Monday, July 9, 2012

kings and control

Good morning friends,
After God freed Israel from slavery God led them in the wilderness to shape them into the holy people God called them to be. A big part of that shaping was the Law, and Deuteronomy is a review of story and law as Moses finishes preparing Israel to enter the Promised Land. In this section, Moses talks about the rules for having a king. As we continue the story we'll see that the concerns expressed in this part of the law are well founded. Humans are addicted to power, so we need to approach any power with great caution.

God bless,


Deuteronomy 17:14-20
14When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and have taken possession of it and settled in it, and you say, “I will set a king over me, like all the nations that are around me,” 15you may indeed set over you a king whom the Lord your God will choose. One of your own community you may set as king over you; you are not permitted to put a foreigner over you, who is not of your own community.

16Even so, he must not acquire many horses for himself, or return the people to Egypt in order to acquire more horses, since the Lord has said to you, “You must never return that way again.” 17And he must not acquire many wives for himself, or else his heart will turn away; also silver and gold he must not acquire in great quantity for himself.

18When he has taken the throne of his kingdom, he shall have a copy of this law written for him in the presence of the levitical priests. 19It shall remain with him and he shall read in it all the days of his life, so that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, diligently observing all the words of this law and these statutes, 20neither exalting himself above other members of the community nor turning aside from the commandment, either to the right or to the left, so that he and his descendants may reign long over his kingdom in Israel.

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