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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Deuteronomy 22




Deuteronomy 12-26, 28. A code of laws (Deuteronomy 1-26) followed by promises to the obedient and threats of punishment for the rest (Deuteronomy 28): see Introd., p. 231. The great Deuteronomic law of one sanctuary is taught or implied in Deuteronomy 12:1 to Deuteronomy 19:13 and hardly in any other part of Dt. This section may, therefore, represent essentially the original Deuteronomic code (see Introd.).

Verses 1-12

Deuteronomy 22:1-4. See Exodus 23:4 f.* (JE) and Leviticus 6:1-7* (P), and cf. CH. 9-13.

Deuteronomy 22:5. Peculiar to Dt. In one of the rites of Canaanite, Phœnician, and Syrian heathenism the sexes changed dresses (see references in Driver).

Deuteronomy 22:6 f. Respect for parenthood, so prominent in Dt. (Deuteronomy 21:18-21, cf. Deuteronomy 5:16) is the probable source of this law (peculiar to Dt.).

Deuteronomy 22:8. Another example of the hunianitarianism (Deuteronomy 15:12-18*) so characteiistic of Dt. In the East people spend much of their evenings on the flat roof of their houses (Judges 16:27, 1 Samuel 9:25, 2 Samuel 11:2, etc.). They were used for religious ceremonies (Nehemiah 8:16, Jeremiah 19:13, Zephaniah 1:5) and for private prayer (Acts 10:9). Without such a parapet as is here prescribed, accidents would be common. The present writer has spent many a social evening in Palestine on such a house-top, always protected by a parapet or surrounding wall.—blood: Deuteronomy 19:10.

Deuteronomy 22:9-11. Leviticus 19:19* (H).

Deuteronomy 22:12. See Numbers 15:37-41*.—fringes: an inaccurate rendering due to LXX (cf. Matthew 9:20, "hem") [RV, "border"]. What is meant is a kind of tassel found still attached to the Jewish talith or prayer-shawl.

Verses 13-30

Deuteronomy 22:13-30. Sins against Pure Marriages.

Deuteronomy 22:14. tokens of virginity: their absence is now known not to be necessarily a proof of pre-nuptial unchastity, though the ancient peoples held the contrary, as some peoples do still (see J. D. Michaelis, The Laws of Moses, i. p. 478ff.; Burckhardt, The Bedouins, etc., p. 62f.; Westermarck, History of Human Marriage, p. 123f.). The severe punishment for unchastity before (Deuteronomy 22:21) and after (Deuteronomy 22:22-29) marriage shows the uncompromising attitude of Dt. towards sexual sins—a striking contrast to the prevailing customs of surrounding nations: why the difference?

Deuteronomy 22:22. See Leviticus 18:20*, cf. CH, 129.

Deuteronomy 22:23 f. In CH ( 130) the man is put to death, the woman set free.

Deuteronomy 22:28 f. See Exodus 22:16 f.* (JE).

Deuteronomy 22:30. See Leviticus 18:8*, Leviticus 20:11 (H).—skirt: bedsheet; in Leviticus 18:8, "nakedness." Among the ancient Hebrews a man inherited his father's wives and concubines as his other property (Genesis 35:22; Genesis 49:4, etc.), cf. W. R. Smith, Kinship2, p. 104f.


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 22:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 20th, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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