Tag Archives: politics

Exodus 22 – Holy Men

The legal code continues.  This (i want to call it a project because i am used to doing projects such as i am doing now) work that God is doing with the Israelite people was a relatively new thing.  God was personally setting up the government of a nation for that nation.  He was establishing the rules, laws, and regulations for a nation of 1,000,000+ people.  As a result there was a whole lot of ground to cover.  The nice thing is that there wasn’t a whole bunch of politics going on.  It was clear cut and straight forward.  God said it… it was so.

Here we focus on personal property and what happens when something is stolen, lost by another, or destroyed.  It also looks at various relationships and abuse.  There is a focus on lending and firstfruits to the LORD.

What i really like about this chapter are two verses, 28 & 31.  Verse 28 says; “You shall not curse God, nor curse a ruler of your people.”  It sets a precedent early on that says to treat not only YHWH but also the rulers of the people with respect.  I honestly believe that one of the big problems with our culture today is this mentality that it’s all about me.  Those in authority are here to serve ME, and i have every right to bash them publicly if they are doing something i don’t like.  I know that this is such a common thing that we don’t think twice about it.  I also know that we feel justified to do this because we are in a democratic republic, but that’s not what God says.  He says don’t “curse a ruler of your people“.  Can we disagree?  Absolutely!  Should we voice our opinion publicly?  To some extent.  Should we insult, ostracize, or otherwise denigrate our leaders?  Absolutely not!  Christ said to love those who hate you and pray for those who despitefully use you.  We are to stand up and bring them before God seeking YHWH’s will praying for guidance and direction for them.

All of this is summed up in the beginning of the end of the chapter; “You shall be holy men to Me“.  We are not to act like self-centered and self-focused men and women.  We are to be holy to God.  Set apart to do His good will.

 

John Camiolo

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Genesis 14 – Abram

So who is Abram, and what makes him so special?  This chapter, while mostly not about Abram, gives us a great picture of who he is and what makes him so different.

The majority of this chapter is all about politics.  Five kings came up in battle against four.  One king Chedorlaomor had subjugated numerous other nations for 12 years, these other nations ended up rebelling, a bunch of other stuff happened, and there was a battle.  Five kings came up in battle against four.  In the end, the kings and armies of Sodom and Gomorrah fled.  When that happened, the enemies of these kings came and took spoils of war.  As part of those spoils, they kidnapped Lot, his family and things, and a bunch of other people and goods.

Needless to say, Abram was not too pleased with this turn of events, so he set out to resolve the issue.  So he took 318 men born in his house and pursued the victors.  He got back Lot and all that was his, as well as the other spoils taken from Sodom and Gomorrah.

I found it interesting that through much of this chapter, Abram does what he can to avoid the politics of the day.  He remains neutral in any way he can.  He does not take part in the fight.  In fact, it appears that he avoids it.  He is not interested in getting involved in petty disputes.  However, when it hits home (Lot is taken) then he turns around, takes a group of men (much smaller than the armies he is pursuing), attacks and drives off the victors.  Then, not only does he not desire reward from those he helps, but he refuses to take anything apart from the food that his people ate (after he pays tithe to the King of Salem, priest of the Most High God no less).  Why?  Because he does not want the other kings to be able to turn around and say, “Look, I made Abram rich.”  He is not interested in politics and trading favors.  He is interested in what is just, righteous, and holy.  Are we more interested in what is right, or what we can get out of a deal?

Also of note in this chapter:  We see El-Elyon (God Most High) and YHWH El-Elyon (YHWH God Most High) used what appears to be for the first time in this chapter.  We see the Melchizadek king of Salem referred to as the priest of El-Elyon, and Abram tells the king of Sodom that he has sworn to YHWH (the LORD) El-Elyon, possessor of heaven and earth that he would not take even a thread from the spoils.

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