Text: Exodus 21:12-25
12 He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death.
13 And if a man lie not in wait, but God deliver him into his hand; then I will appoint thee a place whither he shall flee.
14 But if a man come presumptuously upon his neighbour, to slay him with guile; thou shalt take him from mine altar, that he may die.
15 And he that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put to death.
16 And he that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death.
17 And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death.
18 And if men strive together, and one smite another with a stone, or with his fist, and he die not, but keepeth his bed:
19 If he rise again, and walk abroad upon his staff, then shall he that smote him be quit: only he shall pay for the loss of his time, and shall cause him to be thoroughly healed.
20 And if a man smite his servant, or his maid, with a rod, and he die under his hand; he shall be surely punished.
21 Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not be punished: for he is his money.
22 If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.
23 And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,
24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
25 Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.
Key Verse: “Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe” – (Exodus 21:24,25).
Jesus teaches on retaliation in the gospel of Matthew 5:38,39. He states, referring to the key verse “Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also”.
In the text, we read the Mosaic laws and punishment pertaining to fighting, murder, sales of human beings, assault of parents by children, grievous injury and miscarriage caused by another. It concludes in verses 24,25, “Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.”
God does not charge neither does His word or will. The Law was used to formulate the Ten Commandments; and the moral laws are there and still binding on the people. Jesus brought a finality to the word of God. “Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets: I am not come to destroy but to fulfil.”
Jesus came to fulfil the laws and not to destroy it. Therefore, all believers must obey these laws. Do to others as you want them to do unto you; spouses to each other, subordinate and superiors, members to their pastors and vice versa. In summary, all the laws are geared to love your neighbour as yourself. React to your neighbour in a way that their dignity is not taken away. You cannot overlook the law in your dealings and journey to eternity. The laws are given to us and would be used to judge us.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: God’s judgment will be based on the whole Scriptures.
THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Revelation 1-3