Leviticus 19:31
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"'Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.

New Living Translation
"Do not defile yourselves by turning to mediums or to those who consult the spirits of the dead. I am the LORD your God.

English Standard Version
“Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the LORD your God.

New American Standard Bible
'Do not turn to mediums or spiritists; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.

King James Bible
Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Do not turn to mediums or consult spiritists, or you will be defiled by them; I am Yahweh your God."

International Standard Version
"You are to consult neither mediums nor familiar spirits. You are never to seek them—you'll just be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.

NET Bible
Do not turn to the spirits of the dead and do not seek familiar spirits to become unclean by them. I am the LORD your God.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Don't turn to psychics or mediums to get help. That will make you unclean. I am the LORD your God.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Do not return unto spiritists or seek after diviners, to be defiled by them. I AM your God.

King James 2000 Bible
Regard not mediums, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

American King James Version
Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

American Standard Version
Turn ye not unto them that have familiar spirits, nor unto the wizards; seek them not out, to be defiled by them: I am Jehovah your God.

Douay-Rheims Bible
31Go not aside after wizards, neither ask any thing of soothsayers, to be defiled by them: I am the Lord your God.

Darby Bible Translation
-- Turn not unto necromancers and unto soothsayers; seek not after them to make yourselves unclean: I am Jehovah your God.

English Revised Version
Turn ye not unto them that have familiar spirits, nor unto the wizards; seek them not out, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

Webster's Bible Translation
Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

World English Bible
"'Don't turn to those who are mediums, nor to the wizards. Don't seek them out, to be defiled by them. I am Yahweh your God.

Young's Literal Translation
Ye do not turn unto those having familiar spirits; and unto wizards ye do not seek, for uncleanness by them; I am Jehovah your God.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

19:1-37 laws. - There are some ceremonial precepts in this chapter, but most of these precepts are binding on us, for they are explanations of the ten commandments. It is required that Israel be a holy people, because the God of Israel is a holy God, ver. 2. To teach real separation from the world and the flesh, and entire devotedness to God. This is now the law of Christ; may the Lord bring every thought within us into obedience to it! Children are to be obedient to their parents, ver. 3. The fear here required includes inward reverence and esteem, outward respect and obedience, care to please them and to make them easy. God only is to be worshipped, ver. 4. Turn not from the true God to false ones, from the God who will make you holy and happy, to those that will deceive you, and make you for ever miserable. Turn not your eyes to them, much less your heart. They should leave the gleanings of their harvest and vintage for the poor, ver. 9. Works of piety must be always attended with works of charity, according to our ability. We must not be covetous, griping, and greedy of every thing we can lay claim to, nor insist upon our right in all things. We are to be honest and true in all our dealings, ver. 11. Whatever we have in the world, we must see that we get it honestly, for we cannot be truly rich, or long rich, with that which is not so. Reverence to the sacred name of God must be shown, ver. 12. We must not detain what belongs to another, particularly the wages of the hireling, ver. 13. We must be tender of the credit and safety of those that cannot help themselves, ver. 14. Do no hurt to any, because they are unwilling or unable to avenge themselves. We ought to take heed of doing any thing which may occasion our weak brother to fall. The fear of God should keep us from doing wrong things, though they will not expose us to men's anger. Judges, and all in authority, are commanded to give judgment without partiality, ver. 15. To be a tale-bearer, and to sow discord among neighbours, is as bad an office as a man can put himself into. We are to rebuke our neighbour in love, ver. 17. Rather rebuke him than hate him, for an injury done to thyself. We incur guilt by not reproving; it is hating our brother. We should say, I will do him the kindness to tell him of his faults. We are to put off all malice, and to put on brotherly love, ver. 18. We often wrong ourselves, but we soon forgive ourselves those wrongs, and they do not at all lessen our love to ourselves; in like manner we should love our neighbour. We must in many cases deny ourselves for the good of our neighbour. Ver. 31: For Christians to have their fortunes told, to use spells and charms, or the like, is a sad affront to God. They must be grossly ignorant who ask, What harm is there in these things? Here is a charge to young people to show respect to the aged, ver. 32. Religion teaches good manners, and obliges us to honour those to whom honour is due. A charge was given to the Israelites to be very tender of strangers, ver. 33. Strangers, and the widows and fatherless, are God's particular care. It is at our peril, if we do them any wrong. Strangers shall be welcome to God's grace; we should do what we can to recommend religion to them. Justice in weights and measures is commanded, ver. 35. We must make conscience of obeying God's precepts. We are not to pick and choose our duty, but must aim at standing complete in all the will of God. And the nearer our lives and tempers are to the precepts of God's law, the happier shall we be, and the happier shall we make all around us, and the better shall we adorn the gospel.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 31. - This verse contains a prohibition of all dealings with those that have familiar spirits or are wizards. The punishment of such persons is appointed in the next chapter. Both in the Old and the New Testament, the real existence of evil spirits and their power of communicating with the human spirit is assumed.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Regard not them that have familiar spirits,.... The word used signifies "bottles", and that sort of diviners here intended go by this name, either because what they sat on when they divined was in the form of a bottle, or they divined by one, or they were swelled and inflated as bottles when they delivered out their answers, or spoke as out of a bottle or hollow place; hence they are called masters or mistresses of the bottle: they seem to be the same with the ventriloquists, and so the Septuagint version here calls them; such whose voice seemed to come out of their bellies, and even the lower parts of them; and such was the Pythian prophetess at Delphos, and very probably the maid in the times of the apostles, who had a spirit of divination, or of Python, Acts 16:16; and so the words may be rendered here, "look not to the Python" (n), or those who have the spirit of Python; so Jarchi from the Misnah (o) interprets the word here used, "Baal Ob" or the master of the bottle, this is Python, one that speaks from under his arm holes:

neither seek after wizards; such as pretend to a great deal of knowledge, as the word signifies; such as are called cunning men, who pretend to know where lost or stolen goods are, and to tell people their fortunes, and what will befall them hereafter:

to be defiled by them; for by seeking to them, and believing what is said by them, and trusting thereunto, and expecting events answerable to their predictions, they would be guilty of a gross sin, and so bring pollution and guilt on them; according to the Jewish canons (p), such sort of persons as are cautioned against were to be stoned, and they that consulted them to be reproved:

I am the Lord your God; who only is to be regarded and sought unto for advice and assistance; see Isaiah 8:19.

(n) "ne respiciatis ad Pythonas", Montanus; so Junius & Tremellius, Piscator. (o) Misn. Sanhedrin, c. 7. sect. 7. (p) lbid.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

31. Regard not them that have familiar spirits—The Hebrew word, rendered "familiar spirit," signifies the belly, and sometimes a leathern bottle, from its similarity to the belly. It was applied in the sense of this passage to ventriloquists, who pretended to have communication with the invisible world. The Hebrews were strictly forbidden to consult them as the vain but high pretensions of those impostors were derogatory to the honor of God and subversive of their covenant relations with Him as His people.

neither seek after wizards—fortunetellers, who pretended, as the Hebrew word indicates, to prognosticate by palmistry (or an inspection of the lines of the hand) the future fate of those who applied to them.

Leviticus 19:31 Additional Commentaries
Context
Keep My Decrees
30'You shall keep My sabbaths and revere My sanctuary; I am the LORD. 31'Do not turn to mediums or spiritists; do not seek them out to be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God. 32'You shall rise up before the grayheaded and honor the aged, and you shall revere your God; I am the LORD.…
Cross References
Acts 16:16
Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling.

Exodus 22:18
"Do not allow a sorceress to live.

Leviticus 20:6
"'I will set my face against anyone who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute themselves by following them, and I will cut them off from their people.

Leviticus 20:27
"'A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads.'"

Deuteronomy 18:10
Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft,

Deuteronomy 18:11
or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead.

1 Samuel 28:3
Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had mourned for him and buried him in his own town of Ramah. Saul had expelled the mediums and spiritists from the land.

1 Samuel 28:9
But the woman said to him, "Surely you know what Saul has done. He has cut off the mediums and spiritists from the land. Why have you set a trap for my life to bring about my death?"

2 Kings 21:6
He sacrificed his own son in the fire, practiced divination, sought omens, and consulted mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the eyes of the LORD, arousing his anger.

2 Kings 23:24
Furthermore, Josiah got rid of the mediums and spiritists, the household gods, the idols and all the other detestable things seen in Judah and Jerusalem. This he did to fulfill the requirements of the law written in the book that Hilkiah the priest had discovered in the temple of the LORD.

1 Chronicles 10:13
Saul died because he was unfaithful to the LORD; he did not keep the word of the LORD and even consulted a medium for guidance,

2 Chronicles 33:6
He sacrificed his children in the fire in the Valley of Ben Hinnom, practiced divination and witchcraft, sought omens, and consulted mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the eyes of the LORD, arousing his anger.

Isaiah 8:19
When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living?
Treasury of Scripture

Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.

Leviticus 19:26 You shall not eat any thing with the blood: neither shall you use …

Leviticus 20:6,7,27 And the soul that turns after such as have familiar spirits, and …

Exodus 22:18 You shall not suffer a witch to live.

Deuteronomy 18:10-14 There shall not be found among you any one that makes his son or …

1 Samuel 28:3,7-9 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had lamented him, and buried …

2 Kings 17:17 And they caused their sons and their daughters to pass through the …

2 Kings 21:6 And he made his son pass through the fire, and observed times, and …

1 Chronicles 10:13 So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the …

2 Chronicles 33:6 And he caused his children to pass through the fire in the valley …

Isaiah 8:19 And when they shall say to you, Seek to them that have familiar spirits, …

Isaiah 29:4 And you shall be brought down, and shall speak out of the ground, …

Isaiah 47:13 You are wearied in the multitude of your counsels. Let now the astrologers, …

Acts 8:11 And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched …

Acts 13:6-8 And when they had gone through the isle to Paphos, they found a certain …

Acts 16:16-18 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed …

Acts 19:19,20 Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, …

Galatians 5:20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, …

Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, …

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