New Defender's Study Bible Notes
35:7 give to the Levites. The Levites were specially called to the service of the tabernacle (later the temple). Therefore, they had no one region of land as their tribal inheritance. However, not all Levites were at the tabernacle simultaneously, so the Lord made provision of forty-eight special cities scattered throughout the whole land. Six of these Levitical cities were designated as cities of refuge (Numbers 35:11; see also Deuteronomy 4:41-43; and 19:1-3).
35:11 cities of refuge. Six cities of refuge were designated out of the forty-eight assigned to the Levites (Numbers 35:6-7) to give those involved in unintentional manslaughter (as distinct from murder) refuge from an avenger.
35:12 the avenger. The “avenger” (Hebrew gaal, also translated “kinsman” or “redeemer”) acted under the authority of Genesis 9:6 in seeking to avenge the death of a near kinsman. Note Hebrews 6:18.
35:30 one witness. At least two witnesses must be available to testify in a capital crime, as a safeguard against one vindictive person causing the death of an innocent person. These would not necessarily have to be eye-witnesses. Rather, they must at least be independent witnesses of circumstantial evidences relevant to the crime.