20 Then the Lord said to Joshua: 2 “Tell the ·Israelites [L sons/T children of Israel] to ·choose [designate] the special cities of ·safety [refuge], as I had Moses command you to do [Num. 35:1–8]. 3 If a person kills someone accidentally and without meaning to kill him, that person may go to a city of ·safety [refuge] to hide. There the killer will be safe from the ·relative who has the duty of punishing a murderer [near-relative; L avenger of blood].
4 “When the killer ·runs [flees] to one of those cities, he must stop at the entrance ·gate [L of the city gate], stand there, and tell the ·leaders of the people [L elders of that city] what happened [C the council of leaders met at the city gate and held trials there; Deut. 21:19; Ruth 4:1]. Then that person will be allowed to enter the city and will be given a place to live among them. 5 But if the ·one who is chasing him [near-relative; L avenger of blood] follows him to that city, ·the leaders of the city [L they] must not hand over the ·killer [manslayer]. It was an accident. He did not hate him beforehand or kill him on purpose. 6 ·The killer [L He] must stay in the city until ·a court comes to a decision [L he stands before the congregation for judgment] and until the high priest dies [Num. 35:25–28; C the high priest’s death may have marked a general amnesty]. Then he may go back home to the town from which he ran away.”
7 So the Israelites chose these cities to be cities of ·safety [refuge]: Kedesh in Galilee in the ·mountains [hill country] of Naphtali; Shechem in the ·mountains [hill country] of Ephraim; Kiriath Arba (also called Hebron) in the ·mountains [hill country] of Judah; 8 Bezer ·on the east side of the Jordan River near [L beyond the Jordan east of] Jericho in the ·desert [wilderness plain] in the land of Reuben; Ramoth in Gilead in the land of Gad; and Golan in Bashan in the land of Manasseh. 9 Any Israelite or ·anyone living among them [resident alien; sojourner] who killed someone accidentally was to be allowed to run to one of these cities of ·safety [refuge]. There he would not be killed, before he ·was judged [L stood before the congregation], by the ·relative who had the duty of punishing a murderer [near-relative; L avenger of blood].
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Upgrade to remove banner ads and unlock new features!
You've successfully created your account! For the best Bible Gateway experience, consider an upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus. For less than the cost of a latte each month, you'll get reduced banner ads and a huge digital Bible study library. Try it free for 30 days!