Today we see an epochal event in the life of an accidental “manslayer,” one living in a City of Refuge … “until the DEATH of the HIGH PRIEST that shall be in those days.” Joshua 20:6, mid-verse.
The erring Jew, protected (but still somewhat incarcerated, unable to leave the city limits of his refuge) by law … was still not allowed to go home, to see his family, to love his children!
He was “safe” for sure, from any avenger of blood, but NOT at “full liberty” to go where he pleased!
That is … “until the death of the high priest that shall be in those days.”
At that point … “then shall the slayer return, and come unto his own city, and unto his own house, unto the city from whence he fled.” Still verse 6 of Joshua 20.
Watch this …
Jews in the Old Testament could (if guilty of neglect, of killing a man inadvertently) flee to a specified city and be protected by law from any vengeful relative of the deceased!
But that Jew (picture of an erring man who had found protection) could NOT exercise complete liberty!
For example, Numbers 35:26-27 legislates: “If the slayer shall at any time COME WITHOUT THE BORDER OF THE CITY OF HIS REFUGE, whither he was fled; and the revenger of blood find him without the borders of the city of his refuge, and the revenger of blood KILL THE SLAYER; he shall NOT be guilty of blood.”
BUT … once the High Priest died … FULL LIBERTY was granted the manslayer!
It’s a Picture of Jesus, folks!
Clearly … Old Testament believers were safe in a (Jesus) Christ Who was promised to come … once they had placed faith in His Name!
They lived in a (so to speak) place of Refuge!
But not at complete liberty, not yet!
Many restrictions applied!
But once the High Priest died, which Jesus (the great High Priest) died on the Cross … liberty was completely instituted! One could then go home! Safely go home!
Yes, the Old Testament saints are “at home” now!
In Heaven … with Jesus!
Before Jesus’ Death, Burial and Resurrection/Ascension … they were in a place called Paradise, Abraham’s Bosom! NOT in the Third Heaven!
But the High Priest’s victorious, vicarious Death took care of all that!
Free … in Jesus!
— Dr. Mike Bagwell