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Exodus 23-24 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Laws about Honesty and Justice

23 “You must not spread a false report. Do not join[a] the wicked to be a malicious witness.

“You must not follow a crowd in wrongdoing. Do not testify in a lawsuit and go along with a crowd to pervert justice. Do not show favoritism to a poor person in his lawsuit.

“If you come across your enemy’s stray ox or donkey, you must return it to him.

“If you see the donkey of someone who hates you lying helpless under its load, and you want to refrain from helping it, you must help with it.[b]

“You must not deny justice to a poor person among you in his lawsuit. Stay far away from a false accusation. Do not kill the innocent and the just, because I will not justify the guilty. You must not take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and corrupts the words[c] of the righteous. You must not oppress a resident alien; you yourselves know how it feels to be a resident alien because you were resident aliens in the land of Egypt.

Sabbaths and Festivals

10 “Sow your land for six years and gather its produce. 11 But during the seventh year you are to let it rest and leave it uncultivated, so that the poor among your people may eat from it and the wild animals may consume what they leave. Do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove.

12 “Do your work for six days but rest on the seventh day so that your ox and your donkey may rest, and the son of your female slave as well as the resident alien may be refreshed.

13 “Pay strict attention to everything I have said to you. You must not invoke the names of other gods; they must not be heard on your lips.[d]

14 “Celebrate a festival in my honor three times a year. 15 Observe the Festival of Unleavened Bread. As I commanded you, you are to eat unleavened bread for seven days at the appointed time in the month of Abib,[e] because you came out of Egypt in that month. No one is to appear before me empty-handed. 16 Also observe the Festival of Harvest[f] with the firstfruits of your produce from what you sow in the field, and observe the Festival of Ingathering[g] at the end of the year, when you gather your produce[h] from the field. 17 Three times a year all your males are to appear before the Lord God.

18 “You must not offer the blood of my sacrifices with anything leavened. The fat of my festival offering must not remain until morning.

19 “Bring the best of the firstfruits of your land to the house of the Lord your God.

“You must not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.

Promises and Warnings

20 “I am going to send an angel before you to protect you on the way and bring you to the place I have prepared. 21 Be attentive to him and listen to him. Do not defy him, because he will not forgive your acts of rebellion, for my name is in him. 22 But if you will carefully obey him and do everything I say, then I will be an enemy to your enemies and a foe to your foes. 23 For my angel will go before you and bring you to the land of the Amorites, Hethites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hivites, and Jebusites, and I will wipe them out. 24 Do not bow in worship to their gods, and do not serve them. Do not imitate their practices. Instead, demolish them[i] and smash their sacred pillars to pieces. 25 Serve the Lord your God, and he[j] will bless your bread and your water. I will remove illnesses from you. 26 No woman will miscarry or be childless in your land. I will give you the full number of your days.

27 “I will cause the people ahead of you to feel terror[k] and will throw into confusion all the nations you come to. I will make all your enemies turn their backs to you in retreat.[l] 28 I will send hornets[m] in front of you, and they will drive the Hivites, Canaanites, and Hethites away from you. 29 I will not drive them out ahead of you in a single year; otherwise, the land would become desolate, and wild animals would multiply against you. 30 I will drive them out little by little ahead of you until you have become numerous[n] and take possession of the land. 31 I will set your borders from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea,[o] and from the wilderness to the Euphrates River.[p] For I will place the inhabitants of the land under your control, and you will drive them out ahead of you. 32 You must not make a covenant with them or their gods. 33 They must not remain in your land, or else they will make you sin against me. If you serve their gods, it will be a snare for you.”

The Covenant Ceremony

24 Then he said to Moses, “Go up to the Lord, you and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of Israel’s elders, and bow in worship at a distance. Moses alone is to approach the Lord, but the others are not to approach, and the people are not to go up with him.”

Moses came and told the people all the commands of the Lord and all the ordinances. Then all the people responded with a single voice, “We will do everything that the Lord has commanded.” And Moses wrote down all the words of the Lord. He rose early the next morning and set up an altar and twelve pillars for the twelve tribes of Israel at the base of the mountain. Then he sent out young Israelite men, and they offered burnt offerings and sacrificed bulls as fellowship offerings to the Lord. Moses took half the blood and set it in basins; the other half of the blood he splattered on the altar. He then took the covenant scroll and read it aloud to the people. They responded, “We will do and obey all that the Lord has commanded.”

Moses took the blood, splattered it on the people, and said, “This is the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you concerning all these words.”

Then Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of Israel’s elders, 10 and they saw the God of Israel. Beneath his feet was something like a pavement made of lapis lazuli, as clear as the sky itself. 11 God did not harm[q] the Israelite nobles; they saw him, and they ate and drank.

12 The Lord said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain and stay there so that I may give you the stone tablets with the law and commandments I have written for their instruction.”

13 So Moses arose with his assistant Joshua and went up the mountain of God. 14 He told the elders, “Wait here for us until we return to you. Aaron and Hur are here with you. Whoever has a dispute should go to them.” 15 When Moses went up the mountain, the cloud covered it. 16 The glory of the Lord settled on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it for six days. On the seventh day he called to Moses from the cloud. 17 The appearance of the Lord’s glory to the Israelites was like a consuming fire on the mountaintop. 18 Moses entered the cloud as he went up the mountain, and he remained on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

Footnotes:

  1. 23:1 Lit join hands with
  2. 23:5 Or load, you must refrain from leaving it to him; you must set it free with him
  3. 23:8 Or and subverts the cause
  4. 23:13 Lit mouth
  5. 23:15 March–April; called Nisan in the post-exilic period; Neh 2:1; Est 3:7
  6. 23:16 The Festival of Harvest is called Festival of Weeks elsewhere; Ex 34:22. In the NT it is called Pentecost; Ac 2:1.
  7. 23:16 The Festival of Ingathering is called Festival of Shelters elsewhere; Lv 23:34-36.
  8. 23:16 Lit labors
  9. 23:24 Probably the idols
  10. 23:25 LXX, Vg read I
  11. 23:27 Lit will send terror of me ahead of you
  12. 23:27 Or I will give your enemies to you by the neck
  13. 23:28 Or send panic
  14. 23:30 Lit fruitful
  15. 23:31 Lit the Sea of the Philistines
  16. 23:31 Lit the River
  17. 24:11 Lit not stretch out his hand against
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

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