March 7, 2020: Day 35 – Numbers 35

We talk a lot about murder in this chapter.  It begins with the command by God for the Levites to be given 48 cities by the tribes of Israel.  It ends with the section giving the Levites the land to ensuring that the land which contains the houses of refuge, the cities of refuge, the place where criminals can run if they are accused of something and are seeking safety, all of those lands must belong to the Levites.  That makes sense.  You give the priests all of the lands that contain the criminals running from the law in them.  One would think that the priests would be the ones with the compassion to work with all people.  But on that note...

The next verses in the chapter speaks specifically as to which criminals can and cannot flee to those cities.  Only those who killed someone accidentally is able to flee to those cities.  As vs.15 states: "anyone that kills a person without intent may flee there."  From vs.16 and following it lays out the distinction between murder that was meant and murder that was not meant.  I guess we would call it premeditated vs. accidental.  It was 100% eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.

But, not just one witness was able to convict a person, it had to be more than one.  Also, a murdered was not able to pay his way out of the crime.  The reasoning behind all of this was to keep the land pure of people who thought it was okay to murder.  Jesus, remember, had this to say: "38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’[a] 39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you."  

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