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Bible Commentaries

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
Deuteronomy 19



Verses 1-21

Deuteronomy 19:14. Thou shalt not remove thy neighbour’s landmark. This prohibition was salutary in preserving the public peace; it also extended to the removal of the boundaries between the tribes, as fixed by Joshua; and Josephus adds, the boundaries of the neighbouring nations. Ah, how many are the boundaries which the divine legislator was obliged to fix against the avarice and covetousness of man.

Deuteronomy 19:15. One witness, who is clear and pure, ought to be sufficient. But such is the party wickedness of men, and such their malice, that in cases of life and death, it is safer to require two witnesses.

Deuteronomy 19:19. Then shall ye do unto him as he had thought to have done to his brother. This is called a just judgment. Our courts abound with false- swearing, because we allow the perjured to escape punishment: yet they sometimes get exposed in the court.


In addition to what is said in Numbers 35. respecting the manslayer, it is worthy of remark, that however innocent he might be of wilful murder, his exile was a punishment which tended to make all men cautious of fighting with their neighbours, and very much awed the passions of brutish and vulgar men.

In the prohibition of mitigating the punishment of the murderer, we see the greatness of his crime, which is to be abhorred and detested by all persons who desire to love God, and all his creatures. Nevertheless the kings of Israel exercised the power of pardoning on some occasions. David forgiving the widow’s son of Tekoah, was obliged at the same time to pardon Absalom his son. In the last case the royal clemency was awfully abused; and there are few cases indeed in which it can be exercised with safety to national justice.


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Bibliography Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 19:4". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. 1835.

Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, January 21st, 2020
the Second Week after Epiphany
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