The Land of Canaan: A Gift or Reward


Deuteronomy is a vital piece in both the Pentateuch, and in the Canon of Scripture. This is because the people of God stand on the doorstep of the Promised Land, ready to enter and so fulfil one of the key promises of the covenant between God and Abraham. But as they stand there, preparing to enter, the question arises: how do the people receive this wonderful Promised Land? Is it a gift, freely given? Or a reward earned through obedience? The answer to this question is vital, as it lays the foundation for the relationship between God and His people. This essay will seek to explore how Deuteronomy handles the land, and thus establish whether it is a gift or a reward.

Scroll down to the end for a link to the rest of the essay on the topic

The full question:

According to Deuteronomy, is the land of Canaan to be a gift or a reward for obedience?


These books are ordered from the most useful to the least used resource in my research. There are a few journal articles and websites at times as well. (scroll down to the end for my essay on the topic)

Deuteronomy – Block, Daniel Isaac

Deuteronomy: One Nation Under God – Athas, George

Commentary on Deuteronomy – Harman, Allan M.

The Message of Deuteronomy: Not by Bread Alone – Brown, Raymond

Deuteronomy – Merrill, Eugene H.

Deuteronomy: Loving Obedience to a Loving God – Fernando, Ajith

An Introduction to the Old Testament – Dillard and Longman

Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch – Alexander and Baker

Word and Presence: A Commentary on the Book of Deuteronomy – Cairns, Ian

The Land: Place as Gift, Promise, and Challenge in Biblical Faith – Brueggemann, Walter

A Study Commentary on Deuteronomy – Currid, John D.

Waiting for the Land: The Story Line of the Pentateuch – Leder, Arie C.

New Bible Dictionary – Marshall, I. Howard

Now Choose Life: Theology and Ethics in Deuteronomy – Millar, J. Gary

Deuteronomy: An Introduction and Commentary – Woods, Edward J.

Deuteronomy: A Commentary – Rad, Gerhard von

The Problem of the Hexateuch and Other Essays – Rad, Gerhard von

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