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Exodus 22 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

22 [a]⌞The Lord continued,⌟ “Whenever someone steals a bull or a sheep and butchers it or sells it, he must make up for the loss with five head of cattle to replace the bull or four sheep to replace the sheep.

“If anyone catches a thief breaking in and hits him so that he dies, he is not guilty of murder. But if it happens after sunrise, he is guilty of murder.

“A thief must make up for what he has stolen. If he is unable to do so, he must be sold ⌞as a slave⌟ to pay for what he stole. But if the stolen animal is found alive in his possession, whether it’s a bull, donkey, or a sheep, he must make up for the loss with double the amount.

“Whenever someone lets his livestock graze in a field or a vineyard, and they stray and graze in another person’s field, he must make up for what the damaged field was expected to produce. But if he lets them ruin the whole field with their grazing,[b] he must make up from his own field for the loss with the best from his field and vineyard.

“Whenever a fire starts and spreads into the underbrush so that it burns up stacked or standing grain or ruins a field, the person who started the fire must make up for the loss.

“This is what you must do whenever someone gives his neighbor silver or ⌞other⌟ valuables to keep for him, and they are stolen from that person’s house: If the thief is caught, he must make up for the loss with double the amount. If the thief is not caught, the owner of the house must be brought to God to find out whether or not he took his neighbor’s valuables. If there is a dispute over the ownership of a bull, a donkey, a sheep, an article of clothing, or any ⌞other⌟ lost property which two people claim as their own, both people must bring their case to God. The one whom God declares guilty must make up for his neighbor’s loss with double the amount.

10 “This is what you must do whenever someone gives his neighbor a donkey, a bull, a sheep, or any other kind of animal to keep for him, and it dies, is injured, or is captured in war, and there are no witnesses. 11 The case between them must be settled by swearing an oath to the Lord that the neighbor did not take the other person’s animal. The owner must accept the oath. The neighbor doesn’t have to make up for the loss. 12 But if the animal was stolen from the neighbor, he must make up for the owner’s loss. 13 If it was killed by a wild animal, he must bring in the dead body as evidence. He doesn’t have to make up for an animal that has been killed.

14 “Whenever someone borrows an animal from his neighbor, and it is injured or dies while the owner is not present, the borrower must make up for the loss. 15 If the owner is with the animal, the borrower doesn’t have to make up for the loss. If it is rented, the rental fee covers the loss.

Laws for Living as God’s Holy People

16 “Whenever a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged to anyone and has sexual intercourse with her, he must pay the bride-price and marry her. 17 If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he must pay an amount of money equal to the bride-price for virgins.

18 “Never let a witch live.

19 “Whoever has sexual intercourse with an animal must be put to death.

20 “Whoever sacrifices to any god except the Lord must be condemned and destroyed.

21 “Never mistreat or oppress foreigners, because you were foreigners living in Egypt.

22 “Never take advantage of any widow or orphan. 23 If you do and they cry out to me, you can be sure that I will hear their cry. 24 I will become angry and have you killed in combat. Then your wives and children will become widows and orphans.

25 “If you lend money to my people—to any poor person among you—never act like a moneylender. Charge no interest. 26 If you take any of your neighbor’s clothes as collateral, give it back to him by sunset. 27 It may be the only clothes he has to cover his body. What else will he sleep in? When he cries out to me, I will listen because I am compassionate.

28 “Never show disrespect for God or curse a leader of your people.

29 “Never withhold your best wine from me.

“You must give me your firstborn son. 30 You must do the same with your cattle and your sheep. They will stay with their mothers seven days, but on the eighth day you must give them to me.

31 “You must be my holy people. Never eat the meat of an animal that has been killed by wild animals out in the countryside. Throw it to the dogs.”

Footnotes:

  1. 22:1 Exodus 22:1–31 in English Bibles is Exodus 21:37–22:30 in the Hebrew Bible.
  2. 22:5 he must make … grazing” Greek, Samaritan Pentateuch, Dead Sea Scrolls; Masoretic Text omits these words.
GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

Copyright © 1995, 2003, 2013, 2014, 2019, 2020 by God’s Word to the Nations Mission Society. All rights reserved.

Exodus 22 New International Version (NIV)

Protection of Property

22 [a]“Whoever steals an ox or a sheep and slaughters it or sells it must pay back five head of cattle for the ox and four sheep for the sheep.

“If a thief is caught breaking in at night and is struck a fatal blow, the defender is not guilty of bloodshed; but if it happens after sunrise, the defender is guilty of bloodshed.

“Anyone who steals must certainly make restitution, but if they have nothing, they must be sold to pay for their theft. If the stolen animal is found alive in their possession—whether ox or donkey or sheep—they must pay back double.

“If anyone grazes their livestock in a field or vineyard and lets them stray and they graze in someone else’s field, the offender must make restitution from the best of their own field or vineyard.

“If a fire breaks out and spreads into thornbushes so that it burns shocks of grain or standing grain or the whole field, the one who started the fire must make restitution.

“If anyone gives a neighbor silver or goods for safekeeping and they are stolen from the neighbor’s house, the thief, if caught, must pay back double. But if the thief is not found, the owner of the house must appear before the judges, and they must[b] determine whether the owner of the house has laid hands on the other person’s property. In all cases of illegal possession of an ox, a donkey, a sheep, a garment, or any other lost property about which somebody says, ‘This is mine,’ both parties are to bring their cases before the judges.[c] The one whom the judges declare[d] guilty must pay back double to the other.

10 “If anyone gives a donkey, an ox, a sheep or any other animal to their neighbor for safekeeping and it dies or is injured or is taken away while no one is looking, 11 the issue between them will be settled by the taking of an oath before the Lord that the neighbor did not lay hands on the other person’s property. The owner is to accept this, and no restitution is required. 12 But if the animal was stolen from the neighbor, restitution must be made to the owner. 13 If it was torn to pieces by a wild animal, the neighbor shall bring in the remains as evidence and shall not be required to pay for the torn animal.

14 “If anyone borrows an animal from their neighbor and it is injured or dies while the owner is not present, they must make restitution. 15 But if the owner is with the animal, the borrower will not have to pay. If the animal was hired, the money paid for the hire covers the loss.

Social Responsibility

16 “If a man seduces a virgin who is not pledged to be married and sleeps with her, he must pay the bride-price, and she shall be his wife. 17 If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he must still pay the bride-price for virgins.

18 “Do not allow a sorceress to live.

19 “Anyone who has sexual relations with an animal is to be put to death.

20 “Whoever sacrifices to any god other than the Lord must be destroyed.[e]

21 “Do not mistreat or oppress a foreigner, for you were foreigners in Egypt.

22 “Do not take advantage of the widow or the fatherless. 23 If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. 24 My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless.

25 “If you lend money to one of my people among you who is needy, do not treat it like a business deal; charge no interest. 26 If you take your neighbor’s cloak as a pledge, return it by sunset, 27 because that cloak is the only covering your neighbor has. What else can they sleep in? When they cry out to me, I will hear, for I am compassionate.

28 “Do not blaspheme God[f] or curse the ruler of your people.

29 “Do not hold back offerings from your granaries or your vats.[g]

“You must give me the firstborn of your sons. 30 Do the same with your cattle and your sheep. Let them stay with their mothers for seven days, but give them to me on the eighth day.

31 “You are to be my holy people. So do not eat the meat of an animal torn by wild beasts; throw it to the dogs.

Footnotes:

  1. Exodus 22:1 In Hebrew texts 22:1 is numbered 21:37, and 22:2-31 is numbered 22:1-30.
  2. Exodus 22:8 Or before God, and he will
  3. Exodus 22:9 Or before God
  4. Exodus 22:9 Or whom God declares
  5. Exodus 22:20 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them.
  6. Exodus 22:28 Or Do not revile the judges
  7. Exodus 22:29 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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