Deuteronomy 21 is a chapter that outlines the laws and regulations that the Israelites were to follow in the event of a murder. The chapter begins by stating that if a body is found in the land that the Lord has given to the Israelites, and it is not known who the murderer is, then the elders and judges of the nearest city are to go out and measure the distance from the body to the city. This was done to determine which city was closest to the body and thus responsible for the investigation.
The chapter then goes on to outline the procedure for the investigation. The elders and judges of the city were to take a heifer that had never been worked and bring it to a valley that had never been plowed. They were to break the heifer's neck and wash their hands over the heifer, declaring their innocence in the matter. This was done as a sign of innocence and to show that the city was not responsible for the murder.
The chapter then outlines the punishment for the murderer. If the murderer was found, then they were to be put to death. This was done to ensure that justice was served and to deter others from committing similar crimes.
Finally, the chapter outlines the laws for inheritance in the event of a murder. If a man was killed and had no children, then his inheritance was to go to his brothers. If he had no brothers, then his inheritance was to go to his father's brothers. This was done to ensure that the inheritance was passed on to the rightful heirs.
Deuteronomy 21 is an important chapter that outlines the laws and regulations that the Israelites were to follow in the event of a murder. It is a reminder of