Bible in Basic English

Water from the rock

17:1     17:1 And the children of Israel went on from the waste land of Sin, by stages as the Lord gave them orders, and put up their tents in Rephidim : and there was no drinking-water for the people. 2 So the people were angry with Moses, and said, Give us water for drinking. And Moses said, Why are you angry with me ? and why do you put God to the test? 3 And the people were in great need of water ; and they made an outcry against Moses, and said, Why have you taken us out of Egypt to send death on us and our children and our cattle through need of water? 4 And Moses, crying out to the Lord, said, What am I to do to this people ? they are almost ready to put me to death by stoning. 5 And the Lord said to Moses, Go on before the people, and take some of the chiefs of Israel with you, and take in your hand the rod which was stretched out over the Nile, and go. 6 See, I will take my place before you on the rock in Horeb ; and when you give the rock a blow, water will come out of it, and the people will have drink. And Moses did so before the eyes of the chiefs of Israel. 7 And he gave that place the name Massah and Meribah, because the children of Israel were angry, and because they put the Lord to the test, saying, Is the Lord with us or not?
17:8     Then Amalek came and made war on Israel in Rephidim. 9 And Moses said to Joshua, Get together a band of men for us and go out, make war on Amalek : tomorrow I will take my place on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand. 10 So Joshua did as Moses said to him, and went to war with Amalek : and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 Now while Moses' hand was lifted up, Israel was the stronger : but when he let his hand go down, Amalek became the stronger. 12 But Moses' hands became tired ; so they put a stone under him and he took his seat on it, Aaron and Hur supporting his hands, one on one side and one on the other ; so his hands were kept up without falling till the sun went down. 13 And Joshua overcame Amalek and his people with the sword.
17:14     And the Lord said to Moses, Make a record of this in a book, so that it may be kept in memory, and say it again in the ears of Joshua : that all memory of Amalek is to be completely uprooted from the earth. 15 Then Moses put up an altar and gave it the name of Yahweh-nissi: 16 For he said, The Lord has taken his oath that there will be war with Amalek from generation to generation.

Moses' father-in-law

18:1     Now news came to Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses' father-in-law, of all God had done for Moses and for Israel his people, and how the Lord had taken Israel out of Egypt. 2 And Jethro, Moses' father-in-law, took Zipporah, Moses' wife, after he had sent her away, 3 And her two sons, one of whom was named Gershom, for he said, I have been living in a strange land: 4 And the name of the other was Eliezer, for he said, The God of my father was my help, and kept me safe from the sword of Pharaoh: 5 And Jethro, Moses' father-in-law, came with his sons and his wife to where Moses had put up his tent in the waste land, by the mountain of God. 6 And he said to Moses, I, your father-in-law, have come to you, with your wife and your two sons. 7 And Moses went out to his father-in-law, and went down on his face before him and gave him a kiss ; and they said to one another, Are you well ? and they came into the tent. 8 And Moses gave his father-in-law an account of all the Lord had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians because of Israel, and of all the troubles which had come on them by the way, and how the Lord had given them salvation. 9 And Jethro was glad because the Lord had been good to Israel, freeing them from the power of the Egyptians.
18:10     And Jethro said, Praise be to the Lord, who has taken you out of the hand of Pharaoh and out of the hand of the Egyptians ; freeing the people from the yoke of the Egyptians. 11 Now I am certain that the Lord is greater than all gods, for he has overcome them in their pride. 12 Then Jethro, Moses' father-in-law, made a burned offering to God : and Aaron came, with the chiefs of Israel, and had a meal with Moses' father-in-law, before God.
18:13     Now on the day after, Moses took his seat to give decisions for the people : and the people were waiting before Moses from morning till evening. 14 And when Moses' father-in-law saw all he was doing, he said, What is this you are doing for the people ? why are you seated here by yourself, with all the people waiting before you from morning till evening? 15 And Moses said to his father-in-law, Because the people come to me to get directions from God: 16 And if they have any question between themselves, they come to me, and I am judge between a man and his neighbour, and I give them the orders and laws of God. 17 And Moses' father-in-law said to him, What you are doing is not good. 18 Your strength and that of the people will be completely used up : this work is more than you are able to do by yourself. 19 Give ear now to my suggestion, and may God be with you : you are to be the people's representative before God, taking their causes to him: 20 Teaching them his rules and his laws, guiding them in the way they have to go, and making clear to them the work they have to do. 21 But for the rest, take from among the people able men, such as have the fear of God, true men hating profits wrongly made ; and put such men over them, to be captains of thousands, captains of hundreds and of fifties and of tens ; 18:22 And let them be judges in the causes of the people at all times : and let them put before you all important questions, but in small things let them give decisions themselves : in this way, it will be less hard for you, and they will take the weight off you. 18:23 If you do this, and God gives approval, then you will be able to go on without weariness, and all this people will go to their tents in peace. 24 So Moses took note of the words of his father-in-law, and did as he had said.
18:25     And he made selection of able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, captains of thousands, captains of hundreds and of fifties and of tens. 26 And they were judges in the causes of the people at all times : the hard questions they put before Moses ; but on every small point they gave decisions themselves. 27 And Moses let his father-in-law go away, and he went back to his land.

Israel at Sinai

19:1     In the third month after the children of Israel went out from Egypt, on the same day, they came into the waste land of Sinai. 2 And when they had gone away from Rephidim and had come into the waste land of Sinai, they put up their tents in the waste land before the mountain : there Israel put up its tents. 3 And Moses went up to God, and the voice of the Lord came to him from the mountain, saying, Say to the family of Jacob, and give word to the children of Israel: 4 You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I took you, as on eagles' wings, guiding you to myself. 5 If now you will truly give ear to my voice and keep my agreement, you will be my special property out of all the peoples: for all the earth is mine : 6 And you will be a kingdom of priests to me, and a holy nation. These are the words which you are to say to the children of Israel.
19:7     And Moses came and sent for the chiefs of the people and put before them all these words which the Lord had given him orders to say. 8 And all the people, answering together, said, Whatever the Lord has said we will do. And Moses took back to the Lord the words of the people. 9 And the Lord said to Moses, See, I will come to you in a thick cloud, so that what I say to you may come to the ears of the people and they may have belief in you for ever.
    And Moses gave the Lord word of what the people had said. 10 And the Lord said to Moses, Go to the people and make them holy today and tomorrow, and let their clothing be washed. 11 And by the third day let them be ready: for on the third day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai, before the eyes of all the people. 12 And let limits be marked out for the people round the mountain, and say to them, Take care not to go up the mountain or near the sides of it : whoever puts his foot on the mountain will certainly come to his death : 13 He is not to be touched by a hand, but is to be stoned or have an arrow put through him; man or beast, he is to be put to death: at the long sounding of a horn they may come up to the mountain. 14 Then Moses went down from the mountain to the people, and made the people holy; and their clothing was washed. 15 And he said to the people, Be ready by the third day : do not come near a woman.
19:16     And when morning came on the third day, there were thunders and flames and a thick cloud on the mountain, and a horn sounding very loud; and all the people in the tents were shaking with fear. 17 And Moses made the people come out of their tents and take their places before God ; and they came to the foot of the mountain, 18 And all the mountain of Sinai was smoking, for the Lord had come down on it in fire: and the smoke of it went up like the smoke of a great burning ; and all the mountain was shaking. 19 And when the sound of the horn became louder and louder, Moses' words were answered by the voice of God. 20 Then the Lord came down on to Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain, and the Lord sent for Moses to come up to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up. 21 And the Lord said to Moses, Go down and give the people orders to keep back, for fear that a great number of them, forcing their way through to see the Lord, may come to destruction. 22 And let the priests who come near to the Lord make themselves holy, for fear that the Lord may come on them suddenly. 23 And Moses said to the Lord, The people will not be able to come up the mountain, for you gave us orders to put limits round the mountain, marking it out and making it holy. 24 And the Lord said to him, Go down, and you and Aaron may come up; but let not the priests and the people make their way through to the Lord, or he will come on them suddenly. 25 So Moses went down to the people and said this to them.

The Ten Commandments

20:1     And God said all these words : 2 I am the Lord your God who took you out of the land of Egypt, out of the prison-house.
    20:3 You are to have no other gods but me.
    20:4 You are not to make an image or picture of anything in heaven or on the earth or in the waters under the earth: 5 You may not go down on your faces before them or give them worship : for I, the Lord your God, am a God who will not give his honour to another ; and I will send punishment on the children for the wrongdoing of their fathers, to the third and fourth generation of my haters ; 6 And I will have mercy through a thousand generations on those who have love for me and keep my laws.
    20:7 You are not to make use of the name of the Lord your God for an evil purpose ; whoever takes the Lord's name on his lips for an evil purpose will be judged a sinner by the Lord
    20:8 Keep in memory the Sabbath and let it be a holy day. 9 On six days do all your work : 10 But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; on that day you are to do no work, you or your son or your daughter, your man-servant or your woman-servant, your cattle or the man from a strange country who is living among you : 11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and the sea, and everything in them, and he took his rest on the seventh day : for this reason the Lord has given his blessing to the seventh day and made it holy.
    20:12 Give honour to your father and to your mother, so that your life may be long in the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
    20:13 Do not put anyone to death without cause.
    20:14 Do not be false to the married relation.
    20:15 Do not take the property of another.
    20:16 Do not give false witness against your neighbour.
    20:17 Let not your desire be turned to your neighbour's house, or his wife or his man-servant or his woman-servant or his ox or his ass or anything which is his.
20:18     And all the people were watching the thunderings and the flames and the sound of the horn and the mountain smoking; and when they saw it, they kept far off, shaking with fear. 19 And they said to Moses, To your words we will give ear, but let not the voice of God come to our ears, for fear death may come on us. 20 And Moses said to the people, Have no fear : for God has come to put you to the test, so that fearing him you may be kept from sin.
20:21     And the people kept their places far off, but Moses went near to the dark cloud where God was. 22 And the Lord said to Moses, Say to the children of Israel, You yourselves have seen that my voice has come to you from heaven 23 Gods of silver and gods of gold you are not to make for yourselves. 24 Make for me an altar of earth, offering on it your burned offerings and your peace-offerings, your sheep and your oxen : in every place where I have put the memory of my name, I will come to you and give you my blessing. 25 And if you make me an altar of stone do not make it of cut stones : for the touch of an instrument will make it unclean. 26 And do not go up by steps to my altar, for fear that your bodies may be seen uncovered.

Laws about violence

21:1     Now these are the laws which you are to put before them.
    21:2 If you get a Hebrew servant for money, he is to be your servant for six years, and in the seventh year you are to let him go free without payment. 3 If he comes to you by himself, let him go away by himself : if he is married, let his wife go away with him. 4 If his master gives him a wife, and he gets sons or daughters by her, the wife and her children will be the property of the master, and the servant is to go away by himself. 5 But if the servant says clearly, My master and my wife and children are dear to me ; I have no desire to be free : 6 Then his master is to take him to the gods of the house, and at the door, or at its framework, he is to make a hole in his ear with a sharp-pointed instrument ; and he will be his servant for ever.
    21:7 And if a man gives his daughter for a price to be a servant, she is not to go away free as the men-servants do. 8 If she is not pleasing to her master who has taken her for himself, let a payment be made for her so that she may go free ; her master has no power to get a price for her and send her to a strange land, because he has been false to her. 9 And if he gives her to his son, he is to do everything for her as if she was his daughter. 10 And if he takes another woman, her food and clothing and her married rights are not to be less. 11 And if he does not do these three things for her, she has the right to go free without payment.
    21:12 He who gives a man a death-blow is himself to be put to death. 13 But if he had no evil purpose against him, and God gave him into his hand, I will give you a place to which he may go in flight. 14 But if a man makes an attack on his neighbour on purpose, to put him to death by deceit, you are to take him from my altar and put him to death.
    21:15 Any man who gives a blow to his father or his mother is certainly to be put to death.
    21:16 Any man who gets another into his power in order to get a price for him is to be put to death, if you take him in the act.
    21:17 Any man cursing his father or his mother is to be put to death.
    21:18 If, in a fight, one man gives another a blow with a stone, or with the shut hand, not causing his death, but making him keep in bed ; 19 If he is able to get up again and go about with a stick, the other will be let off ; only he will have to give him payment for the loss of his time, and see that he is cared for till he is well.
    21:20 If a man gives his man-servant or his woman-servant blows with a rod, causing death, he is certainly to undergo punishment. 21 But, at the same time, if the servant goes on living for a day or two, the master is not to get punishment, for the servant is his property.
    21:22 If men, while fighting, do damage to a woman with child, causing the loss of the child, but no other evil comes to her, the man will have to make payment up to the amount fixed by her husband, in agreement with the decision of the judges. 23 But if damage comes to her, let life be given in payment for life, 24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 Burning for burning, wound for wound, blow for blow.
    21:26 If a man gives his man-servant or his woman-servant a blow in the eye, causing its destruction, he is to let him go free on account of the damage to his eye. 27 Or if the loss of a tooth is caused by his blow, he will let him go free on account of his tooth.
    21:28 If an ox comes to be the cause of death to a man or a woman, the ox is to be stoned, and its flesh may not be used for food; but the owner will not be judged responsible. 29 But if the ox has frequently done such damage in the past, and the owner has had word of it and has not kept it under control, so that it has been the cause of the death of a man or woman, not only is the ox to be stoned, but its owner is to be put to death. 30 If a price is put on his life, let him make payment of whatever price is fixed. 31 If the death of a son or of a daughter has been caused, the punishment is to be in agreement with this rule. 32 If the death of a man-servant or of a woman-servant is caused by the ox, the owner is to give their master thirty shekels of silver, and the ox is to be stoned.
    21:33 If a man makes a hole in the earth without covering it up, and an ox or an ass dropping into it comes to its death ; 34 The owner of the hole is responsible; he will have to make payment to their owner, but the dead beast will be his.
    21:35 And if one man's ox does damage to another man's ox, causing its death, then the living ox is to be exchanged for money, and division made of the price of it, and of the price of the dead one. 36 But if it is common knowledge that the ox has frequently done such damage in the past, and its owner has not kept it under control, he will have to give ox for ox ; and the dead beast will be his.

Concerning restitution

    22:1 If a man takes without right another man's ox or his sheep, and puts it to death or gets a price for it, he is to give five oxen for an ox, or four sheep for a sheep, in payment : the thief will have to make payment for what he has taken ; if he has no money, he himself will have to be exchanged for money, so that payment may be made.
    22:2 If a thief is taken in the act of forcing his way into a house, and his death is caused by a blow, the owner of the house is not responsible for his blood. 3 But if it is after dawn, he will be responsible. 4 If he still has what he had taken, whatever it is, ox or ass or sheep, he is to give twice its value.
    22:5 If a man makes a fire in a field or a vine-garden, and lets the fire do damage to another man's field, he is to give of the best produce of his field or his vine-garden to make up for it.
    22:6 If there is a fire and the flames get to the thorns at the edge of the field, causing destruction of the cut grain or of the living grain, or of the field, he who made the fire will have to make up for the damage.
    22:7 If a man puts money or goods in the care of his neighbour to keep for him, and it is taken from the man's house, if they get the thief, he will have to make payment of twice the value. 8 If they do not get the thief, let the master of the house come before the judges and take an oath that he has not put his hand on his neighbour's goods.
    22:9 In any question about an ox or an ass or a sheep or clothing, or about the loss of any property which anyone says is his, let the two sides put their cause before God; and he who is judged to be in the wrong is to make payment to his neighbour of twice the value.
    22:10 If a man puts an ass or an ox or a sheep or any beast into the keeping of his neighbour, and it comes to death or is damaged or is taken away, without any person seeing it : 11 If he takes his oath before the Lord that he has not put his hand to his neighbour's goods, the owner is to take his word for it and he will not have to make payment for it. 12 But if it is taken from him by a thief, he is to make up for the loss of it to its owner. 13 But if it has been damaged by a beast, and he is able to make this clear, he will not have to make payment for what was damaged.
    22:14 If a man gets from his neighbour the use of one of his beasts, and it is damaged or put to death when the owner is not with it, he will certainly have to make payment for the loss. 15 If the owner is with it, he will not have to make payment : if he gave money for the use of it, the loss is covered by the payment.
    22:16 If a man takes a virgin, who has not given her word to another man, and has connection with her, he will have to give a bride-price for her to be his wife. 17 If her father will not give her to him on any account, he will have to give the regular payment for virgins.
    22:18 Any woman using unnatural powers or secret arts is to be put to death.
    22:19 Any man who has sex connection with a beast is to be put to death.
    22:20 Complete destruction will come on any man who makes offerings to any other god but the Lord.
    22:21 Do no wrong to a man from a strange country, and do not be hard on him; for you yourselves were living in a strange country, in the land of Egypt. 22 Do no wrong to a widow, or to a child whose father is dead. 23 If you are cruel to them in any way, and their cry comes up to me, I will certainly give ear ; 24 And in the heat of my wrath I will put you to death with the sword, so that your wives will be widows and your children without fathers.
    22:25 If you let any of the poor among my people have the use of your money, do not be a hard creditor to him, and do not take interest. 26 If ever you take your neighbour's clothing in exchange for the use of your money, let him have it back before the sun goes down : 27 For it is the only thing he has for covering his skin; what is he to go to sleep in? and when his cry comes up to me, I will give ear, for my mercy is great.
    22:28 You may not say evil of the judges, or put a curse on the ruler of your people.
    22:29 Do not keep back your offerings from the wealth of your grain and your vines.
    The first of your sons you are to give to me. 30 In the same way with your oxen and your sheep : for seven days let the young one be with its mother ; on the eighth day give it to me.
    22:31 You are to be holy men to me : the flesh of no animal whose death has been caused by the beasts of the field may be used for your food ; it is to be given to the dogs.

My angle goes before

    23:1 Do not let a false statement go further ; do not make an agreement with evil-doers to be a false witness. 2 Do not be moved to do wrong by the general opinion, or give the support of your words to a wrong decision: 3 But, on the other hand, do not be turned from what is right in order to give support to a poor man's cause.
    23:4 If you come across the ox or the ass of one who is no friend to you wandering from its way, you are to take it back to him. 5 If you see the ass of one who has no love for you bent down to the earth under the weight which is put on it, you are to come to its help, even against your desire.
    23:6 Let no wrong decisions be given in the poor man's cause. 7 Keep yourselves far from any false business ; never let the upright or him who has done no wrong be put to death: for I will make the evil-doer responsible for his sin. 8 Take no rewards in a cause : for rewards make blind those who have eyes to see, and make the decisions of the upright false.
    23:9 Do not be hard on the man from a strange country who is living among you; for you have had experience of the feelings of one who is far from the land of his birth, because you yourselves were living in Egypt, in a strange land.
    23:10 For six years put seed into your fields and get in the increase ; 11 But in the seventh year let the land have a rest and be unplanted; so that the poor may have food from it: and let the beasts of the field take the rest. Do the same with your vine-gardens and your olive-trees.
    23:12 For six days do your work, and on the seventh day keep the Sabbath; so that your ox and your ass may have rest, together with the son of your servant and the man from a strange land living among you. 13 Take note of all these things which I have said to you, and let not the names of other gods come into your minds or from your lips.
    23:14 Three times in the year you are to keep a feast to me. 15 You are to keep the feast of unleavened bread ; for seven days let your bread be without leaven, as I gave you orders, at the regular time in the month Abib (for in it you came out of Egypt) ; and let no one come before me without an offering : 16 And the feast of the grain-cutting, the first-fruits of your planted fields : and the feast at the start of the year, when you have got in all the fruit from your fields. 17 Three times in the year let all your males come before the Lord God.
    23:18 Do not give the blood of my offering with leavened bread ; and do not let the fat of my feast be kept all night till the morning.
    23:19 The best of the first-fruits of your land are to be taken into the house of the Lord your God.
    The young goat is not to be cooked in its mother's milk.
23:20     See, I am sending an angel before you, to keep you on your way and to be your guide into the place which I have made ready for you. 21 Give attention to him and give ear to his voice ; do not go against him; for your wrongdoing will not be overlooked by him, because my name is in him.
23:22     But if you truly give ear to his voice, and do whatever I say, then I will be against those who are against you, fighting those who are fighting you.
23:23     And my angel will go before you, guiding you into the land of the Amorite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Canaanite and the Hivite and the Jebusite, and they will be cut off by my hand. 24 Do not go down on your faces and give worship to their gods, or do as they do ; but overcome them completely, and let their pillars be broken down. 25 And give worship to the Lord your God, who will send his blessing on your bread and on your water ; and I will take all disease away from among you. 26 All your animals will give birth without loss, not one will be without young in all your land; I will give you a full measure of life. 27 I will send my fear before you, putting to flight all the people to whom you come ; all those who are against you will go in flight, turning their backs before you. 28 I will send hornets before you, driving out the Hivite and the Canaanite and the Hittite before your face. 29 I will not send them all out in one year, for fear that their land may become waste, and the beasts of the field be increased overmuch against you. 30 Little by little I will send them away before you, till your numbers are increased and you take up your heritage in the land. 31 I will let the limits of your land be from the Red Sea to the sea of the Philistines, and from the waste land to the river Euphrates : for I will give the people of those lands into your power ; and you will send them out before you. 32 Make no agreement with them or with their gods. 33 Let them not go on living in your land, or they will make you do evil against me: for if you give worship to their gods, it will certainly be a cause of sin to you.

Blood on the altar

24:1     And he said to Moses, Come up to the Lord, you and Aaron, and Nadab and Abihu and seventy of the chiefs of Israel ; and give me worship from a distance. 2 And Moses only may come near to the Lord; but the others are not to come near, and the people may not come up with them.
24:3     Then Moses came and put before the people all the words of the Lord and his laws: and all the people, answering with one voice, said, Whatever the Lord has said we will do. 4     Then Moses put down in writing all the words of the Lord, and he got up early in the morning and made an altar at the foot of the mountain, with twelve pillars for the twelve tribes of Israel. 5 And he sent some of the young men of the children of Israel to make burned offerings and peace-offerings of oxen to the Lord. 6 And Moses took half the blood and put it in basins ; draining out half of the blood over the altar. 7 And he took the book of the agreement, reading it in the hearing of the people: and they said, Everything which the Lord has said we will do, and we will keep his laws. 8 Then Moses took the blood and let it come on the people, and said, This blood is the sign of the agreement which the Lord has made with you in these words.
24:9     Then Moses and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the chiefs of Israel went up : 10 And they saw the God of Israel ; and under his feet there was, as it seemed, a jewelled floor, clear as the heavens. 11 And he put not his hand on the chiefs of the children of Israel : they saw God, and took food and drink.
24:12     And the Lord said to Moses, Come up to me on the mountain, and take your place there : and I will give you the stones on which I have put in writing the law and the orders, so that you may give the people knowledge of them. 13 Then Moses and Joshua his servant got up ; and Moses went up into the mountain of God. 14 And he said to the chiefs, Keep your places here till we come back to you: Aaron and Hur are with you ; if anyone has any cause let him go to them.
24:15     And Moses went up into the mountain, and it was covered by the cloud. 16 And the glory of the Lord was resting on Mount Sinai, and the cloud was over it for six days ; and on the seventh day he said Moses' name out of the cloud. 17 And the glory of the Lord was like a flame on the top of the mountain before the eyes of the children of Israel. 18 And Moses went up the mountain, into the cloud, and was there for forty days and forty nights.
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