Reading in Deuteronomy:
Deut 11:10-12 For the land which you go to possess is not like the land of Egypt from which you have come, where you sowed your seed and watered it by foot, as a vegetable garden; 11 but the land which you cross over to possess is a land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of heaven, 12 a land for which the LORD your God cares; the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year.
As I read this I thought of Zambia, a land that depends upon the rains coming in November to prepare the soil for planting and continuing in a hit or miss pattern through to March. I believe it is called dry farming, depending on the natural rains rather than irrigation.
So in Egypt, they depend upon the Nile and its flooding, making ditches to bring the water to their plots. Apparently, (don’t know for sure) in the land of Israel there is the “early rain” to prepare the soil for planting and germination and the “latter rain” that fattens up the fruit growing in the fields.
Mathew Henry uses this cross reference:
9 You visit the earth and water it,
You greatly enrich it;
The river of God is full of water;
You provide their grain,
For so You have prepared it.
10 You water its ridges abundantly,
You settle its furrows;
You make it soft with showers,
You bless its growth.
Moving to Zambia where the weather and rains were of constant conversation and concern was a new experience for us. Now, here we are in Sparta where the rich fields of corn, grain and soy stretch forever just 20 miles from the Mississippi. I know there have been times of drought, but America still seems to be a land blessed by God.
The admonition to obey God:
13’And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love the LORD your God and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, 14 then I will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil. 15 And I will send grass in your fields for your livestock, that you may eat and be filled.’