11 (A)then you shall select cities to be cities of refuge for you, that the manslayer who kills any person without intent may flee there.

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13 (A)But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then (B)I will appoint for you a place to which he may flee.

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“Say to the people of Israel, (A)‘Appoint the cities of refuge, of which I spoke to you through Moses,

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“The cities that you give to the Levites shall be (A)the six cities of refuge, where you shall permit the manslayer to flee, and in addition to them you shall give forty-two cities.

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Laws Concerning Cities of Refuge

19 “When (A)the Lord your God cuts off the nations whose land the Lord your God is giving you, and you dispossess them and dwell in their cities and in their houses, (B)you shall set apart three cities for yourselves in the land that the Lord your God is giving you to possess. You shall measure the distances[a] and divide into three parts the area of the land that the Lord your God gives you as a possession, so that any manslayer can flee to them.

“This is the provision for (C)the manslayer, who by fleeing there may save his life. If anyone kills his neighbor unintentionally without having hated him in the past— as when someone goes into the forest with his neighbor to cut wood, and his hand swings the axe to cut down a tree, and the head slips from the handle and strikes his neighbor so that he dies—he may flee to one of these cities and live, lest (D)the avenger of blood in hot anger pursue the manslayer and overtake him, because the way is long, and strike him fatally, though the man did not deserve to die, since he had not hated his neighbor in the past. Therefore I command you, You shall set apart three cities. (E)And if the Lord your God enlarges your territory, (F)as he has sworn to your fathers, and (G)gives you all the land that he promised to give to your fathers— provided you are careful to keep all this commandment, which I command you today, by loving the Lord your God and by walking ever in his ways—(H)then you shall add three other cities to these three, 10 lest innocent blood be shed in your land that the Lord your God is giving you for an inheritance, and so the guilt of bloodshed be upon you.

11 “But if anyone hates his neighbor and lies in wait for him and attacks him (I)and strikes him fatally so that he dies, and he flees into one of these cities, 12 then the elders of his city shall send and take him from there, and hand him over to the avenger of blood, so that he may die. 13 (J)Your eye shall not pity him, (K)but you shall purge the guilt of innocent blood[b] from Israel, so that it may be well with you.

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Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 19:3 Hebrew road
  2. Deuteronomy 19:13 Or the blood of the innocent

42 that (A)the manslayer might flee there, anyone who kills his neighbor unintentionally, without being at enmity with him in time past; he may flee to one of these cities and save his life:

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22 “But if he pushed him suddenly without enmity, or hurled anything on him (A)without lying in wait 23 or used a stone that could cause death, and without seeing him dropped it on him, so that he died, though he was not his enemy and did not seek his harm, 24 then (B)the congregation shall judge between the manslayer and (C)the avenger of blood, in accordance with these rules. 25 And the congregation shall rescue the manslayer from the hand of the avenger of blood, and the congregation shall restore him to his city of refuge to which he had fled, and he shall live in it (D)until the death of the high priest (E)who was anointed with the holy oil.

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