Restitution for crimes. When marriage begins. Capital crimes. Other crimes.
VERSE 1. “If a man steals an ox or a sheep, and kills it or sells it, he shall pay five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.
he shall pay. These punishments are substantial. They would serve as strong deterrents:
five oxen for an ox. The punishment is five times what was stolen.
four sheep for a sheep. The punishment is four times what was stolen.
VERSE 2. If the thief is found breaking in, and is struck so that he dies, there shall be no guilt of bloodshed for him.
there shall be no guilt of bloodshed. Self-defense is permitted for a follower of the One God.
VERSE 3. If the sun has risen on him, he is guilty of bloodshed. He shall make restitution. If he has nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.
he shall be sold for his theft. A poor person would be sold into slavery.
VERSE 4. If the stolen property is found in his hand alive, whether it is ox, donkey, or sheep, he shall pay double.
VERSE 5. “If a man causes a field or vineyard to be eaten by letting his animal loose, and it grazes in another man’s field, he shall make restitution from the best of his own field, and from the best of his own vineyard.
VERSE 6. “If fire breaks out, and catches in thorns so that the shocks of grain, or the standing grain, or the field are consumed; he who kindled the fire shall surely make restitution.
VERSE 7. “If a man delivers to his neighbor money or stuff to keep, and it is stolen out of the man’s house, if the thief is found, he shall pay double.
VERSE 8. If the thief isn’t found, then the master of the house shall come near to God, to find out whether or not he has put his hand on his neighbor’s goods.
come near to God. This actually means “appear before the judges,” as we see in other translations. Here are three examples:
New International Version. But if the thief is not found, the owner of the house must appear before the judges, and they must determine whether the owner of the house has laid hands on the other person’s property.
Berean Study Bible. If the thief is not found, the owner of the house must appear before the judges to determine whether he has taken his neighbor’s property.
New American Standard Bible. If the thief is not caught, then the owner of the house shall appear before the judges, to determine whether he laid his hands on his neighbor’s property.
VERSE 9. For every matter of trespass, whether it is for ox, for donkey, for sheep, for clothing, or for any kind of lost thing, about which one says, ‘This is mine,’ the cause of both parties shall come before God. He whom God condemns shall pay double to his neighbor.
come before God. As we saw in the verse above, this actually means “appear before the judges.”
VERSE 10. “If a man delivers to his neighbor a donkey, an ox, a sheep, or any animal to keep, and it dies or is injured, or driven away, no man seeing it;
VERSE 11. the oath of the LORD shall be between them both, he has not put his hand on his neighbor’s goods; and its owner shall accept it, and he shall not make restitution.
VERSE 12. But if it is stolen from him, the one who stole shall make restitution to its owner.
VERSE 13. If it is torn in pieces, let him bring it for evidence. He shall not make good that which was torn.
VERSE 14. “If a man borrows anything of his neighbor’s, and it is injured, or dies, its owner not being with it, he shall surely make restitution.
VERSE 15. If its owner is with it, he shall not make it good. If it is a leased thing, it came for its lease.
VERSE 16. “If a man entices a virgin who isn’t pledged to be married, and lies with her, he shall surely pay a dowry for her to be his wife.
he shall surely pay a dowry for her to be his wife. When does marriage begin? What is it that causes a couple to become married?
In this verse, there was no cleric. There was no justice of the peace. There were no legal papers.
The only act was genital intercourse.
Biblically, genital intercourse is the act that transforms two people to the married state.
VERSE 17. If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.
TNIV translation. If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he must still pay the bride-price for virgins.
a sorceress. This is the first command requiring the Hebrew people to execute somebody. A sorceress is to be executed simply for existing.
sex with an animal. This is the second command requiring the Hebrew people to execute somebody. Anyone who has committed bestiality is to be executed simply for existing.
sacrifices to any god. This is the third command requiring the Hebrew people to execute somebody. Anyone who has committed idolatry is to be executed simply for existing.
You shall not wrong an alien or oppress him. The LORD God requires his followers to treat foreigners and aliens well.
This is also commanded in Exodus 23.
Unfortunately, in the United States, we fail terribly to live up to this command.
VERSE 22. “You shall not take advantage of any widow or fatherless child.
VERSE 23. If you take advantage of them at all, and they cry at all to me, I will surely hear their cry;
VERSE 24. and my wrath will grow hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless.
VERSE 25. “If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be to him as a creditor. You shall not charge him interest.
If you lend money. In ancient Israel, lending was a way to help a fellow Israelite. Charging interest was forbidden. But in our day, Christian lenders go against this prohibition. And get rich from it. Read more »
my people with you who is poor. We followers of the One God are required to show favor to poor people. Unfortunately, in the United States, we fail terribly to live up to this command.
VERSE 26. If you take your neighbor’s garment as collateral, you shall restore it to him before the sun goes down,
VERSE 27. for that is his only covering, it is his garment for his skin. What would he sleep in? It will happen, when he cries to me, that I will hear, for I am gracious.
VERSE 28. “You shall not blaspheme God, nor curse a ruler of your people.
VERSE 29. “You shall not delay to offer from your harvest and from the outflow of your presses. “You shall give the firstborn of your sons to me.
VERSE 30. You shall do likewise with your cattle and with your sheep. It shall be with its mother seven days, then on the eighth day you shall give it to me.
VERSE 31. “You shall be holy men to me, therefore you shall not eat any meat that is torn by animals in the field. You shall cast it to the dogs.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.