TODAY’S READING: Leviticus 24–25
Bi-racial marriage is not problematic for God. After all, Moses married both a Saudi and a Sudanese. What is problematic is anyone of any race disrespecting the God of all races and His variegated children. Lest there be any doubt that Jehovah’s heart, purposes, and statutes are global, for all peoples, He states: “You shall have the same law for the stranger and for one from your own country; for I am the Lord your God” (Lev. 24:22). Jehovah is no tribal deity with a favorite people. Jehovah chose a weak and insignificant child as an example of His grace to all His children. He chose a foolish and recalcitrant runt as an example of His strength to all His beloved. Jehovah chose Israel to bless all nations, but this does not mean they have special laws or allowances. The perfect Parent loves all His kids.
The laws revealed to Moses are said by some to copy the Code of Hammurabi. Hammurabi was a Babylonian king (1792–1750 BC) whose code stated that if a citizen injured another citizen’s eye or tooth, “his eye shall be destroyed” or “his tooth shall be knocked out.” As all truth is God’s truth, I find it highly unlikely that God plagiarized Hammurabi (or consulted China, Greece, and Rome) for any of the good things humanity has implemented. More likely, from Adam on down, God injected and leased His wisdom to those with ears to hear. Jehovah loves to share truth with all His children; what He doesn’t like is when we play favorites with truth or law.
Laws that required eyes for eyes and ears for ears seem primitive, barbaric, and retaliatory. In historical context the strong and powerful over-punished criminal offenders (usually the poor and disadvantaged). Old Testament law was a corrective to the corrector, a loving God setting boundaries for punishments. Jesus then took it a step further—not only should we keep our mean streak in check, we should develop our compassion. Any laws or systems that unfairly persecute and punish a subsector of society (or a different race than the majority power holders) are anathema to God.
The compassionate heart of God for all peoples and all demographics is repeated in the laws of Jubilee, Sabbath, property redemption, lending, and service. The Jubilee laws (never consistently applied) were to protect the nation against a few families or sectors becoming ridiculously wealthy and corrupt, essentially enslaving the poor. Lord Acton’s principle about “power corrupting” has ever been true, and Jehovah is not a fan of corruption, nor of power concentrated in the hands of a few.
What is true for citizens is true for cities, city-states, states, nations, and churches. Blessing is given to be given, not to be hoarded. Wealth is given to be disbursed, not to enshrine the possessor in power. When churches give to missions, to the spread of the gospel to peoples on earth that have never heard of the spiritual wealth found in Jesus, those churches are blessed. When churches (or families, societies, or nations) send no gospel relief to the nations or spend disproportionately and indulgently on themselves or skittishly and shrewdly skirt sacrifice, they violate God’s laws and will soon face His justice.
 The Chronological Study Bible. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2008. 141.
 “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” From “Lord Acton Quote Archive.” Acton Institute. https://acton.org/research/lord-acton-quote-archive (accessed February 16, 2019).