The Importance of a Reputation for Peacefulness
Today’s reading: Numbers 34:1-36:13
My selection: Numbers 35:22-24
22 “But if he pushed him suddenly without enmity, or hurled anything on him without lying in wait 23 or used a stone that could cause death, and without seeing him dropped it on him, so that he died, though he was not his enemy and did not seek his harm, 24 then the congregation shall judge between the manslayer and the avenger of blood, in accordance with these rules.
A key factor in determining the guilt of a manslayer was the history of his relationship with the victim. If they were not enemies in the past this would weigh in favor of the manslayer. If there had been a history of enmity between them, this would indicate possible guilt in the case.
Two observations here:
1. It pays to do everything possible to maintain peace with others. Paul wrote in Romans 12:16, 18
16 Live in harmony with one another… 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
2. It is important to exercise extreme care when involved with others in any kind of dangerous activity. We are called to preserve life and that includes keeping the rule “safety first”. This should include driving within the speed limit as well as sports and work situations where others can be harmed.
My challenge: To cause the death of another is a horrible thing. Beware of setting up any situation that would bring a lifetime of regret. Try to resolve conflicts promptly. Be known for peacefulness.
Tomorrow’s reading: Deuteronomy 1:1-3:11