Awesome Hands – part 82: “The judgments” – Part M

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Awesome Hands – part 82

“The judgments”

July 22nd, 2015


Exo 23:2  Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shalt thou speak in a cause to decline after many to wrest judgment:
Exo 23:3  Neither shalt thou countenance a poor man in his cause.
Exo 23:4  If thou meet thine enemy’s ox or his ass going astray, thou shalt surely bring it back to him again.
Exo 23:5  If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee lying under his burden, and wouldest forbear to help him, thou shalt surely help with him.
Exo 23:6  Thou shalt not wrest the judgment of thy poor in his cause.

Following the multitude is not something that is a good idea generally speaking. When speaking about following the multitude and evil in the same sentence, then we should obviously know that we need to obey the commandments of the Lord.

Following the commandments of the Lord versus the commandments of men is really the contrast we should be focused on, and Exodus 23:1-2 gives us an insight on the mind of God concerning judgment and the multitudes.


To them it is not given…


Exo 23:2 (BBE) Do not be moved to do wrong by the general opinion, or give the support of your words to a wrong decision:

(Darby) Thou shalt not follow the multitude for evil; neither shalt thou answer in a cause, to go after the multitude to pervert judgment .

Exo 23:2  Thou shalt notH3808 followH1961 H310 a multitudeH7227 to do evil;H7451 neitherH3808 shalt thou speakH6030 inH5921 a causeH7379 to declineH5186 afterH310 manyH7227 to wrestH5186 judgment:

After reading this verse, I was intrigued at how the King James used the word “wrest”. If you add the ending “ing” you get the English word “wresting”.

“Wrest” in English means to forcibly pull (something) from a person’s grasp. So, combining the English word “wrest” with the context it is used here in the Hebrew, we can start to formulate the intent the Holy Spirit inspired to be written about the judgments God has given Moses to give to the Israelites.

The strange thing about how it is mentioned in the English in the KJV is that “decline” and “wrest” as used for the same word here.



BDB Definition:

1) to stretch out, extend, spread out, pitch, turn, pervert, incline, bend, bow
1a) (Qal)
1a1) to stretch out, extend, stretch, offer
1a2) to spread out, pitch (tent)
1a3) to bend, turn, incline
1a3a) to turn aside, incline, decline, bend down
1a3b) to bend, bow
1a3c) to hold out, extend (figuratively)
1b) (Niphal) to be stretched out
1c) (Hiphil)
1c1) to stretch out
1c2) to spread out
1c3) to turn, incline, influence, bend down, hold out, extend, thrust aside, thrust away

Part of Speech: verb
A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: a primitive root
Same Word by TWOT Number: 1352

(YLT) `Thou art not after many to evil, nor dost thou testify concerning a strife, to turn aside after many to cause others to turn aside;

What we are being told in Exo 23:2, when we compare other scriptures to it, is that we are not to follow the multitudes and we are not to give our word or okay towards a topic which can cause OTHERS to see it and think the same.

The multitudes will never be able to obey God’s commandments because they have not been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, among other reasons.

Mat 13:2  And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, so that he went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore.

Mat 13:10  And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?
Mat 13:11  He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
Mat 13:12  For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.
Mat 13:13  Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Being “disciples indeed”, we are given the seeing and hearing to understand what the parables are all about, and this is the same for the judgment of God which is on His house now. This judgment must be used wisely and righteously when we apply it to our day to day lives and to others we are in contact with. In this way, these other folks will see “Christ and His Christ”.

This has a very practical application to us in everyday life no matter the topic we are discussing.

“If your friends jump off a bridge will you do it too,” is one of the quotes I remember my parents saying to me that sort of captures the idea behind not following a multitude.

However, to bring the point closer to the idea behind not following a multitude to do evil, we’ll look at another placed “wrest” is used.

Deu 16:18  Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, throughout thy tribes: and they shall judge the people with just judgment.
Deu 16:19  Thou shalt not wrest judgment; thou shalt not respect persons, neither take a gift: for a gift doth blind the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous.
Deu 16:20  That which is altogether just shalt thou follow, that thou mayest live, and inherit the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

The English word used as “just” here means righteous the majority of the time it is used in the OT. We are to judge all things with righteous judgment.



Total KJV Occurrences: 117

righteousness, 78
Lev_19:15, Deu_33:19, Job_6:29, Job_8:6, Job_29:14, Job_36:2-3 (2), Psa_4:1, Psa_4:5, Psa_7:8, Psa_7:17, Psa_9:8, Psa_15:2, Psa_17:15, Psa_18:20, Psa_18:24, Psa_23:3, Psa_35:24, Psa_35:28, Psa_37:6, Psa_40:9, Psa_45:4, Psa_45:7, Psa_48:10, Psa_50:6, Psa_51:19, Psa_52:3, Psa_58:1, Psa_65:5, Psa_72:2, Psa_85:10-11 (2), Psa_85:13, Psa_94:15, Psa_96:13, Psa_97:2, Psa_97:6, Psa_98:9, Psa_118:19, Psa_119:123, Psa_119:142, Psa_119:144, Psa_119:172, Pro_2:9 (2), Pro_8:8, Pro_12:17, Pro_25:5, Ecc_3:16, Ecc_7:15, Isa_1:21, Isa_1:26, Isa_16:4-5 (3), Isa_26:9-10 (2), Isa_32:1, Isa_41:10, Isa_42:6, Isa_45:8, Isa_45:13, Isa_45:19, Isa_51:1, Isa_51:5, Isa_58:7-8 (2), Isa_61:3, Isa_62:1-2 (2), Jer_23:5-6 (2), Jer_33:16, Eze_3:20, Dan_9:24, Hos_2:19, Hos_10:12, Zep_2:3

just, 11
Lev_19:36 (4), Deu_16:18, Deu_16:20, Deu_25:15 (2), Eze_45:10 (3)

justice, 10
Job_8:3, Psa_89:14, Psa_119:121, Pro_1:3, Pro_8:15, Ecc_5:8, Isa_58:2, Isa_59:4, Jer_31:23, Jer_50:7

righteous, 9
Psa_35:27, Psa_119:7, Psa_119:62, Psa_119:106, Psa_119:138, Psa_119:160, Psa_119:164, Pro_16:13, Isa_41:2

right, 3
Psa_9:4, Psa_17:1, Psa_119:75

righteously, 3
Deu_1:16, Pro_31:9, Jer_11:20

even, 1

righteousness’, 1

unrighteousness, 1

Following in the same train of thought, we are to not look towards a “poor” person and show them favor in an evil simply because they are poor.

Exo 23:3  Neither shalt thou countenance a poor man in his cause (H7379).

(BBE) But, on the other hand, do not be turned from what is right in order to give support to a poor man’s cause.

(GNB) Do not show partiality to a poor person at his trial.

The same word used as “cause” in Exodus 23:3 is also used a few times as controversy, but mainly as “cause” or “strife”. This verse captures the idea of what these “causes” are all about.

Eze 44:24  And in controversy they shall stand in judgment; and they shall judge it according to my judgments: and they shall keep my laws and my statutes in all mine assemblies; and they shall hallow my sabbaths.

The entire focus of these first two first covered today is to have PROPER righteous judgment in ALL MATTERS big or small.

We know this to be true for the most part, but we as followers of Christ, should always be looking to glorify God in all of our judgments of living out our lives day to day.

Most of the time, we like to or tend to think about how we would react to “big decisions” if we were to suddenly need to decide how to act or what to say concerning big topics of the day.

Gay marriage, abortion, racism, war, economy, etc. are examples of a few of these “big discussions” in America’s culture today, but I hope to invoke in you a mindset that these issues ARE NOT the main topics for which you are going to be judged by God the Father.

What do I mean with that statement? We are mostly going to be judged on the “small matters”, the small things that we act and react on each and every day. If we do not have proper judgment in the small matters, then the big matters will have zero proper judgment.

Luk 12:48  But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

The subject of judging “small matters” is very important because if we are not able to be exercised and trained up to be able to handle the smallest of these matters, how are we ever going to be prepared to be used to help run the kingdom of God and judge the world?

1Co 6:1  Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?
1Co 6:2  Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?
1Co 6:3  Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

These small matters do indeed matter because they are what “sit at the lowest levels” of the “house of God”, right on top of the foundation.

Zec 4:9  The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you.
Zec 4:10  For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.

In the book of Zechariah, Zechariah is being given the “word of the Lord” form the “LORD of hosts” starting off in essence by saying, “do not follow the multitudes to do evil”. Those “multitudes” are “the fathers” in type.

Zec 1:2  The LORD hath been sore displeased with your fathers.
Zec 1:3  Therefore say thou unto them, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Turn ye unto me, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will turn unto you, saith the LORD of hosts.
Zec 1:4  Be ye not as your fathers, unto whom the former prophets have cried, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Turn ye now from your evil ways, and from your evil doings: but they did not hear, nor hearken unto me, saith the LORD.

The book of Zechariah is not directly connected to the book of Exodus except to use it as an example of the “sum of thy word is Truth” concerning judgment and small matters/things.

Zechariah chapter 1 focuses on the commandments of God and doing or not doing them and the results of these actions.

Chapter 2 focuses on the “measurements of Jerusalem” and whether or not they are accurate according to the resting place God will make for Himself. This chapter also tells us that many nations will be “joined to the Lord in that day” because they will see what the judgment of the Lord is.

Chapter 3 focuses on the covering and garment received in place of the “filthy garment” that “Joshua” had before the Lord comes to judge the situation.

In other words, keeping the commandments and word of the Lord is very important and the Lord calls this collectively “a day of small things”.


Treating your enemy…. within and without


Exodus 23:4 and 5 go on to give us an example of righteous judgment versus unrighteous judgment and connects the concept of how to righteously handle a “small matter.”

Exo 23:4  If thou meet thine enemy’s ox or his ass going astray, thou shalt surely bring it back to him again.
Exo 23:5  If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee lying under his burden, and wouldest forbear to help him, thou shalt surely help with him.

Exo 23:4 (CEV) If you find an ox or a donkey that has wandered off, take it back where it belongs, even if the owner is your enemy.
Exo 23:5  If a donkey is overloaded and falls down, you must do what you can to help, even if it belongs to someone who doesn’t like you.

Most of us in this age won’t have the opportunity to see our enemy’s ox or donkey wondering lost so that we can bring it to our enemy’s home. So, how do we apply this concept to our day to day lives?

Anytime we have an opportunity to do the “right thing” in a given situation is the time to do that right thing.

There shouldn’t be a consideration of whether or not we are BFF’s with this person or not. We shouldn’t be concerned with what this person has done to us in the past.

The proper judgment according to the commandments of the Lord is to do what is right no matter the circumstances especially to your enemy BECAUSE this is the time that you will WRESTLE with what to do.

It’s easy to decide to help a loved one when they need help. It’s not so easy to do it to someone who is your enemy or hates you.

Mat 5:45  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
Mat 5:46  For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
Mat 5:47  And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
Mat 5:48  Be ye therefore perfect, (complete) even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (complete).

Pro 25:21 (CEV) If your enemies are hungry, give them something to eat. And if they are thirsty, give them something to drink.

Pro 25:22  This will be the same as piling burning coals on their heads. And the LORD will reward you.

Luk 6:28  Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.

Of course, there is a law of sin working in our flesh that will be kicking and screaming against us doing the right thing when we know to do the right thing.

Rom 7:21  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.
Rom 7:22  For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
Rom 7:23  But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

However, that doesn’t excuse us from serving God and following the law He has placed in our minds to follow. That is why we are told to do good to all men, specially the household of Faith.

We always want the right things to come to us and others to treat us fair and respectfully, so this is what we should strive to do as well.

Col 3:17  And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

1Th 5:15  See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men.

Gal 6:7  Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
Gal 6:8  For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
Gal 6:9  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
Gal 6:10  As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

When we see our enemy’s “beast” in need of help, and because they are our enemy, it is the most natural thing to not want to help them …. that HOOOOORRRIBBBBBLLLLLEEEE BEAST they are!

However, that is called forgetting the manner of man I am after leaving the mirror! It is also what the flesh and carnal mind call utter foolishness. After all, we aren’t supposed to be helping anyone’s beast, right?

Well, there is a difference in helping someone DO and COMMIT EVIL, which we should never actively be doing and HELPING a person who is considered our enemy or hates us.

That is why these examples given directly after Exodus 23:2-3 are wonderfully placed.

Lastly, we should always strive to be just / righteous with everyone, especially the household of Faith.

Exo 23:6  Thou shalt not wrest the judgment of thy poor in his cause.

Exo 23:6 (CEV) Make sure that the poor are given equal justice in court.

Looking on the outward appearance is something we should be avoiding at all costs and applies in the physical sense in Exodus 23:6, and just as importantly, we should be looking on the inward appearance and recognizing (or not) the voice of the True Shepherd.

The “poor” of the Lord should always be given the benefit of hearing their “case” or side of things before making any decisions about a topic we are considering and most importantly weighing all situations, doctrines and topics against the Word of God.

We must always be striving to find the mind of Christ and the multitude of counsel on any given topic, and this is especially true of the “household of Faith”.

It may seem like this is beyond the scope of the beginning of Exodus 23, but when speaking about judgments, verdicts and trials we have a plethora of scripture to support resting with the Word of God so that we judge righteously.

“Do unto others as you want others to do unto you” is a fine example of living the Word of God out in our daily lives and NOT following the multitudes on what the flesh would have us all do naturally given the chance.

This is what “forgiveness of debt” is all about, and what bigger message do we bring to the multitudes and masses than that of salvation?

Mat 6:12  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
Mat 6:13  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Mat 6:14  For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
Mat 6:15  But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Rev 12:10  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

1Co 4:1  Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.
1Co 4:2  Moreover it is REQUIRED in stewards, that a man be found faithful.
1Co 4:3  But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self.
1Co 4:4  For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.
1Co 4:5  Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

1 Co 4:4(WNT)  Though I am not conscious of having been in any way unfaithful, yet I do not for that reason stand acquitted; but He whose scrutiny I must undergo is the Lord.

(GNB)  My conscience is clear, but that does not prove that I am really innocent. The Lord is the one who passes judgment on me.


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