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Bible Pathways 03/08/2002

March 08

Read Deuteronomy 21 -- 23

In Today's Reading:

Explanations of civil laws covering all aspects of life. Who should keep them? Is anyone exempt?

Verse for Today:

You shall not see your brother's ox or his sheep go astray, and hide yourself from them: you shall in any case bring them again to your brother (Deuteronomy 22:1).


Laws concerning unsolved murders, female war captives, rebellious sons, marriage, divorce, responsibility toward another's property, exclusion from the congregation, sanitation and human relations.

The Israelites had been taught that everything belonged to God and they were only caretakers of His possessions. Because of their covenant relationship with the Lord, they even were responsible for the welfare of their neighbor's property (see Deuteronomy 22:1-4).

Under the laws of our country, we may not be held legally responsible for failing to prevent someone else's financial loss. But our stewardship responsibility to God requires that we respond to another's needs in a spirit of Christlike love.

In our Lord's Sermon on the Mount, He taught His followers to go far beyond merely helping preserve the property of a neighbor. As His disciples, we must bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you . . . that you may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven (Matthew 5:44-45).

The person we help may or may not appreciate or deserve the kindness shown. Our responsibility, however, is not to the person who needs our help, but to the Lord, Who is the true Owner of all things. Our Lord provides continual opportunities for us to express His love to others by meeting their needs.

The Apostle John was led to remind us: Let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth (1 John 3:18).

A Thought from Psalms: I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed (119:46).

Christ Revealed:

Christ was foreshadowed in the Law that, if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and you hang him on a tree: His body shall not remain all night upon the tree (Deuteronomy 22:22-23). Jesus died on the cross in our place, submitting to the penalty of death imposed by the Law for our sins (21:23). Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law (Galatians 3:13). Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:3).

Word Studies:

21:4 rough valley = valley with running water; eared = plowed; strike off = cut the throat; 21:5 every stroke = every case of dispute; 21:12 pare = cut; 21:13 bewail = mourn; 21:15 hated = disliked, unloved; 22:3 ass = donkey; hide thyself = remain indifferent or turn away; 22:6 dam = mother bird; 22:8 battlement = guard railing around the edge of the flat rooftop; 22:9 divers seeds = more than one kind of seed; 22:12 fringes = tasselled strings; 22:18 chastise = rebuke and whip; 22:19 amerce = fine; 22:25 force = rape; 22:30 discover his father's skirt = commit adultery with his father's wife; 23:19 lend upon usury = charge interest.

Prayer Needs:

Government Official: Sen. George Allen (VA) · Pray for one more person to read through the Bible · Country: Turkey (66 million) in Asia Minor and southeastern Europe · Major languages: Turkish, Kurdish, and Arabic · Official resistance to Christian witnessing · 99+% Muslim; .5% Christian · Prayer Suggestion: Encourage others to praise the Lord throughout the day (Psalms 67:5).

Optional Reading: Luke 23

Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:13

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