Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Bible Challenge: Day 71

The scriptures read were Deuteronomy 19-21, Psalm 59, and Luke 17.

Deuteronomy 19. Legal matters, including the setting up of cities of refuge for people who accidentally kill someone. This is because the usual way to handle this is for family to avenge the dead person. But if the death was unintentional, the person is not guilty of murder. However it only applies to unpredmeditated murder with no history of bad blood. If it looks like premeditated murder with a history of hate, fleeing to the city of refuge will not help the murderer. However, you can't condemn someone on the basis of one witness. False witnesses get the penalty the people they witnessed against would get if truly guilty.

And no messing around with your neighbor's boundary markers!

Deuteronomy 20. Before battle, those who are in the midst of building a house, planting a vineyard, or engaged to be married get to go home and finish those things, rather than fight. Also cowards lest they affect the morale of the troops. Israel need not worry about being outnumbered.

Offer peace to a city before attacking it. If they refuse peace, attack it. Spare the women, children and animals of cities that don't belong to the nations in the land.

Spare the fruit trees when making siege engines. Very practical.

Deuteronomy 21. What to do when a murder victim is found in a field and no one knows who killed it. This was before CSI.

If you see a good-looking prisoner of war, you must let her mourn her parents for a month. Then you may wed her. If you don't keep her, she is free and not to be sold as a slave. Considering the time and culture, you do get glimmers of compassion and some limited rights granted to people who ordinarily would not have any.

Again, the rights of a firstborn upheld, despite the husband's feelings towards his first wife. Also capital offenses.

Psalm 59. A prayer for justice by someone with enemies lying about him. "Do not kill them lest my people be unmindful; with your power make wanderers of them..." That's a change.

Luke 17. Out of 10 lepers healed by Jesus only 1 returns to thank him. And he's a Samaritan. Luke loves to spotlight the roles of despised, oppressed and marginalized people in his gospel.

The kingdom of God--his royal reign--is among you. You should have chills thinking about that.

More warnings that the Second Coming will be unexpected and sudden. Stop trying to fix on a date for it.  

No comments:

Post a Comment