Deuteronomy 17* All sacrifices to be perfect, Idolaters must be slain. (1-7)Difficult controversies. (8-13) The choice of a king, Hisduties. (14-20)1-7 No creature which had any blemish was to be offered insacrifice to God. We are thus called to remember the perfect,pure, and spotless sacrifice of Christ, and reminded to serveGod with the best of our abilities, time, and possession, or ourpretended obedience will be hateful to him. So great apunishment as death, so remarkable a death as stoning, must beinflicted on the Jewish idolater. Let all who in our day set upidols in their hearts, remember how God punished this crime inIsrael. 8-13 Courts of judgment were to be set up in every city. Thoughtheir judgment had not the Divine authority of an oracle, it wasthe judgment of wise, prudent, experienced men, and had theadvantage of a Divine promise. 14-20 God himself was in a particular manner Israel's King; andif they set another over them, it was necessary that he shouldchoose the person. Accordingly, when the people desired a king,they applied to Samuel, a prophet of the Lord. In all cases,God's choice, if we can but know it, should direct, determine,and overrule ours. Laws are given for the prince that should beelected. He must carefully avoid every thing that would turn himfrom God and religion. Riches, honours, and pleasures, are threegreat hinderances of godliness, (the lusts of the flesh, thelusts of the eye, and the pride of life,) especially to those inhigh stations; against these the king is here warned. The kingmust carefully study the law of God, and make that his rule; andhaving a copy of the Scriptures of his own writing, must readtherein all the days of his life. It is not enough to haveBibles, but we must use them, use them daily, as long as welive. Christ's scholars never learn above their Bibles, but willhave constant occasion for them, till they come to that worldwhere knowledge and love will be made perfect. The king'swriting and reading were as nothing, if he did not practise whathe wrote and read. And those who fear God and keep hiscommandments, will fare the better for it even in this world.
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