Sunday, March 15, 2009

15 March 2009: 3rd Sunday in Lent

Deuteronomy 24:1-22

Today's lesson is an interestin combination, mostly showing the mercy of the Lord. The lesson starts straight out on marriage. If a man divorces his wife, she marries another, and they divorce, she is not to return to her first husband. It would be detestabel

The second lesson is probably something more applicable today. It basically defines a honeymoon as a year. I think there is great wisdom in this, and it would be wonderful if we could fully apply this to all newly weds, that within reason they should not be separated from each other durnig the first year of mariage so they can truly get to know each other.

Continuining and jumping around a bit, a principle is laid out that if we were to apply it today, life would be much easier for any. We are not to take someone's means of livelihood as a guarantee of a payment. The Israelites were agricultural, and the millstone was necesary to make bread, the staff of life. LIekwise we treat the person we are loaning to with respect. We do not enter his house to collect the surety, we allow him to bring it to us. Even more important, if that surety is something he needs to live, we are not to keep it. The example given is a cloak, with which the poor not only used as a coat in the cold, but as a blanket as well.

We go on, no kidnapping, and listen to what the doctors say about disease, so that it will not spread.

Do not keep back wages. In other words pay your employees on time. Also treat everyone fairly, not only our brothers, but the stranger in the land as well. Each person is to be punished for his own sins. The son is not held responsable for what his father has done, nor is the father held repsonsable for wht the son has done, in ohter words we are to be responsable for our own actions.

The last in practice is maybe the most difficult to apply. A person is only to harvest his field once. Anything he missed is to be left for the poor the widow and the orphan. In other words, we are to help the helpless, but do so in such a way that allows them their dignity. For example, when working with street kids in Honduras, I did not just give them food. I would send them on errands, or even have them help in the kitchen or get coconuts. to allow them to feel that they were earning there own keep.

The lesson today is truly a mixed hodgepodge, but the principles apply even today.

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