0 More commandments (Ex 21)

Episode 33: More commandments

(Exodus 21)

On slavery

21 2 If you buy a Hebrew slave, you must set him free on the seventh year.

4 If you have given him a wife and she has children, then you get to keep the wife and kids.

5-6 If he refuses to leave his family when his seven years are up, then bore a hole through his ear and keep him forever.


On selling your daughter

7 If a man sells his daughter, she doesn't gain her freedom in the same way that a man does.

8 If she doesn't please her new master as a concubine, he must let her be bought back, but he may not sell her to a foreigner. And if he gives her to his son, he must treat her as his own daughter.

On polygamy

10 If a man takes another wife, he must provide food and clothing for her, and have sex with her. 11 If he fails to do so, he must let her go free, without asking her to pay him.


On murder

12 If a man kills another man, take him away from my altar and kill him.

13 But if man kills someone that I [God] delivered into his hand, I will provide him with a hiding place.

On disobedient children and slave stealers

15, 17 A child who hits or curses his parents must be killed.

16 If a man steals a slave, kill him.

On assault

18-19 If a man injures another man by striking him with a stone or his fist, he must pay for the injured man's loss of time and medical treatment until he is thoroughly healed.

On slave beating

20-21 If a man smites his slave with a rod, and he or she survives for a day or two, then he shall not be punished -- because slaves are his money.


On miscarriage / abortion

22 If two men fight and cause a woman to miscarry, then the one who caused the miscarriage must pay her husband an amount determined by the judges. 23 Only if the woman dies is the punishment to be death.

24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

More about slave beating

26 If a man smite the eye of his slave and blinds him, then he must let his slave go for his eye's sake.

27 Or if he smites out the tooth of his slave, he must let the slave go for his tooth's sake.

On ox goring

28 If an ox gores a man or woman to death, the ox shall be surely stoned (and his flesh must not be eaten).

29 If the ox has a history of goring people and then kills someone, then the ox shall be stoned, and his owner also shall be put to death.

32 If an ox gores a slave, the owner of the ox must pay the owner of the slave 30 shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned.

A few more words about this episode

If man kills someone that I [God] delivered into his hand. (21:13)
This seems to refer to an accidental killing (an "act of God"), rather than a premeditated one. In such cases God will provide a place for the killer to hide. (See Dt 19:1-13, Num 35:9-15, Dt 4:41-43, and Jos 20:1-9 for more about God's cities of refuge.)
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