Text: Deuteronomy 19:1-10 (KJV)
1 When the LORD thy God hath cut off the nations, whose land the LORD thy God giveth thee, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their cities, and in their houses;
2 Thou shalt separate three cities for thee in the midst of thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it.
3 Thou shalt prepare thee a way, and divide the coasts of thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee to inherit, into three parts, that every slayer may flee thither.
4 And this is the case of the slayer, which shall flee thither, that he may live: Whoso killeth his neighbour ignorantly, whom he hated not in time past;
5 As when a man goeth into the wood with his neighbour to hew wood, and his hand fetcheth a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head slippeth from the helve, and lighteth upon his neighbour, that he die; he shall flee unto one of those cities, and live:
6 Lest the avenger of the blood pursue the slayer, while his heart is hot, and overtake him, because the way is long, and slay him; whereas he was not worthy of death, inasmuch as he hated him not in time past.
7 Wherefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt separate three cities for thee.
8 And if the LORD thy God enlarge thy coast, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, and give thee all the land which he promised to give unto thy fathers;
9 If thou shalt keep all these commandments to do them, which I command thee this day, to love the LORD thy God, and to walk ever in his ways; then shalt thou add three cities more for thee, beside these three:
10 That innocent blood be not shed in thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and so blood be upon thee.
Key Verse: “That innocent blood be not shed in thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and so blood be upon thee.” – (Deuteronomy 19:10)
A professor of medicine in a world-acclaimed medical school, in an attempt to explain the sanctity of life, posed a medical situation, which was an ethical problem to his students. He said, “Here’s the family history: The father has syphilis, and the mother has tuberculosis (TB). They already have four children. The first is blind. The second has died. The third is deaf. The fourth has TB. Now, the mother is pregnant again and they come to you for advice. They are willing to have an abortion, if you decide they should. What do you say?” All the students recommended abortion. Satirically, the professor said, “Congratulations” but added, “You just took the life of Beethoven!” Reason was that the medical history which he gave was that of Ludwig Van Beethoven, who some experts in music widely considered as the greatest pianist and composer of all times.
From our text, it is obvious that God bestows great value on human life and rights. He treasures life so much that He made ample provisions for its protection, preservation and maximum safety. Commandments were given to separate three cities of refuge, where the ignorant slayer might flee to, so there won’t be any case of innocent bloodshed in the land.
Unfortunately, in many countries especially in Africa, innocent blood is being shed almost on a daily basis either for political, religious or ritual purposes. Governments seem to be unable to handle these killings that have kept the populace in perennial tears and insecurity.
If the Lord places such a great value on physical life, imagine what greater value He would have put on the spiritual life of man! Knowing that the human soul is made to live eternally, care must be taken to ensure that our brief moment on earth does not jeopardise our eternal rest with God.
Thought For The Day: What value do you place on your soul and the souls of others?
The Bible In One Year: Psalm 89-91
DCLM Daily Manna was written by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi; is the founder and General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church situated at KM 42 on the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Nigeria.
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