Moses’ first discourse (Deut. 1:6 - 4:40) serves as a prologue to the book, describing the historical events leading up to the laws he proclaims in 4: 44 through chapter 28.
The prologue consists of two divisions:
- A retrospective on the events that led to the exodus (1:6 - 3:29), and
- An exhortation, based on historical experience, to obey God's laws (4:1 - 4:40)
If there is one word to remember from this first discourse is obedience. Indeed, the entire journey from Egypt to the shores of the Promised Land is overshadowed by God's love and faithfulness and Israel's wanderings and disobedience. Obedience to God's laws is not a mechanical outward attitude inspired by a servile fear; it is the truest expression of Love for God, as Our Lord, Jesus Christ, taught us and showed us.