Sunday, November 1, 2009

57: Refuge & Numbers: In Review

Numbers 35-36
God tells Moses that he should give the Levites six "towns of refuge" that people who have killed someone can flee to. In the next paragraph it says the towns of refuge are for people who have killed accidentally, but it is unclear if they are still talking about the same towns.

It goes on to say people that kill in anger should be immediately killed, but people who have accidentally killed should be protected. This seems ok until you read the fine print. If you accidentally kill someone you have to stay in a city of refuge. If you leave the city of refuge and go back to your home, you can be killed for accidentally killing someone. So you're essentially imprisoned in this city. The only way you are allowed out is if the high priest dies. Huh? What does the high priest's death have to do with anything? And how is this a fair punishment? The high priest could die in 2 days or 40 years. This also begs the question, what happens when someone accidentally kills someone in a city of refuge?

Numbers 36 essentially spells out how Israelites can't marry with other clans. So they all marry their cousins, the perfect solution.

Numbers: In Review
Nothing terribly exciting or original happens in Numbers. The Israelites complain about their hardships some more and God punishes them some more. They count all the Israelites a couple of times. Aaron dies, the Israelites destroy a few more civilizations. Oh, and lets not forget the talking donkeys.

Deuteronomy is next. We'll hope for something interesting.
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