The articles in this blog represent my own belief, thoughts and walk with Adonai and the things He teaches me. Do not copy or publish any of my articles without my permission.

Thank you for your understanding,
Bat Melech בת מלך

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

An eye for an eye

Some like to use this phrase ”an eye for an eye” to 'explain' why the Law was something way too severe and it's 'expired' because now it has been replaced by love. To secure that theory, they use Yeshua's words from Matthew 5:38-41 to support their theory which claims that the Law is done with.

"You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.' But I tell you, don't resist him who is evil; but whoever strikes you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also. If anyone sues you to take away your coat, let him have your cloak also. Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.'

We know that Yeshua came to fulfill the Law (Matthew 5:17), and we know that 'an eye for an eye' is in the Law' so, if Yeshua didn't come to abolish the Law, then how can you explain His words?
The Jewish people have kept this mitzvah (commandment) for 4000 years and I can promise you that they're not a blind and toothless nation. "An eye for an eye" doesn't encourage revenge nor does it encourage people to make justice for themselves.
The context in which this mitzvah was given, is 'slightly' different than most like to quote it.

But if any harm follows, then you must take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burning for burning, wound for wound, and bruise for bruise. "If a man strikes his servant's eye, or his maid's eye, and destroys it, he shall let him go free for his eye's sake. - Shemot/ Exodus 21:21-26

Adonai has invented compensation. Up until the moment this mitzvah was given, the one that was stronger had absolute power and owed nothing to no one, specialy to someone poorer then them. One that was rich could harm a poor man without any consequence, without the poor person being comepensated in any way. Among goyim (non-Jews) a master could kill his slave if he so wanted to without being guilty of a crime because the slave was considered like an animal. In the same way if a man chose to beat his wife to death, he wasn't responsible in any way, because it was considered his right to do so. But Adonai is a loving God so He gave a loving Law, a Law that was sensitive even to the pain of a slave that normaly had no right whatsoever.
The Sanhedrin or the Beit Din (a court of law) was establishing the value of the loss and came up with an amount of money that would cover that loss.
'An eye for an eye' doesn't mean that if a man lost an eye or a tooth because of someone else, they would go and revenge their loss by doing the same thing to the other person.
What Yeshua is saying in Matthew 5:38-41 is that if somehow you were to lose an eye or a tooth don't ask for compensation, and if you are the one that left a man blind or toothless, then you shold pay even more than what they ask of you. If someone asks for compensation your coat let him take your cloak as well. And if he asks for compensation for you to walk 1 mile with him, then you should walk 2.
The verses in Matthew 5 are said in the context of the Law issued in Exodus 21, so it must be interpreted in that context and not to support a theory according to which Adonai no longer requires that which He once commanded. That would just make Him as changing as the weather and we know He's the same forever.

Bat Melech בת מלך

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