Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Loving Potentially Dangerous People - Part 2

This morning I am looking in the Hebrew and studying the 'Stranger and Sojourner.' There is so much here about these words and great insight for us in dealing with potentially dangerous people from outside our circle.

Here is a passage where these words refer to Abraham...

"And Sarah was an hundred and seven and twenty years old: these were the years of the life of Sarah. And Sarah died in Kirjatharba; the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan: and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her. And Abraham stood up from before his dead, and spake unto the sons of Heth, saying, I am a stranger and a sojourner with you: give me a possession of a buryingplace with you, that I may bury my dead out of my sight. And the children of Heth answered Abraham, saying unto him, Hear us, my lord: thou art a mighty prince among us: in the choice of our sepulchres bury thy dead; none of us shall withhold from thee his sepulchre, but that thou mayest bury thy dead. And Abraham stood up, and bowed himself to the people of the land, even to the children of Heth." - Genesis 23:1-7 KJV

The Hebrew word Ger (Strong's H1616) is often translated stranger from the verb Guwr (H1481) to turn aside on the road (detour). Passages where Abraham stopped somewhere with a different people group such as in Eygpt or with the Philstines seem to use this verb (Genesis 12:10, 19:9, 20:1, 21:23, 21:34)

The other word Towshab (Strong's H8453) is from the Hebrew verb Yashab (H3427) to dwell, to establish or to judge and it is often translated sojourner. The sojourner is just passing through as a lodger but not a citizen.

Israel made a distinction between a citizen with an inheritance and a person who was just passing through. There were certain restrictions but there were also certain provisions given.

If we look at our personal life we can treat it like it is a nation. Is a person applying for citizenship or are they a sojourner? If they are a sojourner that is fine. There are provisions for sojourners but there are also restrictions.

Romantic relationships in modern culture often fail to make these distinctions. Women grant men the rights of citizenship when in truth these fellows are sojourners and strangers. They are just passing through and haven't decided one way or another where they want to be. It is recipe for heartbreak.

It is going to take a while to unpack these words and concepts but notice how Abraham is here in Genesis 23 as opposed to the Hivites in Joshua chapter 9. Abraham is upfront about his intentions. He is staying for a short time and returning to his life.


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