Safety in the City

Then Moses set apart three cities on this side of the Jordan, toward the rising of the sun, that the manslayer might flee there, who kills his neighbor unintentionally, without having hated him in time past, and that by fleeing to one of these cities he might live.
Deuteronomy 4:41-42, NKJV

Contrary to popular belief, urban centers do not inherently act as breeding grounds for danger and violence. In fact, the Bible presents the city as a place of safety and lawfulness. Israel’s cities of refuge represent this perspective. God set aside these cities to shelter people who had committed accidental manslaughter. Rather than running away from a community, the suspect was encouraged to run toward one. Citizens of the city were to protect the suspect and ensure a fair hearing rather than leave him in the open to be preyed upon by the dead person’s relatives.

The hazards of modern life in cities (or anywhere) are often a result of the loss of community. The answer to urban crime is not to flee to the suburbs but to reclaim the benefits of living alongside one’s neighbors in peace, without fear or prejudice but with meaningful interaction and generosity. God yearns for us to live in fellowship with one another.

Drawn from a note in the Apply the Word Study Bible.

What hurdles do we need to overcome to fellowship with our neighbors in meaningful interaction and generosity? Post a comment below! >

 

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2 Comments

  • Shawn says:

    It appears you have forgotten the spirit of 2 Corinthians 6:14 – 18.

    “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said:

    “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” And, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters…” (NIV)

    We are in the world, but we are called out of the world to be separate and set apart… not as a bunch of elitist snobs, but as a public sign of our obedience and faithfulness to Jesus in opposition to the unsaved world.

    Yes, Jesus “ate with sinners” and was “a friend to tax collectors” BUT He did not join sinners in their sinful practices. Jesus suffered, bled and died on the cross to pay the most terrible price ever for all of our sins, but Jesus did not compromise with the world even then. Though Jesus was taunted to “save Himself and come down from the cross” He chose to stay on the cross to the end… for us. For our sakes! In like manner, we as Christians ought to take up our crosses and follow Jesus NOT compromise with the unsaved world – ever. Otherwise, what is our witness of Jesus worth?

    Will not the unsaved world reject the Gospel and mock Jesus all the more on account of our lack of commitment?

  • ChaplainDRW says:

    I am a living Recoverer. I have been delivered from many things,one was poverty and am still recovering from this and many more. Looking back today, I am now aware of my messy transformation. And messy it was because during the process, many have been hurt who participated in my transformation. I unintentionally hurt them. There are many whom I cannot find to apologize nor express ‘my present state of mind – gratitude’, but I know they exist. However, I cant help but wonder, how ‘my ugly-stench-then’ made them feel then – and – now. Are they consequently in need of recovery or were they equipped and don’t need recovery?
    Are they aware that the seed they invested in me did sprout?

    My struggles and those whom God sent to partner with me on my journey, is the premise of our ministry, Green Pastures, A Recovery of Soul Exchange. Borrowing this phase, hurting people hurt people, I can personally testify that vulnerable people suffer severe hurt/pain unsolicitedly.. I can also attest that during my formidable years, pain was initially initiated to me, later I admitted to have also continued the hurting game process.

    One solution that I endorse on life’s battlefield for everyone whether cities, the church or the un-church population, is one that has helped me: CelebrateRecovery.com. All of us are broken and are in desperate need of recovery, especially those of us who are called to help others. We need to admit that we need recovery before we are capable to assist others to get out of their denial, which is part of the process of The Road to RECOVERY in any city for all humanity. DRW

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