Bible: Lev 18-20

Exhortation to Obedience and Life

18:1 The Lord spoke to Moses: 18:2 Speak to the Israelites and tell them, ‘I am the Lord your God! 18:3 You must not do as they do in the land of Egypt where you have been living, 1  and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan into which I am about to bring you; 2  you must not 3  walk in their statutes. 18:4 You must observe my regulations 4  and you must be sure to walk in my statutes. 5  I am the Lord your God. 18:5 So you must keep 6  my statutes and my regulations; anyone who does so will live by keeping them. 7  I am the Lord.

Laws of Sexual Relations

18:6‘No man is to approach any close relative 8  to have sexual intercourse with her. 9  I am the Lord. 10  18:7 You must not 11  expose your father’s nakedness by having sexual intercourse with your mother. 12  She is your mother; you must not have intercourse with her. 18:8 You must not have sexual intercourse with your father’s wife; she is your father’s nakedness. 13  18:9 You must not have sexual intercourse with your sister, whether she is your father’s daughter or your mother’s daughter, 14  whether she is born in the same household or born outside it; 15  you must not have sexual intercourse with either of them. 16  18:10 You must not expose the nakedness of your son’s daughter or your daughter’s daughter by having sexual intercourse with them, because they are your own nakedness. 17  18:11 You must not have sexual intercourse with the daughter of your father’s wife born of your father; she is your sister. You must not have intercourse with her. 18  18:12 You must not have sexual intercourse with your father’s sister; she is your father’s flesh. 19  18:13 You must not have sexual intercourse with your mother’s sister, because she is your mother’s flesh. 18:14 You must not expose the nakedness of your father’s brother; you must not approach his wife to have sexual intercourse with her. 20  She is your aunt. 21  18:15 You must not have sexual intercourse with your daughter-in-law; she is your son’s wife. You must not have intercourse with her. 18:16 You must not have sexual intercourse with your brother’s wife; she is your brother’s nakedness. 22  18:17 You must not have sexual intercourse with both a woman and her daughter; you must not take as wife either her son’s daughter or her daughter’s daughter to have intercourse with them. 23  They are closely related to her 24 it is lewdness. 25  18:18 You must not take a woman in marriage and then marry her sister as a rival wife 26  while she is still alive, 27  to have sexual intercourse with her.

18:19‘You must not approach a woman in her menstrual impurity 28  to have sexual intercourse with her. 18:20 You must not have sexual intercourse 29  with the wife of your fellow citizen to become unclean with her. 18:21 You must not give any of your children as an offering to Molech, 30  so that you do not profane 31  the name of your God. I am the Lord! 18:22 You must not have sexual intercourse with a male as one has sexual intercourse with a woman; 32  it is a detestable act. 33  18:23 You must not have sexual intercourse 34  with any animal to become defiled with it, and a woman must not stand before an animal to have sexual intercourse with it; 35  it is a perversion. 36 

Warning against the Abominations of the Nations

18:24‘Do not defile yourselves with any of these things, for the nations which I am about to drive out before you 37  have been defiled with all these things. 18:25 Therefore 38  the land has become unclean and I have brought the punishment for its iniquity upon it, 39  so that the land has vomited out its inhabitants. 18:26 You yourselves must obey 40  my statutes and my regulations and must not do any of these abominations, both the native citizen and the resident foreigner in your midst, 41  18:27 for the people who were in the land before you have done all these abominations, 42  and the land has become unclean. 18:28 So do not make the land vomit you out because you defile it 43  just as it has vomited out the nations 44  that were before you. 18:29 For if anyone does any of these abominations, the persons who do them will be cut off from the midst of their people. 45  18:30 You must obey my charge to not practice any of the abominable statutes 46  that have been done before you, so that you do not 47  defile yourselves by them. I am the Lord your God.’

Religious and Social Regulations

19:1 The Lord spoke to Moses: 19:2 Speak to the whole congregation of the Israelites and tell them, ‘You must be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy. 19:3 Each of you must respect his mother and his father, 48  and you must keep my Sabbaths. I am the Lord your God. 19:4 Do not turn to idols, 49  and you must not make for yourselves gods of cast metal. I am the Lord your God.

Eating the Peace Offering

19:5‘When you sacrifice a peace offering sacrifice to the Lord, you must sacrifice it so that it is accepted for you. 50  19:6 It must be eaten on the day of your sacrifice and on the following day, 51  but what is left over until the third day must be burned up. 52  19:7 If, however, it is eaten 53  on the third day, it is spoiled, 54  it will not be accepted, 19:8 and the one who eats it will bear his punishment for iniquity 55  because he has profaned 56  what is holy to the Lord. 57  That person will be cut off from his people. 58 

Leaving the Gleanings

19:9‘When you gather in the harvest 59  of your land, you must not completely harvest the corner of your field, 60  and you must not gather up the gleanings of your harvest. 19:10 You must not pick your vineyard bare, 61  and you must not gather up the fallen grapes of your vineyard. You must leave them for the poor and the foreigner. I am the Lord your God.

Dealing Honestly

19:11‘You must not steal, you must not tell lies, and you must not deal falsely with your fellow citizen. 62  19:12 You must not swear falsely 63  in my name, so that you do not profane 64  the name of your God. I am the Lord. 19:13 You must not oppress your neighbor or commit robbery against him. 65  You must not withhold 66  the wages of the hired laborer overnight until morning. 19:14 You must not curse a deaf person or put a stumbling block in front of a blind person. 67  You must fear 68  your God; I am the Lord.

Justice, Love, and Propriety

19:15‘You 69  must not deal unjustly in judgment: 70  you must neither show partiality to the poor nor honor the rich. 71  You must judge your fellow citizen fairly. 72  19:16 You must not go about as a slanderer among your people. 73  You must not stand idly by when your neighbor’s life is at stake. 74  I am the Lord. 19:17 You must not hate your brother in your heart. You must surely reprove your fellow citizen so that you do not incur sin on account of him. 75  19:18 You must not take vengeance or bear a grudge 76  against the children of your people, but you must love your neighbor as yourself. 77  I am the Lord. 19:19 You must keep my statutes. You must not allow two different kinds of your animals to breed, 78  you must not sow your field with two different kinds of seed, and you must not wear 79  a garment made of two different kinds of fabric. 80 

Lying with a Slave Woman

19:20‘When a man has sexual intercourse with a woman, 81  although she is a slave woman designated for another man and she has not yet been ransomed, or freedom has not been granted to her, there will be an obligation to pay compensation. 82  They must not be put to death, because she was not free. 19:21 He must bring his guilt offering to the Lord at the entrance of the Meeting Tent, a guilt offering ram, 83  19:22 and the priest is to make atonement for him with the ram of the guilt offering before the Lord for his sin that he has committed, 84  and he will be forgiven 85  of his sin 86  that he has committed.

The Produce of Fruit Trees

19:23‘When you enter the land and plant any fruit tree, 87  you must consider its fruit to be forbidden. 88  Three years it will be forbidden to you; 89  it must not be eaten. 19:24 In the fourth year all its fruit will be holy, praise offerings 90  to the Lord. 19:25 Then in the fifth year you may eat its fruit to add its produce to your harvest. 91  I am the Lord your God.

Blood, Hair, and Body

19:26‘You must not eat anything with the blood still in it. 92  You must not practice either divination or soothsaying. 93  19:27 You must not round off the corners of the hair on your head or ruin the corners of your beard. 94  19:28 You must not slash your body for a dead person 95  or incise a tattoo on yourself. 96  I am the Lord. 19:29 Do not profane your daughter by making her a prostitute, 97  so that the land does not practice prostitution and become full of lewdness. 98 

Purity, Honor, Respect, and Honesty

19:30‘You must keep my Sabbaths and fear my sanctuary. I am the Lord. 19:31 Do not turn to the spirits of the dead and do not seek familiar spirits 99  to become unclean by them. I am the Lord your God. 19:32 You must stand up in the presence of the aged, honor the presence of an elder, and fear your God. I am the Lord. 19:33 When a foreigner resides 100  with you in your land, you must not oppress him. 19:34 The foreigner who resides with you must be to you like a native citizen among you; so 101  you must love him as yourself, because you were foreigners in the land of Egypt. I am the Lord your God. 19:35 You must not do injustice in the regulation of measures, whether of length, weight, or volume. 102  19:36 You must have honest balances, 103  honest weights, an honest ephah, and an honest hin. 104  I am the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt. 19:37 You must be sure to obey all my statutes and regulations. 105  I am the Lord.’

Prohibitions against Illegitimate Family Worship

20:1 The Lord spoke to Moses: 20:2 You are to say to the Israelites, ‘Any man from the Israelites or from the foreigners who reside in Israel 106  who gives any of his children 107  to Molech 108  must be put to death; the people of the land must pelt him with stones. 109  20:3 I myself will set my face 110  against that man and cut him off from the midst of his people, 111  because he has given some of his children to Molech and thereby defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name. 112  20:4 If, however, the people of the land shut their eyes 113  to that man 114  when he gives some of his children to Molech so that they do not put him to death, 20:5 I myself will set my face against that man and his clan. I will cut off from the midst of their people both him and all who follow after him in spiritual prostitution, 115  to commit prostitution by worshiping Molech. 116 

Prohibition against Spiritists and Mediums 117 

20:6‘The person who turns to the spirits of the dead and familiar spirits 118  to commit prostitution by going after them, I will set my face 119  against that person and cut him off from the midst of his people.

Exhortation to Holiness and Obedience

20:7‘You must sanctify yourselves and be holy, because I am the Lord your God. 20:8 You must be sure to obey my statutes. 120  I am the Lord who sanctifies you.

Family Life and Sexual Prohibitions 121 

20:9‘If anyone 122  curses his father and mother 123  he must be put to death. He has cursed his father and mother; his blood guilt is on himself. 124  20:10 If a man 125  commits adultery with his neighbor’s wife, 126  both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death. 20:11 If a man has sexual intercourse with his father’s wife, he has exposed his father’s nakedness. 127  Both of them must be put to death; their blood guilt is on themselves. 128  20:12 If a man has sexual intercourse with his daughter-in-law, both of them must be put to death. They have committed perversion; 129  their blood guilt is on themselves. 20:13 If a man has sexual intercourse with a male as one has sexual intercourse with a woman, 130  the two of them have committed an abomination. They must be put to death; their blood guilt is on themselves. 20:14 If a man has sexual intercourse with both a woman and her mother, 131  it is lewdness. 132  Both he and they must be burned to death, 133  so there is no lewdness in your midst. 20:15 If a man has sexual intercourse 134  with any animal, he must be put to death, and you must kill the animal. 20:16 If a woman approaches any animal to have sexual intercourse with it, 135  you must kill the woman, and the animal must be put to death; their blood guilt is on themselves.

20:17‘If a man has sexual intercourse with 136  his sister, whether the daughter of his father or his mother, so that he sees her nakedness and she sees his nakedness, it is a disgrace. They must be cut off in the sight of the children of their people. 137  He has exposed his sister’s nakedness; he will bear his punishment for iniquity. 138  20:18 If a man has sexual intercourse with a menstruating woman and uncovers her nakedness, he has laid bare her fountain of blood and she has exposed the fountain of her blood, so both of them 139  must be cut off from the midst of their people. 20:19 You must not expose the nakedness of your mother’s sister and your father’s sister, for such a person has laid bare his own close relative. 140  They must bear their punishment for iniquity. 141  20:20 If a man has sexual intercourse with his aunt, he has exposed his uncle’s nakedness; they must bear responsibility for their sin, they will die childless. 20:21 If a man has sexual intercourse with 142  his brother’s wife, it is indecency. He has exposed his brother’s nakedness; 143  they will be childless.

Exhortation to Holiness and Obedience

20:22‘You must be sure to obey all my statutes and regulations, 144  so that 145  the land to which I am about to bring you to take up residence there does not vomit you out. 20:23 You must not walk in the statutes of the nation 146  which I am about to drive out before you, because they have done all these things and I am filled with disgust against them. 20:24 So I have said to you: You yourselves will possess their land and I myself will give it to you for a possession, a land flowing with milk and honey. I am the Lord your God who has set you apart from the other peoples. 147  20:25 Therefore you must distinguish 148  between the clean animal and the unclean, and between the unclean bird and the clean, and you must not make yourselves detestable by means of an animal or bird or anything that creeps on the ground – creatures 149  I have distinguished for you as unclean. 150  20:26 You must be holy to me because I, the Lord, am holy, and I have set you apart from the other peoples to be mine.

Prohibition against Spiritists and Mediums

20:27‘A man or woman who 151  has in them a spirit of the dead or a familiar spirit 152  must be put to death. They must pelt them with stones; 153  their blood guilt is on themselves.’

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