Deuteronomy 22-28- For our protection!

Among the various laws we read over the week, I was left pondering........a lot!! Some of what we read was strange!

Yet, one verse stood out to me like a light bringing clarity to it all!!
"For the Lord moves about in your camp to protect you and deliver your enemies to you." (23:14)

I love that!!! God gave us laws to use for "teaching, correcting and rebuking" (2 Tim. 3:16) because He loves us!! He wants to protect us!

I also had this thought, while I was reading all those rules, like a parent with a child, we don't always get the "why" behind the rule.  At times, I have given a rule to one of my kids and just expected obedience because of my relationship with that child.  My kids know I love them and want the best for them, so for the most part, they obey the rules of the house without asking why. Actually, most of the time, they can figure out the "why" without asking.

I noticed that a lot of the rules God put forth in the Law have obvious, good intentions that don't need explaining, even in our day and age (i.e. "cover up your excrement" 23:13).  We don't need that explained!  Yet, there are a lot of laws I would love further clarification! Instead, I'm left pondering. However, just because I can't figure out the "why" doesn't mean I toss the Law out like it's irrelevant.

Here is one law that actually came with a "why" and I still needed help understanding it.  "If the guilty person deserves to be beaten, the judge shall make them lie down and have them flogged in his presence with the number of lashes the crime deserves, but the judge must not impose more than forty lashes.  If the guilty party is flogged more than that, your fellow Israelite will be downgraded in your eyes." (25:2-3)
What does that mean, that the fellow Israelite will be downgraded? (I asked myself)
One commentary explained that the beating was not to scar or maim the fellow brother so that the possibility remained for him to be able to "return to his dignity". (Obviously, the Romans took this form of discipline too far.) The wrong doer was not to be treated as an animal.

That explanation is amazing to me!! God is always looking to restore people!  Yes, one needs to be disciplined for wrongdoing, but there is always another day, another chance to do right! God doesn't want his people to carry scars from past sins forever!   How loving of God to provide that rule!!!

How about you?  Did you feel inspired to do some extra digging to figure out how some of those odd rules are rooted in love and useful for teaching today? I would love to hear what you discovered or discover!


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