1664.) Deuteronomy 24

“God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble,” says James 4:6. As you read these Old Testament laws, consider what more we could do in our modern-day culture to give grace and to restrain exploitation and greed, all for the sake for protecting the needy.

Deuteronomy 24 (English Standard Version)

Laws Concerning Divorce

Deu24 ball-and-chain

Matthew 19:7-8 (NIV)

“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning.”

1“When a man takes a wife and marries her, if then she finds no favor in his eyes because he has found some indecency in her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce and puts it in her hand and sends her out of his house, and she departs out of his house, 2and if she goes and becomes another man’s wife, 3and the latter man hates her and writes her a certificate of divorce and puts it in her hand and sends her out of his house, or if the latter man dies, who took her to be his wife, 4then her former husband, who sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after she has been defiled, for that is an abomination before the LORD. And you shall not bring sin upon the land that the LORD your God is giving you for an inheritance.

Divorce may leave a woman, especially a mom, in difficult financial straights.

Miscellaneous Laws

5 “When a man is newly married, he shall not go out with the army or be liable for any other public duty. He shall be free at home one year to be happy with his wife whom he has taken.

God recognizes that newlyweds are needy; they benefit from community support to become a strong marriage.

Deuteronomy 24:5 (KJV)

When a man hath taken a new wife, he . . . shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken.

6“No one shall take a mill or an upper millstone in pledge, for that would be taking a life in pledge.

A mill was used to grind grain into flour to make bread.  Taking the millstone would render a needy family unable to make food to eat, since bread was the staple of their existence.

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Music:

For us, too — “Bread of Heaven,” Jesus Christ — the One we cannot live without, the One who feeds us, nourishes us, strengthens us, lives in us.

HERE  Fred Hammond leads us as we worship Jesus.

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7 “If a man is found stealing one of his brothers of the people of Israel, and if he treats him as a slave or sells him, then that thief shall die. So you shall purge the evil from your midst.

Kidnapping is the only theft in the Old Testament punishable by death, for the thief has stolen a life.

8“Take care, in a case of leprous disease, to be very careful to do according to all that the Levitical priests shall direct you. As I commanded them, so you shall be careful to do. 9Remember what the LORD your God did to Miriam on the way as you came out of Egypt.

God requires responsible health care for the sake of the whole community.

10“When you make your neighbor a loan of any sort, you shall not go into his house to collect his pledge. 11You shall stand outside, and the man to whom you make the loan shall bring the pledge out to you. 12And if he is a poor man, you shall not sleep in his pledge. 13 You shall restore to him the pledge as the sun sets, that he may sleep in his cloak and bless you. And it shall be righteousness for you before the LORD your God.

Human dignity matters.  Poverty robs a person of so much, but the poor should be allowed to control what they still own and should be given respect in their own homes.

14“You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether he is one of your brothers or one of the sojourners who are in your land within your towns. 15 You shall give him his wages on the same day, before the sun sets (for he is poor and counts on it), lest he cry against you to the LORD, and you be guilty of sin.

The conditions of work should be fair and the payment for work should be prompt.


16 “Fathers shall not be put to death because of their children, nor shall children be put to death because of their fathers. Each one shall be put to death for his own sin.

If one is found guilty of a capital offense, vengeance must not be taken on innocent family members. Additionally, God commanded that each individual be responsible for his or her own sin. Parents cannot be blamed and responsible for the sin of their (grown) children, and the children cannot be blamed and responsible for the sin of their parents.

17 “You shall not pervert the justice due to the sojourner or to the fatherless, or take a widow’s garment in pledge, 18but you shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt and the LORD your God redeemed you from there; therefore I command you to do this. 19 When you reap your harvest in your field and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it. It shall be for the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. 20When you beat your olive trees, you shall not go over them again. It shall be for the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow. 21When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not strip it afterward. It shall be for the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow.

This law was a way of helping the poor by establishing the right of the gleaner. It commanded farmers to have a generous heart, and it made a way for the poor to provide for their own needs with dignity. (See Ruth 2.)

22 You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt; therefore I command you to do this.”

Those who do not, for various reason, have a share in the ownership of the land are still to be given a chance to share in the blessing of the land.

In a variation on that theme -- the national parks allow everyone to enjoy some of the most remarkable features of the land, its landscapes, flora, and fauna -- for relaxation, recreation, and education.

In a variation on that theme — the national parks allow everyone to enjoy some of the most remarkable features of the land, its landscapes, flora, and fauna — for relaxation, recreation, and education.

Click  here  to see a map with all the U.S. National Parks identified.

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English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
Stop exploitation.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/24-exploitation1.jpg
ball and chain.    http://tws1.ftwmedia.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/ball-and-chain-wedding-cake-toppers.jpg
happy bride.    http://media.merchantcircle.com/19484716/wedding%20dj_full.jpeg
child at clinic.    http://www.chc-mckinney.com/img/cdc_clinic1024.jpg
paycheck.    https://www.edgarsnyder.com/images/large-550/legal/giving-check.jpg
U. S. National Parks.    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c5/US-NationalParkService-ShadedLogo.svg/2000px-US-NationalParkService-ShadedLogo.svg.png
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