Numbers 25:5-9 :
Moses said to the judges of Israel, “Everyone kill his men who have joined themselves to Baal Peor.”
Behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought to his brothers a Midianite woman in the sight of Moses,
and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, while they were weeping at the door of the Tent of Meeting.
When Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from the middle of the congregation, and took a spear in his hand.
He went after the man of Israel into the pavilion, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her body.
So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel. Those who died by the plague were twenty-four thousand.
This may seem violent to us but that's only because we have failed to remember God's law.
Numbers 3:10 :
You shall appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall keep their priesthood. The stranger who comes near shall be put to death.”
A "stranger" is exactly what this woman was. Not only was Israel dying of plague because if these women, this man had the chutzpah to bring her right
up to the door of the Tent of Meeting! My guess is that the young Phinehas could not believe than none of the old guys had the guts to do what needed to be done.
There is kind of vigilantism that is supported by the Bible as you can read here. There is a time when no one will do what is right even though the word of
God is obvious. These are times when the God of holiness and love is standing completely by Himself and every man is failing to defend Him. God is a tormented lover
of mankind and when just one man will stand up for Him, it can make all the difference in the world.
I praise God for the Phinehases in my life. They have served as an example to me and saved my life, sometimes at the expense of their own.