch forth their hands in prayer, He answereth and delivereth them. But, the idols of the peoples of strange worships are of no use: but because we have provoked Him, and have not returned to His service, our adversaries are our witnesses and our judges.

For the works of this people are like the works of the people of Sedom, and their evil counsels like those of the people of Amorah; their wicked thoughts are as serpents heads; bitter therefore to them is their punishment which maketh desolate.

Behold as the bitterness of serpents when they come forth from their wines, (?) so shall be the bitter cup of the curse which they are to drink in the day of their punishment, and cruel as the head of asps.

Are not their secret works all known before Me? Sealed and laid up Are they in My treasury!

Vengeance lies before Me, and I will recompense them at the time when their foot shall move to the captivity; for the day of their destruction is coming near, and the evil which is prepared for them maketh haste.

For the Word of Yahuah adjudgeth in His mercy the judgement of His people Israel, and for the evil He hath appointed upon His servants there shall be repentance before Him; for He knoweth that in the time when they have sinned the stroke of their enemies will be heavy upon them, and help have passed away from their hands, and the faithful will have failed with their good works and be scattered and forsaken.

And the enemy will say, Where is the fear of Israel, their Strength in whom they confided,

who ate the fat of their sacrifices, and drank the wine of their libations? Let Him now rise up and help you, let Him shield you by His Word.

When the Word of Yahuah shall reveal Himself to redeem His people, He will say to all the nations: Behold now, that I am He who Am, and Was, and Will Be, and there is no other Elohim beside Me: I, in My Word, kill and make alive; I smite the people of the Beth Israel, and I will heal them at the end of the days; and there will be none who can deliver them from My hand, Gog and his armies whom I have permitted to make war against them.

I have lifted My hand with an oath to heaven, and have said, As I exist, I will not abolish My oath forever.

If I whet my sword, as lightning it will prevail in the judgment of My hand. I will return retribution on them who afflict My people, and repay to their enemies the hire of their wickedness. I will make My arrows drunk with the blood of their slain, and the captivity of their hosts shall be the punishment of My people’s foes.

I will make My arrows drunk with their blood, and My sword shall consume their flesh; with the blood of the destroyers of My people, their captives, and the chieftains of their hosts.

Rejoice, ye nations, (and) ye people of Beth Israel; for the blood of His servants which was shed, He hath avenged. He hath kept (in mind) and returned just vengeance upon His adversaries, and by His Word will He make Atonement for His land, and for His people.

And Mosheh came from the tabernacle of the house of instruction, and spake all the words of this hymn, in the hearing of the people, he and Jehoshua bar Nun.

And Mosheh made an end of speaking all these words with all Israel,

and said to them: Apply your heart to all the words with which I bear witness to you this day, that you may dictate them to your children, so that they may observe and do all the words of this law.

For there is no vain word in the law, unless to them who transgress it; for it is your life, and by this word you will prolong days upon the land that you pass over Jordan to inherit.

And Yahuah spake with Mosheh on the seventh of the month Adar, on the same day, saying,

It was when the Word of Yahuah had said to him, Go up to this mount Ibraee, the mountain of Nebo, and he thought in his heart, and said, Perhaps this up-going will be like that to Mount Sinai; and he said, I will go and sanctify the people; but the Word of Yahuah said to him, Not so at all, but, Go thou up and view the land of Kenaan, which I have given to the children of Israel for an inheritance.

And thou shalt sleep in the mountain to which thou goest up, and be gathered to thy people, even thou, as Aharon thy brother hath slept in the mountain of Omanos, and hath been gathered unto his people. Mosheh at once opened his mouth in prayer, and said, Lord of all the world, I entreat that I may not be as a man who had one only son, who being in captivity, he went and redeemed him with great price; he taught him wisdom and art, espoused him to a wife, planted for him a royal bower, builded him a marriage house, prepared for him the bed, invited his companions, baked his bread, slew his victims, and mixed his wine; yet, when the time came for his son to make glad with his wife, and the guests were about to consecrate the feast; then was that man required to go to the house of judgment, before the king and be punished with the judgment of death; neither would the delay to execute his sentence that he might see the happiness of his son. So have I laboured for this people; I have led them by Thy Word out of Mizraim, and builded for this people; I have taught them Thy law builded for them the tabernacle to Thy Name; but now that the time hath come to pass the Jordan, I am punished with death! Let it please Thee to withhold from me this sentence until I have passed the Jordan, to see the good of Israel before I die.

Yahuah of the world answered him, and said: Because thou didst prevaricate with My Word In the midst of the children of Israel, at the Waters of Contention at Rekem in the desert of Zin, and didst not sanctify Me among them;

therefore thou mayest look over against it, but shalt not enter into the land that I give unto the children of Israel.