In what way was Israel the apple of his eye? (Deuteronomy 32:10) 10 He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.
ESV - 10 He found him in a desert land, and in the howling waste of the wilderness; he encircled him, he cared for him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.
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"The apple of God's eye" is a figure of speech referring (as it also does with humans) to the pupil of the eye, which is the most critical part of the eye with regard to vision, and is therefore the part that is most carefully guarded or protected. Also, when one looks into a mirror, he can see an image of himself reflected in the pupil of his eye, which brings to mind the way in which God originally created man in His own image. God first demonstrated this degree of care for Israel by choosing them as His own people, and later delivering them from their bondage in Egypt. He also provided food -- such as manna and quails (Exodus 16) -- for them, and saw to their physical needs. (As Moses said to Israel in Deuteronomy 29:5, "I have led you forty years in the wilderness. Your clothes have not worn out upon you, and your sandals have not worn off your feet.") Most specifically, it was through the nation of Israel that God sent His Son to redeem all of humanity from the penalty for its sin, and make it possible for them to have eternal life with Him.
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