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Numbers 35

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 1 And the LORD spoke to Moses in the plains of Moab by Jordan near Jericho, saying,

 2 "Command the children of Israel, that they give to the Levites possession of the inheritance of their cities to dwell in; and you shall give also to the Levites close-by countryside of the cities surrounding them.

 3 They shall have the cities to dwell in; and the close-by countryside of them shall be for their cattle, for their goods, and for all their beasts.

 4 And the close-by countryside of the cities, which you shall give to the Levites, shall reach from the wall of the city and outward a distance of five hundred yards around them.

 5 And you shall measure from without the city on the east side five hundred yards, and on the south side five hundred yards, and on the west side five hundred yards, and on the north side five hundred yards; and the city shall be in the middle of the close-by countryside of the cities.

 6 And among the cities which you shall give to the Levites there shall be six cities for refuge, which you shall appoint for the manslayer, that he may flee there; and to them you shall add forty two more cities.

 7 So the total of all the cities that you shall give to the Levites will be forty eight; you shall give them with their close-by countryside.

 8 The cities that you shall give shall be of the possession of the children of Israel; from those who have many, you shall give many; but from those who have few, you shall give few; everyone shall give of his cities to the Levites according to his inheritance which he inherits."

 9 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,

 10 "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them, When you have come over Jordan into the land of Canaan;

 11 Then you shall designate cities to be cities of refuge for yourselves; that the slayer may flee there, who kills any person accidentally.

 12 And to you they shall be cities of refuge from the avenger, so that a manslayer may not die until he stands before the congregation in judgment.

 13 And of these cities that you shall give to the Levites, six of the cities shall be for refuge.

 14 You shall give three cities on this side Jordan, and three cities in the land of Canaan [over the Jordan], all which will be cities of refuge.

 15 These six cities shall be a refuge, both for the children of Israel, for the stranger, and for the sojourner among them, so that anyone who kills any person accidentally may flee there.

 16 If the manslayer has struck someone with an instrument of iron and killed him, he is a murderer; the murderer shall surely be put to death.

 17 If the manslayer has struck someone by throwing a stone, which can kill, and someone dies, he is a murderer; the murderer shall surely be put to death.

 18 If the manslayer has struck someone with a hand weapon of wood, which can kill, and he dies, he is a murderer; the murderer shall surely be put to death.

 19 The revenger of blood himself shall slay the murderer; when he meets him, he shall slay him.

 20 But if a manslayer has stabbed at someone in hatred, or hurled something at him by laying of wait, for that he dies;

 21 Or if in enmity the manslayer strikes someone with his fist so that he dies, he who struck him shall surely be put to death for he is a murderer; when the revenger of blood meets him, he shall slay the murderer.

 22 But if he thrust him suddenly without enmity, or have cast upon him anything without laying of wait,

 23 Or with any stone, with which a man may die, seeing him not, and cast it upon him, that he die, and was not his enemy, neither sought his harm:

 24 Then the congregation shall judge between the slayer and the revenger of blood according to these judgments:

 25 And the congregation shall deliver the slayer out of the hand of the revenger of blood, and the congregation shall restore him to the city of his refuge, where he was fled; and he shall live in it until the death of the high priest, who was anointed with the holy oil.

 26 But if the slayer shall at any time go outside the border of the city of his refuge, where he had fled;

 27 And if the revenger of blood finds him outside the borders of the city of his refuge and kills the slayer; he shall not be guilty of blood;

 28 Because the slayer should have remained in the city of his refuge until the death of the high priest; but after the death of the high priest, the slayer may return into the land of his possession.

 29 So these things will be for a statute of judgment to you throughout your generations in all your dwellings.

 30 Whoever kills any person, the murderer shall be put to death by the mouth of [at least two] witnesses; but one witness who testifies against any person shall not be sufficient to cause him to die.

 31 Moreover you shall accept no ransom for the life of a murderer, who is guilty of death; but he shall be surely put to death.

 32 And you shall accept no ransom for him who has fled to the city of his refuge, so that he might come again to dwell in the land, until the death of the priest.

 33 In this [refusal of ransom and insistence of either death or refuge for a man slayer], you will not pollute the land in which you dwell; because blood defiles the land, and because the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed in it, except by the blood of him who shed it.

 34 Therefore do not defile the land that you shall inhabit, in which I dwell; for I the LORD dwell among the children of Israel.


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