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What is Fair and Just? Do We Know?

What is Fair and Just?
Jeremie Webb

Today’s Torah Commentary from Exodus 22:4 – 26
The Second Book of the Torah, “Shemot,” “Names.”
This weeks reading is “Mishpatim,” “Judgments.”
Today we continue reading the “rest of the commandments.”

GOD continues with HIS instructions concerning judgments over the day to day living of HIS people.

HIS judgements here are concerning restitution between people in cases of negligence.

HE starts with loose livestock grazing in another’s fields and the restitution from the best of the owners fields.

The judgment of fire’s that get out of control, responsibility of one holding, or watching articles of another.

In every case of dishonesty, the courts must declare guilt, then restitution is made in double back to the injured party.

In cases of livestock being tended to by another, as well as the harm done to articles borrowed, and even leased.

If a man seduces a virgin who is not betrothed, he must pay the dowry to her father, regardless of marriage, which is determined also by her father.

HE also instructs us to, “not allow a sorceress to live.”

HE then continues with matters of ‘beastiality,’ sacrificing to other gods, and mistreatment of foreigners, widows and orphans. If we participate in these practices we are to be, “put to death.” If we mistreat these people and they cry out to HIM, HE will hear them and “kill you by the sword.”

When we lend money to HIS people, specifically the poor, we are not to press them for repayment, or collect interest from them.

If we take our neighbors garment as collateral for a loan, we must return it before sunset. This alone is his covering, he must have it back to sleep.

GOD finishes this portion of judgements off with “I am compassionate.”

These judgements follow the principles of life we would want to follow today.

We have multiple laws of the books concerning matters of injury, negligence, inequality and injustice.

Isn’t it funny how GOD had already made these judgements not only for the nation before HIM at the time, but for all people who choose to follow HIM?

Have you ever considered these judgements in place today and what difference they would make in our society.

What would happen to our community of believers if we chose to follow these judgements today?

Why haven’t we taken the initiative to truly live as GOD has instructed?

We say we follow HIS commandments, HIS Mitzvah’s, yet do we practice these judgements in our lives today?

Do we lend without interest, without expecting payment, without pressure, without a change of attitude towards someone if they don’t repay or respond in the way we expect?

Do we offer “double restitution” to those who have trusted us, or to those whom we have accidentally wronged in any way?

What of the widows, the orphans, the needy, have we visited with them offering them whatever assistance they may need?

Could we truly take on ALL of the judgments of GOD here, not seeing them as “commandments” or as “law” but as judgments of how we are to live, react and respond to our everyday lives, as well as the lives of those around us?

If we did enact these judgments into our own lives, living them, not just following them, how different would our lives become?

What are your thoughts on these scriptures?

Leave your comments below, OR, if you have questions, click HERE.

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