Deuteronomy 12

Laws of the Sanctuary

1These are the statutes and the judgments which you shall carefully observe in the land which the  Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you to possess
Lit all the days
,
b  as long as you live on the
Lit ground
earth.
2You shall utterly destroy all the places where the nations whom you shall dispossess serve their gods, on the d  high mountains and on the hills and under every green tree. 3 e  You shall tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars and burn their
I.e. wooden symbols of a female deity
Asherim with fire, and you shall cut down the engraved images of their gods and g  obliterate their name from that place.
4You shall not act like this toward the  Lord your God. 5 h  But you shall seek the  Lord at the place which the  Lord your God will choose from all your tribes, to establish His name there for His dwelling, and there you shall come. 6There you shall bring your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, i  your tithes, the
Or heave offering
contribution of your hand, your votive offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herd and of your flock.
7There also you and your households shall eat before the  Lord your God, and k  rejoice in all
Lit the putting forth of your hand
your undertakings in which the  Lord your God has blessed you.

8You shall not do at all what we are doing here today, every man doing whatever is right in his own eyes; 9for you have not as yet come to m  the resting place and the n  inheritance which the  Lord your God is giving you. 10When you cross the Jordan and live in the land which the  Lord your God is giving you to inherit, and o  He gives you rest from all your enemies around you so that you live in security, 11 p  then it shall come about that the place in which the  Lord your God will choose for His name to dwell, there you shall bring all that I command you: your burnt offerings and your sacrifices, your tithes and the
Or heave offering
contribution of your hand, and all your choice votive offerings which you will vow to the  Lord.
12“And you shall r  rejoice before the  Lord your God, you and your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, and the s  Levite who is within your gates, since t  he has no portion or inheritance with you.

13 u  Be careful that you do not offer your burnt offerings in every cultic place you see, 14but in the place which the  Lord chooses in one of your tribes, there you shall offer your burnt offerings, and there you shall do all that I command you.

15 v  However, you may slaughter and eat meat within any of your gates
Lit in every desire of your soul
whatever you desire, according to the blessing of the  Lord your God which He has given you; the unclean and the clean may eat of it, as of x  the gazelle and the deer.
16 y  Only you shall not eat the blood; z  you are to pour it out on the ground like water. 17 aa  You are not allowed to eat within your gates the tithe of your grain or new wine or oil, or the firstborn of your herd or flock, or any of your votive offerings which you vow, or your freewill offerings, or the
Lit heave offering
contribution of your hand.
18“But ac  you shall eat them before the  Lord your God in ad  the place which the  Lord your God will choose, you and your son and daughter, and your male and female servants, and the ae  Levite who is within your gates; and you shall af  rejoice before the  Lord your God in all
Lit the putting forth of your hand
your undertakings.
19 ah  Be careful that you do not forsake the Levite
Lit all your days upon your land
as long as you live in your land.

20When the  Lord your God extends your border aj  as He has promised you, and you say, ‘I will eat meat,’ because
Lit your soul desires
you desire to eat meat, then you may eat meat,
Lit in every desire of your soul
whatever you desire.
21If the place which the  Lord your God chooses to put His name is too far from you, then you may slaughter of your herd and flock which the  Lord has given you, as I have commanded you; and you may eat within your gates
Lit in every desire of your soul
whatever you desire.
22Just as a gazelle or a deer is eaten, so you will eat it; the unclean and the clean alike may eat of it. 23Only be sure an  not to eat the blood, for the blood is the
Lit soul
life, and you shall not eat the
Lit soul
life with the flesh.
24You shall not eat it; you shall pour it out on the ground like water. 25You shall not eat it, so that aq  it may be well with you and your sons after you, for ar  you will be doing what is right in the sight of the  Lord. 26 as  Only your holy things which you may have and your votive offerings, you shall take and go to the place which the  Lord chooses. 27“And at  you shall offer your burnt offerings, the flesh and the blood, on the altar of the  Lord your God; and the blood of your sacrifices shall be poured out on the altar of the  Lord your God, and au  you shall eat the flesh.

28Be careful to listen to all these words which I command you, so that av  it may be well with you and your sons after you forever, for you will be doing what is good and right in the sight of the  Lord your God.

29When aw  the  Lord your God cuts off before you the nations which you are going in to dispossess, and you dispossess them and dwell in their land, 30beware that you are not ensnared
Lit after them
to follow them, after they are destroyed before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How do these nations serve their gods, that I also may do likewise?’
31 ay  You shall not behave thus toward the  Lord your God, for every abominable act which the  Lord hates they have done for their gods; for az  they even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods.

32
Lit Everything that
,
bb  Whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do; bc  you shall not add to nor take away from it.
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