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Commentary On Joshua by Jean Calvin

CHAPTER 20

1 And Jehovah spoke to Joshua, saying,

2 Address the children of Israel in these words, Give cities of refuge of which I spoke to you by the hand of Moses;

3 That the homicide, who has taken away a life through mistake, not knowingly, may flee thither: and they will be to you for a refuge from the kinsman of blood.

4 And he shall fly to one of those cities, and shall stand at the door of the gate of the city, and speak his words in the ears of the elders of the city itself, and they will receive him into the city, and give him a place, and he shall dwell with them.

5 And when the kinsman of blood shall have pursued him, they shall not deliver up the homicide into his hand; because he smote his neighbor unknowingly, and had no hatred to him in time past, (yesterday and the day before yesterday.)

6 And he will dwell in that city until he stand before the assembly for judgment, even until the high priest, who shall be in those days, shall die: for then the homicide will return, and come to his city, and to his house, to the city whence he had fled.

7 And they assigned Cedes in Galilee, in mount Naphtali, and Sechem in mount Ephraim, and Ciriath-arba (the same is Hebron) in mount Judah.

8 And from beyond the Jordan of Jericho on the east, they gave Beser, in the desert in the plain, of the tribe of Reuben: and Ramoth in Gilead of the tribe of Gad; and Golan in Basan, of the tribe of Manasseh.

9 Those were the cities of convention to all the children of Israel, and to the stranger sojourning in the midst of them, that whosoever had slain any one by mistake might flee thither, and not die by the hand of the kinsman of blood before he had stood before the assembly.

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