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Numbers 35:16-21

Context

35:16 “But if he hits someone with an iron tool so that he dies, 1  he is a murderer. The murderer must surely be put to death. 35:17 If he strikes him by throwing a stone large enough that he could die, and he dies, he is a murderer. The murderer must surely be put to death. 35:18 Or if he strikes him with a wooden hand weapon so that he could die, and he dies, he is a murderer. The murderer must surely be put to death. 35:19 The avenger 2  of blood himself must kill the murderer; when he meets him, he must kill him.

35:20 “But if he strikes him out of hatred or throws something at him intentionally 3  so that he dies, 35:21 or with enmity he strikes him with his hand and he dies, the one who struck him must surely be put to death, for he is a murderer. The avenger of blood must kill the murderer when he meets him.

1 tn the verb is the preterite of “die.” The sentence has :“if…he strikes him and he dies.” The vav (ו) consecutive is showing the natural result of the blow.

2 tn The participle גֹּאֵל (goel) is the one who protects the family by seeking vengeance for a crime. This is the same verb used for levirate marriages and other related customs.

3 tn The Hebrew text is more vivid: “by lying in wait.”



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