As we have stated before, the entire body of commandments given by God to Moses on Mt. Sinai for the Israelite nation (the law) is an amendment to the covenant given by God to Abraham for the purpose of governing that nation of people in the promised land.
There are many today who believe and teach that some adherence to the law was required for people in the Old Testament to be "saved." They believe and teach a FAITH plus WORKS system was in place at the time. (Many of these people also believe and teach this system will be put back in place during the tribulation.)
Today, we are going to examine the book of Deuteronomy to find out the stated purpose for which the law was given. The book of Deuteronomy is said to be a second giving or a repeating of the law. It does, in fact, repeat much of the material found in Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers…but it does so from God's viewpoint. While Exodus and Numbers contain the historical record of the giving of the law and the wilderness wanderings, Deuteronomy provides a spiritual record of the same material.
Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statues and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers giveth you. (4:1)
Thou shalt keep therefore his statues, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayeset prolong thy days upon the earth, which the Lord thy God giveth thee, for ever. (4:40)
Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess. (5:33)
Hear therefore, O Israel, and observe to do it; that it may be well with thee, and that ye may increase mightily, as the Lord God of thy fathers hath promised thee, in the land that floweth with milk and honey. (6:3)
And the Lord commanded us to do all these statues, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as it is this day. (6:24)
All the commandments which I command thee this day shall ye observe to do, that ye may live, and multiply, and go in and possess the land which the Lord sware unto your fathers. (8:1)
Therefore shall ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it; And that ye may prolong your days in the land, which the Lord sware unto your fathers to give unto them and to their seed, a land that floweth with milk and honey. (11:8-9)
And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessing shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. (28:1-2)
Keep therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may prosper in all that ye do. (29:9)
In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the Lord thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it. (30:16)
And he said unto them, Set your hearts unto all the words which I testify among you this day, which ye shall command your children to observe to do, all the words of this law. For it is not a vain thing for you; because it is your life: and through this thing ye shall prolong your days in the land, whither ye go over Jordan to possess it. (32:46-47)
1. The law was given to the Hebrew nation. No Gentile was ever or has ever been responsible for any of it.
2. The promise given to the nation (not individuals) for keeping the law was prolonged, blessed life in the land of promise on the earth. No mention is ever made of eternal life anywhere.
The law was given to a physical people (Israel) with a promise of physical blessings (life, rain, crops, prosperity, victory over other nations) in a physical land (Canaan).