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Appeal to a Higher Court

If a matter is too difficult for you to judge—bloodshed,[a] legal claim,[b] or assault[c]—matters of controversy in your villages[d]—you must leave there and go up to the place the Lord your God chooses.[e] You will go to the Levitical priests and the judge in office in those days and seek a solution; they will render a verdict. 10 You must then do as they have determined at that place the Lord chooses. Be careful to do just as you are taught. 11 You must do what you are instructed, and the verdict they pronounce to you, without fail. Do not deviate right or left from what they tell you. 12 The person who pays no attention[f] to the priest currently serving the Lord your God there, or to the judge—that person must die, so that you may purge evil from Israel. 13 Then all the people will hear and be afraid, and not be so presumptuous again.

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  1. Deuteronomy 17:8 tn Heb “between blood and blood.”
  2. Deuteronomy 17:8 tn Heb “between claim and claim.”
  3. Deuteronomy 17:8 tn Heb “between blow and blow.”
  4. Deuteronomy 17:8 tn Heb “gates.”
  5. Deuteronomy 17:8 tc Several Greek recensions add “to place his name there,” thus completing the usual formula to describe the central sanctuary (cf. Deut 12:5, 11, 14, 18; 16:6). However, the context suggests that the local Levitical towns, and not the central sanctuary, are in mind.
  6. Deuteronomy 17:12 tn Heb “who acts presumptuously not to listen” (cf. NASB).

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