Deut. 21-23 (law, fascinating)

The listing of the law continues, but it is unusually interesting.

First, we have the procedure for atoning for a murder when you don’t know who committed the murder.  Deut. 21: 1-9.  What I find fascinating here is how seriously the Israelites took the notion of retribution.  As in, a sin creates a societal debt that must be paid.

Second, we have the awful laws about rape & conquest.  Deut. 21:10-14; 22:13-30.  I think one thing that interests me about these is from where did they come?  The patriarchy is real, but is it conscious?  Is the point of these laws to oppress women?  Maybe.  Here’s a passage about how to terrify children into obedience at Deut. 21:18-21.  There is natural selection at work in societies that formulate such mechanisms of control, yes?

Third, what about the weird “kindnesses” sprinkled throughout.  Do not return a slave to his master when seeking refuge, Deut. 23:15.  Do not sell the captured woman into slavery, but let her go free if you don’t want here, Deut. 21:14.

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