Deuteronomy 19; Deuteronomy 20; Deuteronomy 21; Mark 13:21-37

1 "After the Lord your God has destroyed the people whose land he is giving you and after you have taken their cities and houses and settled there, 2 divide the territory into three parts, each with a city that can be easily reached. Then any of you that kill will be able to escape to one of them for protection. 4 If you accidentally kill someone who is not your enemy, you may escape to any of these cities and be safe. 5 For example, if two of you go into the forest together to cut wood and if, as one of you is chopping down a tree, the ax head comes off the handle and kills the other, you can run to one of those three cities and be safe. 6 If there were only one city, the distance to it might be too great, and the relative who is responsible for taking revenge for the killing might catch you and angrily kill an innocent person. After all, it was by accident that you killed someone who was not your enemy. 7 This is why I order you to set aside three cities. 8 "When the Lord your God enlarges your territory, as he told your ancestors he would, and gives you all the land he has promised, 9 then you are to select three more cities. (He will give you this land if you do everything that I command you today and if you love the Lord your God and live according to his teachings.) 10 Do this, so that innocent people will not die and so that you will not be guilty of putting them to death in the land that the Lord is giving you. 11 "But suppose you deliberately murder your enemy in cold blood and then escape to one of those cities for protection. 12 In that case, the leaders of your own town are to send for you and hand you over to the relative responsible for taking revenge for the murder, so that you may be put to death. 13 No mercy will be shown to you. Israel must rid itself of murderers, so that all will go well. 14 "Do not move your neighbor's property line, established long ago in the land that the Lord your God is giving you. 15 "One witness is not enough to convict someone of a crime; at least two witnesses are necessary to prove that someone is guilty. 16 If any of you try to harm another by false accusations, 17 both of you are to go to the one place of worship and be judged by the priests and judges who are then in office. 18 The judges will investigate the case thoroughly; and if you have made a false accusation, 19 you are to receive the punishment the accused would have received. In this way your nation will get rid of this evil. 20 Then everyone else will hear what happened; they will be afraid, and no one will ever again do such an evil thing. 21 In such cases show no mercy; the punishment is to be a life for a life, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand, and a foot for a foot.
1 "When you go out to fight against your enemies and you see chariots and horses and an army that outnumbers yours, do not be afraid of them. The Lord your God, who rescued you from Egypt, will be with you. 2 Before you start fighting, a priest is to come forward and say to the army, 3 "Men of Israel, listen! Today you are going into battle. Do not be afraid of your enemies or lose courage or panic. 4 The Lord your God is going with you, and he will give you victory.' 5 "Then the officers will address the men and say, "Is there any man here who has just built a house, but has not yet dedicated it? If so, he is to go home. Otherwise, if he is killed in battle, someone else will dedicate his house. 6 Is there any man here who has just planted a vineyard, but has not yet had the chance to harvest its grapes? If so, he is to go home. Otherwise, if he is killed in battle, someone else will enjoy the wine. 7 Is there anyone here who is engaged to be married? If so, he is to go home. Otherwise, if he is killed in battle, someone else will marry the woman he is engaged to.' 8 "The officers will also say to the men, "Is there any man here who has lost his nerve and is afraid? If so, he is to go home. Otherwise, he will destroy the morale of the others.' 9 When the officers have finished speaking to the army, leaders are to be chosen for each unit. 10 "When you go to attack a city, first give its people a chance to surrender. 11 If they open the gates and surrender, they are all to become your slaves and do forced labor for you. 12 But if the people of that city will not surrender, but choose to fight, surround it with your army. 13 Then, when the Lord your God lets you capture the city, kill every man in it. 14 You may, however, take for yourselves the women, the children, the livestock, and everything else in the city. You may use everything that belongs to your enemies. The Lord has given it to you. 15 That is how you are to deal with those cities that are far away from the land you will settle in. 16 "But when you capture cities in the land that the Lord your God is giving you, kill everyone. 17 Completely destroy all the people: the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, as the Lord ordered you to do. 18 Kill them, so that they will not make you sin against the Lord by teaching you to do all the disgusting things that they do in the worship of their gods. 19 "When you are trying to capture a city, do not cut down its fruit trees, even though the siege lasts a long time. Eat the fruit, but do not destroy the trees; the trees are not your enemies. 20 You may cut down the other trees and use them in the siege mounds until the city is captured.
1 "Suppose someone is found murdered in a field in the land that the Lord your God is going to give you, and you do not know who killed him. 2 Your leaders and judges are to go out and measure the distance from the place where the body was found to each of the nearby towns. 3 Then the leaders of the town nearest to where the body was found are to select a young cow that has never been used for work. 4 They are to take it down to a spot near a stream that never runs dry and where the ground has never been plowed or planted, and there they are to break its neck. 5 The levitical priests are to go there also, because they are to decide every legal case involving violence. The Lord your God has chosen them to serve him and to pronounce blessings in his name. 6 Then all the leaders from the town nearest the place where the murdered person was found are to wash their hands over the cow 7 and say, "We did not murder this one, and we do not know who did it. 8 Lord, forgive your people Israel, whom you rescued from Egypt. Forgive us and do not hold us responsible for the murder of an innocent person.' 9 And so, by doing what the Lord requires, you will not be held responsible for the murder. 10 "When the Lord your God gives you victory in battle and you take prisoners, 11 you may see among them a beautiful woman that you like and want to marry. 12 Take her to your home, where she will shave her head, cut her fingernails, 13 and change her clothes. She is to stay in your home and mourn for her parents for a month; after that, you may marry her. 14 Later, if you no longer want her, you are to let her go free. Since you forced her to have intercourse with you, you cannot treat her as a slave and sell her. 15 "Suppose a man has two wives and they both bear him sons, but the first son is not the child of his favorite wife. 16 When the man decides how he is going to divide his property among his children, he is not to show partiality to the son of his favorite wife by giving him the share that belongs to the first-born son. 17 He is to give a double share of his possessions to his first son, even though he is not the son of his favorite wife. A man must acknowledge his first son and give him the share he is legally entitled to. 18 "Suppose someone has a son who is stubborn and rebellious, a son who will not obey his parents, even though they punish him. 19 His parents are to take him before the leaders of the town where he lives and make him stand trial. 20 They are to say to them, "Our son is stubborn and rebellious and refuses to obey us; he wastes money and is a drunkard.' 21 Then the men of the city are to stone him to death, and so you will get rid of this evil. Everyone in Israel will hear what has happened and be afraid. 22 "If someone has been put to death for a crime and the body is hung on a post, 23 it is not to remain there overnight. It must be buried the same day, because a dead body hanging on a post brings God's curse on the land. Bury the body, so that you will not defile the land that the Lord your God is giving you.
21 "Then, if anyone says to you, "Look, here is the Messiah!' or, "Look, there he is!' - do not believe it. 22 For false Messiahs and false prophets will appear. They will perform miracles and wonders in order to deceive even God's chosen people, if possible. 23 Be on your guard! I have told you everything ahead of time. 24 "In the days after that time of trouble the sun will grow dark, the moon will no longer shine, 25 the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers in space will be driven from their courses. 26 Then the Son of Man will appear, coming in the clouds with great power and glory. 27 He will send the angels out to the four corners of the earth to gather God's chosen people from one end of the world to the other. 28 "Let the fig tree teach you a lesson. When its branches become green and tender and it starts putting out leaves, you know that summer is near. 29 In the same way, when you see these things happening, you will know that the time is near, ready to begin. 30 Remember that all these things will happen before the people now living have all died. 31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. 32 "No one knows, however, when that day or hour will come - neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son; only the Father knows. 33 Be on watch, be alert, for you do not know when the time will come. 34 It will be like a man who goes away from home on a trip and leaves his servants in charge, after giving to each one his own work to do and after telling the doorkeeper to keep watch. 35 Watch, then, because you do not know when the master of the house is coming - it might be in the evening or at midnight or before dawn or at sunrise. 36 If he comes suddenly, he must not find you asleep. 37 What I say to you, then, I say to all: Watch!"
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