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This small group Deuteronomy 3 Bible study guide contains commentary, discussion questions, cross-references, and application to encourage life change. Visit our library of inductive Bible studies for more in depth inductive studies on this and other books of the Bible you can use in your small group.

Deuteronomy 3 Bible Study Guide – Defeat of King Og and Moses’ Sin


I. Defeat of King Og (1-11)
II. Some tribes receive their land allotments (12-22)
III. Moses is denied entry into the land (23-29)

I. Defeat of King Og (1-11)

Discussion Questions

• What command did God give them in verse 2?
• Why might they have been afraid?
• Why should they not fear?
• In what situation might you feel afraid? How can this passage encourage you?
• Where does victory come from?
• What victories or achievements has God given you?
• What type of opposition did they face?
• What opposition do we face today?


2 Timothy 1:7 – For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Proverbs 29:25 – The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.

Proverbs 28:1 – The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion.

1 Corinthians 15:57 – But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

Verse by Verse Commentary

1. Do not fear him for I have given him and all his people and his land into your hand – It would have been natural to be afraid. They were facing a formidable foe with strong defenses. Yet the strongest kings of the earth are no match for God. The Lord had decided to give this land to the Israelites. Therefore, if they obeyed Him, victory was a foregone conclusion.

Psalms 2:1-4 – Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against his Anointed, saying, “Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.” He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision.

God is not fazed by large armies, fierce warriors, or thick walls. He created the heavens and the earth. His side is the winning side.

Application – When you join God’s side, you need not fear. His side is the winning side. At the end of the day, God wins. What is the scariest thing you are facing in your life right now? Take it to God in prayer. Remember that He is on the throne. He has good plans for you. No weapon formed against His people will prosper (Isaiah 54:17).

On the other hand, if you are not on God’s side, you have every reason to fear. King Og and his armies were on the wrong side. They were fighting against the Living God. That is a very bad idea and did not end well.

Many people today are also fighting against God. They want nothing to do with Him. Such people should fear. That fear should cause them to run to Him in repentance. Instead, many have false bravado. The very same people that are now cursing and blaspheming God will be scared out of their minds when they actually meet Him.

Join His team. Do not fear.

2. All these cities were fortified with high walls, gates, and bars – It was not a walk in the park. The opposition they faced was very real and very strong.

Israel was not a warfaring people at this point in history. Having lived in the wilderness for forty years, they likely did not have impressive weapons or siege equipment. They were not war machines like Rome or Greece would be. Powerful armies generally need a strong economy to supply them. Israel did not have such an economy. Victory was not achieved through their own wit or military might. It was possible because God’s hand was with them.

Today we face opposition of a different kind, but it is nonetheless formidable.

Reflect – What type of warfare do believers need to wage today?

2 Corinthians 10:3-6 – For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.

At the moment of salvation, every believer enters a new battlefield. He has new enemies, Satan and his legions of demons. And he has a new advocate, Jesus Christ.

The Christian life is like a war.

Reflect – What does the word “war” imply about the Christian walk?

War is a serious thing. In a war, there are extremely high stakes. To lose means death. One has to be constantly alert against attacks from the enemy: including frontal assaults, sabotage missions, traps, and even propaganda. The soldier has to train, readying his body and mind for battle. And a soldier must fight. The choices are fight or lose.

That is what the Christian enters into when he comes to the Lord. There is no middle ground. The enemy will not show quarter.

The believer must not give ground or retreat. Instead, he “wages war.”

Application – You are in a battle. Are you trying to be a spectator, or are you waging war?

Satan is supernatural, as are his demons. What is Satan’s goal? He wants your mind and soul. He wants you to sin and fall away from the Lord.

1 Peter 5:8 – Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

To fight successfully against a superior adversary, we need some help. And God gives that help to us. He is by our side, supporting and sustaining us. The first step in a successful battle plan is to come to God and say, “I need help. I can’t win by myself. I am weak and I need you.”

That is the heart of what it means to not fight in our own flesh. We don’t trust in ourselves. Instead, we come to the only one who can give us the victory. Day after day, we come back to the cross, asking for His deliverance.

We are not called to sit. We are called upon to fight against and destroy the strongholds in our society which set themselves up against the truth of God.

Here are a few examples of mainstream arguments that set themselves against God:

• Evolution
• Hedonism
• Live and let live
• Universalism
• All religions are good as long as you are sincere
• God is harsh and capricious
• Look out for number one
• You are a self-made man
• Traditional family values are outdated
• People are basically good
• You can choose your own sex; God’s design is irrelevant.

These are only a few of the many heinous belief systems that reverberate around the globe.

What is our role when we face these arguments?

We are warriors in His army. That means we have to fight these ideas while praying for people’s souls to be set free from their grip. Using the truth of God’s Word, we face these ideas and defeat them. We don’t retreat or compromise. We fight head-on. As we do, we are bold because we know that we are on the winning side.

The Israelites had their fight. We have ours. As God was with them, He will be with us. Do not fear.

3. Devoted to destruction every person in the cities – See notes on Deuteronomy 2.

4. Og was a giant descended from the Rephaim – His bed was 13.5 feet (4.1 meters) long. If his bed was in typical proportion to his height, he might have been 9 to 13 feet (2.7 to 4 m) tall.

II. Some tribes receive their land allotments (12-22)

Discussion Questions

• When was the land promised to Israel?
• How much time had passed since God promised it to them?
• What does this show us about God’s character?
• What does this show us about His promises?
• How does this relate to other promises, such as Jesus’ second coming?


Galatians 3:18 – For if the inheritance comes by the law, it no longer comes by promise; but God gave it to Abraham by a promise.

Genesis 17:4-8 – “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you. And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you. And I will give to you and to your offspring after you the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession, and I will be their God.”

2 Corinthians 1:20 – For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.

Joshua 23:14 – And now I am about to go the way of all the earth, and you know in your hearts and souls, all of you, that not one word has failed of all the good things that the Lord your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one of them has failed.

Verse by Verse Commentary

1. Moses allotted the inheritance to the Reubenites, Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh – These two-and-a-half tribes settled on the east side of the Jordan. After defeating the two Amorite kings, the leaders of these tribes approached Moses and asked that they be allowed to settle in those lands rather than cross the Jordan.

Moses gave them permission with one condition. They were required to enter Canaan and support their brothers in battle first. Only after helping the other tribes take possession of the Promised Land were they allowed to return and settle.

2. God’s promises were fulfilled – God had promised this land to Abraham’s descendants at least five hundred years before this. Now those promises were finally being fulfilled.

Every single promise God has ever made will be fulfilled as He said; the only question is time. For them, it was a very long time. And yet, the wait had a purpose.

Reflect – Why might God have had the nation wait for 500 years before possessing the land?

Five hundred years before, Israel was not yet a nation! They were a small family. It took time for them to grow and multiply to become like the sand of the sea and the stars in the sky. Rome was not built in a day and neither was the nation of Israel.

In addition, all of their experiences in and eventual deliverance from Egypt defined who they were as a people. They learned of God’s power. They experienced His presence in a very personal way. Their history was their foundation. In the Psalms, the writers frequently referred back to their time in Egypt. God used the object lessons there to teach His people about Himself. The seeming delay was used to accomplish His perfect purposes.

None of His plans are fruitless. He had reasons for the long wait in fulfilling His promises to the Israelites and He likewise has reasons whenever we need to wait today.

2 Peter 3:8-9 – But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

The fact that God did not forget and fulfilled every word (Joshua 23:14) of His promise reminds us that Jesus’ promised second coming is also guaranteed.

III. Moses is denied entry into the land (23-29)

Discussion Questions

• For what reason was Moses denied entry into the land?
• What does this teach us about God?
• What does Moses’ disobedience in striking the rock teach us about people?
• How did Moses feel about the discipline?
• Why did he say this happe