The Ten Commandments

20 (A)And (B)God spoke all these words, saying,

(C)“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

(D)“You shall have no other gods before[a] me.

(E)“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. (F)You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am (G)a jealous God, (H)visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands[b] of those who love me and keep my commandments.

(I)“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.

(J)“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. (K)Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, 10 but the (L)seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the (M)sojourner who is within your gates. 11 For (N)in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

12 (O)“Honor your father and your mother, (P)that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.

13 (Q)“You shall not murder.[c]

14 (R)“You shall not commit adultery.

15 (S)“You shall not steal.

16 (T)“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

17 (U)“You shall not covet (V)your neighbor's house; (W)you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor's.”

18 Now when all the people saw (X)the thunder and the flashes of lightning and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking, the people were afraid[d] and trembled, and they stood far off 19 and said to Moses, (Y)“You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, lest we die.” 20 (Z)Moses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to (AA)test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” 21 The people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the (AB)thick darkness where God was.

Laws About Altars

22 And the Lord said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the people of Israel: ‘You have seen for yourselves that I have (AC)talked with you from heaven. 23 (AD)You shall not make gods of silver to be with me, nor shall you make for yourselves gods of gold. 24 An altar of earth you shall make for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your sheep and your oxen. (AE)In every place where I cause my name to be remembered I will come to you and (AF)bless you. 25 (AG)If you make me an altar of stone, (AH)you shall not build it of hewn stones, for if you wield your tool on it you profane it. 26 And you shall not go up by steps to my altar, that your nakedness be not exposed on it.’

Laws About Slaves

21 “Now these are the (AI)rules that you shall set before them. (AJ)When you buy a Hebrew slave,[e] he shall serve six years, and in the seventh he shall go out free, for nothing. If he comes in single, he shall go out single; if he comes in married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out alone. But (AK)if the slave plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free,’ then his master shall bring him to (AL)God, and he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall bore his ear through with an awl, and he shall be his slave forever.

“When a man (AM)sells his daughter as a slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. If she does not please her master, who has designated her[f] for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has broken faith with her. If he designates her for his son, he shall deal with her as with a daughter. 10 If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, or (AN)her marital rights. 11 And if he does not do these three things for her, she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.

12 (AO)“Whoever strikes a man so that he dies shall be put to death. 13 (AP)But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then (AQ)I will appoint for you a place to which he may flee. 14 But if a man willfully attacks another to kill him by cunning, (AR)you shall take him from my altar, that he may die.

15 “Whoever strikes his father or his mother shall be put to death.

16 (AS)“Whoever steals a man and sells him, and anyone found (AT)in possession of him, shall be put to death.

17 (AU)“Whoever curses[g] his father or his mother shall be put to death.

18 “When men quarrel and one strikes the other with a stone or with his fist and the man does not die but takes to his bed, 19 then if the man rises again and walks outdoors with his staff, he who struck him shall be clear; only he shall pay for the loss of his time, and shall have him thoroughly healed.

20 “When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the (AV)slave is his money.

22 “When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman's husband shall impose on him, and (AW)he shall pay as the (AX)judges determine. 23 But if there is harm,[h] then you shall pay (AY)life for life, 24 (AZ)eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

26 “When a man strikes the eye of his slave, male or female, and destroys it, he shall let the slave go free because of his eye. 27 If he knocks out the tooth of his slave, male or female, he shall let the slave go free because of his tooth.

28 “When an ox gores a man or a woman to death, the (BA)ox shall be stoned, and its flesh shall not be eaten, but the owner of the ox shall not be liable. 29 But if the ox has been accustomed to gore in the past, and its owner has been warned but has not kept it in, and it kills a man or a woman, the ox shall be stoned, and its owner also shall be put to death. 30 If (BB)a ransom is imposed on him, then (BC)he shall give for the redemption of his life whatever is imposed on him. 31 If it gores a man's son or daughter, he shall be dealt with according to this same rule. 32 If the ox gores a slave, male or female, the owner shall give to their master (BD)thirty shekels[i] of silver, and (BE)the ox shall be stoned.

Laws About Restitution

33 “When a man opens a pit, or when a man digs a pit and does not cover it, and an ox or a donkey falls into it, 34 the owner of the pit shall make restoration. He shall give money to its owner, and the dead beast shall be his.

35 “When one man's ox butts another's, so that it dies, then they shall sell the live ox and share its price, and the dead beast also they shall share. 36 Or if it is known that the ox has been accustomed to gore in the past, and its owner has not kept it in, he shall repay ox for ox, and the dead beast shall be his.

22 [j] “If a man steals an ox or a sheep, and kills it or sells it, he shall repay five oxen for an ox, and (BF)four sheep for a sheep. [k] If a thief is found (BG)breaking in and is struck so that he dies, there shall be no bloodguilt for him, but if the sun has risen on him, there shall be bloodguilt for him. He[l] shall surely pay. If he has nothing, then (BH)he shall be sold for his theft. If the stolen beast (BI)is found alive in his possession, whether it is an ox or a donkey or a sheep, (BJ)he shall pay double.

“If a man causes a field or vineyard to be grazed over, or lets his beast loose and it feeds in another man's field, he shall make restitution from the best in his own field and in his own vineyard.

“If fire breaks out and catches in thorns so that the stacked grain or the standing grain or the field is consumed, he who started the fire shall make full restitution.

“If a man gives to his neighbor money or goods to keep safe, and it is stolen from the man's house, then, if the thief is found, (BK)he shall pay double. If the thief is not found, the owner of the house shall come near to God to show whether or not he has put his hand to his neighbor's property. For every breach of trust, whether it is for an ox, for a donkey, for a sheep, for a cloak, or for any kind of lost thing, of which one says, ‘This is it,’ the case of both parties shall come before God. The one whom God condemns shall pay double to his neighbor.

10 “If a man gives to his neighbor a donkey or an ox or a sheep or any beast to keep safe, and it dies or is injured or is driven away, without anyone seeing it, 11 (BL)an oath by the Lord shall be between them both to see whether or not he has put his hand to his neighbor's property. The owner shall accept the oath, and he shall not make restitution. 12 But if (BM)it is stolen from him, he shall make restitution to its owner. 13 If it is torn by beasts, let him bring it as evidence. He shall not make restitution for what has been torn.

14 “If a man borrows anything of his neighbor, and it is injured or dies, the owner not being with it, he shall make full restitution. 15 If the owner was with it, he shall not make restitution; if it was hired, it came for its hiring fee.[m]

Laws About Social Justice

16 (BN)“If a man seduces a virgin[n] who is not betrothed and lies with her, he shall give the bride-price[o] for her and make her his wife. 17 If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, (BO)he shall pay money equal to the (BP)bride-price for virgins.

18 (BQ)“You shall not permit a sorceress to live.

19 (BR)“Whoever lies with an animal shall be put to death.

20 (BS)“Whoever sacrifices to any god, other than the Lord alone, shall be devoted to destruction.[p]

21 (BT)“You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt. 22 (BU)You shall not mistreat any widow or fatherless child. 23 If you do mistreat them, and they (BV)cry out to me, I will surely (BW)hear their cry, 24 and my wrath will burn, and I will kill you with the sword, and (BX)your wives shall become widows and your children fatherless.

25 (BY)“If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be like a moneylender to him, and you shall not exact interest from him. 26 (BZ)If ever you take your neighbor's cloak in pledge, you shall return it to him before the sun goes down, 27 for that is his only covering, and it is his cloak for his body; in what else shall he sleep? And if he (CA)cries to me, I will hear, for I am (CB)compassionate.

28 (CC)“You shall not revile God, nor (CD)curse a ruler of your people.

29 “You shall not delay to offer from the fullness of your harvest and from the outflow of your presses. (CE)The firstborn of your sons you shall give to me. 30 (CF)You shall do the same with your oxen and with your sheep: (CG)seven days it shall be with its mother; on the eighth day you shall give it to me.

31 (CH)“You shall be consecrated to me. Therefore (CI)you shall not eat any flesh that is torn by beasts in the field; (CJ)you shall throw it to the dogs.

23 (CK)“You shall not spread a false report. You shall not join hands with a wicked man to be a (CL)malicious witness. You shall not fall in with the many to do evil, nor shall you bear witness in a lawsuit, siding with the many, so as to pervert justice, (CM)nor shall you be partial to a poor man in his lawsuit.

(CN)“If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying down under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it; you shall rescue it with him.

(CO)“You shall not pervert the justice due to your poor in his lawsuit. (CP)Keep far from a false charge, and (CQ)do not kill the innocent and righteous, for (CR)I will not acquit the wicked. (CS)And you shall take no bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of those who are in the right.

(CT)“You shall not oppress a sojourner. You know the heart of a sojourner, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.

Laws About the Sabbath and Festivals

10 (CU)“For six years you shall sow your land and gather in its yield, 11 but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave the beasts of the field may eat. You shall do likewise with your vineyard, and with your olive orchard.

12 (CV)“Six days you shall do your work, but on the seventh day you shall rest; that your ox and your donkey may have rest, and the son of your servant woman, and the alien, may be refreshed.

13 (CW)“Pay attention to all that I have said to you, and make no mention of the names of other gods, nor let it be heard on your lips.

14 (CX)“Three times in the year you shall keep a feast to me. 15 (CY)You shall keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread. As I commanded you, you shall eat unleavened bread for seven days at the appointed time in the month of (CZ)Abib, for in it you came out of Egypt. (DA)None shall appear before me empty-handed. 16 You shall keep (DB)the Feast of Harvest, of the firstfruits of your labor, of what you sow in the field. You shall keep the (DC)Feast of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you gather in from the field the fruit of your labor. 17 (DD)Three times in the year shall all your males appear before the Lord God.

18 (DE)“You shall not offer the blood of my sacrifice with anything leavened, or let the fat of my feast remain until the morning.

19 “The best of the (DF)firstfruits of your ground you shall bring into the house of the Lord your God.

(DG)“You shall not boil a young goat in its mother's milk.

Conquest of Canaan Promised

20 (DH)“Behold, I send an angel before you to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place that I have prepared. 21 Pay careful attention to him and obey his voice; (DI)do not rebel against him, (DJ)for he will not pardon your transgression, for my name is in him.

22 “But if you carefully obey his voice and do all that I say, then (DK)I will be an enemy to your enemies and an adversary to your adversaries.

23 (DL)“When my angel goes before you and brings you (DM)to the Amorites and the Hittites and the Perizzites and the Canaanites, the Hivites and the Jebusites, and I blot them out, 24 you shall (DN)not bow down to their gods nor serve them, (DO)nor do as they do, but (DP)you shall utterly overthrow them and break their (DQ)pillars in pieces. 25 You (DR)shall serve the Lord your God, and (DS)he[q] will bless your bread and your water, and (DT)I will take sickness away from among you. 26 (DU)None shall miscarry or be barren in your land; I will fulfill the (DV)number of your days. 27 I will send (DW)my terror before you and will throw into (DX)confusion all the people against whom you shall come, and I will make all your enemies turn their backs to you. 28 And (DY)I will send hornets[r] before you, which shall drive out the Hivites, the Canaanites, and the Hittites from before you. 29 (DZ)I will not drive them out from before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the wild beasts multiply against you. 30 Little by little I will drive them out from before you, until you have increased and possess the land. 31 (EA)And I will set your border from the Red Sea to the Sea of the Philistines, and from the wilderness to the Euphrates,[s] for (EB)I will give the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you. 32 (EC)You shall make no covenant with them and their gods. 33 They shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against me; for if you serve their gods, (ED)it will surely be a snare to you.”


  1. Exodus 20:3 Or besides
  2. Exodus 20:6 Or to the thousandth generation
  3. Exodus 20:13 The Hebrew word also covers causing human death through carelessness or negligence
  4. Exodus 20:18 Samaritan, Septuagint, Syriac, Vulgate; Masoretic Text the people saw
  5. Exodus 21:2 Or servant; the Hebrew term ‘ebed designates a range of social and economic roles; also verses 5, 6, 7, 20, 21, 26, 27, 32 (see Preface)
  6. Exodus 21:8 Or so that he has not designated her
  7. Exodus 21:17 Or dishonors; Septuagint reviles
  8. Exodus 21:23 Or so that her children come out and it is clear who was to blame, he shall be fined as the woman's husband shall impose on him, and he alone shall pay. 23If it is unclear who was to blame…
  9. Exodus 21:32 A shekel was about 2/5 ounce or 11 grams
  10. Exodus 22:1 Ch 21:37 in Hebrew
  11. Exodus 22:2 Ch 22:1 in Hebrew
  12. Exodus 22:3 That is, the thief
  13. Exodus 22:15 Or it is reckoned in (Hebrew comes into) its hiring fee
  14. Exodus 22:16 Or a girl of marriageable age; also verse 17
  15. Exodus 22:16 Or engagement present; also verse 17
  16. Exodus 22:20 That is, set apart (devoted) as an offering to the Lord (for destruction)
  17. Exodus 23:25 Septuagint, Vulgate I
  18. Exodus 23:28 Or the hornet
  19. Exodus 23:31 Hebrew the River

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