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Deuteronomy 23-25:19

I have gone through these three chapters about four times trying to get a change of focus but I’m stuck on verses two and three of the 23rd chapter.

2"Those of illegitimate birth and their descendants for ten generations may not be included in the assembly of the LORD.

3"No Ammonites or Moabites, or any of their descendants for ten generations, may be included in the assembly of the LORD.

I realize that we are operating under a new covenant but I can’t help think that there is something more here than meets “my” eye because of what little I know of the scriptures.

“Assembly of the LORD,” what is it? Is this considered all of Israel (actually Israel as well as spiritual), or is this leadership, elders of the religious community or political or possibly both? I’m going through the Bible using the One Year Bible and these two verses in Deuteronomy 23 have arrested my attention.

I know that Ruth, Naomi’s daughter-in-law was a Moabite and she was David’s grandmother (1 Chronicles 2:10-13) so how does that fact fit in with what the third verse of Deut 23 states? I’m thinking that all of this, verse 2 and 3 has something to do with lifestyle choices and that is what causes you to be Israel and or a Moabite. Judah produced two sons out of wedlock and by his daughter-in-law (Gen. 38) Tamar who were in Jesus’ lineage. And yes I know that this discretion happened before the Law was given to Moses. Also one of Israel’s judges, Jephthah was born out of wedlock (Judges 11). So what does this all mean?

Funny how we get stuck on things that seem to make no sense, but I’ve learned if I stuck on something God is trying to show me something or at least trying to get me to see things from a different perspective.

Deuteronomy 25:
17 "Never forget what the Amalekites did to you as you came from Egypt. 18 They attacked you when you were exhausted and weary, and they struck down those who were lagging behind. They had no fear of God. 19 Therefore, when the LORD your God has given you rest from all your enemies in the land he is giving you as a special possession, you are to destroy the Amalekites and erase their memory from under heaven. Never forget this!


Again here is something that flies in the face of forgive and forget. And yes I know that we are under a different covenant; however, in the fourth verse of chapter 23 God commands Israel to behave differently toward the Egyptians, who held them in bondage, and the Edomites, descendents of Esau. I’m still thinking that there is something in the way each of these mentioned nations have chosen to conduct their society that determines Israel’s treatment of them. I do know that all of the mentioned nations worshiped a multitude of gods. So I think that each nation’s character must have something to do with how Israel interacts with them. I think I’m focused on this because this might have implications for us today.
Luke 10:13-37

In Luke 10 this conversation is recorded, 25 One day an expert in religious law stood up to test Jesus by asking him this question: "Teacher, what must I do to receive eternal life?"
26 Jesus replied, "What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?"

One of the reasons why I love going through the scriptures for myself is because God has invited me too. Jesus asked this religious expert, “How do you read it?” In short He was telling the man, just as he tells us today, “Don’t’ give me what someone else’s has said, tell me what you think?” Throughout scripture God has invites us to dialogue with Him out His Word. And if we are truly seeking truth, when we are wrong about reading a scripture, God will engage us in dialogue. He won’t slap us silly, He want call us neither stupid nor “dingbat.” I know this for a fact because He has lovingly engaged and corrected me.

“Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool. (Isaiah 1:18)

Most of the time our understanding of the text is right is just our application may be off.

Psalm 75:1-10
1 We thank you, O God!
We give thanks because you are near.
People everywhere tell of your mighty miracles.

Sometimes I invite myself to my very own pity party and I think at work, at play or wherever, that I’m the only bible believing Christian and I’m in the midst of a “bunch of heathens.” That is a lie. This text tells me that there are people everywhere talking about God and what He has done. I’m just not listening because I’m focusing on little ole me and thinking I’m all that and a bag of chips!


Proverbs 12:12-14
14 People can get many good things by the words they say; the work of their hands also gives them many benefits.

This seems to be just another way of saying we reap what we sow.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

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