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Home > Study Desk
Passage Display[Printer-friendly Verses]   
 Deuteronomy 19
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The New American Standard Bible
   Book of DeuteronomyClick Verse Reference for Study Notes
    19:1-21 - Study Chapter  - Click for Chapter Audio

Cities of Refuge

1 "When R638 the LORD your God cuts off the nations, whose land the LORD your God gives you, and you dispossess them and settle in their cities and in their houses, 2 you R639 shall set aside three cities for yourself in the midst of your land, which the LORD your God gives you to possess. F277 3 "You shall prepare the roads F278 for yourself, and divide into three parts the territory of your land which the LORD your God will give you as a possession, so F279 that any manslayer may flee there.

4 "Now R640 this is the case of the manslayer who may flee there and live: when he kills F280 his friend unintentionally, F281 not F282 hating him previously-- 5 as when a man goes into the forest with his friend to cut wood, and his hand swings F283 the axe to cut down the tree, and the iron head slips off the handle F284 and strikes F285 his friend so that he dies--he may flee to one of these cities and live; 6 otherwise the avenger of blood might pursue the manslayer in F286 the heat of his anger, and overtake him, because the way is long, and take F287 his life, though he was not deserving of death, since he had not hated him previously. 7 "Therefore, I command you, saying, `You shall set aside three cities for yourself.'

8 "If the LORD your God enlarges R641 your territory, just as He has sworn to your fathers, and gives you all the land which He promised F288 to give your fathers-- 9 if you carefully F289 observe all this commandment which I command you today, to R642 love the LORD your God, and to walk in His ways always--then R643 you shall add three more cities for yourself, besides these three. 10 "So innocent blood will not be shed in the midst of your land which the LORD your God gives you as an inheritance, and bloodguiltiness R644 be on you.

11 "But if R645 there is a man who hates his neighbor and lies in wait for him and rises up against him and strikes him F290 so that he dies, and he flees to one of these cities, 12 then the elders of his city shall send and take him from there and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die. 13 "You R646 F291 shall not pity him, but you R647 shall purge the blood of the innocent from Israel, that it may go well with you.

Laws of Landmark and Testimony

14 "You R648 shall not move your neighbor's boundary mark, which the ancestors have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the LORD your God gives you to possess. F292

15 "A R649 single witness shall not rise up against a man on account of any iniquity or any sin which F293 he has committed; on the evidence F294 of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed. 16 "If R650 a malicious witness rises up against a man to accuse F295 him of wrongdoing, F296 17 then both the men who have the dispute shall stand before R651 the LORD, before the priests and the judges who will be in office in those days. 18 "The judges shall R652 investigate thoroughly, and if the witness is a false witness and he has accused F297 his brother falsely, 19 then you R653 shall do to him just as he had intended to do to his brother. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you. 20 "The R654 rest will hear and be afraid, and will never again do such an evil thing among you. 21 "Thus you R655 F298 shall not show pity: life R656 for life, eye R657 for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

F277: Lit possess it
F278: Lit road
F279: Lit and it shall be for every manslayer to flee there
F280: Lit smites
F281: Lit without knowledge
F282: Lit and he was not hating him previously
F283: Lit is thrust with
F284: Lit wood
F285: Lit finds
F286: Lit while his heart is hot
F287: Lit smite him in the soul
F288: Lit spoke
F289: Lit do it
F290: Lit him in the soul
F291: Lit Your eye
F292: Lit possess it
F293: Lit in any sin, which he sins
F294: Lit mouth of two witnesses, or by the mouth of three
F295: Lit testify against
F296: Lit turning aside
F297: Lit testified against
F298: Lit your eye

R638: Deuteronomy 6:10,11
R639: Deuteronomy 4:41; Joshua 20:2
R640: Numbers 35:9-34
R641: Genesis 15:18
R642: Deuteronomy 6:5
R643: Joshua 20:7
R644: Numbers 35:33; Deuteronomy 21:1-9
R645: Exodus 21:12; Numbers 35:16; 1 John 3:15
R646: Deuteronomy 7:2
R647: 1 Kings 2:31
R648: Deuteronomy 27:17; Job 1:24:2; Proverbs 22:28; Hosea 5:10
R649: Numbers 35:30; Deuteronomy 17:6; Matthew 18:16; John 8:17; 2 Corinthians 13:1; 1 Timothy 5:19; Hebrews 10:28
R650: Exodus 23:1; Psalms 27:12
R651: Deuteronomy 17:9
R652: Deuteronomy 25:1
R653: Proverbs 19:5
R654: Deuteronomy 17:13; 21:21
R655: Deuteronomy 19:13
R656: Exodus 21:23; Leviticus 24:20
R657: Matthew 5:38


Copyright Statement: The New American Standard Bible
Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995; Audio Recording Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, (P) 1989 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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