Some Notes:

The English language has no gender-neutral pronouns. So when the words man, he, him, etc are used, they mean "Generic human being" unless the context specifically says otherwise. Only women get words devoted just to them.

Thou, Thee, and Thine are singular pronouns. You and Your are plural in the 16th Century English the King James Bible was translated into. This actually makes the message clearer than our habit of using "you" as both a singular and a plural.

In many scriptures I have changed the King James (English) spelling to American spelling (labour=labor, for example. I understand those in England still spell it with a u). Also, in some scriptures I have changed the "-eth" to a simple "s." Spelling standards weren't set in English until the mid 1800's, well after the translating of the KJV. So I see no problem with making these simple changes that don't affect the meaning of the scripture but make it easier for our modern mouths and ears to deal with.

Exodus 22c- Dangerous Animals

Exodus 21:28 If an ox gore a man or a woman to death, the ox shall be stoned to death,
and his meat shall not be eaten, but the owner of the ox will not be held guilty.

The animal isn’t eaten encase the violence was caused by a disease. This kept many illnesses in check.

Exodus 21:29 But if the ox has gored anyone before, and the owner knows about it but doesn't keep the animal penned up so he goes out and kills someone, both the ox and the owner shall be put to death.

However, if someone knowingly lets a violent animal live and then it kills someone, he is guilty of the attack. He will be stoned alongside of his ox.

Exodus 21:30 If the victim's family will accept money to pay for the death, then he can give whatever amount they set instead.

The family of the victim can accept a financial compensation instead of execution of the ox's owner if they wish.

This is a big difference between God's Law and American Law; in God's law the penalty was set by the victim or their family within the boundaries set by God.

In American law the penalty is set by an arbitrary judge within the confines set by the law. The victims have no say and often receive no compensation. It’s as if we think the worst damage is done to the government somehow instead of to the victims.


Exodus 21:31 It doesn't matter if the victim is male or female, this is what will be done to him.

Men and women are of equal value.

Exodus 21:32 If the ox shall gore a slave, male or female, the owner of the ox will give their owner thirty shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned.

Thirty shekels of silver was the common price of a foreign slave.

Exodus 21:33 If someone digs or uncovers a hole and doesn't cover it up, so that a ox or donkey falls in it, 

34 The one left the hole open will make it good, and give money to the owner of the animal. The dead animal is now his, instead.

The owner of the animal gets full financial compensation for his loss, and the careless owner of the pit gets a steak dinner, whether he wants it or not.

35 And if one man's ox kills another ox, then they shall sell the live ox, and divide the money, and they will divide the dead ox, too. 

“Ox” in 16th century English was any bovine trained to work in harness. So this would include cows and bulls as well as castrated males (our definition of “ox.”)

Bulls simply will fight. And if they do, being often close to 2000 pounds, no one is going to stop the fight. So, the two owners will just share both animals. Both get steak dinners, both get some money.


Exodus 21:36 But if the killer ox has a reputation for attacking other animals and the owner hasn't kept him penned up, he will pay the owner for the dead ox and keep the dead one himself. 

However, if one of the oxen has been violent before, and his owner hasn’t properly confined him, he gets steak and pays the owner of the other ox for his loss. 

Remember, an ox was their equivalent of a tractor. A man needed him to survive.