The Cities of Refuge

When the ‘promised land’ of Canaan was divided up amongst the twelve tribes of Israel after the conquest in c.1406BC, the levites, who served the other tribes by their priestly functions, received no exclusive territory. Instead, they were allocated forty-eight cities and the surrounding grazing lands within the other tribal areas (see Joshua 14:3-4 & 21:1-45).

Six of these cities were also designated as ‘cities of refuge’ to which a man could escape if he killed another person accidentally (Numbers 35:6-15). The six ‘cities of refuge’ were

To the west of the Jordan:

Kedesh in Galilee, in the territory of Naphtali
Shechem in the hill country of the tribe of Ephraim
Hebron (Kiriath Arba) in the territory of Judah

To the east of the Jordan:  (see also Deuteronomy 4:43)

Bezer in the territory of the tribe of Reuben
Ramoth in Gilead, in the territory of Gad
Golan in Bashan, in the territory of Manasseh

Source: The Bible Journey

Stone steles at Gezer  (הניאוליתי)

Remains at Beth Shemesh   ( ישי טייכר )

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