Worshiping Other Gods

13 [a]If a prophet,(A) or one who foretells by dreams,(B) appears among you and announces to you a sign or wonder, and if the sign(C) or wonder spoken of takes place, and the prophet says, “Let us follow other gods”(D) (gods you have not known) “and let us worship them,” you must not listen to the words of that prophet(E) or dreamer.(F) The Lord your God is testing(G) you to find out whether you love(H) him with all your heart and with all your soul. It is the Lord your God you must follow,(I) and him you must revere.(J) Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast(K) to him. That prophet or dreamer must be put to death(L) for inciting rebellion against the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt and redeemed you from the land of slavery. That prophet or dreamer tried to turn(M) you from the way the Lord your God commanded you to follow. You must purge the evil(N) from among you.

If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices(O) you, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods”(P) (gods that neither you nor your ancestors have known, gods of the peoples around you, whether near or far, from one end of the land to the other), do not yield(Q) to them or listen to them. Show them no pity.(R) Do not spare them or shield them. You must certainly put them to death.(S) Your hand(T) must be the first in putting them to death, and then the hands of all the people. 10 Stone them to death, because they tried to turn you away(U) from the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 11 Then all Israel will hear and be afraid,(V) and no one among you will do such an evil thing again.

12 If you hear it said about one of the towns the Lord your God is giving you to live in 13 that troublemakers(W) have arisen among you and have led the people of their town astray, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods you have not known), 14 then you must inquire, probe and investigate it thoroughly.(X) And if it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done among you,(Y) 15 you must certainly put to the sword all who live in that town. You must destroy it completely,[b](Z) both its people and its livestock.(AA) 16 You are to gather all the plunder of the town into the middle of the public square and completely burn the town(AB) and all its plunder as a whole burnt offering to the Lord your God.(AC) That town is to remain a ruin(AD) forever, never to be rebuilt, 17 and none of the condemned things[c] are to be found in your hands. Then the Lord will turn from his fierce anger,(AE) will show you mercy,(AF) and will have compassion(AG) on you. He will increase your numbers,(AH) as he promised(AI) on oath to your ancestors— 18 because you obey the Lord your God by keeping all his commands that I am giving you today and doing what is right(AJ) in his eyes.

Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 13:1 In Hebrew texts 13:1-18 is numbered 13:2-19.
  2. Deuteronomy 13:15 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them.
  3. Deuteronomy 13:17 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them.

13 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder,

And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them;

Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.

And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the Lord thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;

Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;

Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:

But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.

10 And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

11 And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is among you.

12 If thou shalt hear say in one of thy cities, which the Lord thy God hath given thee to dwell there, saying,

13 Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;

14 Then shalt thou enquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you;

15 Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.

16 And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for the Lord thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again.

17 And there shall cleave nought of the cursed thing to thine hand: that the Lord may turn from the fierceness of his anger, and shew thee mercy, and have compassion upon thee, and multiply thee, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers;

18 When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the Lord thy God.

Punishment of Apostates

13 “If there arises among you a prophet or a (A)dreamer of dreams, (B)and he gives you a sign or a wonder, and (C)the sign or the wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods’—which you have not known—‘and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God (D)is testing you to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall (E)walk[a] after the Lord your God and fear Him, and keep His commandments and obey His voice; you shall serve Him and (F)hold fast to Him. But (G)that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has spoken in order to turn you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the house of bondage, to entice you from the way in which the Lord your God commanded you to walk. (H)So you shall [b]put away the evil from your midst.

(I)“If your brother, the son of your mother, your son or your daughter, (J)the wife [c]of your bosom, or your friend (K)who is as your own soul, secretly entices you, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods,’ which you have not known, neither you nor your fathers, of the gods of the people which are all around you, near to you or far off from you, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth, you shall (L)not [d]consent to him or listen to him, nor shall your eye pity him, nor shall you spare him or conceal him; but you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to (M)death, and afterward the hand of all the people. 10 And you shall stone him with stones until he dies, because he sought to entice you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. 11 So all Israel shall hear and (N)fear, and not again do such wickedness as this among you.

12 (O)“If you hear someone in one of your cities, which the Lord your God gives you to dwell in, saying, 13 [e]‘Corrupt men have gone out from among you and enticed the inhabitants of their city, saying, “Let us go and serve other gods” ’—which you have not known— 14 then you shall inquire, search out, and ask diligently. And if it is indeed true and certain that such an [f]abomination was committed among you, 15 you shall surely strike the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying it, all that is in it and its livestock—with the edge of the sword. 16 And you shall gather all its plunder into the middle of the street, and [g]completely (P)burn with fire the city and all its plunder, for the Lord your God. It shall be (Q)a [h]heap forever; it shall not be built again. 17 (R)So none of the accursed things shall remain in your hand, that the Lord may (S)turn from the fierceness of His anger and show you mercy, have compassion on you and [i]multiply you, just as He swore to your fathers, 18 because you have listened to the voice of the Lord your God, (T)to keep all His commandments which I command you today, to do what is right in the eyes of the Lord your God.

Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 13:4 follow the Lord
  2. Deuteronomy 13:5 exterminate
  3. Deuteronomy 13:6 Whom you cherish
  4. Deuteronomy 13:8 yield
  5. Deuteronomy 13:13 Lit. Sons of Belial
  6. Deuteronomy 13:14 detestable action
  7. Deuteronomy 13:16 Or as a whole-offering
  8. Deuteronomy 13:16 Lit. mound or ruin
  9. Deuteronomy 13:17 increase

Bible Gateway Sponsors