Deuteronomy 24 | Biblical Marriage
Deuteronomy 24 1When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house. 2And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife. 3And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; 4Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance. 5When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken. 6No man shall take the nether or the upper millstone to pledge: for he taketh a man's life to pledge. 7If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or selleth him; then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put evil away from among you. 8Take heed in the plague of leprosy, that thou observe diligently, and do according to all that the priests the Levites shall teach you: as I commanded them, so ye shall observe to do. 9Remember what the LORD thy God did unto Miriam by the way, after that ye were come forth out of Egypt. 10When thou dost lend thy brother any thing, thou shalt not go into his house to fetch his pledge. 11Thou shalt stand abroad, and the man to whom thou dost lend shall bring out the pledge abroad unto thee. 12And if the man be poor, thou shalt not sleep with his pledge: 13In any case thou shalt deliver him the pledge again when the sun goeth down, that he may sleep in his own raiment, and bless thee: and it shall be righteousness unto thee before the LORD thy God. 14Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of thy strangers that are in thy land within thy gates: 15At his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it; for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it: lest he cry against thee unto the LORD, and it be sin unto thee. 16The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin. 17Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger, nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow's raiment to pledge: 18But thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee thence: therefore I command thee to do this thing. 19When thou cuttest down thine harvest in thy field, and hast forgot a sheaf in the field, thou shalt not go again to fetch it: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow: that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hands. 20When thou beatest thine olive tree, thou shalt not go over the boughs again: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow. 21When thou gatherest the grapes of thy vineyard, thou shalt not glean it afterward: it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow. 22And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt: therefore I command thee to do this thing.
Today's Scripture Meaning:
Of divorce. (1-4) Of new-married persons, Of man-stealers, Of pledges. (5-13) Of justice and generosity. (14-22) Verses 1-4: Where the providence of God, or his own wrong choice in marriage, has allotted to a Christian a trial instead of a help meet; he will from his heart prefer bearing the cross, to such relief as tends to sin, confusion, and misery. Divine grace will sanctify this cross, support under it, and teach so to behave, as will gradually render it more tolerable. Verses 5-13: It is of great consequence that love be kept up between husband and wife; that they carefully avoid every thing which might make them strange one to another. Man-stealing was a capital crime, which could not be settled, as other thefts, by restitution. The laws concerning leprosy must be carefully observed. Thus all who feel their consciences under guilt and wrath, must not cover it, or endeavour to shake off their convictions; but by repentance, and prayer, and humble confession, take the way to peace and pardon. Some orders are given about pledges for money lent. This teaches us to consult the comfort and subsistence of others, as much as our own advantage. Let the poor debtor sleep in his own raiment, and praise God for thy kindness to him. Poor debtors ought to feel more than commonly they do, the goodness of creditors who do not take all the advantage of the law against them, nor should this ever be looked upon as weakness. Verses 14-22: It is not hard to prove that purity, piety, justice, mercy, fair conduct, kindness to the poor and destitute, consideration for them, and generosity of spirit, are pleasing to God, and becoming in his redeemed people. The difficulty is to attend to them in our daily walk and conversation.
Today's Scripture Application Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the book of Deuteronomy with Chapter 24 and we see principles for marriage and divorce as the new couple was to spend one year together without work or military service to strengthen the Marriage bond. In the betrothal process the home was to be prepared to allow this process to happen. What a wonderful idea to start a Marriage strong. In divorce some might misread the principles of today's text as the Lord agrees with divorce but this was not the will of God but rather the law in the process of the hardened heart of the married couple. These verses show us more of the heart of our Lord when it comes to Marriage, a man and woman making a promise before God. The 2 become one and the relationship which the Lord sees as Holy Matrimony. In making application as I stated on Monday our society is far from the heart of the Lord when it comes to Marriage with 60% ending in divorce. If we would apply Biblical Principles to our marriages our results would get closer to the heart of God with none ending in divorce. How about you? Do you embrace Biblical Principles when it comes to Marriage? Let us study the Scriptures and apply them to Marriage so that we will attain a Biblical Marriage.
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Sincerely, Dr. David Burnette
Director, The United States Bible Society, Inc.