Read Deuteronomy 24 -- 27
In Today's Reading:
Brotherly kindness, integrity, and justice are emphasized as the Israelites are reminded: Remember that you were bondmen (slaves) in the land of Egypt (Deuteronomy 24:18). We note with significant surprise that Moses, who never liked to talk, begins his third lengthy speech (chapter 27).
Verses for Today:
Remember what Amalek did to you by the way, when you came out of Egypt . . . you shall blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under Heaven; you shall not forget it (Deuteronomy 25:17).
Laws concerning divorce, domestic relations with servants, and miscellaneous human relations; command to execute Amalek; offering of the firstfruits and tithes; Law written on large, whitewashed stones and set up on Mount Ebal along with an altar to the Lord; upon Mount Gerizim the blessings were proclaimed (Deuteronomy 27:4-13).
From the days of Moses to the reign of King David, the Amalekites, descendants of Esau (Genesis 36:12), were the enemies of Israel (Psalms 83:1-7). Soon after the Exodus from Egypt, the Amalekites made a fierce, cruel attack on the old and weak Israelites who were trailing along behind and were unable to defend themselves. Therefore, God commanded the Israelites to execute the Amalekites -- not for personal revenge, but in fulfillment of God's command for justice.
God's Word does not give us license to harm those who have wronged us. It makes a clear distinction between personal revenge and the execution of judicial law and order.
The civil authorities are servants of God for our protection. But, if you are violating the law of the land by refusing to pay taxes, you have a reason to fear. The "power of the law" which is vested in every legal officer, judge and jury is by divine appointment to execute justice upon evildoers. It is God who said: Let every soul be subject to the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whoever therefore resists the power, resists the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. . . . If you do what is evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that does evil. Wherefore you must . . . be subject, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience sake. For this cause you pay tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually to this very thing (Romans 13:1-6).
A Thought from Proverbs: To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice (21:3).
Through the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt and Pharaoh (Deuteronomy 26:8). Jesus left His home in Heaven to deliver us from Satan and his control (Galatians 1:3-4).
24:10 to fetch his pledge = to secure collateral; 24:11 abroad = outside; 24:12 not sleep with his pledge = not to keep it overnight; 25:8 stand to it = still refuses; 25:18 smote the hindmost of thee = struck down those who were feeble and lagging behind; 26:5 Syrian = wandering Aramean; 26:17 avouched = openly declared; 27:16 setteth light = dishonors; 27:17 removeth his neighbor's landmark = move the boundary landmark between his land and his neighbor's to enlarge his own property.
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Optional Reading: Luke 24
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:13