New American Standard Bible
Cities of Refuge
1When the LORD your God cuts off the nations, whose land the LORD your God gives you, and you dispossess them and settle in their cities and in their houses, 2you shall set aside three cities for yourself in the midst of your land, which the LORD your God gives you to possess. 3You shall prepare the roads for yourself, and divide into three parts the territory of your land which the LORD your God will give you as a possession, so that any manslayer may flee there.
4Now this is the case of the manslayer who may flee there and live: when he kills his friend unintentionally, not hating him previously 5as when a man goes into the forest with his friend to cut wood, and his hand swings the axe to cut down the tree, and the iron head slips off the handle and strikes his friend so that he dieshe may flee to one of these cities and live; 6otherwise the avenger of blood might pursue the manslayer in the heat of his anger, and overtake him, because the way is long, and take his life, though he was not deserving of death, since he had not hated him previously. 7Therefore, I command you, saying, You shall set aside three cities for yourself.
8If the LORD your God enlarges your territory, just as He has sworn to your fathers, and gives you all the land which He promised to give your fathers 9if you carefully observe all this commandment which I command you today, to love the LORD your God, and to walk in His ways alwaysthen you shall add three more cities for yourself, besides these three. 10So innocent blood will not be shed in the midst of your land which the LORD your God gives you as an inheritance, and bloodguiltiness be on you.
11But if there is a man who hates his neighbor and lies in wait for him and rises up against him and strikes him so that he dies, and he flees to one of these cities, 12then the elders of his city shall send and take him from there and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die. 13You shall not pity him, but you shall purge the blood of the innocent from Israel, that it may go well with you.
15A single witness shall not rise up against a man on account of any iniquity or any sin which he has committed; on the evidence of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed. 16If a malicious witness rises up against a man to accuse him of wrongdoing, 17then both the men who have the dispute shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges who will be in office in those days. 18The judges shall investigate thoroughly, and if the witness is a false witness and he has accused his brother falsely, 19then you shall do to him just as he had intended to do to his brother. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you. 20The rest will hear and be afraid, and will never again do such an evil thing among you. 21Thus you shall not show pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.