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Deuteronomy 22:8

"When thou buildest a new house, then thou shalt make a battlement for thy roof, that thou bring not blood upon thine house, if any man fall from thence." (Deuteronomy 22:8 KJV)

1. What did the text mean to the biblical audience?

Literally, the biblical audience was instructed by the LORD God through Moses to take care of each other through careful construction of their houses, by providing a small wall around their roofs to prevent those atop from falling. Deeper literal interpretation defines "battlement" further by suggesting a high wall to protect themselves, with small openings to defend against attacks, however, the crucial point brings focus to the danger of falls from a great height.

2. What are the differences between the biblical audience and us?

Through the historical progression of revelation by the LORD God about His Being, Works and Will through His covenanted Word, we know that symbolically, the references to the house, battlement and roof are deep and meaningful. Rather than just a literal law which wisely proclaims the measures necessary for the safety of believers, present-day believers can understand the deeper implication contained within His Word.

3. What is the theological principle in this text?

Consideration and protective measures must be taken for all aspects of both your spiritual and natural lives to keep you safe.

Spiritually speaking, the symbolism holds even greater meaning as one considers the house to be the covering of the soul and the place that represents the foundational faith and spiritual growth of a person. When those things are considered, the theological principle is to make your spiritual and natural dwelling place strong and sure, with protection against the enemies that might cause you to fall from the spiritually high places of the LORD God.

4. Does the New Testament teaching modify or qualify this principle, and, if so, how?

The principle is not modified, but made deeper in revelation through the continuing revelation of the LORD God and the moving of His Holy Spirit.

5. How should individual Christians today apply the theological principle in their lives?

Christians must take due care in ensuring that their foundation of belief is sure and founded on the principles of Jesus Christ firmly, as well as making sure their roofs are made safe and sure from attack. Its the high places of our spiritual existence, the places that bring us closest to the worship of the LORD God in Spirit, that are the most vulnerable to our human frailties. To fall from the high places of spirit leaves us wounded and bloody. The LORD God instructs us to take care that we look after each other to make sure we are always protected from falls that could harm us.

Cite Article Source

MLA Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. "Deuteronomy 22:8." Becker Bible Studies Applications Jan 2006.   <>.

APA Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. (2006, January) "Deuteronomy 22:8." Becker Bible Studies Applications Retrieved   from

Chicago Style Citation:
McFarland, Kathy L. (2006) "Deuteronomy 22:8." Becker Bible Studies Applications (January), (accessed )

About the Author

Kathy L. McFarland is a Becker Bible Studies Teacher and Author of Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians. She has received her Bachelor of Science degree in Religious Studies from Liberty University, and is currently seeking her Master of Divinity (Professional Ministries Track) degree from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary & Graduate School. Kathy is a noted expert on Old Testament exegesis, Christian apologetics, and Bible typology and mysteries.

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