But the Shema
carries not merely demands but also affirmations about the character and faithfulness of God. Recently, scholars have sought to demonstrate that the last word of the Shema
, or “one”) is an affirmation of God’s loyalty and His own moral unity. This is justified by indirect appeal to the close connections with the Decalogue in Deuteronomy 5, mentioned above, and Jeremiah 32:38–41
, among other texts. If this indirect claim is correct, then the historical prologue in Deuteronomy 5:6
(“who brought you out of the land of Egypt and out of the house of slavery”) is echoed tersely in the word one
at the end of the Shema
. Therefore, divine integrity assured the Hebrews at the threshold of their entrance into Canaan.