Calvin's Commentaries, Vol. 3: Harmony of the Law, Part I, tr. by John King, [1847-50], at sacred-texts.com
10. And it shall be, when the Lord thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not;
10. Erit autem quum introduxerit to Jehova Deus tuus in terram de qua juravit patribus tuis, Abraham, Isaac et Jacob, se daturum tibi eam, et urbes magnas et pulchras quasnon aedificasti:
11. And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not; and wells digged, which thou diggedst not; vineyards and olive-trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten, and be full;
11. Et domus plenas omni bono, quas non replesti, et cisternas effossas, quas non effodisti: vineas et oliveta, quae non plantasti: et comederis, et saturatus fueris:
12. Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
12. Cave tibi ne obliviscaris Jehovae, qui eduxit te e terra Aegyptie domo servorum.
10. And it shall be, when the Lord thy God. Since wealth and prosperity for the most part blind men’s minds, so that they do not sufficiently attend to modesty and moderation, but rather grow wanton in their lusts, and intoxicate themselves with pleasures, God prescribes against this error by anticipation. For not without cause does he admonish them to beware lest they forget God, when they shall have been liberally and luxuriously treated by Him, but because he knew this to be a common vice, for abundance to beget arrogance; as afterwards he will say in his song,
“Jeshurun waxed fat and kicked: thou art waxen fat, etc., then he forsook God which made him, and lightly esteemed the Rock of his salvation.” (De 32:15.)
First of all, he shews how base and unworthy would be their ingratitude, if, when loaded with so many excellent benefits by God, they should cast away the recollection of Him; for, as His goodness was inestimable, in giving them cities built by the hands of others, and in transferring to them whatever others had prepared by their great labor and industry, so would their impiety be the more detestable in neglecting Him, when He daily set Himself before them in this abundant store of blessing. Let us learn, therefore, from this passage, that we are invited by God’s liberality to honor Him, and that whenever He deals kindly by us, He places His glory before our eyes; but, on the other hand, we should remember, that what ought to be as it were vehicles, to lift up our minds on high, are, by our own fault, converted into obstacles and clogs, and that therefore we ought to be the more upon our guard. At the end of verse 12, he reproves their folly by another argument, if being thus suddenly enriched, they should give way to intemperance; as if he had said, that their absurdity would be insupportable, if, when uplifted by God’s bounty, they should not remember their origin; for nothing should have served more to incline them to humility than that wretched state of servitude from whence they had been rescued. Therefore he contrasts with that ample dominion to which God had exalted them, the house of bondmen,” 245 in order that the recollection of their former lot may restrain all frowardness.
Margin of A. V.