The City of Refuge [HEBRON]
Our solace, security and help are in God alone. He made Himself the secret place so that we can find our rest, hope and expectations in Him. Sometimes we think we know God and His provisions enough. No we don’t! If we really do know God as we should or claim we do, we would fret or worry for nothing absolutely. If you know God then you must live by this knowledge of Him. If you know God then trust Him.
There were in Isreal some cities called the Cities of Refuge. God gave each tribe in Isreal their cities and commanded that each tribe should give four cities each of their own possessions to the Levites. Six of these cities were to be declared cities of refuge for anyone who commits manslaughter (accidental murder). In that time, there were avengers of blood who run after murderers to avenge them of their murder. These cities of refuge were a secured hold for culprits of manslaughter to protect them from the avengers. He would remain secured within this fortress as long so long the sitting high priest is alive. If he (the culprit) decides to walk out of the hold (the place of refuge) only then can he be killed by the avengers of blood and no one would be accused of his death. After the death of the high priest, the accused murderer can reunite with his family and reintegrate into the society without the fear of being killed or judged.
So, the city of refuge is a place of safety. The concept which came from God is to create a haven for people who have committed an offence (wrong-doers); people who have sinned, to enact the salvation plan. This salvation plan is to enable us run to Jesus when we have sinned and done abominable things for which we could have died or should die and then find our rest in Him. In the New Testament, the city of refuge is more than a place; it is a person─Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour.
So you shall not defile the land in which you are. For blood defiles the land. And the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed in it, except by the blood of him that shed it. Num 35:33
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Rom 6:23
For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, Rom 3:23
So that by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us, Heb 6:18
Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters into that within the veil, Heb 6:19
We all have sinned in time past and deserved to die. But Jesus became the propitiation for our sins and a city of refuge as well. The universe is demanding justice because man has violated the laws guiding it. Strange sicknesses and diseases, famine, insecurity, wars and natural disasters are indications that the earth is revolting against the earth-shattering sins and wickedness of mankind. We all try to run away from these miseries for shelter which can only be found in Jesus¾the only sure hope of refuge.
THE NEED FOR THE CITY OF REFUGE
- All of us have sinned, so we need a refuge. The ultimate sin is to reject Jesus.
- The enemy is running after us. All the challenges and difficulties we have is a reflection of the enemy’s hot pursuit.
- For the longest day you live, there is no hope elsewhere except in the city of refuge.
Despite our claims to be Christians, some of us are looking for our refuge in hard work, some others in people. Some are looking for security in money and help in physical forces. Money and material possessions are indeed a blessing from God but trusting your security and safety to them is setting the wrong priority because they have the tendency to fail in themselves.
The Anatomy of Sin
Fools make a mock at sin. Pro 14:9
The word sin is a generic term for disobeying God. There are three words used in the bible to represent this act which are closely related in meaning. These are:
- Sin. It is the commonest and means fallen short. To fall short of God’s expectation and standard.
- Transgression. It means to break the law and instructions of God.
- Iniquity. It means rebellion. To rebel against God. It is a thing of the heart. It is commonly found in many Christians. You give your life to Christ; you sins and transgressions are washed away, but you just chose to defy His instructions on godly living.
Sin Does the Following:
- It brings reproach (disgrace). Pro 14:34.
- It keeps good things away. Jer 5:25.
- It reduces life span. Psa 34:12-14.
- It prevents answers to prayers. Isa 59:1-3, Psa 66:18.
- It guarantees a place in hell. Rev 21:7-8, 22:15.
- It opens the door to satan and grants him access to your life. Rev 12:10.
The Benefits of The City of Refuge
- Safety. There is no safer place to dwell but in Jesus. Not in people, wealth, money or walls. Don’t put your trust in these things for they must fail because they are designed and programmed to. Eph 2:5-6.
- Preservation. This is shelter in time of storm. Nothing can preserve us except the blood of Jesus.
- It guarantees another chance at life. He gave Samson and the adulterous woman a second chance for repentance. He is the God of many chances. He is the God of the first and fat chance.
- All that pertains to life and godliness. He provides all that our lives ever need. In the body of Christ we have a common wealth. Eph 2:12-15.
- You will find peace and rest in Him. He makes His people prosper in the place of rest. Psa 23:1-2.
You will find rest if you run to Him. You will see manifestations of divine magnitude if you run into the city of refuge. There is nothing God has that you cannot have. There is nothing heaven possess you can’t possess. God cannot be awake for your sake and you are awake same time. You cannot be poor when Jesus for your sake was poor. He bore your stripes so you can be healthy. He became you shepherd so you don’t need to lack anything good. Have the proper perspective. Run to the city of refuge and be calm. Trade it with Him at the City of Refuge!
Food for Thought
Whenever you do wrong, don’t run away from Him; run to Him.
The name of the LORD is my strong tower: I run into it, and am safe. Proverbs 18:10