The Lord also spoke to Joshua, saying, “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘Appoint for yourselves cities of refuge, of which I spoke to you through Moses, that the slayer who kills a person accidentally or unintentionally may flee there; and they shall be your refuge from the avenger of blood. And when he flees to one of those cities, and stands at the entrance of the gate of the city, and declares his case in the hearing of the elders of that city, they shall take him into the city as one of them, and give him a place, that he may dwell among them. Joshua 20:1
This book speaks about the cities of refuge that were to be established at the time.
I love the concept. Imagine if we still had that nowadays; specific churches where we could attend for a predetermined time when we make mistakes that will cause major conflict in our local church. I call them “Safe-house Churches”.
I know that the Bible teaches that we must forgive and tells us to be peaceful, tenderhearted, and slow to anger. If we all did what the Bible said, we would have less prolonged issues. But we don’t, because not all persons are at the stage of maturity or committed to living by the word.
Hence my reason to imagine how lovely this system would be. It may not be ideal or very practical for new testament believers but just imagine what it would be like. Imagine having the ability to go to a church after you unintentionally did something that caused one or more members to hurt or feel discouraged. Imagine being able to attend a specific church for a specified period when you feel like your church, which you love, is getting a little unbearable (for lack of a better word).
It would be like a spiritual vacation aimed at making you whole again, for restoring and forgiving yourself for the mistake made. A place where no one would condemn or judge you for your actions that unintentionally resulted in another person being hurt. Safe-house Churches. Oh how handy they would be in this age.