Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Commandment regarding the poor

But there will be no poor among you; for the Lord will bless you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you for an inheritance to possess—if only you will strictly obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all this commandment that I command you today. For the Lord your God will bless you, as he promised you, and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow, and you shall rule over many nations, but they shall not rule over you. (Deuteronomy 15:4-6, ESV)

I've read this before, but it is an extraordinary command regarding:
  1. How a nation should be a lender, not a borrower, and in being so, rules over them
  2. There are to be no poor among you - and the chapter goes on to describe an economic system for how that is to take place.
See also v. 11 - that we will always have the poor with us.

It's been very interesting to read this section of scripture as a systems engineer and see how God was creating a whole way of life for his people.  That includes a law system, an economic system, cultural norms, and a whole worship system.  The whole thing admitted of The Fall and sin, and yet pointed the people to God and His grace and how to show that to each other.  This whole system was utterly different from the people around them.

I wonder how different just our family looks from our culture, or how much our church family looks different?  Admittedly, we're in a very Christianized area with many churches, so some things will not look different, but some will - and should.

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