Okay...I"m back from the bball game and here! We WON!!! We smoked 'em!! Wahhoooo! They play tomorrow night at 8:00 and have to win that game to get to go to state next week!
Chapter 35 The Israelites are supposed to share. Just like JJ and his tractors, they have to give and share some with others. They are to give pasturelands to the Levites because they were not entitled to a tribal inheritance. The 6 cities of refuge represent an attempt to restrain the tribal law of blood revenge so that a killer might receive a trial. Early legislation stipulated that a person might seek asylum from the "avenger" or next of kin. It was their duty to to uphold family rights by killing the murderer or a relative. This avenger of blood was to be the closes male relative of any individual who has been killed. This can though lead to retaliation and unfortunately, there is a real possibility that those accused of manslaughter will themselves be killed before they have an opportunity to stand trial. So....God established these cities of refuge as a response to this problem. These are to be a place of temporary sanctuary for those who have been killed accidentally. The blood pollutes the land in the midst of where the Lord dwells, or "tabernacles." so only blood can atone for the sins of the crime. Murder is far more than an act against society. It is a violation against creation, inducing a debt to the land. Not a single life is expendable in God's land! In the year of Jubilee, the fields are to be fallowed (harvest and plowed but nothing re-seeded). Slaves are to be set free, and debts are cancelled in remembrance of all that belongs to God.
Chapter 36 Bottom line of this chapter is about keeping the tribal land intact. The women who inherit land must not marry outside of their own tribe. That is after all what they've been trying to get throughout the whole story. How to live in the promised land. This has been a manual for just that....for the Israelites and for us! How to live in the promised land and how to live a holy life with God! Amen? Amen!!!
Tomorrow: an intro to Deuteronomy and chapters 1-2!