Forbidden Practices

14 “You are sons of the Lord your God;(A) do not cut yourselves or make a bald spot on your head[a] on behalf of the dead,(B) for you are a holy people belonging to the Lord your God. The Lord has chosen you to be His own possession(C) out of all the peoples on the face of the earth.

Clean and Unclean Foods

“You must not eat any detestable thing. These are the animals you may eat:

the ox, the sheep, the goat,
the deer, the gazelle, the roe deer,
the wild goat, the ibex, the antelope,
and the mountain sheep.

You may eat any animal that has hooves divided in two and chews the cud. But among the ones that chew the cud or have divided hooves, you are not to eat these:

the camel, the hare, and the hyrax,
though they chew the cud, they do not have hooves—
they are unclean for you;
and the pig, though it has hooves, it does not chew the cud—
it is unclean for you.

You must not eat their meat or touch their carcasses.(D)

“You may eat everything from the water that has fins and scales, 10 but you may not eat anything that does not have fins and scales—it is unclean for you.(E)

11 “You may eat every clean bird, 12 but these are the ones you may not eat:

the eagle, the bearded vulture,
the black vulture, 13 the kite,
any kind of falcon,[b]
14 every kind of raven, 15 the ostrich,
the short-eared owl, the gull,
any kind of hawk,
16 the little owl, the long-eared owl,
the white owl, 17 the desert owl,
the osprey, the cormorant, 18 the stork,
any kind of heron,
the hoopoe, and the bat.[c](F)

19 All winged insects are unclean for you; they may not be eaten. 20 But you may eat every clean flying creature.(G)

21 “You are not to eat any carcass; you may give it to a temporary resident living within your gates, and he may eat it, or you may sell it to a foreigner. For you are a holy people belonging to the Lord your God. You must not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.

A Tenth for the Lord

22 “Each year you are to set aside a tenth of all the produce grown in your fields. 23 You are to eat a tenth of your grain, new wine, and oil, and the firstborn of your herd and flock, in the presence of Yahweh your God at the place where He chooses to have His name dwell,(H) so that you will always learn to fear(I) the Lord your God. 24 But if the distance is too great for you to carry it, since the place where Yahweh your God chooses to put His name is too far away from you and since the Lord your God has blessed you, 25 then exchange it for money, take the money in your hand, and go to the place the Lord your God chooses. 26 You may spend the money on anything you want: cattle, sheep, wine, beer, or anything you desire. You are to feast there in the presence of the Lord your God and rejoice with your family. 27 Do not neglect the Levite within your gates, since he has no portion or inheritance among you.(J)

28 “At the end of every three years, bring a tenth of all your produce for that year and store it within your gates. 29 Then the Levite, who has no portion or inheritance among you, the foreigner, the fatherless, and the widow within your gates may come, eat, and be satisfied.(K) And the Lord your God will bless you in all the work of your hands that you do.(L)


  1. Deuteronomy 14:1 Or forehead
  2. Deuteronomy 14:13 Some Hb mss, Sam, LXX; other Hb mss, Vg read the falcon, the various kinds of kite
  3. Deuteronomy 14:18 The identification of some of these animals is uncertain.

Bible Gateway Recommends