1 And Jehovah spoke to Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan across from Jericho,
2 Command the children of Israel that they give the Levites cities to dwell in from the inheritance of their possessions, and you shall also give the Levites common land around the cities.
3 They shall have the cities to dwell in; and their common land shall be for their cattle, for their herds, and for all their animals.
4 The common land of the cities which you shall give the Levites shall extend from the wall of the city outward a thousand cubits all around.
5 And you shall measure outside the city on the east side two thousand cubits, on the south side two thousand cubits, on the west side two thousand cubits, and on the north side two thousand cubits. The city shall be in the middle. This shall be to them as common land for the cities.
6 And among the cities which you shall give to the Levites you shall appoint six cities of
refuge, to which a manslayer may flee. And to these you shall add forty-two cities.
7 So all the cities you shall give to the Levites shall be forty-eight; these you shall give with their common lands.
8 And the cities which you shall give shall be from the possession of the children of Israel;
from the larger tribe you shall give many, from the smaller you shall give few. Each shall
give some of its cities to the Levites, according to the inheritance that each receives.
9 And Jehovah spoke to Moses, saying,
10 Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: When you cross the Jordan into the
land of Canaan,
11 then you shall appoint cities to be cities of refuge for you, that the manslayer who kills
any soul accidentally may flee there.
12 They shall be cities of refuge for you from the kinsman avenger, that the manslayer
may not die until he stands before the congregation in judgment.
13 And out of the cities which you give, you shall have six cities of refuge.
14 You shall appoint three cities on this side of the Jordan, and three cities you shall
appoint in the land of Canaan, which shall be cities of refuge.
15 These six cities shall be for refuge for the children of Israel, for the stranger, and for
the sojourner among them, that anyone who kills a soul accidentally may flee there.
16 But if he strikes him with an implement of iron, so that he dies, he is a murderer; the
murderer shall be executed to death.
17 And if he strikes him with a stone in the hand, by which one could die, and he dies, he
is a murderer; the murderer shall be executed to death.
18 Or if he strikes him with a wooden implement in the hand, by which one could die, and
he dies, he is a murderer; the murderer shall be executed to death.
19 The kinsman avenger of blood himself shall put the murderer to death; when he meets
him, he shall put him to death.
20 If he pushes him out of hatred, or while lying in wait has thrown something at him, so
that he dies,
21 or in enmity he has struck him with his hand so that he dies, the one who struck him
shall be executed to death. He is a murderer. The kinsman avenger of blood shall put the
murderer to death when he meets him.
22 However, if he has pushed him suddenly without enmity, or has thrown anything at
him without lying in wait,
23 or a stone, by which a man could die, which falls on him without seeing him, so that he
dies, while he was not his enemy or seeking his harm;
24 then the congregation shall judge between the manslayer and the kinsman avenger of
blood according to these judgments.
25 Thus the congregation shall deliver the manslayer out of the hand of the kinsman
avenger of blood, and the congregation shall return him to the city of refuge where he had
fled, and he shall remain there until the death of the high priest who was anointed with the
26 But if the manslayer at any time goes outside the borders of the city of refuge where he
27 and the kinsman avenger of blood finds him outside the borders of his city of refuge,
and the kinsman avenger of blood kills the manslayer, he shall not be guilty of blood,
28 because he should have remained in his city of refuge until the death of the high priest.
But after the death of the high priest the manslayer shall return to the land of his
29 And these things shall be a statute of judgment to you throughout your generations in
all your dwellings.
30 Whoever kills a soul, the murderer shall be put to death at the mouth of witnesses; but
one witness shall not testify against a soul for him to die.
31 Moreover you shall take no ransom for the soul of a murderer who is guilty of death,
but he shall be executed to death.
32 And you shall take no ransom for him to flee to his city of refuge, to return to dwell in
the land until the death of the priest.
33 Thus you shall not pollute the land where you are; for blood pollutes the land. And no
atonement can be made for the land, for the blood that is shed on it, except by the blood of
him who sheds it.
34 Therefore do not defile the land which you inhabit, in the midst of which I dwell; for I,
Jehovah, dwell among the children of Israel.