In the beginning of chapter 23 God continues giving judgements to the people concerning their relationships and ordinances. Then he begins telling about the Angel he will send before the people into the promised land and warns them about the inhabitants of that land and how if they don’t drive them out and destroy them, they will become a snare unto them.

Verses like this are what many non-believers will point to especially nowadays to try Christianity as some kind of racist faith. But the thing those people do not understand is that God is sovereign over all things.

For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.
I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.

Psalm 50: 10-11

Israelites are the chosen people of God, from whom, Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world would come. God had to preserve them from the wickedness of the inhabitants of Canaan. In later passages, it will become clear that God was justified in his warnings against the “ites” that are mentioned, as they do indeed become a snare to Israel, throughout the remainder of the old testament even unto this day.

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