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Deuteronomy 17 (Common English Bible w/ Apocrypha)

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1 Don't sacrifice to the LORD your God any oxen or sheep that have defects of any kind, because that is detestable to the LORD your God.

Capital punishment

2 If someone, whether male or female, is found in your community—in one of the cities the LORD your God is giving you—who does evil in the LORD your God's eyes, by breaking God's covenant, 3 by following and serving other gods, and by bowing down to them, to the sun or the moon or any of the heavenly bodies that I haven't permitted— 4 and you hear news about it, then you must look into this situation very carefully. And if it's definitely true that this detestable thing was done in Israel, 5 then you must bring out the man or woman who has done this evil thing to the gates of the city. Stone that person until he or she is dead. 6 Capital punishment must be decided by two or three witnesses. No one may be executed on the basis of only one testimony. 7 In the execution, the hands of the witnesses must be against the guilty person from the start; the hand of all the people will be involved at the end. Removea such evil from your community!

Legal disputes

8 If some legal dispute in your cities is too difficult for you to decide—say, between different kinds of bloodshed, different kinds of legal ruling, or different kinds of injury—then take it to the location the LORD your God selects. 9 Go to the levitical priests and to the head judge in office at that time and look into things there. They will announce to you the correct ruling. 10 You must then act according to the ruling they announced to you from that location, the one the LORD selects. You must follow very carefully everything they instruct you to do. 11 Act precisely according to the instruction they give you and the ruling they announce to you. Don't deviate even a bit from the word they announce. 12 And whoever acts rashly by not listening to the priest who is in office serving the LORD your God or to the head judge will die. Removeb such evil from Israel! 13 All the people will hear about this and be afraid. They won't act arrogantly anymore.

Law of the king

14 Once you have entered the land the LORD your God is giving you and you have taken possession of it and settled down in it, you might say: "Let's appoint a king over us, as all our neighboring nations have done." 15 You can indeed appoint over you a king that the LORD your God selects. You can appoint over you a king who is one of your fellow Israelites. You are not allowed to appoint over you a foreigner who is not one of your fellow Israelites. 16 That granted, the king must not acquire too many horses, and he must not return the people to Egypt in order to acquire more horses, because the LORD told you: "You will never go back by that road again." 17 The king must not take numerous wives so that his heart doesn't go astray. Nor can the king acquire too much silver and gold. 18 Instead, when he sits on his royal throne, he himself must write a copy of this Instruction on a scroll in the presence of the levitical priests. 19 That Instruction must remain with him, and he must read in it every day of his life so that he learns to revere the LORD his God by keeping all the words of this Instruction and these regulations, by doing them, 20 by not being overbearing toward his fellow Israelites, and by not deviating even a bit from the commandment. If the king does all that, he will ensure lasting rule in Israel for himself and for his successors.
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