THE DEATH PENALTY
Today, many people are opposed to the death penalty because of the danger of sentencing an innocent person to death --but God has provided safeguards to protect the innocent.
God’s law made a distinction between manslaughter and murder. In the Old Testament, a person who killed his neighbor ignorantly (who had not hated his neighbor from yesterday the third day) could flee to a City of Refuge and would not be killed by the avenger of the blood. However, If the man was guilty of premeditated murder, the elders of the city would deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood that he may die.
“Thine eye shall not pity him, but thou shalt put away the guilt of innocent blood from Israel, that it may go well with thee.” Deut 19:13
The death penalty was reserved for premeditated murder and required the testimony of two or three witnesses . Now, consider this: if those witnesses bore false witness --THEY WOULD RECEIVE THE DEATH PENALTY!
Deuteronomy 19:15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.
Deuteronomy 19:16 If a false witness rise up against any man to testify against him that which is wrong;
Deuteronomy 19:17 Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges, which shall be in those days;
Deuteronomy 19:18 And the judges shall make diligent inquisition: and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and hath testified falsely against his brother;
Deuteronomy 19:19 THEN SHALL YE DO UNTO HIM, AS HE HAD THOUGHT TO HAVE DONE UNTO HIS BROTHER.: so shalt thou put the evil away from among you.
Deuteronomy 19:20 And those which remain shall hear, and fear, and shall henceforth commit no more any such evil among you.
A wise and merciful God has given the laws pertaining to murder and perjury. A righteous society will enforce them.
Proverbs 16:6 By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.