On the face of it, Deuteronomy seems to be a book filled with triumph — the pronouncement of the commandments, the end of the Israelites’ long exile, the coming of the Promised Land.
But Daniel Berrigan here turns a searching eye toward this text and finds its darker side. Moses, the people’s leader for forty years, is denied entrance to the land he dreamt about. The people desperately create a golden calf to worship even as God is giving Moses the two tablets. The Promised Land, full of milk and honey, is also full of inhabitants — gaining entrance means destroying or driving out a number of its people.
Berrigan draws clear parallels between Deuteronomy’s time of mingled triumph and broken law and our own moment in history, uncovering the stories within the story of this complex biblical book. With both great grace and incisive candor, he turns Deuteronomy inside out and makes us look at it — and ourselves — in a fresh light.