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attended and guarded him. This manner of confinement is | was first introduced among the Romans by Sylla. Their
demnation upon him; yet one argument, which in a menacing “Sometimes the prisoner was fastened to two soldiers, manner they addressed to him, at last totally shook his firma one on each side, wearing a chain both on his right and left ness, and induced him to yield to their sanguinary purpose. hand. St. Paul at first was thus confined. When the tri- The Jews, after aggravating his guilt, and employing every bune received him from the hands of the Jews, he com- expedient in vain to influence the president to inflict capital manded him to be bound with two chains. (Acts xxi. 33.) punishment upon him, at last cried out: If thou let this man In this manner was Peter fettered and confined by Herod go, thou art not Cæsar's friend ; whosoever maketh himself a Agrippa. The same night Peter was sleeping between two sol- king, speaketh against Cæsar. Upon hearing this, all his diers, bound with two CHAINS. (Acts xii. 6.)
former firmness instantly vanished; he could stem the torrent 6 " It further appears, that if the soldiers, who were thus ap- of popular fury no longer : to this he yielded, and immediately pointed to guard criminals, and to whom they were chained, ordered his execution. Then delivered he him, therefore, to them suffered the prisoner to escape, they were punished with to be crucified. This conduct of Pilate arose from his perfect death. Thus, when Peter was delivered out of prison by a knowledge of the character and temper of his master Tiberius, miracle, the next morning we read there was no small con- who was a gloomy old tyrant, day and night incessantly haunted fusion among the soldiers who were appointed his guards, with the fiends of jealousy and suspicion—who would never and to whom he had been chained, what was become of forgive any innovations in his government, but punished the Peter.
authors and abettors of them with inexorable death.? Pilate, “ Whence it appears that his deliverance had been effected, therefore, hearing the Jews reiterating this with menaces, and his shackles had been miraculously unloosed, without that if he let him go he was not Cæsar's friend—knowing their knowledge, when they were sunk in repose. Upon the jealousy and cruelty of Tiberius, and fearing that the which Herod, after making a fruitless search for him, ordered disappointed rage of the Jews would instigate them to accuse all those who had been entrusted with the custody of Peter him to the old tyrant, as abetting and suffering a person to to be executed. (Acts xii. 19.) In like manner also keepers escape with impunity, who had assumed the regal'title and of prisons were punished with death, if the confined made character in one of his provinces, was alarmed for his own their escape. This is evident from what is related concern- safety; and rather than draw down upon his devoted head ing the imprisonment of Paul and Silas at Philippi. These, the resentment of the sovereign, who would never forgive or after their bodies were mangled with scourges, were precipi- forget an injury, real or imaginary, contrary to his own judgtated into the public dungeon, and their feet were made fást ment and clear persuasion of the innocence of Jesus, senin the stocks. At midnight these good men prayed and sang tenced him to be crucified." praises to God in these circumstances; when suddenly a VI. As the Romans allowed the inhabitants of conquered dreadful earthquake shook the whole prison to its foundation, countries to retain their local tribunals, we find incidental all the doors in an instant flew open, and the shackles of all mention made in the New Testament of provincial courts of the prisoners dropped to the ground. This violent concus- justice. Two of these are of sufficient importance to claim sion awakening the keeper, when he saw the doors of the a distinct notice in this place; viz. 1. The Areopagus, at prison wide open, he drew his sword, and was going to Athens; and, 2. The Assembly, at Ephesus. plunge it in his bosom, concluding that all the prisoners had 1. The tribunal of the AREOPAGUS is said to have been escaped. In that crisis Paul called to him with a loud voice, instituted at Athens, by Cecrops the founder of that city, entreating him not to lay violent hands upon himself, assur- and was celebrated for the strict equity of its decisions. ing him all the prisoners were safe.
Among the various causes of which it took cognizance, were V. “The Roman tribunal, if we may judge of it from matters of religion, the consecration of new gods, erection what is related concerning Pilate's, was erected on a raised of temples and altars, and the introduction of new ceremonies stage, the floor of which was embellished with a tesselated into divine worship. On this account St. Paul was brought pavement. This consisted of little square pieces of marble, before the tribunal of Areopagus as a setter forth of strange or of stones of various colours, which were disposed and ar- gods, because he preached unto the Athenians, Jesus and ranged with great art and elegance, to form a chequered and ArLotatis, or the Resurrection. (Acts xvii. 18.) Its sittings pleasing appearance. Pliny informs us that this refinement were held on the Apacs Ilszos, or Hill of Mars (whence its 1 Qiremadmodum eadem catena et custodiam et militem copulat, sic ista
name was derived), which is situated in the midst of the city qnæ iam di -siinilia sunt, pariter incedunt. Senecæ Epist. 5. ton. ii. p. 13. of Athens, opposite to the Acropolis or citadel, and is an Gronovii, 1672. So also Manilius.
insulated precipitous rock, broken towards the south, and on Vinctorum dominus, sociusque in parte catenæ,
the north side sloping gently down to the temple of Thesus. Interdum pænis innoxia corpora servat.-Lib. V. v. 628, 629. In like manner the brave but unfortunate Eumenes addressed a very • Lithostrota acceptavere sub Sylla. Plinii Hist. Nat. lib. xxxvi. p. 60. pathetic speech to his army, with his setters on. Plutarch, Eumenes. Jus- • In expeditionibus tessella at sectilia pavimenta circumtulisse. Sueto. iin, lib. xiv, cap.
nins vita S. Cæsaris. cap. 16. p. 74. edit. variorum Lug. Bat. 1662. Vid. etiain 3 Prolatam, sicut erat catenatus, manum ostendit. Justin, lib. xiv. cap.3. not. Salmasii in loc. p. 395. Gronovii.
See Suetonius, Tacitus, Dion Cassius. • Opus tessellatum ex parvulis coloris varii lapillis quadratis constabat, • Philo makes the very same remark concerning Pilate, p. 390. edit. quibus solum pavimenti incrustabalur. Varro de re rustica, lib. iii. 1. Mangey.
Its appearance is thus described by Dr. E. D. Clarke :-“ It 1. IDOLATRY, that is, the worship of other gods, in the is not possible to conceive a situation of greater peril, or one Mosaic law occupies the first place in the list of crimes. It more calculated to prove the sincerity of a preacher, than that was, indeed, a crime not merely against God, but also against in which the apostle was here placed: and the truth of this, a fundamental law of the state, and, consequently, was a perhaps, will never be better felt than by a spectator, who species of high-treason, which was capitally punished. This from this eminence actually beholds the monuments of pagan crime consisted not in ideas and opinions, but in the overt pornp and superstition, by which he, whom the Athenians act of worshipping other gods. An Israelite, therefore, was considered as the setter forth of strange gods, was then sur- guilty of idolatry founded : representing to the imagination the disciples of (1.) When he actually worshipped other gods besides Socrates and of Plato, the dogmatist of the porch, and the JEHOVAH, the only true God. This was, properly speaking, sreptic of the academy, addressed by a poor and lowly man, the state crime just noticed ; and it is, at the same time, the who, rude in speech, without the enticing words of man's wis- greatest of all offences against sound reason and common dom, enjoined precepts contrary to their taste, and very hostile sense. This crime was prohibited in the first of the ten to their prejudices. One of the peculiar privileges of the commandments. (Exod. xx. 3.) Areopagitæ seems to have been set at defiance by the zeal of (2.) By worshipping images, whether of the true God Saint Paul on this occasion; namely, that of inflicting ex- under a visible form, to which the Israelites were but too treme and exemplary punishment upon any person, who prone (Exod. xxxii. 4, 5. Judg. xvii. 3. xviii. 4–6. 14–17. should slight the celebration of the holy mysteries, or blas- 30, 31. vi. 25–33. viii. 24–27. 1 Kings xii. 26–31.), or pheme the gods of Greece. We ascended to the summit by of the images of the gods of the Gentiles, of which we have means of steps cut in the natural stone. The sublime scene so many instances in the sacred history. All image-worship here exhibited, is so striking, that a brief description of it whatever is expressly forbidden in Exod. xx. 4, 5. : and a may prove how truly it offers to us a commentary upon the curse is denounced against it in Deut. xxvii. 15. apostle's words, as they were delivered upon the spot. He (3.) By prostration before, or adoration of, such images, or stood upon the top of the rock, and beneath the canopy of of any thing else revered as a god, such as the sun, moon, heaven. Before him there was spread a glorious prospect of and stars. YExod. xx. 5. xxxiv. 14. Deut. iv. 19.) This mountains, islands, seas, and skies: behind him towered the prostration consisted in falling down on the knees, and at lofty Acropolis, crowned with all its marble temples. Thus the same time touching the ground with the forehead. every object, whether in the face of nature, or among the (4.). By having altars or groves dedicated to idols, or images works of art, conspired to elevate the mind, and to fill it thereof; all which the Mosaic law required to be utterly with reverence towards that Being, who made and governs the destroyed (Exod. xxxiv. 13. Deut. vii. 5. xii. 3.); and the world (Acts xvii. 24. 28.); who sitteth in that light which Israelites were prohibited, by Deut. vii. 25, 26., from keepno mortal eye can approach, and yet is nigh unto the meanest ing, or even bringing into their houses, the gold and silver of his creatures; in whom we live and move and have our that had been upon any image, lest it should prove u snare,
and lead them astray: because, having been once conse2. The ASSEMBLY mentioned in Acts xix. 39. is, most crated to an idol-god (considering the then prevalent superprobably, that belonging to the district of Ephesus, Asia stition as to the reality of such deities), some idea of its Minor being divided into several districts, each of which had sanctity, or some dread of it, might still have continued, and its appropnate legal assembly. Some of these are referred have thus been the means of propagating idolatry afresh 10 by Cicero, and many others are mentioned by Pliny, among their children. particularly this of Ephesus. The Iprepuertos or chief officer (5.) By offering sacrifices to idols, which was expressly forsays, that if Demetrius had any claim of property to make, bidden in Lev. xvii. 1–7., especially human víctims, the there were civil courts in which he might sue: if he had sacrifices of which (it is well known), prevailed to a frightcrimes to object to any person, the proconsul was there, to ful extent. Parents immolated their offspring: this horrid take cognizance of the charge : but, if he had complaints of practice was introduced among the Israelites, from the a political nature to prefer, or had any thing to say which Canaanites, and is repeatedly reprobated by the prophets might redound to the honour of their goddess, there was the in the most pointed manner. The offering of human victims usual legal assembly of the district belonging to Ephesus, was prohibited in Lev. xviii. 21. compared with 2, 3. 24– in which it ought to be proposed. The regular periods of 30. xx. 1–5. Deut. xii. 30. and xviii. 10. such assemblies, it appears, were three or four times a month; (6.) By eating of offerings made to idols, made by other peoalthough they were convoked extraordinarily for the despatch ple, who invited them to their offering-feasts. Though no of any pressing business.
special law was enacted against thus attending the festivals of their gods, it is evidently presupposed as unlawful in Exod. xxxiv. 15.
Idolatry was punished by stoning the guilty individual. SECTION III.5
When a whole city became guilty of idolatry, it was considered in a state of rebellion against the government, and was treated according to the laws of war. Its inhabitants
and all their cattle were put to death; no spoil was made, I CHINES AGAINST GOD :- 1. Idolatry.—2. Blasphemy.--3. but every thing which it contained was burnt, together with Falsely prophesying.– 4. Divination. - 5. Perjury.-II. the city itself; nor was it ever allowed to be rebuilt
. (Deut. CRIXES AGAINST PARENTS AND MagistraTES.-HI. ČRIMES xiii. 13—18.) This law does not appear to have been parAgaissT PROPERTY :- 1. Theft.—2. Man-stealing.–3. The ticularly enforced; the Israelites (from their proneness to crime of denying any thing taken in trust, or found.- adopt the then almost universally prevalent polytheism) in 4. Regulations concerning debtors.-IV. CRIMES AGAINST most cases overlooked the crime of a city that became notoTHE PERSON :- 1. Murder.—2. Homicide.-3. Corporal in- riously idolatrous; whence it happened, that idolatry was juries.-4. Crimes of lust.-V. CRIMES OF Malice. not confined to any one city, but soon overspread the whole
nation. In this case, when the people, as a people, brought I. It has been shown in a preceding chapter, that the guilt upon themselves by their idolatry, God reserved to maintenance of the worship of the only true God was a fun- himself the infliction of the punishments denounced against damental object of the Mosaic polity. The government of that national crime; which consisted in wars, famines, and the Israelites being a Theocracy, that is, one in which the other national judgments, and (when the measure of their supreme legislative power was vested in the Almighty, who iniquity was completed) in the destruction of their polity, was regarded as their king, it was to be expected that, in a and the transportation of the people as slaves into other state confessedly religious, crimes against the Supreme Ma- lands. (Lev. xxvi. Deut. xxviii. xxix. xxxii.) For the crime jesty of Jehovah should occupy a primary place in the statutes of seducing others to the worship of strange gods, but more given by Moses to that people. Accordingly,
especially where a pretended prophet (who might often • Dr Clarke's Travels, vol. vi. pp. 263–25. See also Mr. Dodwell's Clas- naturally anticipate what would come to pass) utiered presical and Topographical Tour through Greece, vol. i. pp. 361, 362. dictions tending to lead the people into idolatry, the appointed
Cicero, Epist. ad Atticum, lib. v. ep. 20. • Pliny, Hist. Nat. lib. v. ce. 25. 29. 32, 33. See also Cellarii Geographia order to prevent the barbarous immolation of infants, Moses
punishment was stoning to death. (Deut. xiii. 2-12.) In Antiqua, vol ii. p. 127. Biscoe on the Acts, vol i. p. 312., and Bloomfield's Annotations, vol. iv. denounced the punishment of stoning upon those who offered This section is wholly an abridgment of Michaelis's Commentaries, vol.
human sacrifices; which the bystanders might instantly Iv. pp. 1-312
execute upon the delinquent when caught in the act, without • See p. 11. supra.
any judicial inquiry whatever. (Lev. xx. 2.)
ON THE CRIMINAL LAW OF THE JEWS.
2. God being both the sovereign and the legislator of the only remarked, that it abrogated the fifth commandment, but Israelites, Blasphemy (that is, the speaking injuriously of he likewise added, as a counter-doctrine, that Moses, their his name, h s attributes, his government, and his revelation) own legislator, had expressly declared, that the man who was not only a crime against Him, but also against the state; cursed futher or mother deserved to die. Now, it is impossiit was, therefore, punished capitally by stoning. (Lev. xxiv. ble for a man to curse his parents more effectually, than by 10-14.)
a vow like this, when he interprets it with such rigour, as to 3. It appears from Deut. xviii. 20—22. that a False Pro- preclude him from doing any thing in future for their benefit. PHET was punished capitally, being stoned to death ; and It is not imprecating upon them a curse in the common style there were two cases in which a person was held as con- of curses, which evaporate into air; but it is fulfilling the victed of the crime, and consequently liable to its punish- curse, and making it io all intents and purposes ellectual.”': ment, viz. (1.) If he had prophesied any thing in the name Of the two crimes above noticed, the act of striking a parent of any other god, whether it took place or not,—he was evinces the most depraved and wicked disposition: and at all events considered as a false prophet, and, as such, severe as the punishment was, few parents would apply to a stoned to death, (Deut. xiii. 2–6.)—(2.) If a prophet spoke magistrate, until all methods had been tried in vain. Both in the name of the true God, he was tolerated, so long as he these crimes are included in the case of the stubborn, rebelremained unconvicted of imposture, even though he threat- lious, and drunkard son; whom his parents were unable to ened calamity or destruction to the state, and he could not keep in order, and who, when intoxicated, endangered the be punished : but when the event which he had predicted lives of others. Such an irreclaimable offender was to be did not come to pass, he was regarded as an audacious im- punished with stoning. (Deut. xxi. 18—21.) Severe as this postor, and, as such, was stoned. (Deut. xviii. 21, 22.) law may seem, we have no instance recorded of its being
4. Divination is the conjecturing of future events from carried into effect; but it must have had a most salutary opethings which are supposed to presage them. The eastern ration in the prevention of crimes, in a climate like that of people were always fond of divination, magic, the curious Palestine, where (as in all southern climates) liquor produces arts of interpreting dreams, and of obtaining a knowledge more formidable effects than with us, and where also it is of future events. When Moses gave the law which bears most probable that at that time, the people had not the same his name to the Israelites, this disposition had long been efficacious means which we possess, of securing drunkards, common in Egypt and the neighbouring countries. Now, and preventing them from doing mischief. all these vain arts in order to pry into futurity, and all divina- 2. Civil government being an ordinance of God, provision tion whatever, unless God was consulted by prophets, or by is made in all
well regulated states for respecting
the persons Urim and Thummim (the sacred lot kept by the high-priest), of MagistraTES. We have seen in a former chapter, that were expressly prohibited by the statutes of Lev. xix. 26. when the regal government was established among the Israel31. xx. 6. 23. 21. and Deut. xviii. 9–12. In the case of a ites, the person of the king was inviolable, even though he person transgressing these laws, by consulting a diviner, God might be tyrannical and unjust. It is indispensably necesreserved to himself the infliction of his punishment; the sary to the due execution of justice that the persons of magistransgressor not being amenable to the secular magistrate. traies be sacred, and that they should not be insulted in the (Lev. xx. 6.) The diviner himself was to be stoned. (Lev. discharge of their office. All reproachful words or curses, XX. 27.)
uttered against persons invested with authority, are prohi5. Perjury is, by the Mosaic law, most peremptorily pro- bited in Exod. xxii. 28. No punishment, however, is specihibited as a most heinous sin against God; to whoin the fied; probably it was left to the discretion of the judge, and punishment of it is left, and who in Exod. xx. 7. expressly was different according to the rank of the magistrate and the promises that he will inflict it, without ordaining the inflic- extent of the crime. tion of any punishment by the temporal magistrate; except III. The Crimes or offences against Property, mentioned only in the case of a man falsely charging another with a by Moses, are theft, man-stealing, and the denial of any thing criine, in which case the false witness was liable to the same taken in trust, or found. punishment which would have been inflicted on the accused 1. On the crime of Theft, Moses imposed the punishment party if he had been found to have been really guilty (as is of double (and in certain cases still higher) restitution; and shown in p. 64. infra); not indeed as the punishment of if the thief were unable to make it (which, however, could perjury against God, but of false witness.
rarely happen, as every Israelite by law had his paternal 11. CRIMES Against Parents and MAGISTRATES consti- field, the crops of which might be attached), he was ordered tute an important article of the criminal law of the Hebrews. to be sold for a slave, and payment was to be made to the in
1. In the form of government among that people, we jured party out of the purchase-money. (Exod. xxii. 1. 3.) recognise much of the patriarchal spirit; in consequence of The same practice obtains, according to Chardin, among the which fathers enjoyed great rights over their families. The Persians. The wisdom of this regulation is much greater Cursing of PARENTS,—that is, not only the imprecation of than the generality of mankind are aware of: for, as the deevil on them, but probably also all rude and reproachful lan- sire of gain and the love of luxuries are the prevalent induceguage towards them, was punished with death (Exod. xxi. ments to theft, restitution, varied according to circumstances, 17. Lev. xx. 9.); as likewise was the striking of them. would effectually prevent the unlawful gratification of that (Exod. xxi. 15.) An example of the crime of cursing of a desire, while the idle man would be deterred from stealing parent, which is fully in point, is given by Jesus Christ in by the dread of slavery, in which he would be compelled to Matt. xv. 4–6. or Mark vii. 9–12.; “where he upbraids work by the power of blows. If, however, a thief was found the Pharisees with their giving, from their deference to hu- breaking into a house in the night season, he might be killed man traditions and doctrines, such an exposition of the divine (Exod. xxii. 2.), but not if the sun had arisen, in which case law, as converted an action, which, by the law of Moses, he might be known and apprehended, and the restitution would have been punished with death, into a vow, both obli- made which was enjoined by Moses. When stolen oxen or gatory and acceptable in the sight of God. It seems, that it sheep were found in the possession of a thief, he was to make was then not uncommon for an undutiful and degenerate son, a two-fold restitution to the owner, who thus obtained a profit who wanted to be rid of the burden of supporting his parents, for his risk of loss. (Exod. xxii. 4.) The punishment was and in his wrath, to turn them adrift upon the wide world, to applicable to every case in which the article stolen remained say to his father or mother, Korban, or, Be that Corban (con- unaltered in his possession. But if it was already alienated secrated) which I should appropriate to thy support ; that is, or slaughtered, the criminal was to restore four-fold for a Every thing wherewith I might ever aid or serve thee, and, of sheep, and five-fold for an ox (Exod. xxii. 1), in consequence course, every thing, which I ought to devote to thy relief in the of its great value and indispensable utility in agriculture, to days of helpless old age, I here vow unto God.-A most abomi- the Israelites, who had no horses. In the time of Solomon,
indeed ! and which God would, unquestionably, when property had become more valuable from the increase as little approve or accept, as he would a vow to commit of commerce, the punishment of restitution was increased to adultery. “And yet some of the Phrarisees pronounced on seven-fold. (Prov. vi. 30, 31.) When a thief had nothing to such vows this strange decision; that they were absolutely pay, he was sold as a slave (Exod. xxii. 3.), probably for as obligatory, and that the son, who uttered such words, was many years as were necessary for the extinction of the debt, bound to abstain from contributing, in the smallest article, and of course, perhaps, for life; though in other cases the to the use of his parents, because every thing, that should Hebrew servant could be made to serve only for six years. have been so appropriated, had become consecrated to God, If, however, a thief, after having denied, even upon oath, any and could no longer be applied to their use, without sacrilege theft, with which he was charged, had the honesty or conand a breach of his vow. But on this exposition, Christ not
1 Michaelis's Commentaries, vol. iv. p. 300.
9 See p. 44. supran
science to retract his perjury, and to confess his guilt, instead (3.) When it is committed premeditatedly and deceitfully. of double restitution, he had only to repay the amount stolen, Exod. xxi. 14.)—(4.) When a man lies in wait for another, and one fifth more. (Levit. vi. 25.).
falls upon him, and slays him. (Deut. xix. 11.) In order 2. MAN-STEALING, that is, the seizing or stealing of the to constitute wilful murder, besides enmity, Moses deemed person of a free-born Israelite, either to use him as a slave it essential, that the deed be perpetrated by a blow, a thrust, himself, or to sell him as a slave to others, was absolutely or a cast, or other thing of such a nature as inevitably to and irremissibly punished with death. (Exod. xxi. 16. Deut. cause death. (Num. xxxv. 16–21.): such as, the use of an xxiv. 7.)
iron tool,-a stone, or piece of wood, that may probably 3. “Where a person was judicially convicted of having cause death,--the striking of a man with the fist, out of enDENIED ANY THING COMMITTED TO HIS TRUST, or found by mity,-pushing a man down in such a manner that his life him, his punishment, as in the case of theft, was double is endangered, and throwing any thing at a man, from sanrestitution; only that it never, as in that crime, went so far guinary motives, so as to occasion his death. The punishas quadruple, or quintuple restitution; at least nothing of this ment of murder was death, without all power of redemption. kind is ordained in Exod. xxii. 8. If the person accused of 2. Homicide or Manslaughter is discriminated by the folthis crime had sworn himself guiltless, and afterwards, from lowing adjuncts or circumstances:-(1.) That it takes place the impulse of his conscience, acknowledged the commission without hatred or enmity. (Num. xxxv. 22. Deut. xix. 4— of perjury, he had only one-fifth beyond the value of the 6.7—(2.) Without thirst for revenge. (Exod. xxi. 13. Num. article denied to refund to its owner. .” (Levit. vi. 5.) xxxv. 22.)-(3.) When it happens by mistake. (Num. xxxv.
4. The Mosaic laws respecting Debtors were widely dif- 11. 15.)—(4.) By accident, or (as it is termed in the English ferent from those which obtain in European countries: the law) chance-medley: (Deut. xix. 5.) The punishment of mode of procedure sanctioned by them, though simple, was homicide was confinement to a city of refuge, as will be Fery efficient. Persons, who had property due to them, shown in the following section. might, if they chose, secure it either by means of a mort- Besides the two crimes of murder and homicide, there are gage, or by a pledge, or by a bondsman or surety.
two other species of homicide, to which no punishment was (1.) Thé creditor, when about to receive a pledge for a annexed; viz. (1.) If a man caught a thief breaking into his debt, was not allowed to enter the debtor's house, and take house by night, and killed him, it was not blood-guiltiness, what he pleased; but was to wait before the door, till the that is, he could not be punished; but if he did so when the debtor should deliver up that pledge with which he could sun was up, it was blood-guiltiness ; for the thief's life ought most easily dispense. (Deut. xxiv. 10, 11. Compare Job to have been spared, for the reason annexed to the law (Exod. xxii. 6. xxiv. 3. 7-9.)
xxii. 2, 3.), víz. because then the person robbed might have (2.) When a millor mill-stone, or an upper garment, was it in his power to obtain restitution; or, at any rate, the thief, given as a pledge, it was not to be kept all night. These if he could not otherwise make up his loss, might be sold, articles appear to be specified as examples for all other in order to repay him.—(2.) If the Goél or avenger of blood things with which the debtor could not dispense without overtook the innocent homicide before he reached a city of great inconvenience. (Exod. xxii. 26, 27. Deut. xxiv. 6. 12.) refuge, and killed him while his heart was hot, it was consi
(3.) The debt which remained unpaid until the seventh or dered as done in justifiable zeal (Deut. xix. 6.); and even sabbatic year (during which the soil was to be left without if he found him without the limits of his asylum, and slew cultivation, and, consequently, a person was not supposed to him, he was not punishable. (Num. xxxv. 26, 27.). The be in a condition to make payments), could not be exacted taking of pecuniary compensation for murder was prohibited; during that period. (Deut. xv. 1-11.3
. But, at other times, but the mode of punishing murderers was undetermined ; and, in case the debt was not paid, the creditor might seize, first, indeed, it appears to have been left in a great degree to the the hereditary land of the debtor, and enjoy its produce until pleasure of the Go I. An exception, however, was made to the debt was paid, or at least until the year of jubilee; or, ihe severity of the law in the case of a perfect slave (that is, secondly, his houses. These might be sold in perpetuity, one not of Hebrew descent), whether male or female. Alexcept ihose belonging to the Levites. (Levit. xxv. 11–32.) though a man had struck any of his slaves, whether male or Thirdly, in case the house or land was not sufficient to cancel female, with a stick, so as to cause their death, unless that the debt, or if it so happened that the debtor had none, the event took place immediately, and under his hand, he was persm of the debtor might be sold, together with his wife not punished. If the slave survived one or two days, the and children, if he had any. This is implied in Lev. xxv. master escaped with impunity: it being considered that his 39.; and this custom is alluded to in Job xxiv. 9. It existed death might not have proceeded from the beating, and that it in the time of Elisha (2 Kings iv. 1.); and on the return of was not a master's interest to kill his slaves, because, as the Jews from the Babylonish captivity, some rich persons Moses says (Exod. xxi. 20, 21.), they are his money. If the exercised this right over their poor debtors. (Neh. v. 1— slave died under his master's hand while beating him, or 13.) Our Lord alludes to the same custom in Matt. xviii. 25. even during the same day, his death was to be avenged; but As the person of the debtor might thus be seized and sold, in what manner Moses has not specified. Probably the his cattle and furniture were, consequently, liable for his Israelitish master was subjected only to an arbitrary punishdebts. This is alluded to by Solomon, in Prov. xxii. 27. It ment, regulated according to circumstances by the pleasure does not appear that imprisonment for debt existed in the age of the judge. of Moses, but it seems to have prevailed in the time of Jesus In order to increase an abhorrence of marder, and to deter Christ. (Matt. xviii. 34.)
them from the perpetration of so heinous a crime,—when it (4.) I' a person had become bondsman, or surety for an- had been committed by some person unknown, the city nearother, he was liable to be called upon for payment in the est to which the corpse was found was to be ascertained by same way with the original debtor. But this practice does mensuration : after which the elders or magistates of that not appear to have obtained before the time of Solomon (in city were required to declare their utter ignorance of the whose Proverbs there are several references to it), when it affair in the very solemn manner prescribed in Deut. xxi. was attended with serious consequences. It seems that the 1-9. formality observed was, for the person who became surety 3. For other CORPORAL INJURIES of various kinds, different to gire his hand to the debtor, and not to the creditor, to inti- statutes were made, which show the humanity and wisdom mate that he became, in a legal sense, one with the debtor; of the Mosaic law. Thus, if a man injured another in a fray, for Solomon cautions his son against giving his hand to a he was obliged to pay the expenses of his cure, and of his atranger, to a person whose circumstances he did not know: bed, that is, the loss of his time arising from his confineand entreats him to go and urge the person to whom he had ment. (Exod. xxi. 18m 19.) By this admirable precept, given his hand, or for whom he had become surety, to pay most courts of justice still regulate their decisions in such his own debt; so that it must have been to the debtor that cases. If a pregnant woman was hurt, in consequence of a the hand was given. See Prov. xi. 15. xvii. 18. and xxii. 26. fray between two individuals,--as posterity among the Jews
IV. Among the Crimes which may be committed AGAINST was among the peculiar promises of their covenant,-in the THE PERSON,
event of her premature delivery, the author of the misfortune 1. MURDER claims the first place. As this is a crime of was oblige i to give her husband such a pecuniary compensathe most heinous nature, Moses has described four accessory tion as he might demand, the amount of which, if the offencircumstances or marks, by which to distinguish it from sim- der thought it too high, was to be determined by the decision ple homicide or manslaughter; viz. (1.) When it proceeds of arbitrators. On the other hand, if either the woman or from hatred or enmity. (Num. xxxv. 20, 21. Deut. xix. 11.) her child was hurt or maimed, the law of retaliation took its -(2.) When it proceeds from thirst of blood, or a desire to full effect, as stated in Exod. xxi. 22–25.-The law of Satiate revenge with the blood of another. (Num. xxxv. 20.)— retaliation also operated, if one man hurt another by either
assaulting him openly, or by any insidious attack, whether 8. Dichotomy, or cutting asunder.-9. Tuuteriousc, or beatthe parties were both Israelites, or an Israelite and a foreigner. ing to death.-10. Exposing to wild beasts.-11. Crucifixion. (Lev. xxiv. 19-22.) This equality of the law, however, -(1.) Prevalence of this mode of punishment among the andid not extend to slaves : but if a master knocked out the
cients.—(2.) Ignominy of crucifixion.—(3.) The circumeye or tooth of a slave, the latter received his freedom as a
stances of our Saviour's crucifixion considered and illuscompensation for the injury he had sustained. (Exod. xxi. trated. 26, 27.) If this noble law did not teach the unmerciful slave-holder humanity, at least it taught him caution; as one
The end of punishment is expressed by Moses to be the rash blow might have deprived him of all right to the future determent of others from the commission of crimes. His services of his slave, and, consequently, self-interest would language is, that others may hear and fear, and may shun the oblige him to be cautious and circumspect.
commission of like crimes. (Deut. xvii. 13. xix. 20.) By the 4. The crime, of which decency withholds the name, as wise and humane enactments of this legislator, parents are nature abominates the idea, was punished with death (Lev. not to be put to death for their children, nor children for their xviii. 22, 23. xx. 13. 15, 16.), as also was adultery (Lev. parents (Deut. xxiv. 16.), as was afterwards the case with xx. 10.),—it should seem by stoning (Ezek. xvi. 38. 40. the Chaldæans (Dan. vi. 24.), and also among the kings of John viii. 7.), except in certain cases which are specified in Israel (1 Kings xxi. and 2 Kings ix. 26.), on charges of treaLev. xix. 20–22.* Other crimes of lust, which were com- son. Of the punishments mentioned in the sacred writers, mon among the Egyptians and Canaanites, are made capital some were inflicted by the Jews in common with other naby Moses. For a full examination of the wisdom of his tions, and others were peculiar to themselves. They are laws on these subjects, the reader is referred to the commen- usually divided into two classes, non-capital and capital. taries of Michaelis.2
I. The NON-CAPITAL or inferior PUNISHMENTS, which were the Mosaic
law more admirably displayed, than in the rigour Mosaic law was SCOURGING. (Lev. xix. 20. Deut. xxii. 18, V. In nothing, however, were the wisdom and equity of inflicted for smaller offences, are eight in number; viz.
1. The most common corporal punishment of the ancient with which Crimes of Malice were punished. Those pests of society, malicious informers, were odious in the eye of xxv: 2, 3.). After the captivity it continued to be the usual that law (Lev. xix. 16–18.), and the publication of false punishment for transgressions of the law, so late indeed as the reports, affecting the characters of others
, is expressly pro: it five times. (2 Cor. xi. 24.)". In the time of our Saviour it hibited' in Exod. xxiii. 1.: though that statute does not annex any punishment to this crime. One exception, how- was not confined to the judicial tribunals, but was also inever, is made, which justly imposes a very severe punish-flicted in the synagogues. (Matt. x. 17. xxiii. 34. Acts xxii. ment on the delinquent. See Deut. xxii. 13–19. All manner 19. xxvi. 11.) The penalty of scourging was inflicted by of false witness was prohibited (Exod. xx. 16.), even though judicial sentence. The offender having been admonished to it were to favour a poor man. (Exod. xxiii. 1-3.) But in acknowledge his guilt, and the witnesses produced against the case of false testimony against an innocent man, the him as in capital cases, the judges commanded him to be tied matter was ordered to be investigated with the utmost strict- by the arms to a low pillar: the culprit being stripped down ness, and, as a species of wickedness altogether extraordi- to his waist, the executioner, wh
stood behind him upon a nary, to be brought before the highest tribunal, where the stone, inflicted the punishment both on the back and breast priests and the judges of the whole people sat in judgment: with thongs ordinarily made of ox’s hide or leather. The and after conviction, the false witness was subjected to pe According to the talmudical writers, while the executioner
number of stripes depended upon the enormity of the offence. nishment, according to the law of retaliation, and beyond the possibility of reprieve; so that he suffered the very same
was discharging his office, the principal judge proclaimed punishment which attended the crime of which he accused these words with a loud voice :-If thou obserrest not all the his innocent brother. (Deut. xix. 16–21.) No regulation words of this law, &c. then the Lord shall make thy plagues can be more equitable than this, which must have operated wonderful, &c. (Deut. xxviii. 58, 59.); adding, Keep thereas a powerful prevention of this crime. Some of those fore the words of this covenant, and do them, thui ye may prosexcellent laws, which are the glory and ornament of the per in all that ye do (Deut. xxix. 9.); and concluding with British Constitution, have been made on this very ground. these words of the Psalmist (!xxviii. 38.) :-But he being full Thus, in the 37 Edw. III. c. 18., it is enacted, that all those of compassion forgave their iniquities, which he was to repeat, who make suggestion, shall suffer the same penalty to which if he had finished these verses before the full number of the other party would have been subject, if he were attainted, stripes was given. It was expressly enacted that no Jew in case his suggestions be found evil. A similar law was should suffer more than forty stripes for any crime, though a made in the same reign. (38 Edw. III. c. 9.) By a law less number might be inflicted. In order that the legal numof the twelve tables, false witnesses were thrown down the ber might not be exceeded, the scourge consisted of three Tarpeian rock. In short, false witnesses have been deserv- lashes or thongs : so that, at each blow, he received three edly execrated by all nations, and in every age.
stripes: consequently when the full punishment was inflicted, the delinquent received only thirteen blows, that is, forty stripes save one ; but if he were so weak, as to be on the point of fainting away, the judges would order the executioner to
suspend his flagellation. Among the Romans, however, the SECTION IV.
number was not limited, but varied according to the crime of ON THE PUNISHMENTS MENTIONED IN THE SCRIPTURES. 3
the malefactor and the discretion of the judge. It is highly
probable that, when Pilate took Jesus and scourged him, he Design of punishments.- Classifcation of Jewish punishments. | directed this scourging to be unusually severe, that the sight -1. PunisuMENTS, NOT CAPITAL.— 1. Scourging:—2. Retali- of his lacerated body might move the Jews to compassionate ation.—3. Pecuniary Fines.—4. Offerings in the nature of the prisoner, and desist from opposing his release. This appunishment.-5. Imprisonment.–6. Banishment.- Oriental pears the more probable; as our Saviour was so enfeebled by mode of treating prisoners:–7. Depriving them of sight.- this scourging, that he afterwards had not strength enough 8. Cutting or plucking off the hair.-9. Ercommunication. left to enable him to drag his cross to Calvary. Among the -II. Capital PuNISHMENTS.–1. Slaying with the sword. Jews, the punishment of scourging involved no sort of igno2. Stoning.–3. Burning to death.4. Decapitation.-5. miny, which could make the sufferer infamous or an object Precipitation.—6. Drowning.–7. Bruising in a mortar.- of reproach to his fellow-citizens. It consisted merely in the
physical sense of the pain.8 ? As the Jewish law inficted such heavy punishinents on those who com. mitted fornication and adultery, it is probable, from Prov. ii. 16., that the punishment inflicted for corporal injuries to another,cye for
2. RETALIATION, or the returning of like for like, was the them in'o impurity and ido atry, and who might be tolerated in some cor- eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot. (Exod. xxi. supy periods of their s'ate. The case was the saine at Athens, where foreign 24.) It appears, however, to have been rarely, if ever,
Hence the term strange women, came to be applied to all bad women, whether foreigners or Israelites. Orton's Exposi. Lion, vol. v. p.
• Michaelis's Commentaries, vol. iv. p. 371. vol. iii. pp. 404. 400—402. · Vol. iv. pp. 163-203.
; The general authorities for this section are, Schulzii Archeologia He. 6 In inflicting the punishment of whipping, the Jews sometimes, for noto. braica, pp. 82-92 Calinet, Dissertation sur les Supplices des Hebreux, rious offences, tied sharp bones, pieces of lead, or thorns to the end of the Dissert. tom. i. pp. 241-276.; Brunings, Antiq. Hebr. pp. 107-114. ; Alber, thongs, called by the Greeks ootprysed wines Toy 25, Nagra tarillata ; llerineneul. Vet. Test. toin. i. pp. 227-233. C. B. Michaelis, de judiciis, but in ihe Scriptures termed scorpions. To these Rehoboam alludes in poenisque capitalibus Hebræorum, in Pou's and Ruperti's Sylloge Couninen. 1 Kings xii. 11.--Burder's Oriental Literature, vol. I. p. 414. tationum, vol. iv. pp. 177-19.; Jahn, Archæologia Biblica, $ 249--265. ; 1 Cited by Dr. Lightfool, Works, vol. i. p. 961. folio edit. Ackermann, Archæologia Biblica, $$ 243-208.
: Michaelis's Commentaries, vol iii. pp. 444–448.
harlo's were tolerated.
8 Ant. Jud. lib. iv. c. 8. $11.