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The subject in this Chapter is similar to the former. Here are laws of direction, for the punishment of evil-doers: respecting the ox in his labour: the disgrace of him that refuseth to build up his brother's name: the punishment of the immodest woman: laws respecting weights and measures: a precept for the blotting out the memory of Amalek.
No doubt in all instances, strict examination took place before punishment. The limitation of the number of stripes prevented the effects of rigour. The Jews have a tradition, that while the stripes were laying on, the judge of the court read those words of scripture; Deuteronomy 28:58-59 , and Deuteronomy 29:9 . And in after ages, Psalms 78:38 . The apostle Paul tells us, that he suffered this punishment to the extreme point five times. 2 Corinthians 11:24 . But what saith another apostle on the subject; 1 Peter 4:13-14 .
Paul hath given the best comment upon this passage. 1 Corinthians 9:9-10 .
I venture to think that this precept had in it somewhat more, than merely what is contained in the obvious letter of it. If it be remembered, that the promise of the woman's seed, bruising the serpent's head, had not in those early ages been so clearly and fully revealed, in what stock or tribe the promised seed should spring, this will serve to show, why it was that the whole nation of the Jews were so very anxious to have children. And, therefore, the preserving the name in Israel was principally with this view. But if we turn to the example of Boaz, in the case of Ruth, where this precept was fully carried into effect, and read what the HOLY GHOST hath been pleased to record concerning this thing: and if we do not forget, at the same time, that Boaz after the flesh, was a progenitor of the LORD JESUS CHRIST; the subject will then open to our view in all its glory. See Ruth 3:9 , to the end, and Ruth 4:0 throughout. Blessed JESUS! thou art indeed our near kinsman, our GOD-Redeemer! and thou hast not only married our nature, but hast redeemed our mortgaged inheritance, when all other brethren were incompetent to do it.
For the honor of women, we should hope this precept was seldom violated, or the punishment made necessary.
It were much to be wished that these precepts were kept in view by all persons concerned in trade.
This short account of Amalek, and the punishment of that people, comes in very properly upon the close of the foregoing precepts; for it was both a just weight and just measure, that Israel should requite Amalek, for his conduct towards them on their first coming out of Egypt. Exodus 17:14-16 . It is worthy remark, how Saul offended the LORD, at least four hundred years after this appointment, in not fully following up the precept: see 1 Samuel 15:2-9 . But, I would have the Reader look a little further, than to the mere history of Amalek, and view in it somewhat typical of GOD'S people, in their conflicts with the enemies of their salvation, in all ages. Amalek, represents all those foes of our souls, which oppose us as Amalek did Israel, the moment GOD is bringing us out of spiritual Egypt. Hence Reader! behold the propriety of utterly destroying them from under heaven. LORD! I would say, enable me to slay all my lusts, all the corruptions both within and without; all the powers of darkness, and of the world, which oppose my way to thee, thou blessed JESUS!
I DESIRE grace to bless my compassionate GOD, that my stripes have fallen far short of my sins, and I may truly say to my soul with one of old, Know, therefore, that GOD hath exacted of thee less than thy iniquity deserved. It is thou, dearest JESUS, who hath been wounded for my transgressions, and bruised for my iniquities; the chastisement of my peace was upon thee, and with thy stripes I have been healed. LORD! grant me the teachings of thine HOLY SPIRIT, that in all thy dealings with men, I may bring no reproach upon thy cause, nor have divers weights and divers measures, but a just balance, which is thy delight. And for all the Amalekites and enemies of my salvation. LORD! endue me with strength and holy resolution, that mine eye may not spare, however delicately they may seem, but by the arm of my GOD, may I hew them in pieces before the LORD my Saviour.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 25". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 13 / Ordinary 18