Deuteronomy 19:14 (CSB)
14 “Do not move your neighbor’s boundary marker, established at the start in the inheritance you will receive in the land the Lord your God is giving you to possess.
This single line pericope seems to be a bit disjointed wedged in between the sanctuary cities and the witness rules to come next. But maybe it is just right, exactly where it is… wouldn’t that be like God to put a verse exactly where it is supposed to be?!?
The topic here is not really the moving of a boundary marker… I mean it is… but it’s not. It’s about taking another’s land. And that is such a big deal because the land in question (it seems apparent that this is concerning land between Israelites) will have been originally given by God, hence the reference to “the inheritance”. So by moving a boundary marker, and thus essentially trying to take a neighbor’s land, one has actually trumped God’s decision and his gift, no, assignment to another. It’s a crime against man, but also a crime against God.
Land was money during this time period, as it continues to be to a great extent even today. But during this time period everything was tied to land: an agricultural society, livestock, even water via wells. Land was wealth and survival. Having such great importance, perhaps that is why this verse is placed between such a grave topic as sanctuary cities for those that are killed accidentally vs with malice, and the rules for witnesses. Is it that far of a stretch to think that dealings with such a valuable commodity could bleed over into either of these bookend subjects?
Lord, thank you for your provision. Thank you for the blessings and gifts you give us. I pray that our hearts would not be greedy, and rather than try to take what you have provided for others, we would rejoice in your blessings on them. Amen.