Debarim 16:18 - 21:9

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18 "Appoint judges and officers within all your gates, which יהוה your Elohim is giving you, according to your tribes. And they shall judge the people with righteous Right-Ruling.

19 "Do not distort Right-Ruling. Do not show partiality, nor take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous.

20 "Follow righteousness, righteousness so that you live and inherit the land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you.

21 "Do not plant for yourself any tree as an Ashĕrah near the altar of יהוה your Elohim that you make for yourself.

22 "And do not set up a pillar, which יהוה your Elohim hates.

Deuteronomy 17

1 "Do not slaughter to יהוה your Elohim a bull or sheep which has any blemish, any evil matter, for that is an abomination to יהוה your Elohim.

2  "When there is found in your midst, in any of your cities which יהוה your Elohim is giving you, a man or a woman who does what is evil in the eyes of יהוה your Elohim, in transgressing His Covenant,

3 and has gone and served other mighty ones and bowed down to them, or to the sun or to the moon or to any of the host of the shamayim, which I have not commanded,

4 and it has been made known to you and you have heard, and has searched diligently. Then see, if true: the matter is confirmed that such an abomination has been done in Yisra'ĕl,

5 then you shall bring out to your gates that man or woman who has done this evil matter, and you shall stone to death that man or woman with stones.

6 "At the mouth of two or three witnesses shall he that is to die be put to death. He is not put to death by the mouth of one witness.

7 "The hand of the witnesses shall be first against him to put him to death, and the hand of all the people last. So you shall purge the evil from your midst.

8  "When any matter arises which is too hard for you to judge, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, or between stroke and stroke - matters of strife within your gates - then you shall rise and go up to the place which יהוה your Elohim chooses,

9 and shall come to the kohenim, the Lĕwites, and to the judge who is in those days, and shall inquire. And they shall declare to you the word of Right-Ruling,

10 and you shall do according to the word which they declare to you from that place which יהוה chooses. And you shall guard to do according to all that they instruct you.

11 "Do according to the Torah in which they teach you, according to the Right-Ruling which they say to you. You do not turn to the right or to the left from the word which they declare to you.

12  "And the man who acts arrogantly, so as not to listen to the kohen who stands to serve there before יהוה your Elohim, or to the judge, that man shall die. So you shall purge the evil from Yisra'ĕl.

13 "And let all the people hear and revere, and no longer do arrogantly.

14  "When you come to the land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you, and shall possess it and shall dwell in it, and you shall say, ‘Let me appoint a sovereign over me like all the gentiles that are around me,'

15 you shall certainly appoint a sovereign over you whom יהוה your Elohim shall choose. Appoint a sovereign over you from among your brothers, you are not allowed to appoint a foreigner over you, who is not your brother.

16  "Only, he is not to increase horses for himself, nor cause the people to return to Mitsrayim to increase horses, for יהוה has said to you, ‘Do not return that way again.'

17 "And he is not to increase wives for himself, lest his heart turn away, nor is he to greatly increase silver and gold for himself.

18  "And it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his reign, that he shall write for himself a copy of this Torah in a book, from the one before the kohenim, the Lĕwites.

19  "And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, so that he learns to revere יהוה his Elohim and guard all the Words of this Torah and these Laws, to do them,

20  so that his heart is not lifted up above his brothers, and so as not to turn aside from the Command, right or left, so that he prolongs his days in his reign, he and his children, in the midst of Yisra'ĕl.

Deuteronomy 18

1 "The kohenim, the Lĕwites, all the tribe of Lĕwi, have no part nor inheritance with Yisra'ĕl. They are to eat the offerings of יהוה made by fire, and His inheritance.

2 "But among his brothers no inheritance. יהוה is his inheritance, as He has spoken to him.

3 "And this is the kohen's right from the people, from those who bring an offering, whether it is bull or sheep: they shall give to the kohen the shoulder, and the two cheeks, and the stomach;

4 the first-fruits of your grain and your new wine and your oil, and the first of the fleece of your sheep, you give to him.

5 "For יהוה your Elohim has chosen him out of all your tribes to stand to serve in the Name of יהוה, him and his sons forever.

6 "And when the Lĕwite comes from one of your gates, from where he has sojourned among all Yisra'ĕl, and shall come with all the desire of his being to the place which יהוה chooses,

7 then he shall serve in the Name of יהוה his Elohim, like all his brothers the Lĕwites, who are standing there before יהוה.

8 "They are to have portion for portion to eat, besides what comes from the sale of his inheritance.

9 "When you come into the land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you, do not learn to do according to the abominations of those gentiles.

10  "Let no one be found among you who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practises divination, or a user of magic, or one who interprets omens or a sorcerer,

11 or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.

12 "For whoever does these are an abomination to יהוה, and because of these abominations יהוה your Elohim drives them out from before you.

13 "Be perfect before יהוה your Elohim,

14 for these nations whom you are possessing do listen to those using magic and to diviners. But as for you, יהוה your Elohim has not appointed such for you.

15  "יהוה your Elohim shall raise up for you a Naḇi like me from your midst, from your brothers. Listen to Him,

16 according to all you asked of יהוה your Elohim in Ḥorĕḇ in the day of the assembly, saying, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of יהוה my Elohim, nor let me see this great fire any more, lest I die.'

17 "And יהוה said to me, ‘What they have spoken is good.

18 ‘I shall raise up for them a Naḇi like you out of the midst of their brothers. And I shall put My Words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him.

19 ‘And it shall be, the man who does not listen to My Words which He speaks in My Name, I require it of him.

20  ‘But the naḇi who presumes to speak a word in My Name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other mighty ones, even that naḇi shall die.'

21 "And when you say in your heart, ‘How do we know the word which יהוה has not spoken?' -

22 when the naḇi speaks in the Name of יהוה and the word is not, or comes not, that is the word which יהוה has not spoken. The naḇi has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 19

1  "When יהוה your Elohim cuts off the nations whose land יהוה your Elohim is giving you, and you dispossess them and dwell in their cities and in their houses,

2 separate three cities for yourself in the midst of your land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you to possess.

3 "Prepare a way for yourself, and divide into three parts the border of your land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you to inherit, that anyone who killed someone shall flee there.

4  "And this is the matter of the one who killed someone who flees there and live: He who smites his neighbour unintentionally, not having hated him in time past,

5  even he who goes to the forest with his neighbour to cut timber, and his hand swings a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head slips from the handle and strikes his neighbour so that he dies - let him flee to one of these cities and live,

6  lest the revenger of blood, while his displeasure is hot, pursue the one who killed someone and overtake him, because the way is long, and shall smite him, though he was not worthy of death, since he had not hated him before.

7 "Therefore I am commanding you, saying, ‘Separate three cities for yourself.'

8 "And if יהוה your Elohim enlarges your border, as He swore to your fathers, and has given you the land which He promised to give to your fathers -

9  when you guard all this Command to do it, which I am commanding you today, to love יהוה your Elohim and to walk in His ways all the days - then you shall add three more cities for yourself besides these three,

10 so that innocent blood is not shed in the midst of your land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you as an inheritance, or blood-guilt shall be upon you.

11  "But when anyone hates his neighbour, and shall lie in wait for him and rise against him and smite the life from him so that he dies, then he shall flee to one of these cities,

12 and the elders of his city shall send and bring him from there, and give him into the hand of the revenger of blood, and he shall die.

13 "Your eye shall not pardon him, but you shall purge the blood of the innocent from Yisra'ĕl, so that it might be well with you.

14 "Do not remove your neighbour's boundary, which those in the past have bound, in your inheritance which you inherit in the land that יהוה your Elohim is giving you to possess.

15 "One witness does not rise up against a man concerning any wickedness or any sin that he commits. At the mouth of two witnesses or at the mouth of three witnesses a matter is established.

16 "When a malicious witness rises up against any man to accuse him of turning aside,

17 then both men who have the dispute shall stand before יהוה, before the kohenim and the judges who serve in those days.

18 "And the judges shall diligently search and see if the witness is a false witness, who has falsely accused his brother,

19 then you shall do to him as he thought to have done to his brother. Thus you shall purge the evil from your midst.

20 "And let the rest hear and revere, and never again do this evil matter in your midst.

21  "And let your eye not pardon, life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

Deuteronomy 20

1  "When you go out to battle against your enemies, and shall see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them, for יהוה your Elohim, who brought you up from the land of Mitsrayim, is with you.

2 "And it shall be, when you draw near to the battle, that the kohen shall come and speak to the people,

3 and shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Yisra'ĕl: You are drawing near today to battle with your enemies. Do not let your heart faint, do not fear, or tremble, or be afraid before them,

4 for יהוה your Elohim is He who goes with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.'

5 "And the officers shall speak to the people, saying, ‘Who is the man who has built a new house and has not dedicated it? Let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man dedicate it.

6 ‘And who is the man who has planted a vineyard and has not begun to use it? Let him also go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man should begin to use it.

7 ‘And who is the man who is engaged to a woman and has not taken her? Let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man take her.'

8 "And the officers shall speak further to the people, and say, ‘Who is the man who is afraid and tender of heart? Let him go and return to his house, lest the heart of his brothers faint like his heart.'

9 "And it shall be, when the officers have finished speaking to the people, that they shall appoint commanders of the divisions to lead the people.

10 "When you draw near to a city to fight against it, then you shall make a call for peace to it.

11 "And it shall be that if it accepts your call for peace, and shall open to you, then all the people found in it are to be your compulsory labour, and serve you.

12 "But if it does not make peace with you, and shall fight against you, then you shall besiege it,

13 and יהוה your Elohim shall give it into your hands, and you shall smite every male in it with the edge of the sword.

14 "Only the women, and the little ones, and the livestock, and all that is in the city, all its spoil, you take as plunder for yourself. And you shall eat the enemies' plunder which יהוה your Elohim gives you.

15 "Do so to all the cities which are very far from you, which are not of the cities of these nations.

16 "Only, of the cities of these peoples which יהוה your Elohim gives you as an inheritance, you do not keep alive any that breathe,

17 but you shall certainly put them under the ban: the Ḥittite and the Amorite and the Kenaʽanite and the Perizzite and the Ḥiwwite and the Yeḇusite, as יהוה your Elohim has commanded you,

18 lest they teach you to do according to all their abominations which they have done for their mighty ones, and you sin against יהוה your Elohim.

19  "When you besiege a city for a long time by fighting against it to take it, you do not destroy its trees by wielding an axe against them. If you do eat of them, do not cut them down. For is the tree of the field a man to be besieged by you?

20  "Only the trees which you know are not trees for food you do destroy and cut down, to build siege-works against the city that is fighting against you, until it falls.

Deuteronomy 21

1  "When anyone is found slain, lying in the field in the land which יהוה your Elohim is giving you to possess, and it is not known who smote him,

2 then your elders and your judges shall go out, and they shall measure the distance from the slain man to the cities round about.

3 "And it shall be that the elders of the city nearest to the slain man shall take a heifer which has not been worked and which has not pulled with a yoke,

4 and the elders of that city shall bring the heifer down to a wadi with flowing water, which is neither ploughed nor sown, and they shall break the heifer's neck there in the wadi.

5 "And the kohenim, the sons of Lĕwi, shall come near, for יהוה your Elohim has chosen them to serve Him and to baraḵ in the Name of יהוה, and by their command every strife and every stroke.

6 "And let all the elders of that city nearest to the slain man wash their hands over the heifer whose neck was broken in the wadi.

7 "And they shall answer and say, ‘Our hands have not shed this blood, nor have our eyes seen it.

8 ‘O יהוה, forgive Your people Yisra'ĕl, whom You have redeemed, and do not allow innocent blood in the midst of Your people Yisra'ĕl.' And the blood-guilt shall be pardoned to them.

9 "Thus you purge the guilt of innocent blood from your midst when you do what is right in the eyes of יהוה.