Exodus 21:14

14 But if anyone schemes and kills someone deliberately, that person is to be taken from my altar and put to death.

Exodus 21:14 in Other Translations

KJV
14 But if a man come presumptuously upon his neighbour, to slay him with guile; thou shalt take him from mine altar, that he may die.
ESV
14 But if a man willfully attacks another to kill him by cunning, you shall take him from my altar, that he may die.
NLT
14 However, if someone deliberately kills another person, then the slayer must be dragged even from my altar and be put to death.
MSG
14 But if the murder was premeditated, cunningly plotted, then drag the killer away, even if it's from my Altar, to be put to death.
CSB
14 If a person willfully acts against his neighbor to murder him by scheming, you must take him from My altar to be put to death.

Exodus 21:14 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 21:14

But if a man come presumptuously upon his neighbour, to slay
him with guile
That comes with malice in his heart, with wrath in his countenance, in a bold, daring, hostile manner, using all the art, cunning, and contrivance he can, to take away the life of his neighbour; no asylum, no refuge, not anything to screen him from justice is to be allowed him: hence, a messenger of the sanhedrim, or an executioner, one that inflicts the forty stripes, save one, or a physician, or one that chastises his son or scholar, under whose hands persons may die, do not come under this law; for though what they do they may do wilfully, yet not with guile, as Jarchi and others observe, not with an ill design, but for good:

thou shalt take him from mine altar,
that he may die: that being the place which in early times criminals had recourse unto, Joab and others, as well as in later times, to secure them from vengeance; but a man guilty of wilful murder was not to be protected in this way; and the Targum of Jonathan is,

``though he is a priest, (the Jerusalem Targum has it, an high priest,) and ministers at mine altar, thou shalt take him from thence, and slay him with the sword,''

so Jarchi; but the law refers not to a person ministering in his office at the altar of the Lord, but to one that should flee there for safety, which yet he should not have.

Exodus 21:14 In-Context

12 “Anyone who strikes a person with a fatal blow is to be put to death.
13 However, if it is not done intentionally, but God lets it happen, they are to flee to a place I will designate.
14 But if anyone schemes and kills someone deliberately, that person is to be taken from my altar and put to death.
15 “Anyone who attacks their father or mother is to be put to death.
16 “Anyone who kidnaps someone is to be put to death, whether the victim has been sold or is still in the kidnapper’s possession.

Cross References 2

  • 1. Genesis 4:8; Numbers 35:20; 2 Samuel 3:27; 2 Samuel 20:10; Hebrews 10:26
  • 2. Deuteronomy 19:11-12; 1 Kings 2:28-34