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Friday, January 17 2014

Deuteronomy 24: How Long Were They Slaves?

"Thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman"

The family of Israel (see Genesis 46: The First Census Of Israel) were welcomed into Egypt - an acceptance that saved their very lives from a great famine and drought. The Prime Minister of Egypt (second in authority only to the king) at that time was Joseph, one of the Israelite patriarchs (see Genesis 45: Joseph's Revelation).

"47:11 And Joseph placed his father and his brethren, and gave them a possession in the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the land of Rameses, as Pharaoh had commanded. 47:12 And Joseph nourished his father, and his brethren, and all his father's household, with bread, according to their families." (Genesis 47:11-12 KJV)

Egypt "47:27 And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they had possessions therein, and grew, and multiplied exceedingly." (Genesis 47:27 KJV)

Over the next four centuries (the great famine that they fled from in the land of Canaan lasted only a few years), the Israelites, rather than returning to their own homeland (see A Biography Of Jacob: The Jacobites Of Syria and Camped Out In Canaan), chose to remain in the well-watered Nile Delta region of Egypt. The Israelites then prospered and grew so much, while born there generation after generation, but nevertheless remaining apart, that a later king of Egypt began to fear the powerful multitude of political and religious aliens in their midst (see Exodus 1: I Will There Make Of Thee A Great Nation). It should be kept in mind that the harsh treatment and economic slavery suffered by the Israelites happened only for a few years, during the reign of just one Pharaoh.

"1:8 Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph. 1:9 And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we: 1:10 Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.

1:11 Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses. 1:12 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel. 1:13 And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve with rigour: 1:14 And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage, in morter, and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field: all their service, wherein they made them serve, was with rigour."

The numerous references to the Israelites being "bondmen" ("slaves") to Egypt actually refers only to the generation of Exodus. The Israelites were free and very wealthy in Egypt for centuries before the Exodus. That is the actual context (i.e. "thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt" - that one, at-the-time generation) of those applications of the Law of the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God).

Further examples (see also Deuteronomy 21: Applications Of The Law, Deuteronomy 22: Freedom - Or Free Ride? and Deuteronomy 23: Purity Of The Camp):

"24:1 When 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. 24:2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife. 24:3 And 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; 24:4 Her 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.

The Nile River 24:5 When 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.

24:6 No man shall take the nether or the upper millstone to pledge: for he taketh a man's life to pledge.

24:7 If 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.

24:8 Take 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. 24:9 Remember what the LORD thy God did unto Miriam by the way, after that ye were come forth out of Egypt.

24:10 When thou dost lend thy brother any thing, thou shalt not go into his house to fetch his pledge. 24:11 Thou shalt stand abroad, and the man to whom thou dost lend shall bring out the pledge abroad unto thee. 24:12 And if the man be poor, thou shalt not sleep with his pledge: 24:13 In 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.

24:14 Thou 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: 24:15 At 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.

24:16 The 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.

24:17 Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger, nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow's raiment to pledge: 24:18 But 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.

24:19 When 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. 24:20 When 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. 24:21 When 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. 24:22 And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt: therefore I command thee to do this thing." (Deuteronomy 24:1-22 KJV)

Fact Finder: Was the "gleaner's law" a reminder of how the Israelites had been both wealthy property owners and "slaves" in Egypt?
See The Gleaner's Law


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This Day In History, January 17

38 BC: Octavian (who became the first emperor of the Roman empire; see A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars) divorced Scribonia and married Livia Drusilla, thereby ending the political peace between the Second Triumvirate (see The Politics Of Rome) and Pompey.

Newfoundland 395: Upon the death of Emperor Theodosius I, the original Roman Empire was no longer ruled by a single leader. As a political and military entity, it thereafter began to be moved northward, where it became officially known as "The Holy Roman Empire of The German Nation" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).

683: The Battle of al-Harrah. A Syrian army supporting the Umayyad caliph Yazid I defeated the rebel forces of Medina.

1377: Pope Gregory XI restored the papacy to Rome from Avignon, France, where it had resided for 72 years. It had been moved there by French Pope Clement V in 1305, to escape the political turmoil in Italy at the time (see The Struggle For The Papacy).

1562: The Edict of St. Germain took effect by which the Huguenots (French Protestants) were recognized in France. On the same day, the Duke of Guise and the Cardinal of Lorraine formed a union to block the edict.

1595: Henry IV of France declared war on Spain.

1601: The Treaty of Lyons was signed between France, Spain and Savoy under which Henry IV gained Bresse, Bugey, Gex and Valromey.

1648: England's "Long Parliament" passed the "Vote of No Addresses," ending negotiations with King Charles I and setting the stage for the second part of the English Civil War.

1773: The Resolution, under England's Captain James Cook, became the first ship to enter Antarctic waters. Cook and his crew explored and charted vast areas around the world.

1775: 9 women in Kalisk, Poland were burnt as witches, accused of causing bad harvests (see also Deuteronomy 19: Innocent Unless Proven Guilty).

1811: The Battle of Calderon Bridge during the Mexican War of Independence; a force of 6,000 Spanish troops defeated a Mexican revolutionist force of 100,000.

1852: The United Kingdom recognized the independence of the Boer colonies of the Transvaal.

1912: Robert Falcon Scott's expedition reached the South Pole, a month after Roald Amundsen of Norway.

1939: The Nazi government in Germany prohibited Jews from working as dentists, veterinarians and chemists (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).

1945: The Soviet Red Army liberated and occupied Warsaw, Poland, from German forces.

1946: The United Nations Security Council held its first session.

HMCS Bonaventure 1957: Canada's last aircraft carrier (Canada had 3 aircraft carriers during the Second World War to Cold War era), HMCS Bonaventure (shown in the photograph), was commissioned. The ship was ordered scrapped in 1969 by the Liberal regime of Pierre Trudeau.

1961: U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower delivered a national televised farewell address, warning of the self-destructive influence of the "military-industrial complex" i.e. arms manufacturers making billions in profits for "defense" by getting gullible or puppet politicians elected to start or provoke wars all around the world.

1966: A U.S. B-52 bomber collided in mid-air with a refueling tanker over Spain. 8 people were killed, and the bomber released its H-bomb into the Atlantic.

1977: Double-murderer Gary Gilmore became the first person to be executed in the U.S. since the reintroduction of the death penalty. He chose a firing squad.

1995: More than 6,000 people were killed after a strong earthquake struck central Japan. Measuring 7.2 on the Richter scale, the earthquake, centered around the port of Kobe, was the biggest quake to hit Japan in half a century.

1998: Matt Drudge broke the story of the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky affair on his website The Drudge Report.

2007: The "Doomsday Clock" was set to five minutes to midnight in response to nuclear testing by North Korea.


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