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Ezra’s Indignation at Intermarriages with the Heathen
1. The Canaanites, etc.] In the Law it was only with the various Canaanite nations that marriage was altogether forbidden (Exodus 34:12-16; Deuteronomy 7:1-3). David was descended from a union between an Israelite and a Moabitess (Ruth 1:4; Ruth 4:17), and Solomon had married an Egyptian princess without reproach (1 Kings 3:1). But the principle which excluded alliances with certain nations was doubtless felt to be applicable to others also, and Solomon’s marriages with women of the Moabites and Ammonites had certainly been attended with calamitous results (1 Kings 11:1-2).
3. Plucked off the hair] Baldness artificially produced was a sign of mourning: Isaiah 15:2; Isaiah 22:12; Jeremiah 16:6; Amos 8:10; Job 1:20.
8. A nail] a figure for security: cp. Isaiah 22:23. In his holy place] i.e. Jerusalem: cp. Psalms 24:3; Isaiah 56:7; Isaiah 57:13.
9. We were bondmen] RV ’we are bondmen’: i.e. subjects of the Persians: cp. Nehemiah 9:36. A wall] i.e. protection (RM ’a fence’).
11. The filthiness of the people] The iniquity of the Canaanite peoples, whose land Israel had taken in possession, is alluded to in Genesis 15:16; Deuteronomy 9:5: cp. also 1 Kings 21:26.
13. Such deliverance] RV ’such a remnant.’
15. For we.. escaped] better, ’for we are left but a remnant that is escaped.’ God’s righteousness had been vindicated by the almost complete destruction of the guilty people; but His mercy had been manifested in the survival of a few who were now imperilling themselves by fresh offences.
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Ezra 9". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 8 / Ordinary 13