v n 19:21. Israel. o 20:1-20. The nations. War. n 21:1-25:16. Israel. o 25:17-19. The nations. War.
n p 1-13. Persons. Man-slayer. q 14. Property. Landmarks. p 15-21. Persons. Witnesses.
p E 1. Prospective. "When". F 2,3-. Cities. Separation of three. G r1 -3. Purpose. s1 4,5-. Case of ignorance. s2 -5. Provision. Flight. r2 6,7. Purpose. E 8,9-. Prospective. "If". F -9. Cities. Addition of three. G r1 10. Purpose. s1 11. Case of intention. s2 12,13-. Provision. Death. r2 -13. Purpose.
1: When the Lord (Yahaveh) your God (Elohim) has cut off the nations (cp. Num. 35:10,11), whose land the Lord your God gives you, and you disposes them, and dwell in their cities, and in their houses;
2: You shall separate three cities for you in the midst of your land (cp. Num. 35:14), which the Lord your God gives you to possess it.
3: You shall prepare you a way, and divide the borders (or confines) of your land, which the Lord your God gives you to inherit, into three parts,
that every slayer may flee to that place.
4: And this is the case of the slayer, which shall flee to that place, that he may live: Whosoever kills his neighbor ignorantly (cp. Ex. 21:12), whom he hated not in time past;
5: As when (Fig., one example put for every kind) a man goes into the wood with his neighbor to hew wood, and his hand fetches a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head (Heb. = iron) slips from the handle, and lights upon his neighbor, that he die;
he shall flee to one of those cities, and live:
6: Lest the avenger (= the kinsman avenger) of the blood pursue the slayer, while his heart is hot, and overtake him, because the way is long, and slay him (i.e. take his life); whereas he was not worthy of death, inasmuch as he hated him not in time past.
7: Wherefore I command you, saying, 'You shall separate three cities for you.
8: And if the Lord your God enlarge your borders, as He has sworn to your fathers, and give you all the land which He promised to give to your fathers;
9: If you shall keep all these commandments to do them, which I command you this day (cp. 4:26), to love the Lord your God, and to walk ever in His ways; then shall you add three cities more for you, beside these three (this done by Joshua, Josh.20:7,8):
10: That innocent blood be not shed in your land, which the Lord your God gives you for an inheritance, and so blood be upon you (= guilt, Fig., the blood shed put for guilt incurred).
11: But if any man hate his neighbor (case of presumption. Cp. Ex. 21:14), and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die, and flees into one of these cities:
12: Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him from that place, and deliver him into the hand of the kinsman avenger of murder, that he may die.
13: Your eye shall not pity him, but you shall surely put away (see 13:5) the guilt of innocent blood from Israel,
that it may go well with you.'
14: You shall not remove your neighbor's landmark (cp. 27:17. Hos. 5:10. Prov. 22:28. Not to be removed, but "stumbling blocks" to be taken out of the way". Lev. 19:14. Isa. 557:14. Rom. 14:13), which they of old time have set in your inheritance, which you shalt inherit in the land that the Lord your God gives you to possess it.
p t 15-. True witness. One insufficient. u -15. Direction. Two or three necessary. t 16. False witnesses. One insufficient. u 17-21. Direction (Trial, 17,18; Penalty, 19-21).
15: One witness shall not rise up against a man for any perverseness (see 17:6), or for any sin, in any sin that he sins:
at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.
16: If a false witness rise up against any man to testify against him that which is wrong (cp. Ex. 23:1 and Deut. 19:16);
17: Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the Lord, before the priests and the judges, which shall be in those days;
18: And the judges shall make diligent (= thorough) inquisition: and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and has testified falsely against his brother;
19: Then shall you all do to him, as he had thought to have done to his brother: so shall you put the evil away from among you.
20: And those which remain shall hear, and fear, and shall henceforth commit no more any such evil among you.
21: And your eye (Fig., put for yourself) shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.