"Suppose there are prophets among you, or those who have dreams about the future, and they promise you signs or miracles,
and the predicted signs or miracles take place. If the prophets then say, 'Come, let us worship the gods of foreign nations,'
do not listen to them. The LORD your God is testing you to see if you love him with all your heart and soul.
Serve only the LORD your God and fear him alone. Obey his commands, listen to his voice, and cling to him.
The false prophets or dreamers who try to lead you astray must be put to death, for they encourage rebellion against the LORD your God, who brought you out of slavery in the land of Egypt. Since they try to keep you from following the LORD your God, you must execute them to remove the evil from among you.
"Suppose your brother, son, daughter, beloved wife, or closest friend comes to you secretly and says, 'Let us go worship other gods' -- gods that neither you nor your ancestors have known.
They might suggest that you worship the gods of peoples who live nearby or who come from the ends of the earth.
If they do this, do not give in or listen, and have no pity. Do not spare or protect them.
You must put them to death! You must be the one to initiate the execution; then all the people must join in.
Stone the guilty ones to death because they have tried to draw you away from the LORD your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt, the place of slavery.
Then all Israel will hear about it and be afraid, and such wickedness will never again be done among you.
"Suppose you hear in one of the towns the LORD your God is giving you
that some worthless rabble among you have led their fellow citizens astray by encouraging them to worship foreign gods.
In such cases, you must examine the facts carefully. If you find it is true and can prove that such a detestable act has occurred among you,
you must attack that town and completely destroy a all its inhabitants, as well as all the livestock.
Then you must pile all the plunder in the middle of the street and burn it. Put the entire town to the torch as a burnt offering to the LORD your God. That town must remain a ruin forever; it may never be rebuilt.
Keep none of the plunder that has been set apart for destruction. Then the LORD will turn from his fierce anger and be merciful to you. He will have compassion on you and make you a great nation, just as he solemnly promised your ancestors.
"The LORD your God will be merciful only if you obey him and keep all the commands I am giving you today, doing what is pleasing to him.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)