1-3If you see your kinsman’s ox or sheep wandering off loose, don’t look the other way as if you didn’t see it. Return it promptly. If your fellow Israelite is not close by or you don’t know whose it is, take the animal home with you and take care of it until your fellow asks about it. Then return it to him. Do the same if it’s his donkey or a piece of clothing or anything else your fellow Israelite loses. Don’t look the other way as if you didn’t see it.
4If you see your fellow’s donkey or ox injured along the road, don’t look the other way. Help him get it up and on its way.
5A woman must not wear a man’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing. This kind of thing is an abomination to God, your God.
6-7When you come across a bird’s nest alongside the road, whether in a tree or on the ground, and the mother is sitting on the young or on the eggs, don’t take the mother with the young. You may take the babies, but let the mother go so that you will live a good and long life.
8When you build a new house, make a parapet around your roof to make it safe so that someone doesn’t fall off and die and your family become responsible for the death.
9Don’t plant two kinds of seed in your vineyard. If you do, you will forfeit what you’ve sown, the total production of the vineyard.
10Don’t plow with an ox and a donkey yoked together.
11Don’t wear clothes of mixed fabrics, wool and linen together.
12Make tassels on the four corners of the cloak you use to cover yourself.
13-19If a man marries a woman, sleeps with her, and then turns on her, calling her loose, giving her a bad name, saying, “I married this woman, but when I slept with her I discovered she wasn’t a virgin,” then the father and mother of the girl are to take her with the proof of her virginity to the town leaders at the gate. The father is to tell the leaders, “I gave my daughter to this man as wife and he turned on her, rejecting her. And now he has slanderously accused her, claiming that she wasn’t a virgin. But look at this, here is the proof of my daughter’s virginity.” And then he is to spread out her bloodstained wedding garment before the leaders for their examination. The town leaders then are to take the husband, whip him, fine him a hundred pieces of silver, and give it to the father of the girl. The man gave a virgin girl of Israel a bad name. He has to keep her as his wife and can never divorce her.
20-21But if it turns out that the accusation is true and there is no evidence of the girl’s virginity, the men of the town are to take her to the door of her father’s house and stone her to death. She acted disgracefully in Israel. She lived like a whore while still in her parents’ home. Purge the evil from among you.
22If a man is found sleeping with another man’s wife, both must die. Purge that evil from Israel.
23-24If a man comes upon a virgin in town, a girl who is engaged to another man, and sleeps with her, take both of them to the town gate and stone them until they die—the girl because she didn’t yell out for help in the town and the man because he raped her, violating the fiancée of his neighbor. You must purge the evil from among you.
25-27But if it was out in the country that the man found the engaged girl and grabbed and raped her, only the man is to die, the man who raped her. Don’t do anything to the girl; she did nothing wrong. This is similar to the case of a man who comes across his neighbor out in the country and murders him; when the engaged girl yelled out for help, there was no one around to hear or help her.
28-29When a man comes upon a virgin who has never been engaged and grabs and rapes her and they are found out, the man who raped her has to give her father fifty pieces of silver. He has to marry her because he took advantage of her. And he can never divorce her.
30A man may not marry his father’s ex-wife—that would violate his father’s rights.
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THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson. All rights reserved. Used by permission of NavPress. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers.Learn More About The Message