SERIES: 05 Deuteronomy - 2015
MESSAGE: Deuteronomy 24-25
SPEAKER: Skip Heitzig
SCRIPTURE: Deuteronomy 24-25

As believers, we come across many situations in our lives that are confusing, and we may be unsure about how God wants us to handle them. In this study of Deuteronomy 24-25, Skip Heitzig points out what God says about divorce, slavery, accepting foreigners, treatment of the poor, handling disputes, and punishment for crimes.


  1. Deuteronomy 24
    1. Divorce (see vv. 1-4)
      1. In the New Testament, the Pharisees tried to trick Jesus by referencing this passage about divorce (see Matthew 19:3-12; Mark 10:1-12)
      2. This is the only Old Testament Scripture about the proceedings of a divorce
      3. Death—not divorce—was the acceptable punishment for adultery
      4. So the reason for divorce was something short of adultery
      5. The intent of the text was not to determine what the reason for divorce was, but to give the process for divorce
        1. If a man divorced his wife, he could not remarry her
        2. It is to protect women from being mistreated by their husbands
      6. A woman was defiled by her husband divorcing her and her marrying another man
        1. Matthew 5:31-32; 19:3-5
        2. Marriage is an unbreakable covenant
      7. Targums: Jewish paraphrases of Scriptures
        1. Made Deuteronomy 24 a commandment
        2. Not what it was intended to be
    2. Marriage (see v. 5)
      1. The men were told to not go to war during their first year of marriage
      2. The first year was supposed to be a time when they focused on their marriage
      3. This was an adjustment period and a time for starting a family
    3. A man should not take the upper or lower part of a millstone, because he would take away the livelihood of his neighbor (see v. 6)
    4. Kidnapping/slavery (see v. 7)
      1. No one should kidnap and sell his brother for money
      2. Joseph was kidnapped by his brothers and sold into slavery (see Genesis 37:12-30)
      3. Punishment was death
      4. Human trafficking is still a huge issue in our world
    5. Leprosy (see vv. 8-9)
      1. In an outbreak of leprosy, the people were to do what the Levites taught them
      2. Leviticus 13-14
      3. Leprosy was the most dreaded disease of the ancient world
        1.  Mycobacterium leprae
        2. Grew slowly but would eventually take over the body
        3. Limbs were lost
      4. People who had it were ostracized from society (see Mark 1:40-45)
      5. When the Israelites came out of Egypt, Miriam contested Moses' leadership and became leprous as a consequence (see Numbers 12)
    6. Lending money (see vv. 10-13)
      1. When borrowing money, it was customary to provide collateral
      2. The person lending the money was not to go into the borrower's house to pick and choose what would be given as collateral
      3. Collateral was not to be kept overnight
        1. It was usually the person's cloak
        2. Their cloak kept them warm at night
    7. How to treat servants and foreigners (see vv. 14-15)
      1. We are all foreigners: this world is not our home
      2. We belong to the Father and are not to be of this world
      3. We were once captive to sin, but Jesus saved us out of this world
      4. Hebrews 13:2
    8. Responsibility for sins (see v. 16)
      1. Code of Hammurabi is similar to the laws of Moses
      2. In the Code of Hammurabi, it was lawful for a son to be put to death for the sins of his father
      3. God said everyone is responsible for their own sin
      4. Ezekiel 18
      5. Each generation is responsible for its own sins
    9. God's welfare program (see vv. 17-22)
      1. God told them to leave a little of their harvest for the poor, orphans, and widows
      2. Ruth 2:8-17
      3. Matthew 12:1-8; Mark 2:23-26; Luke 6:1-5
      4. Gave dignity to the poor
        1. They could glean when no one was watching
        2. They had to work to get it
        3. They had to be involved in the labor process
  2. Deuteronomy 25
    1. Disputes (see vv.1-4)
      1. God's Word is not politically correct, but practically righteous
      2. Justice should be administered swiftly
      3. The judge was part of the process
        1. It kept the judge tender in his conscience
        2. He didn't just render the verdict
      4. Punishment was forty lashes
        1. They did not have a prison system
        2. If they did something that deserved death, they were immediately put to death
        3. Corporal punishment is healing because they received the punishment and then they healed
    2. Do not muzzle an ox when it treads on grain (see v. 4)
      1. They would put wheat on the threshing floor and the ox would walk on it to separate the grains and the chaff
      2. It would have been cruel to muzzle the ox and keep him from eating
      3. 1 Corinthians 9:1-18
    3. Marriage duty of a surviving brother (see vv. 5-10)
      1. Levirate marriage: law of the husband's brother
      2. If a man died, his unmarried brother was to take his wife as his own so the family name could continue
      3. Gaal = kinsman-redeemer
      4. Story of Ruth
      5. Matthew 22:23-32
    4. Women fighting for their husbands (see vv. 11-12)
      1. The only place in the law of Moses that mentions a graphic mutilation
      2. When man is in a fight, argument, disagreement, etc. with another man, do not take away his honor by getting in the middle of it, fighting for him, and fighting dirty
    5. Being honest (see vv. 13-16)
      1. Be above reproach in your business dealings
      2. In all your dealings, be fair and equitable
    6. Destroy the Amalekites (see vv. 17-19)
      1. They did not completely do this until 400 years later
      2. The Amalekites caused problems for Israel (see Exodus 17:8-16)
      3. The Amalekites represent the flesh
      4. We cannot have a covenant with the flesh; we must destroy it
      5. The Amalekites originally attacked from the rear
        1. Believers who aren't in fellowship and straggle behind will be picked off first
        2. The best place to be is the front lines
  3. Closing
    1. Move toward the front lines and be involved and present
    2. Even though this passage was meant for the Israelites, it is still very relevant to our lives today

Hebrew words: gaal

Cross references: Genesis 37:12-30; Exodus 17:8-16; Leviticus 13-14; Numbers 12; Ruth 2:8-17; Ezekiel 18; Matthew 5:31-32; 12:1-8; 19:3-12; 22:23-32; Mark 1:40-45; 2:23-26; 10:1-12; Luke 6:1-5; 1 Corinthians 9:1-18; Hebrews 13:2

Topic: The Law

Keywords: marriage, divorce, kidnapping, slavery, leprosy, lending money, servants, foreigners, sins, disputes, punishment, fighting, honesty

Deuteronomy 24-25 - Deuteronomy 24-25 |
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