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fall down by the way, and hide thyself from them:, seeds; lest the fruit * of thy seed which thou hast thou shalt surely help him to lift dihem up again. sown, and the fruit of thy vineyard, be defiled.
5 The woman shall not wear that which per 10 Thou shalt not plough mwith an ox and an taineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a ass together. woman's garment: for all that do so are abomina u l'hou shalt not wear a garment of divers sorts, tion "unto the Lord thy God.
as of woollen and linen together. 6 If a bird's nest chance to be before thee in 12 Thou shalt make thee fringes "upon the four the way in any tree, or on the ground, whether quarters of thy vesture, wherewith thou coverest they be young ones for eggs, and the dam sitting thyself. upon the young or upon the eggs, thou shalt not 13 If any man take a wife, and go pin unto her, take the dam with the young :
and hate her, 7 But thou shalt in any wise let the dam go, 14 And give occasions of speech against her, and and take the young to thee; that it may be well bring up an evil name upon her, and say, I took this with thee, and that thou mayest prolong ithy days. woman, and, when I came to her, I found her not a
8 When thou buildest a new house, then thou maid : shalt make a battlement for thy roof,* that thou 15 Then shall the father of the damsel, and her bring not blood upon thine house, if any man fall mother, take and bring forth the tokens of the damfrom thence.
sel's virginity unto the elders of the city in the gate: Thou 'shalt not sow thy vineyard with divers 16 And the damsel's father shall say unto the
A c. 4. 40. fulness. m 2 Cor. 6. 14, 16.
d Heb. 12. 12, 13. e c. 18. 12. Luke 12. 6.
Lev, 22. 28.
o Num. 15. 38. Matt. 23. 5.
R Lev. 19. 19. f wings. p Gen. 20. 21. 91 Tim. 5. 14.
to the owner, nay, and in justice to him, for it was doing as we one of them is forgotten before God? This law, 1, Forbids us would be done by, which is one of the fundamental laws of to be cruel to the brute creatures, or to take a pleasure in equity. Note, Religion teaches us to be neighbourly, and to destroying them. Thongh God has made us wiser than the be ready to do all good offices, as we have opportunity, to all fowls of heaven, and given us dominion over them, yet we must men. In doing this, (1.) They must not mind trouble, but if not abuse them, nor rule them with rigour. Let go the dam to they knew not who the owner was, must bring it back them- breed again ; destroy it not, for a blessing is in it, Is. 65. 8. 2. selves; for if they should only send notice to the owner to come It teaches us compassion to those of our own kind, and to abhor and look after it himself, some mischief might befall it ere he the thought of every thing that looks barbarous and cruel, and could reach it. (2.) They must not mind expense; but if they ill natured, especially toward those of the weaker and tender sex, knew not who the owner was, they must take it home, and feed it which always ought to be treated with the utmost respect, in till the owner was found. If such care must be taken of a neigh- consideration of the sorrows wherein they bring forth children. bour's ox or ass going astray, much more of himself going astray It is spoken of as an instance of the most inhuman cruelty, that from God and his duty; we should do our utmost to convert him, the mother was dashed to pieces upon her children, Hos. 10. 14, Jam, 5. 19, and restore him, considering ourselves, Gal. 6. 1. and that the women with child were ripped up, Am. 1. 13.
2. That lost goods should be brought to the owner, v. 3. 3. It further intimates, that we must not take advantage against The Jews say,
"He that found the lost goods, was to give any, from their natural affection, and the tenderness of their public notice of them by the common crier three or four times, disposition, to do them an injury. The dam could not have according to the usage with us; if the owner could not be found, been taken, if her concern for her eggs or young (unlike to the he that found the goods might convert them to his own use;" ostrich) had not detained her upon the nest, when otherwise but (say some learned writers) in this case he would do very she could easily have secured herself by flight. Now, since it well to give the value of the goods to the poor.
is a thousand pities that she should fare the worse for that 3. That calle in distress should be helped, v. 4. This must which is her praise, the law takes care that she shall be let go. be done, both in compassion to the brute creatures, for a mer The remembrance of this may, perhaps, some time or other, ciful man regardeth the life of a beast, though ii be not his own, keep us from doing a hard or unkind thing to those whom we and in love and friendship to our neighbour, not knowing how have at our mercy. soon we may have occasion for his help. If one member may III. In building a house, care must be taken to make it safe, say to another, "I have at present no need of thee,” it cannot that none might receive mischief by falling from it, v. 8. The say, "I never shall."
roofs of their houses were flat for people to walk on, as appears V. 5—12. Here are several laws in these verses, which seem by many scriptures ; now, lest any, through carelessness, should to stoop very low, and to take cognizance of things mean and fall off ihem, they must compass them with battlements, which minute; men's laws commonly do not so; De minimis non curat (the Jews say) must be three feet and a half high; if this were ler-The law trukes no cognizance of little things; but because not done, and mischief followed, the owner, by his neglect, God's providence extends itself to the smallest affairs, his pre- brought the guilt of blood upon his house. See here, 1. How cepts do so, that even in them we may be in the fear of the precious men's lives are to God, who protects them, not only by Lord, as we are under his eye and care. And yet the sig-his providence, but by his law. 2. How precious, therefore, nificancy and tendency of these stalutes, which seem little, are they ought to be to us, and wbat care we should take to prevent such, thal, notwithstanding their minuteness, being found among hurt from coming to any person. The Jews say, that by the the things of God's law, which he has written to us, they are to equity of this law, they were obliged (and so are we 100) to fence, be accounted great things.
or remove, every thing by which life may be endangered, as to I. The distinction of sexes by the apparel is to be kept up, cover draw-wells, keep bridges in repair, and the like; lest if any for the preservation of our own and our neighbour's chastity, 1. perish through our omission, their blood be required at our hand. 5. Nature itself leaches that a difference be made between them IV. Odd mixtures are here forbidden, v. 9, 10. Much of in their hair, 1 Cor. 11. 14, and by the same rule, in their clothes, this we met with before, Lev. 19. 19. There appears not any which therefore ought not to be confounded, either in ordinary thing at all of moral evil in these things, and therefore we wear, or occasionally. To befriend a lawful escape or conceal- now make no conscience of sowing wheat and rye together, ment, it may be done ; but whether for sport, or in the acting ploughing with horses and oxen together, and of wearing linseyof plays, is justly questionable. 1. Some think it refers to the woolsey garments; but hereby is forbidden either, 1. A conidolatrous custom of the Gentiles: in the worship of Venus, formity to some idolatrous customs of the heathen. Or, 2. women appeared in armour, and men in women's clothes; this, That which is contrary to the plainness and purity of an as other such superstitious usages, is here said to be an abomi-Israelite. They must not gratify their own vanity and curination to the Lord. 2. It forbids the confounding of the dispo-osity by putting those things together, which the Creator in sitions and affairs of the sexes; men must not be effeminate, infinite wisdom had made asunder: they must not be unequally nor do the women's work in the house ; nor must women be yoked with unbelievers ; nor mingle themselves with the unviragos, pretend to teach or usurp authority, 1 Tim. 2. 11, 12. clean, as an ox with an ass. Nor must their profession and 3. Probably, this confounding of garments had been used to appearance in the world be motley, or party-coloured, but all of gain opportunity of committing uncleanness, and is therefore a piece, all of a kind. forbidden: for those that would be kept from sin, must keep V. The law concerning fringes upon their garments, and themselves from all occasions of it and approaches to it. memorandums of the commandments, which we had before,
II. In taking a bird's nest, the dam must be let go, 6, 7. Num. 15. 38, 39, is here repeated, v. 12. By these they were The Jews say,
“This is the least of all the commandments of distinguished from other people, so that it might be said, upon the law of Moses," and yet the same promise is here made to the first sight, There goes an Israelite ; which taught them not the observance of it, that is made to the keeping of the fifth to be ashamed of their country, or the peculiarities of their commandment, which is one of the greatest, that it may be well religion, how much soever their neighbours looked upon them with thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days: for as dis- and it with contempt: and they were also put in mind of the obedience in a small matter shows a very great contempt of precepts, upon the particular occasions to which they had the law; so obedience in a small matter shows a very great reference; and perhaps the law is repeated here, because the regard to it. He that let go a bird out of his hand, (which was precepts immediately foregoing seemed so minute, that they worth two in the bush,) purely because God bid him, in that were in danger of being overlooked and forgotten. The fringes made it to appear that he esteemed all God's precepts concerning will remind you not to make your garments of linen and all things to be righe, and that he could deny himself rather than woollen, v. 11. sin against God. But doth God take care for birds? 1 Cor. 9. V.13--30. These laws relate to the seventh commandment, 9. Yes, certainly: and perhaps to this law our Saviour alludes, laying a restraint, by laying a penalty, upon those fleshly lusts Luke 12. 6, Are not five sparrows sold for two forthings, and moi which war against the soul. Vol. 1.-58
( 457 )
cate of that city, and ye shall stone
is wounded in the stones, or hath his
Matt. 19. 8, 9.
& Lev. 21. 9. w c. 13. 5. Lev. 20. 10. Num. 5. 22-27. Ez. 23. 45_48. John 8. 5. Heb. 13. 4.
• Ex. 22, 16, 17.
Ruth 3. 9.
elders, I gave my daughter unto this man to wife, being in the city, and the man, because he hath and he hateth her;
humbled "his neighbour's wife : so ythou shalt put 17 And, lo, he hath given occasions of speech away evil from among you. against her, saying, I found not thy daughter a maid; 25 But if a man find a betrothed damsel in the and yet these are the tokens of my daughter's vir- field, and the man "force her, and lie with her; then ginity: And they shall spread the cloth before the the man only that lay with her shall die; elders of the city.
26 But unto the damsel thou shalt do nothing; 18 And the elders of that city shall take that man, there is in the damsel no sin worthy of death: for and chastise him :
as when a man riseth against his neighbour, and 19 And they shall amerce him in an hundred she- slayeth him, even so is this matter; kels of silver, and give them unto the father of the 27 For he found her in the field, and the betrothed damsel, because he hath brought up an evil name damsel cried, and there was none to save her. upon a virgin of Israel: and she shall be his wife; 28 If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which he rmay not put her away all his days.
is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with 20 But if this thing be true, and the tokens of vir- her, and they be found; ginity be not found for the dansel :
29 Then the man that lay with her shall give unto 21 Then they shall bring out the damsel to the the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall be his wise; because he hath humbled her, he shall stone her with stones that she die; because may not put her away all his days. she hath wrought folly •in Israel, to 'play the whore 30 A «man shall not take his father's wife, nor in her father's house : so ushalt thou put evil away discover bhis father's skirt. from among you. 22 If "a man be found lying with a woman mar
CHAPTER XXIII. ried to an husband, then they shall both of them die, both the man that lay with the woman, and the wo
The laws of this chapter provide, 1. For the preserving of the prurity and honour of
the families of Israel, by excluding such as would be a disgrace to them, v, 1-8. man: so shalt thou put away evil froin Israel. II. For the preserving of the purity and honour of the camp of Israel when it was 23 If a damsel that is a virgin be betrothed xunto
abroad, v. 9.–14. M. For the encouraging and entertaining of proselyles, . 15,
16. IV. Against whoredom, v. 17, 18. V. Against usury, 19, 20. VI, Against an husband, and a man find her in the city, and lie the brench of vows, , 21-23. VII, What liberty A man might take in his neigh
boor's field and vineyard, and what not, v. 24, 25, with her; 24
privy member cut off, shall not enter into the that they die; the damsel, because she cried not, congregation of the LORD. . Gen. 34. 7. Judg. 20. 6, 10, 2 Sam. 13. 12, 13.
y rer. 21, 22. I Cor. 5.2, 13. or, take strong hold of her. % Sam. 13. 14.
a Lev, 18. 8. 20. 11. c. 87, 20. 1 Cor. 5. 1, 13. Matt. , 18, 19. & c. 21. 14.
Ez, 16. 8. a Lev, 21. 17-21. 22. 22-24. I. If a man, lusting after another woman, to get rid of his had before, Lev. 20. 10. For a married man to lie with a single wife, slander her and falsely accuse her, as not having the woman, was not a crime of so high a nature, nor was it punished virginity she pretended to when he married her, upon the dis- with death, because not introducing a spurious brood into famiproof of his slander, he must be punished, v. 13–19. What lies, under the character of legitimate children. the meaning of that evidence is, by which the husband's accu IV. If a damsel were betrothed and not married, she was sation was to be proved false, the learned are not agreed, nor from under the eye of her intended husband, and therefore she is it at all necessary to inquire they for whom this law was and her chastity were taken under the special protection of tho intended, no doubt understood it: it is sufficient for us to know, law. 1. If her chastity were violated by her own consent, she that this wicked husband, who had thus endeavoured to ruin was to be put to death, and her adulterer with her, v. 23, 24. the reputation of his own wife, was to be scourged, and fined, And it shall be presumed that she consented, if it were done in and bound out from ever divorcing the wife he had thus abused, the city, or in any place where, had she cried out, help might p. 18, 19. Upon this dislike of her, he might have divorced speedily have come in to prevent the injury offered her. Qui her, if he had pleased, by the permission of the law, ch. 24. 1, tacet, consentire videtur-Silence implies consent. Note, It may but then he must have given her her dowry: if therefore, tó be presumed that those willingly yield to a temptation, (whatsave that, and to do her the greater mischief, he would thus ever they pretend,) who will not use the means and helps they destroy her good name, it was fit that he should be severely might be furnished with to avoid and overcome it. Nay, her punished for it, and for ever after forfeit the permission to being found in the city, a place of company and diversion, when divorce her. Observe, 1. The nearer any are in relation to she should have kept under the protection of her father's house, us, the greater sin it is to belie them, and blemish their repu- was an evidence against her, that she had not that dread of the tation. It is spoken of as a crime of the highest nature to slander sin, and the danger of it, which became a modest woman. Note, their own mother's son, (Ps. 50.20,) who is next to thyself, much They that needlessly expose themselves to temptation, justly more to slander thine own wife, or thine own husband, that suffer for the same, if, ere they are aware, they be surprised is thyself. It is an ill bird indeed that defiles its own nest. and caught by it. Dinah lost her honour, to gratify her curiosity 2. Chastity is honour as well as virtue, and that which gives with a sight of the daughters of the land. By this law tho occasion for the suspicion of it, is as great a reproach and dis- Virgin Mary was in danger of being made a public example, grace as any other whatsoever: in this matter, therefore, above that is, of being stoned to death, but that God by an angel any thing, we should be highly tender both of our own good cleared the matter to Joseph. 2. if she were forced, and never name and that of others. 3. Parents must look upon them- consented, he that committed the rape was to be put to death, selves as concerned to vindicate the reputation of their children, but the damsel was to be acquitted, v. 25—27. Now if it were for it is a branch of their own.
done in the field, ont of the hearing of neighbours, it shall be II. If the woman that was married as a virgin, were not presumed that she cried out, but there was none to save her; found to be one, she was to be stoned to death at her father's and besides, her going into the field, a place of solitude, did not door, v. 20,21. If the uncleanness had been committed before so much expose her. Now by this law it is intimated to us, she was betrothed, it would not have been punished as a capital (1.) That we shall suffer only for the wickedness we do, not crime; but she must die for the abuse she put upon him whom for that which is done unto us. That is no sin, which has not she married, being conscious to herself of her being defiled, more or less of the will in it. (2.) That we must presume the while she made him believe her to be a chaste and modest best concerning all persons, unless the contrary do appear ; not
But some think that her uncleanness was punished only charity but equity teaches us to do so. Though none heard with death, only in case it was committed after she was be- her cry, yet because none could hear it if she did, it shall be trothed, supposing there were few come to maturity but what taken for granted that she did. This rule we should go by in were betrothed, though not yet married. Now, 1. This gave judging of persons and actions, believe all things, and hope all a powerful caution to young women to flee fornication, since, things. (3.) That our chastity should be as dear to us as our however concealed before, so as not to mar their marriage, it life; when that is assaulted, it is not at all improper to cry would, very likely, be discovered after, to their perpetual in- Murder, Murder, for, as when a man riseth against his neighfamy and utter ruin. 2. It is intimated to parents, that they bour and slayeth him, even so is this matter. (4.) By way of must by all means possible preserve their children's chastity, allusion to this, see what we are to do when Satan sets upon us by giving them good advice and admonition, setting them good with his temptations ; wherever we are, let us cry aloud 10 examples, keeping them from bad company, praying for them, heaven for help, (Succurre, Domine, vim patior-Help me, o and laying them under needful restraints; because, if the children Lord, for I suffer violence,) and there we may be sure to be committed lewdness, the parents must have the grief and shame heard, and answered, as Paul was, My grace is sufficient for thee. of the execution at their own door. That phrase of folly wrought V. If a damsel not betrothed be thus abused by violence, he in Israel, was used concerning this very crime in the case of that abused her should be fined, the father should have the fine, Dinah, Gen. 34.7. All sin is folly, uncleanness especially; but and if he and the damsel did consent, he should be bound to above all, uncleanness in Israel, by profession a holy people. marry her, and never to divorce her, how much soever she was
III. If any man, single or married, lay with a married wo below him, and how unpleasing soever she might afterward be man, they were both to be put to death, v. 22. This law we to him, as Tamar was to Amnon, after he had forced her,
I Rom. 3. 29,
2 A bastard bshall not enter into the congrega 7 Thou shalt not abhor an Edomite; for he is tion of the LORD; even to his tenth generation shall thy brother : thou shalt not abhor an Egyptian, behe not enter into the congregation of the LORD. cause thou kwast a stranger in his land.
3 An Ammonite' or Moabited shall not enter into 8 The children that are begotten of them shall the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth enter 'into the congregation of the Lord in their generation shall they not enter into the congrega- third generation. tion of the Lord for ever:
9 When the host goeth forth against thine ene4 Because they met you not with bread and with mies, then keep mthee from every wicked thing. water in the way, when ye came forth out of Egypt; 10 If nthere be among you any man that is not and because they hired against thee Balaam
/the clean by reason of uncleanness that chanceth him by son of Beor, of Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse night, then shall he go abroad out of the camp, he thee.
shall not come within the camp: 5 Nevertheless the LORD thy God would not 11 But it shall be, when evening tcometh on, he hearken unto Balaam; but the LORD thy God shall wash himself with water: and when the sun turned the curse into a blessing unto thee, because is down, he shall come into the camp again. the LORD thy God loved thee.
12 Thou shalt have a place also without the 6 Thou shalt not seek their peace nor their camp, whither thou shalt go forth abroad: *prosperity all thy days for ever.
13 And thou shalt have a paddle upon thy weabech. 9. 6. c Neh. 13. 1, 2. Is. 56. 3. Lam. 1. 10. d Ruth 4. 10, &c. e c. 2. Ob. 10. 12. Mal. 1. 2. k Ex. 22. 21. 23. 9. Lev. 19. 34. c. 10. 19. 29. Nom, 22. 5, &c. & Mic.6. 5. Ezra 9. 12. • good. i Gen. 25. 24-26. 30. Eph. 2. 12. m Josh. 6. 18. * Lev. 15. 16. I turneth toward. © Lev. 15. 6. v. 28, 29. This was to deter men from such vicious practices, ple, but with those that do not help and further them, when it is which it is a shame that we are necessitated to read and in the power of their hand to do it. The charge at the great write of.
day is for an omission, I was hungry, and ye gave me no meat. VI. The law against a man's marrying his father's widow, (2.] The Moabites had done worse, they hired Balaam to curse or having any undue familiarity with his father's wife, is here them, v. 4. It is true, God turned the curse into a blessing, v. 5, repeated, v. 30, from Lev. 18. 8. And probably, it is intended not only changing the word in Balaam's mouth, but making that (as Bishop Patrick notes) for a short memorandum to them really turn to the honour and advantage of Israel, which was carefully to observe all the laws there made against incestuous designed for their ruin. But though the design was defeated, marriages, this being specified, which is the most detestable of and overruled for good, the Moabites' wickedness was not the all; it is that of which the apostle says, It is not so much as less provoking. God will deal with sinners, not only according named among the Gentiles, 1 Cor. 5. 1.
to their deeds, but according to their endeavours, Ps. 28. 4. NOTES TO CHAPTER XXIII.
(3.) The Edomites and Egyptians have not so deep a mark
of displeasure put upon them, as the Moabites and Ammonites V.1-8. Interpreters are not agreed what is here meant by had. If an Edomite or Egyptian turned proselyte, his grandentering into the congregation of the Lord, which is here forbid-children should be looked upon as members of the congregation den to eunuchs and to bastards, Ammonites ar Moabites, for of the Lord to all intents and purposes, v. 7,8. We should ever, but to Edomites and Egyptians only till the third genera- think that the Edomites had been more injurious to the Israeltion. 1. Some think they are hereby excluded from communi-ites than the Ammonites, and deserved as little favour from cating with the people of God in their religious services; though them, Num. 20.20, and yet " Thou shalt not abhor an Edomite, eunuchs and bastards were owned as members of the church, as thou must an Ammonite, for he is thy brother." Note, The and the Ammonites and Moabites might be circumcised and unkindness of near relations, though by many worse taken, yet proselyted to the Jewish religion, yet they, and their families, should with us, for that reason, because of the relation, be first must lie for some time under marks of disgrace, remembering forgiven. And then as to the Egyptians, here is a strange the rock whence they were hewn, and must not come so near reason given why they must not be abhorred, “ Thou wast a the sanctuary as others might, nor have so free a communion stranger in their land, and therefore, though hardly used there, with Israelites. 2. Others think they are hereby excluded from be civil to them, for old acquaintance' sake.” They must not bearing office in the congregation; none of these must be elders remember their bondage in Egypt, for the keeping up of any ill or judges, lest the honour of the magistracy should thereby be will to the Egyptians, but only for the magnifying of God's stained. '3. Others think they are excluded only from marrying power and goodness in their deliverance. with Israelites. Thus the learned Bishop Patrick inclines to V.9–14. Israel was now encamped, and this vast army was understand it; yet we find that when this law was put in execu just entering upon action, which was likely to keep them totion after the captivity, they separated from Israel, not only the gether for a long time, and therefore it was fit to give them strange wives, but all the mixed multitude, see Neh. 13. 1—3. particular directions for the good ordering of their camp. And With the daughters of these nations, (though out of the nations the charge is in one word to be clean. They must take care to of Canaan,) it should seem, the men of Israel might marry, if keep their camp pure from moral, ceremonial, and natural pob they were completely proselyted to the Jewish religion, but lution. with the men of these nations the daughters of Israel might 1. From moral pollution, v. 9, When the host goeth forth not marry, nor could the men be naturalized, except as here against thine enemy, then look upon thyself as in a special manexcepted.
ner engaged to keep thyself from every evil thing. (1.) The It is plain, in general, that disgrace is here put,
soldiers themselves must take heed of sin, for sin takes off the (1.) Upon bastards and eunuchs, v. 1, 2. By bastards here, edge of valour; guilt makes men cowards. They that put their the Jewish writers understand, not all that were born of forni- | lives in their hands, are concerned to make and keep their peace cation, or out of marriage, but all that were of those incestuous with God, and preserve a conscience void of offence; then may mixtures, which are forbidden, Lev. 18. And though it was they look death in the face without terror. Soldiers, in execunot the fault of the issue, yet, to deter people from those un- ting their commission, must keep themselves from gratifying the lawful marriages, and unlawful lusts, it was very convenient lusts of malice, covetousness, or uncleanness, for those are wickthat their posterity should thus be made infamous. By this ed things ; must keep themselves from the idols, or_accursed rule Jephthah, though the son of a harlot, a strange woman, things, they found in the camps they plundered. (2.) Even they (Judg. 11. 1, 2,) yet was not a bastard in the sense of this law. that tarried at home, the body of the people, and every particuAnd as for the eunuchs, though by this law they seemed to be lar person, must at that time especially keep from every wicked cast out of the vineyard, as dry trees, which they complain of, thing, lest by sín they provoke God to withdraw his presence Is. 56. 3, yet it is there promised, v. 5, that if they took care from the host, and give victory to the enemy for the correcting of their duty to God, as far as they were admitted, by keeping of his own people. Times of war should be times of reformahis sabbaths, and choosing the things that pleased him, the want tion, else how can we expect God should hear and answer our of this privilege should be made up to them with such spiritual prayers for success? Ps. 66. 18.
See 1 Sam. 7. 3. blessings as would entitle them to an everlasting name.
2. From ceremonial pollution, which might befan a person, (2.) Upon Ammonites and Moabites, the posterity of Lot, when unconscious of it, for which he was bound to wash his who, for his outward convenience had separated himself from flesh in water, and look upon himself as unclean until the even, Abraham, Gen. 13. 11. And we do not find that he or his ever Lev. 15. 16. A soldier, notwithstanding the constant service joined themselves again to the children of the covenant. They and duty he had to do in the camp, must be so far from looking are h re cut off to the tenth generation, that is, (as some think it upon himself as discharged from the observance of that cereis explainel,) for ever. Compare Neh. 13. 1. The reason of mony, that more was required from him than at another time; this quarrel, which Israel must have with them, so as not to had he been at his own house, he needed only to wash his flesh, seck their peace, v. 6, is because of the unkindness they had now but being in the army, he must go abroad out of the camp, as lately done to the camp of Israel, notwithstanding the orders one concerned to keep it pure, and ashamed of his own impurity, God had given not to distress or vex them, Deut. 2.9, 10. (1.) It and not return till after sunset, v. 10, 11. By this trouble and was bad enough that they did not meet them with bread and wa- reproach, which even involuntary pollutions exposed men to, ter in the way, v. 4, that they did no', as allies, or at least as they were taught to keep up a very great dread of all fleshly neutral states, bring victuals into their camp, which they showd lusts. It were well if military men would consider this. have been duly paid for. It was well that God's Israel did not 3. From natural pollution; the camp of the Lord must have nced their kindness, God himself following them with bread and nothing offensive in it, v. 12–14. It is strange that the divine wuler. However, this omission of the Ammonites should be law, or at least the solemn order and direction of Moses, should remembered against their paljon in future ages. Note, God | extend to a thing of this nature; but the design of it was to will certainly reckon, not only with those that oppose his peo- teach them, (1.) Modesty and a good decorum ; nature itself
pon; and it shall be, when thou wilt *ease thyself 20 Unto a stranger`thou mayest lend upon usury; abroad, thou shalt dig therewith, and shalt turn but unto thy brother thou shalt not lend upon usury: back and cover that which cometh from thee: that "the LORD thy God may bless thee in all that
14 For the Lord thy God walketh Pin the midst thou settest thine hand to in the land whither thou of thy camp, to deliver thee, and to give up thine goest to possess it. enemies before thee; therefore shall thy camp be 21 When thou shalt vow sa vow unto the LORD holy; that he see no funclean thing in thee, and thy God, thou shalt not slack to pay it: for the LORD turn away from thee.
thy God will surely require it of thee; and it would 15 Thou shalt not deliver unto his master 'the be sin in thee. servant which is escaped from his master unto thee: 22 But if thou shalt forbear to vow, it shall be no
16 He shall dwell with thee, even among you, in sin in thee. that place which he shall choose in one of thy gates, 23 That ywhich is gone out of thy lips thou shalt where it #liketh him best: thou rshalt not oppress keep and perform; even a free-will offering, accordhim.
ing as thou hast vowed unto the Lord thy God, 17 There shall be no swhore ‘of the daughters of which thou hast promised with thy mouth. Israel, nor a sodomite 'of the sons of Israel.
24 When thou comest into thy neighbour's vine18 Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore, or yard, then thou mayest eat grapes thy fill at thine the price of a dog, into the house of the LORD thy own pleasure; but thou shalt not put any in thy God for any vow : for even both these are abomi- vessel. nation unto the LORD thy God.
25 When thou comest into the standing corn of 19 Thou shalt not lend upon usury to thy bro- thy neighbour, then thou mayest pluck the ears ther; usury of money, usury of victuals, usury of with thine hand; but thou shalt not move a sickle any thing that is lent upon usury.
unto thy neighbour's standing corn. sittest down. Lev. 26. 12. 2 Cor. 6. 16. I nakedness of any thing, q 1 Sam. 80. 15. I is good for him. Ex. 22. 21. $or, sodorniteat. Rom. 1. 26. , Ler,
• Ex. 22. 25. Lev. 25. 35–37. Neh. 5. 2, 7. Ps. 15. 5. Ez. 18.8, 17. 22. 12. Luke 6. 34, 35. c. 15. 3. 2 Lev. 19. 34. c. 15. 10 Num. 30. 2. Fc. 5. 4,5.. y Ps. 66. 13, 14. 116. 18. * Matt. 12. 1.
19. 29. 1 Gen. 19. 4, 5, 2 Kinga 23. 7. Rom. 1. 27, 28.
teaches them thus to distinguish themselves from beasts that raelites, a holy nation, 2 Sam. 13. 12. 2. A just mark of disknow no shame. (2.) Cleanliness, and (though not niceness, pleasure put upon this wickedness, that the hire of a whore, yet) neatness, even in their camp. Impurity is offensive to the that is, the money she gets by her whoring, and the price of a senses God has endued us with, prejudicial to the health, a dog, that is, of the sodomite, pimp, or whoremaster, (so I incline wrong to the comfort of human life, and an evidence of a care to understand it, for such are called dogs, Rev. 22. 15,) the less slothful temper of mind. (3.) Purity from the pollutions money he gets by these lewd and villanous practices, no parl of sin; if there must be this care taken to preserve the body of it shall be brought into the house of the Lord (as was comclean and sweet, much more should we be solicitous to keep the monly done by the prostitutes among the Gentiles) for any vow. mind so. (4.) A reverence of the divine ma jesty. This is the This intimates, (1.) That God would not accept of any offering reason here given; for the Lord thy God walketh by his ark, the at all from such wicked people; they had nothing to bring an special token of his presence, in the midst of thy camp; with offering of, but what they got by their wickedness, and therefore respect to that external symbol this external purity is required, their sacrifice could not but be an abomination to the Lord, Prov. which (though not insisted on in the letter when that reason 15.8. (2.) That they should not think, by making and paying Ceases, yet) teaches us to preserve inward purity of soul, in vows, and bringing offerings to the Lord, to obtain leave to go consideration of the eye of God, which is always upon us. By on in this sin, as (it should seem) some that followed that trade this expression of respect to the presence of God among them, suggested to themselves, when their offerings were admitted, they were taught both to fortify themselves against sin, and to Prov. 7. 14, 15, This day have I paid my vows, therefore came encourage themselves against their enemies with the considera- I forth to meet thee. Nothing should be accepted in commutation of that presence. (5.) A regard one to another. The tion of penance. (3.) That we cannot honour God with our filthiness of one is noisome to many; this law of cleanliness substance, unless it be honestly and honourably come by. It therefore teaches us not to do that which will be justly offensive must not only be considered what we give, but how we got it; to our brethren, and grieve them. It is a law against nuisances. God hates robbery for burnt-offerings, and uncleanness too.
V. 15—25. Orders are here given about five several things III. The matter of usury is here settled, v. 19, 20. 1. They which have no relation one to another.
must not lend upon usury to an Israelite. They had and held 1. The land of Israel is here made a sanctuary, or city of their estates immediately from and under God, who, while he refuge, for servants that were wronged and abused by their distinguished them from all other people, might have ordered, masters, and fled thither for shelter from the neighbouring coun had he so pleased, that they should have all things in common tries, v. 15, 16. We cannot suppose that they were hereby among themselves, but instead of that, and in token of their obliged to give entertainment to all the unprincipled men that joint interest in the good land he had given them, he only apran from service ; Israel needed not (as Rome at first did) to pointed them, as there was occasion, to lend to one another be thus peopled. But, 1. They must not deliver up the trem- without interest; which, among them, would be little or no loss bling servant to his enraged master, till upon trial it appeared to the lender, because their land was so divided, their estates that the servant had wronged his master, and was justly liable were so little, and there was so little of merchandise among to punishment. Note, It is an honourable thing to shelter and them, that it was seldom or never that they had occasion to protect the weak, provided they be not wicked. God allows borrow any great sums, except for the subsistence of their his people to patronise the oppressed. The angel bid Hagar families, when the fruits of their ground had met with any disreturn to her mistress, and St. Paul sent Onesimus back to his aster, or the like ; and in such a case, for a small matter to insist master Philemon, because they had neither of them any cause upon usury, would have been very barbarous. Where the borto go away, nor were either of them exposed to any danger in rower gets, or hopes to get, it is just that the lender should share returning. But the servant here is supposed to escape, that is, in the gain; but to him that borrows for his necessary food, pity to run for his life, to the people of Isracl, of whom he had heard must be showed, and we must lend, hoping for nothing again, (as Ben-hadad of the kings of Israel, 1 Kings 20. 31) that they if we have wherewithal to do it, Luke 6. 35. 2. They mighi were a merciful people, to save himself from the fury of a lend upon usury to a stranger, who was supposed to live by tyrant; and in that case to deliver him up is to throw a lamb trade, and (as we say) by turning the penny, and therefore got into the mouth of a lion. 2. If it appeared that the servant by what he borrowed, and came among them in hopes to do so. was abused, they must not only protect him, but supposing him By this it appears that usury is not in itsell oppressive ; for willing to embrace their religion, they must give him all the they must not oppress a stranger, and yet might exact usury encouragement that might be, to settle among them. Care is from him. taken both that he should not be imposed upon in the place of IV. The performance of the vows wherewith we have bound his settlement—let it be that which he shall choose, and where it our souls, is here required; and it is a branch of the law of liketh him best ; and that he should not exchange one hard master nature, v. 21–23. 1. We are here left at our liberty whether for many—thou shall not oppress him. Thus would he soon find we will make vows or no. If thou shalt forbear to vow, (some a comfortable difference between the land of Israel and other particular sacrifice and offering, more than was commanded by lands, and would choose it to be his rest for ever. Note, the law,) it shall be no sin to thee. God had already signified Proselytes and converts to the truth should be treated with his readiness to accept a free-will offering thus vowed, though particular tenderness, that they may have no temptation to it were but a little fine flour, Lev. 2. 4, &c. which was encoureturn.
ragement enough to those who were so inclined. But lest the II. The land of Israel must be no shelter for the unclean; no priests, who had the largest share of those vows and voluntary whore, no sodomite, must be suffered to live among them, offerings, should sponge upon the people, by pressing it upon v, 17, 18, neither a whore nor a whoremonger. No houses of them as their duty to make such vows, beyond their ability and uncleanness must be kept either by men or women. Here is, inclination, they are here expressly told that it should not be 1. A good reason intimated why there should be no such wick- reckoned a sin in them, if they did not make any such vows, as edness tolerated among them; they were Israelites. That it would be if they omitted any of the sacrifices that God had seems to have an emphasis laid upon it. For a daughter of particularly required. For (as Bishop Patrick well expresses Israel to be a whore, or a son of Israel a whoremaster, is to it) God would have men to be easy in his service, and all their reproach the stock they are come of, the people they belong to, offerings to be free and cheerful. 2. We are here laid under and the God they worship. It is bad in any, but worse in Is the highest obligations, when we have made a vow, to perform
A Lev. 13. 14.
e Prov. 5. 18.
any thing to.
and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the In this chapter we have, I. The toleration of divorce, v. 1-4. II. A discharge of Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance. new-married men from the war, v. 5. M. Laws couceraing pledges, v. 6, 10 5 When da man hath taken a new wite, he shall 13, 17. IV. Against mau-slealing. v. 1. V. Concerning the leprosy, v. 8,9. VI. Against the injustice of munsters toward their servants
, v. 14, 15, judges in capi
: not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with causes, (v. 16,) and civil concerns, v. 17, 18. vil. Or charily to the poor, any business: but he shall be free at home one year,
and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken. THEN a man hath taken a wife, and married 6 No man shall take the nether or the upper millvour in his eyes, because he hath found some un 7 IfJa man be found stealing any of his brethren cleanness in her; then let him write her a bill of tdi- of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise vorcement, ,a and give it in her hand, and send her of him, or selleth him; then that thief shall die; and out of his house.
thou shalt put Sevil away from among you. 2 And when she is departed out of his house, she 8 Take heed in the plague of leprosy, that thou may go and be another man's wife.
observe diligently, and do according to all that the 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write priests the Levites shall teach you: as I commanded her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, them, so ye shall observe w dó. and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter 9 Remember what the LORD thy God did unto husband die, which took her to be his wife; Miriam by the way, after that ye were come forth
4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may out of Egypt. not take her again to be his wife, after that she is 10 When thou dost Slend thy brother any thing, defiled ; for that is abomination before the LORD: thou shalt not go into his house to fetch his pledge. • matter of nakedness. I culling off. a Matt. 5. 31, 32. b Jer. 3. 1. c Lev. S Ex. 21. 16. & c. 19. 19.
i Num. 12. 10. lend the loan of 4 C. 20, 1. nol any thing shall pass upon him. it, and to perform it speedily; Thou shall not slack to pay it; 2. That it must be done, not by word of morith, for that might lest if it be delayed beyond the first opportunity, the zeal abate, be spoken hastily, but by writing, and that put in due form, and the vow be forgotten, or something happen to disable thee for solemnly declared, before witnesses, to be his own act and deed, the performance of it. That which is gone out of thy lips as a which was a work of time, and left room for consideration, that solemn and deliberate vow, must not be recalled, but thou shalt it might not be done rashly. keep and perform it, punctually and fully. The role of the 3. That the husband must give it into the hand of his wife, Gospel goes somewhat further than this, 2 Cor. 9. 7, Every and send her away; which, some think, obliged him to endow one, according as he purposeth in his heart, though it have not her, and make provision for her, according to her quality, and gone out of his lips, so let him give. Here is a good reason why such as might help to marry her again; for this, there was good we should pay our vows, that if we do not, God will require il reason, since the cause of quarrel was not her fault, but her of us, will surely and severely reckon with us, not only for lying, infelicity. but for going about to mock him, who cannot be mocked. See 4. That being divorced, it was lawful for her to marry Ec. 5. 4.
another husband, v. 2. The divorce had dissolved the bond V. Allowance is here given, when they passed through a of marriage as effectually as death could; so that she was as cornfield or vineyard, to pluck and eat of the corn or grapes free to marry again as if her first husband had been naturally that grew by the road-side, whether it was done for necessity dead. or delight, only they must carry none away with them, v. 24, 25. 5. That if her second husband (died, or) divorced her, then Therefore the disciples were not censured for plucking the ears still she might marry a third, but her first husband should never of corn, (it was well enough known that the law allowed it,) but take her again, (v. 3, 4,) which he might have done, if she had for doing it on the sabbath day, which the tradition of the elders not married another; for by that act of her own she had perhad forbidden. Now, 1. This law intimated to them what fectly renounced him for ever, and, as to him, was looked upon great plenty of corn and wine they should have in Canaan, so as defiled, though not as to another person. The Jewish writers much ihat á liitle would not be missed out of their fruits; they say that this was to prevent a inost vile and wicked practice should have enough for themselves and all their friends. 2. It which the Egyptians had, of changing wives; or perhaps it provided for the support of poor travellers, to relieve the fatigue was intended to prevent men's rashness in putting away their of their journeys, and teaches us to be kind to such. The Jews wives ; for the wife that was divorced, would be apt in revenge say, " This law was chiefly intended in favour of labourers, who to marry another immediately, and perhaps the husband that were employed in gathering in their harvest and vintages, their divorced her, how much soever he thought to mend himself by mouths must not be muzzled any more than that of the ox when another choice, would find the next worse, and something in her he treads out the corn." 3. It teaches us not to insist upon more disagreeable; so that he would wish for his first wife property in a small matter, of which it is easy to say, What is again. “No," (says this law,)." you shall not have her, you ihat between me and thee? It was true, the grapes which the should have kept her when you had her." Note, It is best to passenger ate were none of his own, nor did the proprietor be content with such things as we have, since changes made give them him ; but the thing was of so small value, that he by discontent often prove for the worse. The uneasiness we had reason to think, were he present, he would not deny them know is commonly better, though we are apt to think it worse, him, any more than he himself would grudge the like courtesy, than that which we do not know. By the strictness of this and therefore it was no theft to take them. 4. It used them to law, God illustrates the riches of his grace in his willingness hospitality, and teaches us to be ready to distribute, willing to to be reconciled to his people that had gone a whoring from communicate, and not to think every thing lost that is given him, Jer. 3. 1, Thou hast played the harlot with many lovers, away. Yet, lastly, It forbids us to abuse the kindness of our yet return again to me ; for his thoughts and ways are above ours. friends, and to take the advantage of fair concessions to make V. 5-13. Here is, unreasonable encroachments: we must not draw an ell from I. Provision made for the preservation and confirmation of those that give but an inch; they may eat of their neighbour's love between new-married people, v.5. This fitly follows upon grapes : but it does not therefore follow that they may carry away. the laws concerning divorce, which would be prevented if their NOTES TO CHAPTER XXIV.
affection to each other were well setiled at first. If the hus.
band were much abroad from his wise the first year, his love to V.1-4. This is that permission which the Pharisees erro- her would be in danger of cooling, and of being drawn aside neously referred to as a precept, Matt. 19.7, Moses command to others whom he would meet with abroad: therefore his ed to give a writing of divorcement ; it was not so ; our Saviour service to his country in war, embassies, or other public busitold them that he only suffered it because of the hardness of ness that would call him from home, shall be dispensed with, their hearts, lest if they had not had liberty to divorce their that he may cheer up the wife which he has tnken. Note, 1. It wives, they should have ruled them with rigour, and, it may be, is of great consequence that love be kept up between husband have been the death of them. It is probable that divorces were and wife, and that every thing be very carefully avoided, which in use before, they are taken for granted, Lev. 21. 14, and Mo- might make them strange one to another, especially at first; ses thought it needful here to give some rules concerning them. for in that relation, where there is not the love that should be,
1. That a man might not divorce his wife, unless he found there is an inlet ready to abundance of guilt and grief. 2. One some uncleanness in her, v. I. It was not sufficient to say that of the duties of that relation, is, to cheer up one another, under he did not like her, or that he liked another better, but he must the cares and crosses that happen, as helpers of each other's show cause for his dislike; something that made her disagree- joy; for a cheerful heart does good like a medicine. able and unpleasant to him, though it might not make her so to II. A law against man-stealing, v. 7. It was not death by another. This uncleanness must mean something less than the law of Moses to steal catile or goods, but to steal a child, adultery; for, for that she was to die ; and less than the suspi- or a weak and simple man, or one that a man had in his power, cion of il, for in that case he might give her the waters of and to make merchandise of him, this was a capital crimo, and jealousy ; but it means either a light carriage, or a cross froward could not be expia'ed, as other thefis, by restitution; so much disposition, or some loathsore sore or disease ; nay, some of is a man better than a sheep, Matt. 12. 12. It was a very the Jewish writers suppose that an offensive breath might be a heinous offence, for, 1. It was robbing the public of one of its just ground for divorce. Whatever is meant by it, doubtless, members. 2. It was taking away a man's liberty, the liberty it was something considerable ; so that their modern doctors of a free-born Israelite, which was next in value to his life. erred, who allowed divorce for every cause, though never go 3. It was driving a man out from the inheritance of the land, to trivial, Matt. 19. 3.
the privileges of which he was entitled, and bidding him go