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Joshua



The book of Joshua, chapter 20, New English Translation and King James Version

Chapter 20

New English Translation


   Israel Designates Cities of Refuge
   1 The LORD instructed Joshua: 2 "Have the Israelites select the cities of refuge that I told you about through Moses. 3 Anyone who accidentally kills someone can escape there; these cities will be a place of asylum from the avenger of blood. 4 The one who committed manslaughter should escape to one of these cities, stand at the entrance of the city gate, and present his case to the leaders of that city. They should then bring him into the city, give him a place to stay, and let him live there. 5 When the avenger of blood comes after him, they must not hand over to him the one who committed manslaughter, for he accidentally killed his fellow man without premeditation. 6 He must remain in that city until his case is decided by the assembly and the high priest dies. Then the one who committed manslaughter may return home to the city from which he escaped."
   7 So they selected Kedesh in Galilee in the hill country of Naphtali, Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the hill country of Judah. 8 Beyond the Jordan east of Jericho they selected Bezer in the desert on the plain belonging to the tribe of Reuben, Ramoth in Gilead belonging to the tribe of Gad, and Golan in Bashan belonging to the tribe of Manasseh. 9 These were the cities of refuge appointed for all the Israelites and for resident foreigners living among them. Anyone who accidentally killed someone could escape there and not be executed by the avenger of blood, at least until his case was reviewed by the assembly.

King James Version


   1 The LORD also spake unto Joshua, saying,
   2 Speak to the children of Israel, saying, Appoint out for you cities of refuge, whereof I spake unto you by the hand of Moses:
   3 That the slayer that killeth any person unawares and unwittingly may flee thither: and they shall be your refuge from the avenger of blood.
   4 And when he that doth flee unto one of those cities shall stand at the entering of the gate of the city, and shall declare his cause in the ears of the elders of that city, they shall take him into the city unto them, and give him a place, that he may dwell among them.
   5 And if the avenger of blood pursue after him, then they shall not deliver the slayer up into his hand; because he smote his neighbour unwittingly, and hated him not beforetime.
   6 And he shall dwell in that city, until he stand before the congregation for judgment, and until the death of the high priest that shall be in those days: then shall the slayer return, and come unto his own city, and unto his own house, unto the city from whence he fled.
   7 ¶ And they appointed Kedesh in Galilee in mount Naphtali, and Shechem in mount Ephraim, and Kirjath-arba, which is Hebron, in the mountain of Judah.
   8 And on the other side Jordan by Jericho eastward, they assigned Bezer in the wilderness upon the plain out of the tribe of Reuben, and Ramoth in Gilead out of the tribe of Gad, and Golan in Bashan out of the tribe of Manasseh.
   9 These were the cities appointed for all the children of Israel, and for the stranger that sojourneth among them, that whosoever killeth any person at unawares might flee thither, and not die by the hand of the avenger of blood, until he stood before the congregation.
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