God holds life in such high regard that even when a murder remained unsolved in the Israelite community, the entire city was led of the Lord to account for the untimely death.
Deut. 21:1-9 “If one be found slain in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it, lying in the field, and it be not known who hath slain him: Then thy elders and thy judges shall come forth, and they shall measure unto the cities which are round about him that is slain: And it shall be, that the city which is next unto the slain man, even”
1. There had to be an pure payment for sin which required shed blood AND death.
“the elders of that city shall take an heifer, which hath not been wrought with, and which hath not drawn in the yoke; And the elders of that city shall bring down the heifer unto a rough valley, which is neither eared nor sown, and shall strike off the heifer's neck there in the valley:”
2. They by faith had to claim the sacrifice as the substitute for sin.
“And the priests the sons of Levi shall come near; for them the LORD thy God hath chosen to minister unto him, and to bless in the name of the LORD; and by their word shall every controversy and every stroke be tried: And all the elders of that city, that are next unto the slain man, shall wash their hands over the heifer that is beheaded in the valley: And they shall answer and say, Our hands have not shed this blood, neither have our eyes seen it. Be merciful, O LORD, unto thy people Israel, whom thou hast redeemed, and lay not innocent blood unto thy people of Israel's charge. And the blood shall be forgiven them.”
3. They were able to move forward, putting the stain of sin behind them and live for the Lord.
“So shalt thou put away the guilt of innocent blood from among you, when thou shalt do that which is right in the sight of the LORD.”
LESSON - Our country is guilty of destroying innocent life! Though we may not be personally responsible for each death, as a society we must atone for this senseless loss of life. If we as a nation refuse to repent and claim the forgiveness offered through the Blood of Jesus, our nation should expect to pay the price for innocent shed blood. We will never be able to move forward as a nation until this happens.