Exodus 21:22 If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.
23 And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,
24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
25 Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.
The Lord gave laws to protect innocent life and punish those guilty of harming others. In the midst of these laws, the Bible has a section devoted to a scenario of what might occur when two men strive with each other. During their conflict, they might hurt a woman who was with child causing her to lose her unborn child. The conflict is literal or physical and the problems resulting are literal or physical, but one cannot miss the spiritual truth disclosed. When two people strive, those not even involved in the initial conflict suffer consequences. Before two people decide to take part in strife, they would be wise to consider how their contentious behaviour affects the innocent people around them.
∙ (For children): Adam and Eve loved their sons very much. They suffered when Cain killed his brother Abel. Abel was dead and Cain had to leave home and wander from place to place (Genesis 4:1-12).
∙ (For everyone): Have you ever been hurt by strife although you were not directly involved? Was your hurt any less than that of those who took part in the strife?
∙ What are some good examples where strife harms the innocent (i.e., church, home, workplace)? Why is it important to think about the consequences of strife before partaking in it?
∙ Ask God to protect the innocent in times of strife.
∙ Thank God for the times He has shielded you from harm.
SONG: TAKE TIME TO BE HOLY
Quotes from the next volume
(VOLUME 4, WEEK 10)
Sin makes a terrible mess of man’s conscience.
Only the blood of Jesus Christ can purge a man’s conscience from dead works to serve the living God.