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Justice. 18 (A)In all the communities which the Lord, your God, is giving you, you shall appoint judges and officials throughout your tribes to administer true justice for the people.

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16 If a hostile witness rises against someone to accuse that person of wrongdoing, 17 the two parties in the dispute shall appear in the presence of the Lord, in the presence of the priests and judges in office at that time,(A) 18 (B)and the judges must investigate it thoroughly. If the witness is a false witness and has falsely accused the other,(C)

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Chapter 21

Absolution of Untraced Murder.[a] If the corpse of someone who has been slain is found lying in the open, in the land the Lord, your God, is giving you to possess, and it is not known who killed the person, your elders and judges shall go out and measure the distances to the cities that are in the neighborhood of the corpse. (A)When it is established which city is nearest the corpse, the elders of that city shall take a heifer that has never been put to work or worn a yoke; the elders of that city shall bring the heifer down to a wadi with an everflowing stream at a place that has not been plowed or sown, and shall break the heifer’s neck there in the wadi.

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Footnotes

  1. 21:1–9 This law has to do with absolving the community of bloodguilt that accrues to it and to the land when a homicide occurs and the murderer cannot be identified and punished.

20 where they shall say to the elders of the city, “This son of ours is a stubborn and rebellious fellow who will not listen to us; he is a glutton and a drunkard.”(A)

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