“By HIS Stripes, we are HEALED”: During the process of explaining the miscellaneous laws to the Israelites, Moses speaks about God’s ruling concerning punishment: "...if the wicked man deserves to be beaten, that the judge will cause him to lie down and be beaten in his presence, according to his guilt, with a certain number of blows. Forty blows he may give him and no more, lest he should exceed this and beat him with many blows above these and your brother be humiliated in your sight" (Deut 25:2-3).
In judicial sentences, which awarded punishment short of capital, scourging was the most common form in which they were executed. The Mosaic Law, however, introduced two important restrictions; namely:
- The punishment should be inflicted in presence of the judge instead of being inflicted in private by some heartless official; and
- The maximum amount of it should be limited to forty stripes, instead of being awarded according to the decision of the magistrate.
Let us remember that our Lord Jesus took stripes upon himself for a reason. "But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5). Jesus took the stripes and scourging upon Himself so that WE could be FORGIVEN, HEALED and DELIVERED from our SINS and SICKNESS!