Expiation of a Crime

21 “If a person who has been killed by someone is found lying in the open country in the land which the Lord your God is giving you to [a]possess, and it is not known who struck him, then your elders and your judges shall go out and measure the distance to the cities which are around the one who was killed. And it shall be that the city which is nearest to the person killed, that is, that the elders of that city shall take a heifer of the herd that has not been worked [b]and has not pulled in a yoke; and the elders of that city shall bring the heifer down to a valley with running water, which has not been plowed or sown, and they shall break the heifer’s neck there in the valley. Then (A)the priests, the sons of Levi, shall come forward, because the Lord your God has chosen them to serve Him and to bless in the name of the Lord; and every dispute and [c]violent crime shall be [d]settled by them. And all the elders of that city [e]which is nearest to the person killed shall (B)wash their hands over the heifer whose neck was broken in the valley; and they shall respond and say, ‘Our hands did not shed this blood, nor did our eyes see who did. [f]Forgive Your people Israel whom You have redeemed, Lord, and do not place the guilt for (C)innocent blood in the midst of Your people Israel.’ And the guilt for bloodshed shall be [g]forgiven them. (D)So you shall remove the guilt for innocent blood from your midst, when you do what is right in the eyes of the Lord.

Domestic Relations

10 “When you go out to battle against your enemies, and (E)the Lord your God hands them over to you and you take them away captive, 11 and you see among the captives a beautiful woman, and are strongly attracted to her and would take her as a wife for yourself, 12 then you shall bring her into your home, and she shall (F)shave her head and [h]trim her nails. 13 She shall also [i]remove the clothes of her captivity and shall remain in your house, and (G)weep for her father and mother a full month; and after that you may have relations with her and become her husband and she shall be your wife. 14 But it shall be, if you are not pleased with her, then you shall let her go [j]wherever she wishes; and you certainly shall not sell her for money, you shall not treat her as merchandise, since you have [k](H)humiliated her.

15 “If a man has two wives, the one loved and (I)the other [l]unloved, and both the loved and the [m]unloved have borne him sons, and the firstborn son belongs to the [n]unloved, 16 then it shall be on the day that he wills what he owns as an inheritance to his sons, he is not allowed to treat the son of the loved wife as the firstborn, [o]at the expense of the son of the [p]unloved, who actually is the firstborn son. 17 On the contrary, he shall acknowledge the firstborn, the son of the [q]unloved wife, by giving him a double [r]portion of everything that [s]he owns, for he was the (J)beginning of his [t]strength; (K)to him belongs the right of the firstborn.

18 “If any person has a stubborn and rebellious son who does (L)not obey his father or his mother, and when they discipline him, he does not listen to them, 19 then his father and mother shall seize him, and bring him out to the elders of his city [u]at the gateway of his hometown. 20 And they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious; he does not obey us, he is thoughtless and given to drinking.’ 21 (M)Then all the men of his city shall stone him to death; so (N)you shall eliminate the evil from your midst, and (O)all Israel will hear about it and fear.

22 “Now if [v]a person has committed a sin carrying (P)a sentence of death and he is put to death, and you hang him on [w]a tree, 23 (Q)his body is not to be left overnight on the [x]tree, but you shall certainly bury him on the same day (for (R)he who is hanged is cursed of God), so that you (S)do not defile your land which the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance.

Various Laws

22 (T)You shall not see your countryman’s ox or his sheep straying away, and avoid them; you shall certainly bring them back to your countryman. And if your countryman is not near you, or if you do not know him, then you shall bring it to your house, and it shall remain with you until your countryman looks for it; then you shall restore it to him. You shall also do this with his donkey, and you shall do the same with his garment, and you shall do likewise with any lost property of your countryman, which has been lost by him and you have found. You are not allowed to avoid them. You shall not see your countryman’s donkey or his ox fallen down on the road, and avoid them; you shall certainly help him raise them up.

“A woman shall not wear a man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.

“If you happen to come upon a bird’s nest along the way, in any tree or on the ground, with young ones or eggs in it, and the mother sitting on the young or on the eggs, (U)you shall not take the mother with the young; you shall certainly let the mother go, but the young you may take for yourself, (V)in order that it may go well for you and that you may prolong your days.

“When you build a new house, you shall make a [y]parapet for your roof, so that you will not bring guilt for bloodshed on your house if anyone falls from it.

(W)You shall not sow your vineyard with two kinds of seed, otherwise [z]all the produce of the seed which you have sown and the yield of the vineyard will be [aa]forfeited to the sanctuary.

10 (X)You shall not plow with an ox and a donkey together.

11 (Y)You shall not wear a material of wool and linen combined together.

12 (Z)You shall make yourself tassels on the four corners of your garment with which you cover yourself.

Laws on Morality

13 (AA)If any man takes a wife and goes in to her and then [ab]turns against her, 14 and he charges her with shameful behavior and [ac]publicly defames her, and says, ‘I took this woman, but when I came near her, I did not find her to have evidence of virginity,’ 15 then the girl’s father and her mother shall take and bring out the evidence of the girl’s virginity to the elders of the city at the gate. 16 And the girl’s father shall say to the elders, ‘I gave my daughter to this man as a wife, but he [ad]turned against her; 17 and behold, he has charged her with shameful behavior, saying, “I did not find your daughter to have evidence of virginity.” But [ae]this is the evidence of my daughter’s virginity.’ And they shall spread out the garment before the elders of the city. 18 Then (AB)the elders of that city shall take the man and rebuke him, 19 and they shall fine him a hundred shekels of silver and give it to the girl’s father, because he [af]publicly defamed a virgin of Israel. And she shall remain his wife; he is not allowed to [ag]divorce her all his days.

20 “But if this [ah](AC)charge is true, and they did not find the girl to have evidence of virginity, 21 then they shall bring the girl out to the doorway of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her [ai]to death, because she has (AD)committed a disgraceful sin in Israel by playing the prostitute in her father’s house; so (AE)you shall eliminate the evil from among you.

22 (AF)If a man is found sleeping with a married woman, then both of them shall die, the man who slept with the woman, and the woman; so you shall eliminate the evil from Israel.

23 (AG)If there is a girl who is a virgin [aj]betrothed to a man, and another man finds her in the city and sleeps with her, 24 then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city and you shall stone them [ak]to death: the girl, because she did not cry out for help though she was in the city, and the man, because he has violated his neighbor’s wife. So you shall eliminate the evil from among you.

25 “But if the man finds the girl who is betrothed in the field, and the man seizes her and [al]rapes her, then only the man who [am]raped her shall die. 26 And you are not to do anything to the girl; there is no sin in the girl worthy of death, for just as a man rises against his neighbor and murders him, [an]so is this case. 27 When he found her in the field, the betrothed girl [ao]cried out, but there was no one to save her.

28 (AH)If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not betrothed, and he seizes her and has sexual relations with her, and they are discovered, 29 then the man who had sexual relations with her shall give the girl’s father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall become his wife, because he has violated her; he is not allowed to divorce her all his days.

30 [ap](AI)A man shall not take [aq]his father’s wife in marriage, so that he does not [ar]uncover his father’s garment.

Persons Excluded from the Assembly

23 (AJ)No one who is [as]emasculated or has his male organ cut off may enter the assembly of the Lord. No one of illegitimate birth may enter the assembly of the Lord; none of his descendants, even to the tenth generation, may enter the assembly of the Lord. (AK)No Ammonite or Moabite may enter the assembly of the Lord; none of their descendants, even to the tenth generation, may ever enter the assembly of the Lord, (AL)because they did not meet you with [at]food and water on the way when you came out of Egypt, and because they hired against you (AM)Balaam the son of Beor from Pethor of [au]Mesopotamia, to curse you. Nevertheless, the Lord your God was unwilling to listen to Balaam, but the Lord your God (AN)turned the curse into a blessing for you because the Lord your God (AO)loves you. (AP)You shall never seek their peace or their prosperity all your days.

“You shall not loathe an [av]Edomite, for (AQ)he is your brother; you shall not loathe an Egyptian, (AR)because you were a stranger in his land. The sons of the third generation who are born to them may enter the assembly of the Lord.

“When you go out as [aw]an army against your enemies, you shall be on guard against every evil thing.

10 (AS)If there is among you any man who is unclean because of a nocturnal emission, then he must go outside the camp; he may not [ax]reenter the camp. 11 But when evening approaches, he shall bathe himself with water, and at sundown he may [ay]reenter the camp.

12 “You shall also have a place allocated outside the camp, so that you may go out there to relieve yourself, 13 and you shall have a [az]spade among your tools, and it shall be when you sit down outside, you shall dig with it and shall turn and cover up your excrement. 14 Since (AT)the Lord your God walks in the midst of your camp to save you and to [ba]defeat your enemies before you, your camp must be (AU)holy; so He must not see [bb]anything indecent among you [bc]or He will turn away from you.

15 (AV)You shall not hand over to his master a slave who has [bd]escaped from his master to you. 16 He shall live with you in your midst, in the place that he chooses in one of your [be]towns where it pleases him; (AW)you shall not mistreat him.

17 (AX)None of the daughters of Israel shall be a cult prostitute, (AY)nor shall any of the sons of Israel be a cult prostitute. 18 You shall not bring the earnings of a prostitute or the money for a [bf](AZ)dog into the house of the Lord your God as payment for any vowed offering, because both of these are an abomination to the Lord your God.

19 (BA)You are not to charge interest to your countrymen: interest on money, food, or anything that may be loaned on interest. 20 (BB)You may charge interest to a foreigner, but to your countrymen you shall not charge interest, so that (BC)the Lord your God may bless you in all [bg]that you undertake in the land which you are about to enter to [bh]possess.

21 (BD)When you make a vow to the Lord your God, you shall not delay to pay it, for the Lord your God will certainly require it of you, and it will be a sin [bi]for you. 22 However, if you refrain from making vows, it will not be a sin [bj]for you. 23 You shall be careful and perform what goes out of your lips, since in fact you have vowed a [bk]voluntary offering to the Lord your God, whatever you have [bl]promised.

24 “When you enter your neighbor’s vineyard, you may eat grapes [bm]until you are satisfied; but you are not to put any in your [bn]basket.

25 (BE)When you enter your neighbor’s standing grain, you may pluck the heads of grain with your hand, but you are not to [bo]use a sickle on your neighbor’s standing grain.


  1. Deuteronomy 21:1 Lit possess it
  2. Deuteronomy 21:3 Lit which has not
  3. Deuteronomy 21:5 Lit blow
  4. Deuteronomy 21:5 Lit according to their mouth
  5. Deuteronomy 21:6 Lit who are
  6. Deuteronomy 21:8 Lit Cover over, atone for
  7. Deuteronomy 21:8 Lit covered over, atoned for
  8. Deuteronomy 21:12 Lit do
  9. Deuteronomy 21:13 Lit remove from her
  10. Deuteronomy 21:14 Lit according to her soul
  11. Deuteronomy 21:14 I.e., by a forced marriage
  12. Deuteronomy 21:15 Or scorned; lit hated
  13. Deuteronomy 21:15 Or scorned; lit hated
  14. Deuteronomy 21:15 Or scorned; lit hated
  15. Deuteronomy 21:16 Lit against the face of
  16. Deuteronomy 21:16 See note v 15
  17. Deuteronomy 21:17 See note v 15
  18. Deuteronomy 21:17 Lit mouthful
  19. Deuteronomy 21:17 Lit is found with him
  20. Deuteronomy 21:17 I.e., power of procreation
  21. Deuteronomy 21:19 Lit and to the gate of his place
  22. Deuteronomy 21:22 Lit a sin is in a person carrying
  23. Deuteronomy 21:22 Lit wood
  24. Deuteronomy 21:23 Lit wood
  25. Deuteronomy 22:8 I.e., a protective railing
  26. Deuteronomy 22:9 Lit the fullness
  27. Deuteronomy 22:9 Or forfeit, adj sense
  28. Deuteronomy 22:13 Lit hates her
  29. Deuteronomy 22:14 Lit brings out an evil reputation against her
  30. Deuteronomy 22:16 Lit hated her
  31. Deuteronomy 22:17 Lit these are
  32. Deuteronomy 22:19 Lit brought out an evil reputation against a virgin
  33. Deuteronomy 22:19 Lit send her away
  34. Deuteronomy 22:20 Lit matter
  35. Deuteronomy 22:21 Lit with stones so that she dies
  36. Deuteronomy 22:23 A betrothed couple was considered legally married, but did not yet live together
  37. Deuteronomy 22:24 Lit with stones so that they die
  38. Deuteronomy 22:25 Lit lies down with
  39. Deuteronomy 22:25 Lit lies down with
  40. Deuteronomy 22:26 I.e., she is only a victim
  41. Deuteronomy 22:27 I.e., presumably did so
  42. Deuteronomy 22:30 Ch 23:1 in Heb
  43. Deuteronomy 22:30 I.e., a stepmother, not his birth mother
  44. Deuteronomy 22:30 Idiom for violating his father’s marriage
  45. Deuteronomy 23:1 Lit wounded by crushing of testicles
  46. Deuteronomy 23:4 Lit bread
  47. Deuteronomy 23:4 Heb Aram-naharaim
  48. Deuteronomy 23:7 I.e., a descendant of Esau
  49. Deuteronomy 23:9 Or a camp
  50. Deuteronomy 23:10 Lit come to the midst of
  51. Deuteronomy 23:11 Lit come to the midst of
  52. Deuteronomy 23:13 Lit peg
  53. Deuteronomy 23:14 Lit give
  54. Deuteronomy 23:14 Lit nakedness of anything
  55. Deuteronomy 23:14 Lit and
  56. Deuteronomy 23:15 Lit delivered himself
  57. Deuteronomy 23:16 Lit gates in the good to him
  58. Deuteronomy 23:18 Prob. refers to a male prostitute
  59. Deuteronomy 23:20 Lit the putting forth of your hand
  60. Deuteronomy 23:20 Lit possess it
  61. Deuteronomy 23:21 Lit in you
  62. Deuteronomy 23:22 Lit in you
  63. Deuteronomy 23:23 Or freewill offering
  64. Deuteronomy 23:23 Lit spoken with your mouth
  65. Deuteronomy 23:24 Lit according to your soul, your satiation
  66. Deuteronomy 23:24 Lit container
  67. Deuteronomy 23:25 Lit brandish

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