Bible Reading and Commentary for the Week March 20-25, 2017

Bible Reading and Commentary for the Week
March 20-25, 2017

Monday, March 20, Deuteronomy 19
Vv. 2-20 — This chapter deals with 6 cities in the Promised Land which the Lord wanted set aside in case someone accidentally killed another Israelite. The person could flee to safety in the “city of refuge” closest to him. If the murder was intentional, the killer was to be handed over for execution. The “Avenger of Blood” was usually one of the closest relatives. Notice the care in the criminal justice system: two or three witnesses were required. A false witness received the punishment he was seeking for his enemy. (vv. 18-19)
v. 14 — “Boundary stones” were property markers. Moving them to increase your land was a serious crime because it was tampering with the way the Lord divided the Promised Land.

Tuesday, March 21, Deuteronomy 20
Vv. 1-4 — What enabled the Israelites to go forward with confidence? Can we go forward with the same confidence? (v. 4)
Vv. 16-18 — While this may seem cruel to us, we need to remember God is a just and righteous judge. He can look into the human heart and see the hardness, brutal cruelness and utter corruption that exist there. On Judgment Day, God’s punishment on the unrepentant sinner will far exceed this. How grateful we should be that by the grace of God, we are lambs and sheep in the fold of the Good Shepherd, heading for heaven.

Wednesday, March 22, Deuteronomy 21
Vv. 18-21 — How displeased God is with rebellious, unrepentant children is brought out in vv. 18-21. While our government today takes a much more liberal view toward rebellious children, children should not take lightly God’s warning in Prov. 30:17. God does carry out His threats. Obedient children of God who live in daily repentance and build their lives on Jesus will not feel the impact of God’s anger, but His gracious love and perfect blessings.
Vv. 22-23 — Those whose bodies were hung on a tree were accursed of God. Because of our sins, Jesus, the sinless Son of God, was placed on the tree of the cross. Think what humiliation He suffered for you and me! Because Jesus became the object of God’s wrath for us, we have this stupendous, glorious blessing! Read II Cor. 5:21 and I Cor. 15:21, 22.

Thursday, March 23, Deuteronomy 22
v. 5 — If the Lord detested this in the Old Testament times, wouldn’t He feel the same today? Because this was a part of the Mosaic Law and we are free from it (Cf. Col. 2:14-17), what we wear today is a part of our Christian freedom. However, keeping in mind the wisdom of God in making this law, it would be well for us to dress accordingly.
v. 12 — The purpose of wearing tassels on their clothing was to remind them to keep the Law. The movement of the tassels as they moved their bodies, was to focus their attention on their moral obligations to God’s Law. Read Num. 15:38, 39.
Vv. 13-30 — Notice how severely God dealt with adultery and rape (vv. 20-25). These were Jewish Civil Laws. Our government’s laws today also punish severely those who break certain parts of the 6th commandment.

Friday, March 24, Deuteronomy 23
Vv. 3-4 — The Ammonites and Moabites were descendants of the incestuous relationship of Lot with his daughters(Gen. 19:30-38).The background on Balaam is found in Num. 22-25, 31.
v. 7 — “Edomite” = a descendant of Esau (Gen. 36:9).
Vv. 17-18 — Heathen cults practiced prostitution and sexual perversion in connection with their worship. This was strictly forbidden by God in Israel.
v. 19 — How many Christians today show such kindness and mercy to fellow-Christians, even members of their own family? Only Christ-like love will move us to be a compassionate Christian.

Saturday, March 25, Deuteronomy 24
v. 1 — How does God feel about divorce? Read MalachI 2:16. Jesus explains the reason for this Jewish Civil Law in Matt. 19:8. Jesus permits divorce only on the basis of adultery. (Matt. 19:9)
v. 6 — Millstones were used for grinding grain to make bread. Taking away a millstone from an Israelite would be like taking away someone’s car today when he depended on it to get to work.
v. 16 — Even in the New Testament, the rule is no different. We are judged by God on the basis of our sin and not someone else’s. Through Jesus’ atonement on the cross, God assures us that He has forgiven us all our sins. Read Ps. 103:2, 3, 11, 12 and I John 1:7.
Vv. 19-22 — There was no government supported system of welfare in Israel.

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