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Leviticus 20:9

Context
Family Life and Sexual Prohibitions 1 

20:9 “‘If anyone 2  curses his father and mother 3  he must be put to death. He has cursed his father and mother; his blood guilt is on himself. 4 

Leviticus 20:11-13

Context
20:11 If a man has sexual intercourse with his father’s wife, he has exposed his father’s nakedness. 5  Both of them must be put to death; their blood guilt is on themselves. 6  20:12 If a man has sexual intercourse with his daughter-in-law, both of them must be put to death. They have committed perversion; 7  their blood guilt is on themselves. 20:13 If a man has sexual intercourse with a male as one has sexual intercourse with a woman, 8  the two of them have committed an abomination. They must be put to death; their blood guilt is on themselves.

Leviticus 20:27

Context
Prohibition against Spiritists and Mediums

20:27 “‘A man or woman who 9  has in them a spirit of the dead or a familiar spirit 10  must be put to death. They must pelt them with stones; 11  their blood guilt is on themselves.’”

1 sn Compare the regulations in Lev 18:6-23.

2 tn Heb “If a man a man who.”

3 tn Heb “makes light of his father and his mother.” Almost all English versions render this as some variation of “curses his father or mother.”

4 tn Heb “his blood [plural] is in him.” Cf. NAB “he has forfeited his life”; TEV “is responsible for his own death.”

sn The rendering “blood guilt” refers to the fact that the shedding of blood brings guilt on those who shed it illegitimately (even the blood of animals shed illegitimately, Lev 17:4; cf. the background of Gen 4:10-11). If the community performs a legitimate execution, however, the blood guilt rests on the person who has been legitimately executed (see the remarks and literature cited in J. E. Hartley, Leviticus [WBC], 328).

5 sn See the note on Lev 18:7 above.

6 tn See the note on v. 9 above.

7 tn The Hebrew term תֶּבֶל (tevel, “perversion”) derives from the verb “to mix; to confuse” (cf. KJV, ASV “they have wrought confusion”).

8 tn Heb “[as the] lyings of a woman.” The specific reference here is to homosexual intercourse between males.

9 tc Smr, LXX, Syriac, and some Targum mss have the relative pronoun אֲשֶׁר (’asher, “who, which”), rather than the MT’s כִּי (ki, “for, because, that”).

10 tn See the note on the phrase “familiar spirit” in Lev 19:31 above.

11 tn This is not the most frequently-used Hebrew verb for stoning, but a word that refers to the action of throwing, slinging, or pelting someone with stones (see the note on v. 2 above). Smr and LXX have “you [plural] shall pelt them with stones.”

sn At first glance Lev 20:27 appears to be out of place but, on closer examination, one could argue that it constitutes the back side of an envelope around the case laws in 20:9-21, with Lev 20:6 forming the front of the envelope (note also that execution of mediums and spiritists by stoning in v. 27 is not explicitly stated in v. 6). This creates a chiastic structure: prohibition against mediums and spiritists (vv. 6 and 27), variations of the holiness formula (vv. 7 and 25-26), and exhortations to obey the Lord’s statutes (and judgments; vv. 8 and 22-24). Again, in the middle are the case laws (vv. 9-21).



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