Bible Devotions

City of Refuge

on November 10, 2009

Read Joshua 20

The God of mercy instructs His people to set aside certain cities to become places of refuge.  This way anyone who accidentally kills someone could go and live without fear that the dead person’s family would try to kill him.  They would live in that city until the high priest died.  After that they could go back to where ever they lived previously.

Did you notice this was for accidental death not for pre-meditated murder?  God has a heart for the innocent.  God wants justice to prevail.  His ways protect the innocent.

Why is it we tend to think the worst in others so readily?  We jump to conclusions and judge others without knowing all the facts.  I’m thankful God is the Just Judge.  He knows all things and can judge fairly.  His judgment is right.

When God says “all have sinned” He means everyone.  There is no one who is innocent and hasn’t sinned.  When God says “the wages of sin is death” He means death is only way to deal with sin.   Thankfully God is more than Just, for had He been just, we all would perish because of our sin.  God is merciful. He paid our sin debt through Jesus’ death on the cross.  His death cleared the charges against us.  So in His eyes we are innocent.

Now we live in a city of refuge.  Not an earthly city where we live only as long as the high priest.  But a heavenly city where the High Priest – Jesus Christ – lives forever and so do we!

God cancels our debt.  He covers us with His righteousness.  He ushers us into His kingdom to live forever with Him.  He did this not because we were innocent by our own efforts, but because of His mercy cancels our sin and makes us innocent by His actions.

Challenge Point:

God has shown you much mercy.  Who can you show mercy to rather than judgment today?

How can you demonstrate mercy towards this person?

Father of mercies, thank you for your righteous judgment.  Thank you for paying our sin debt for us.  Enable us now to walk in the new life in Christ and demonstrate your mercy towards our fellow neighbors. In Jesus’ name we pray Amen.

For more Bible Devotions…

©Elizabeth Marks has led small group Bible studies for almost a decade.  Author of and websites she has a heart for encouraging others with God’s Word.


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