Blessings, Curses and Redemption - The Covenant at Moav

The Jewish People are enjoined to be priests to the rest of the nations of the world (Exodus, Chapter 19, Verse 6). Our true role is to serve all of humanity (Isaiah, Chapter 42, Verse 6). 


Part of the Jewish experience is the dream of the Redemption, a utopian era where all humankind’s problems are solved and nations live in peace with other nations (Isaiah, Chapter 2, Verses 1-5). The Redemption that is promised in the Torah is not for the Jewish People alone, but rather for all of humanity. We invite you to learn more about what that means.


The Nation of Israel (the Jewish People) is in the midst of a divinely-promised process of returning to their inherited Land, the Land of Israel, where we will create a society that will bring solutions to all the world’s problems. This goal is a direct continuation of a process set in motion long ago, beginning with the first years of the Israelite Nation’s time in the Land of Israel after the Exodus from Egypt. It involves four distinct phases: (I) Blessings In The Land, (II) Curses and Exile For Leaving the Covenant, (III) Tikkun (Repair), and (IV) Redemption.


These four phases are mapped out chronologically at the end of the Five Books of Moses, in the Book of Deuteronomy. On the last day of his life, Moses gave a broad speech to the assembled Nation of Israel, in which he paints a wide panorama of the future. Below are translations of that speech, sections of the Torah from the end of the Book of Deuteronomy, Chapters 28-30. 


Jewish tradition teaches that before the nation crossed the Jordan River to enter the Promised Land, Moses brought the entire public – more than 600,000 men, not counting women and children – to commit themselves to a pact, a COVENANT, between the people and God. It’s as if each person signed on a virtual ‘dotted line’ and committed to upholding the covenant, they and their descendants, for all time.


The first section, Blessings, describes the abundance that the nation will receive for upholding the covenant. The second section, Curses, lists a series of curses that will befall the nation if they stray from the covenant, the most serious crime being the worship of idolatrous deities and the abandonment of the worship of God. The end result of this backsliding is exile for the entire nation, and eventually, a holocaust. After another section containing additional instructions regarding the covenant, the fourth and final section of Moses’s prophetic vision is the “good news” part of the covenant that highlights what will happen to the nation and the world in the ‘End of Days’.


It is my assertion that this covenant is true and real, and has held solid throughout history, whether we kept it or not. When we kept it, we indeed received blessings; and when we stopped keeping it, all the curses mentioned in the Curse Section happened to us just as described. Some of the curses happened to their fullest extent only in the Holocaust, because – I believe – the Holocaust was the final curse before the End of Days section of the Covenant would take place.




1. And it will be if you obey God your Lord, to observe to fulfill all His commandments which I command you this day: God your Lord will place you supreme above all the nations of the earth.


2. And all these blessings will come to you and attach themselves to you, because you are obeying God your Lord.


3. You will be blessed in the city, and you will be blessed in the field.


4. Blessed will be the fruit of your womb, the fruit of your soil, the fruit of your livestock, the offspring of your cattle, and the flocks of your sheep.


5. Blessed will be your food basket and your kneading bowl.


6. You will be blessed when you come, and you will be blessed when you go.


7. God will cause your enemies who rise up against you to be beaten before you; they will come out against you in one direction, but they will flee from you in seven directions.


8. God will order the blessing to be with you in your granaries, and in every one of your endeavors, and He will bless you in the land which God your Lord is giving you.


9. God will establish you as His holy people as He swore to you, because you will be observing the commandments of the God your Lord, and be walking in His ways.


10. Then all the peoples of the earth will see that the name of God is called upon you, and they will fear you.


11.  God will grant you good surplus in the fruit of your womb, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your soil, on the land which God swore to your forefathers to give you.


12. God will open up for you His good treasury, the heavens, to give your land its rain in its proper time, and to bless everything you do. And you will lend to many nations, but you will not need to borrow.


13. And God will set you at the head, and not at the tail, and you will be only at the top, and you will not be at the bottom - because you will be obeying the commandments of God your Lord, which I am commanding you this day, to observe to fulfill them.


14. You shall not turn right or left from all of the words I am commanding you this day, to follow other deities to worship them.




15. And it will be, if you do NOT obey God your Lord, to observe to fulfill all His commandments and statutes which I am commanding you this day: that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you.


16. You will be cursed in the city, and you will be cursed in the field.


17. Cursed will be your food basket and your kneading bowl.


18. Cursed will be the fruit of your womb, the fruit of your soil, the fruit of your livestock, those born from your cattle and the flock of your sheep.


19. You will be cursed when you come, and you will be cursed when you go.


20. God will send the curse of shortages, confusion, and turmoil upon you, in every one of your endeavors which you undertake, until it destroys you and until you quickly vanish, because of your evil deeds in forsaking Me.


21. God will cause pestilence to stick to you, until it has exterminated you from upon the land to which you are coming to possess it.


22. God will strike you with consumption, fever, illnesses with burning fevers, a disease which causes unquenchable thirst, with the sword, with blast, and with yellowing; and they will pursue you until you perish.


23. And your skies above you will be like copper, and the earth below you like iron.


24. God will turn the rain of your land into powder and dust, raining down upon you from the heavens until you are destroyed.


25. God will cause you to be broken before your enemy. You will come out against them in one direction, but you will flee from them in seven directions. And you will become a terrifying example to all the kingdoms on earth.


26. Your corpse will be food for all birds of the heaven and for the beasts of the earth, and no one will frighten them away.


27. God will strike you with the boils of Egypt, with hemorrhoids, with oozing sores, and with dry lesions, from which you will be unable to be cured.


28. God will strike you with insanity, with blindness, and with bewilderment.


29. You will grope at midday, as the blind man gropes in the dark, and you will be unsuccessful in your ways. You will be only oppressed and robbed all the days, and no one will save you.


30. You will become engaged to a woman, but another man will sleep with her. You will build a house, but you will not live in it. You will plant a vineyard, but you will not redeem its fruits.


31. Your ox will be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will not eat from it. Your donkey will be snatched right in front of you, and it will not return to you. Your flock will be given over to your enemies, and you will have no savior.


32. Your sons and daughters will be given over to another people, and your eyes will see this and long for them all day long, but you will be powerless.


33. A people unknown to you will eat up the fruit of your soil and the result of all your toil. You will be only wronged and crushed all the days.


34. You will go insane from the vision before your eyes that you will behold.


35. God will strike you on the knees and on the legs with a terrible skin eruption from which you will be unable to be cured; it will eventually cover you from the sole of your foot to the top of your head.


1. The Babylonian Exile


36. God will lead you, and your king whom you will have established over you, to a nation unknown to you or your fathers; and there, you will serve other deities made of wood and stone.


37. You will become an object of astonishment, an example, and a topic of discussion among all the peoples to whom God will lead you.


38. You will take much seed out to the field, yet you will gather in little, for the locusts will finish it.


39. You will plant vineyards and work them, but you will neither drink of their wine, nor gather the grapes, because the worms will devour them.


40. You will have olive trees throughout all your boundaries, but you will not anoint with their oil, because your olive will drop off.


41. You will bear sons and daughters, but you they will not be for you, because they will go into captivity.


42. The locusts will devour all your trees and all the fruit of your soil.


43. The stranger who is among you will arise above you, higher and higher, while you will descend lower and lower.


44. He will lend to you, but you will not lend to him. He will be at the head, while you will be at the tail.


45. All these curses will befall you, pursuing you and overtaking you to destroy you - because you did not obey God your Lord, to observe His commandments and statutes which He commanded you.


46. And they will be as a sign and a wonder upon you and your offspring, forever,


47. Because you did not serve God your Lord with happiness and with gladness of heart, when you had an abundance of everything.


48. Therefore, you will serve your enemies, whom God will send against you, when you are in famine, thirst, destitution, and lacking everything, and he will place an iron yoke upon your neck, until he has destroyed you.


2. The Roman Siege


49. God will bring upon you a nation from afar, from the end of the earth, as the eagle swoops down, a nation whose language you will not understand.


50. A brazen nation which will not respect the elderly, nor show favor to the young.


51. They will devour the fruit of your livestock and the fruit of your soil, to destroy you. They will not leave over anything for you of the grain, wine, oil, offspring of your cattle or flocks of your sheep, until they annihilate you.


52. They will besiege you in all your cities, until your high and fortified walls in which you trust come down, throughout all your land. And they will besiege you in all your cities throughout all your land, which God your Lord, has given you.


53. And during the siege and the desperation which your enemies will bring upon you, you will eat the fruit of your womb, the flesh of your sons and daughters, whom God your Lord gave you.


54. The most tender and delicate man among you will begrudge his own brother and the wife of his embrace and the rest of his children, whom he will leave over,


55. Of giving any one of them of the flesh of his children that he is eating, because not a thing will remain for him in the siege and in the desperation which your enemies will bring upon you, in all your cities.


56. The most tender and delicate woman among you, who would not venture to set her foot upon the ground because of delicateness and tenderness, will begrudge the husband of her embrace and her own son and daughter.


57. And the infants who emerge from between her legs, and her own children whom she will bear, for she will eat them in secret, in destitution, in the siege and the desperation which your enemies will inflict upon you in your cities.


58. If you do not observe to fulfill all the words of this Torah, which are written in this scroll, to fear this glorious and awesome name, God your Lord,


59. Then God will bring upon you and your offspring uniquely horrible plagues, terrible and unyielding plagues, and evil and unyielding sicknesses.


60. And He will bring back upon you all the diseases of Egypt which you dreaded and they will cling to you.


3. The Holocaust


61. Also, God will bring upon you every disease and plague which is not written in this Torah scroll, to destroy you.


62. And you will remain few in number, whereas you were once as numerous as the stars of the heavens because you did not obey God your Lord.


63. And it will be, just as God rejoiced over you to do good for you and to increase you, so will God cause to rejoice over you to annihilate you and to destroy you. And you will be uprooted from the land which you enter therein, to possess it.


4. The Roman Exile


64. And God will scatter you among all the nations, from one end of the earth to the other, and there you will serve other deities unknown to you or your forefathers, deities of wood and stone.


65. Among those nations, you will not be calm, nor will your foot find rest. There, God will give you a trembling heart, dashed hopes, and a depressed soul.


66. And your life will hang in suspense before you. You will be in fear night and day, and you will not believe in your life.


67. In the morning, you will say, "If only it were evening!" and in the evening, you will say, "If only it were morning!" because of the fear in your heart which you will experience and because of the sights that you will behold.


68. And God will bring you back to Egypt in ships, through the way about which I had said to you, you will never see it again. And there, you will seek to be sold to your enemies for slaves and handmaids, but there will be no buyer.




1.  And Moses called all of Israel and said to them, "You have seen all that God did before your very eyes in the land of Egypt: to Pharaoh, to all his servants, and to all his land;


2. The great trials which your very eyes beheld and those great signs and wonders.


3. Yet until this day, God has not given you a heart to know, eyes to see and ears to hear.


4. I led you through the desert for forty years during which time your garments did not wear out from upon you, nor did your shoes wear out from upon your feet.


5. You neither ate bread, nor drank new wine or old wine, in order that you would know that I am God your Lord.


6. And then you arrived at this place. And Sihon, the king of Heshbon, and Og, the king of Bashan, came out towards us in battle, and we defeated them.


7. And we took their land, and we gave it as an inheritance to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and to the half tribe of Manasseh.


8. And you shall observe the words of this covenant and fulfill them, in order that you will succeed in all that you do.


9. You are all standing this day before God your Lord the leaders of your tribes, your elders and your officers, every man of Israel,


10. Your young children, your women, and your convert who is within your camp - both your woodcutters and your water drawers.


11. That you may enter the covenant of God your Lord, and His oath, which God your Lord is making with you this day,


12. In order to establish you this day as His people, and that He will be your God, as He spoke to you, and as He swore to your forefathers to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.


13. But not only with YOU am I making this covenant and this oath,


14. But with those standing here with us today before the Lord, our God, and also with those who are not here with us, this day.


15. For you know how we lived in the land of Egypt, and how we passed among the nations through which you passed.


16. And you saw their abominations and their repugnant idols of wood and stone, silver and gold which were with them.


17. Perhaps there is among you a man, woman, family, or tribe, whose heart strays this day from the Lord, our God, to go and worship the deities of those nations? Perhaps there is among you a root that produces hemlock and wormwood?


18. And it will be, when such a person hears the words of this oath, that he will bless himself in his heart, saying, "I will have peace, even if I follow my heart's desires," in order to add the punishment for the unintentional sins of this man to that of his intentional sins.


19. God will not be willing to forgive him. Rather, the Lord's fury and His zeal will fume against that man, and the entire curse written in this book will rest upon him, and God will obliterate his name from beneath the heavens.


20. And God will separate him for evil, out of all the tribes of Israel, according to all the curses of the covenant written in this Torah scroll.


21. And a later generation, your descendants, who will rise after you, along with the foreigner who comes from a distant land, will say upon seeing the plagues of that land and the diseases with which God struck it:


22. “Sulfur and salt have burned up its entire land! It cannot be sown, nor can it grow anything, not even any grass will sprout upon it. It is like the overturning of Sodom, Gemorrah, Admah and Tzvoyim, which God overturned in His fury and in His rage!”


23. And all the nations will say, “Why did God do so to this land? What is the reason for this great rage of fury?”


24. Then they will say, “It is because they abandoned the covenant of God, the Lord of their fathers, the covenant which He made with them when He took them out of the land of Egypt,


25. Because they went and served other deities, prostrating themselves to them; deities which they had not known, and which He had not apportioned to them.”


26. And God’s fury raged against that land, bringing upon it the entire curse written in this book.


27. And God uprooted them from upon their land, with fury, anger and great wrath, and He sent them to another land, as it is this day.


28. The hidden things belong to the God our Lord; but the revealed things apply to us and to our children forever, that we must fulfill all the words of this Torah.




1.  And it will be, when all these things come upon you - the blessing AND the curse which I have set before you - that you will consider in your heart, among all the nations where God your Lord has banished you.


2. And you will return to God your Lord, with all your heart and with all your soul, and you will listen to His voice according to all that I am commanding you this day - you and your children.


3. Then, God your Lord will bring back your exiles, and He will have mercy upon you. He will once again gather you from all the nations, where God your Lord had dispersed you.


4. Even if your exiles are at the end of the heavens, God your Lord will gather you from there, and He will take you from there.


5. And God your Lord will bring you to the land which your forefathers possessed, and you will take possession of it. And He will do good to you, and He will make you more numerous than your forefathers.


6. And God your Lord will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you may love God your Lord with all your heart and with all your soul, for the sake of your life.


7. And God your Lord will place all these curses upon your enemies, and upon your adversaries who pursued you.


8. And you will return and listen to the voice of the Lord, and fulfill all His commandments, which I command you this day.


9. And God your Lord will make you abundant for good, in all the work of your hands, in the fruit of your womb, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your soil; because the Lord will once again rejoice over you for good, as He rejoiced over your forefathers,


10. Because you will be obeying God your Lord, observing His commandments and His statutes written in this Torah scroll; you will have returned to God your Lord, with all your heart and with all your soul.



These are the words of the covenant, which God commanded Moses to make with the Children of Israel in the Land of Moav, in addition to the covenant which he made with them in Horev.