1 Corinthians 9:9
Parallel Verses
New International Version
For it is written in the Law of Moses: "Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain." Is it about oxen that God is concerned?

New Living Translation
For the law of Moses says, "You must not muzzle an ox to keep it from eating as it treads out the grain." Was God thinking only about oxen when he said this?

English Standard Version
For it is written in the Law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain.” Is it for oxen that God is concerned?

New American Standard Bible
For it is written in the Law of Moses, "YOU SHALL NOT MUZZLE THE OX WHILE HE IS THRESHING." God is not concerned about oxen, is He?

King James Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses, Do not muzzle an ox while it treads out grain. Is God really concerned with oxen?

International Standard Version
For in the Law of Moses it is written, "You must not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain." God is not only concerned about oxen, is he?

NET Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses, "Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain." God is not concerned here about oxen, is he?

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For it is written in The Law of Moses, “Do not muzzle the ox that treads.” Does God concern himself with oxen?

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Moses' Teachings say, "Never muzzle an ox when it is threshing grain." God's concern isn't for oxen.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treads out the grain. Does God take care for oxen?

King James 2000 Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses, You shall not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treads out the grain. Does God care for oxen?

American King James Version
For it is written in the law of Moses, You shall not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treads out the corn. Does God take care for oxen?

American Standard Version
For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn. Is it for the oxen that God careth,

Douay-Rheims Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses: Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?

Darby Bible Translation
For in the law of Moses it is written, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that is treading out corn. Is God occupied about the oxen,

English Revised Version
For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn. Is it for the oxen that God careth,

Webster's Bible Translation
For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?

Weymouth New Testament
For in the Law of Moses it is written, "Thou shalt not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain."

World English Bible
For it is written in the law of Moses, "You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain." Is it for the oxen that God cares,

Young's Literal Translation
for in the law of Moses it hath been written, 'thou shalt not muzzle an ox treading out corn;' for the oxen doth God care?
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

9:1-14 It is not new for a minister to meet with unkind returns for good-will to a people, and diligent and successful services among them. To the cavils of some, the apostle answers, so as to set forth himself as an example of self-denial, for the good of others. He had a right to marry as well as other apostles, and to claim what was needful for his wife, and his children if he had any, from the churches, without labouring with his own hands to get it. Those who seek to do our souls good, should have food provided for them. But he renounced his right, rather than hinder his success by claiming it. It is the people's duty to maintain their minister. He may wave his right, as Paul did; but those transgress a precept of Christ, who deny or withhold due support.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 9. - In the Law of Moses (Deuteronomy 25:4). He uses the same argument again in 1 Timothy 5:19. The mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn; rather, an ox while treading out the corn. The flail was not unknown, but a common mode of threshing was to let oxen tread the corn on the threshing floor. Doth God take care for oxen? Certainly he does; and St. Paul can hardly mean to imply that he does not, seeing that tenderness for the brute creation is a distinguishing characteristic of the Mosaic legislation (Exodus 23:12, 19; Deuteronomy 22:6, 7, 10, etc.). If St. Paul had failed to perceive this truth, he must have learnt it at least from Psalm 145:15, 16; Jonah 4:11. Even the Greeks showed by their proverb that they could pity the hunger of the poor beasts of burden starving in the midst of plenty. It is, however, a tendency of all Semitic idiom verbally to exclude or negative the inferior alternative. St. Paul did not intend to say, "God has no care for oxen;" for he knew that "his tender mercies are over all his works:" he only meant in Semitic fashion to say that the precept was much more important in its human application; and herein he consciously or unconsciously adopts the tone of Philo's comment on the same passage ('De Victim Offerentibus,' § 1), that, for present purposes, oxen might be left out of account. The rabbinic Midrash, which gave this turn to the passage, was happier and wiser than most specimens of their exegesis. St. Paul sets the typico allegorical interpretation above the literal in this instance (comp. 1 Timothy 5:18), because he regards it as the more important. It is a specimen of the common Jewish exegetic method of a fortiori or minori ad magus. Luther's curious comment is: "God cares for all things; but he does not care that anything should be written for oxen, because they cannot read"!

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For it is written in the law of Moses,.... Deuteronomy 25:4

Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. The manner of threshing, or beating out the corn among the Jews, was not the same with ours; it was not done by the flail, at least not always, but by the means of oxen; and by these not only treading upon it to and fro, but drawing a wooden instrument after them, the bottom of which was stuck with iron teeth, and the top of it filled with stones, to press it down close by the weight thereof; the sheaves put in proper form, the oxen were led to and fro upon them, drawing this threshing instrument after them, by which means the grain was separated from the husk and ear (g); see Isaiah 41:15 The learned Beckius (h) has given us a figure of this instrument, and the manner of using it: now according to this law, whilst the ox was thus employed, its mouth was not to be muzzled, but it might freely eat of the corn it trod upon, excepting, the Jews say (i), what was dedicated to sacred uses. They give many rules relating to this law, and particularly observe, that it is to be extended to all sorts of creatures, as well as the ox, and to all sorts of business (k); and that what is said of the ox, is much more to be observed with respect to men (l); and which agrees with the apostle's reasoning here:

doth God take care for oxen? yes, he does, and for creatures of less importance than they, even the fowls of the air, and the most worthless of them, sparrows, two of which are sold for a farthing; but not for them only, nor principally, but chiefly for men.

(g) Ben Melec. in 2 Samuel 12.31. & Jarchi in Isaiah 41.1, 5. (h) Not. in Targum in 1 Chronicles 20.3. p. 210. Vid. Surenhusii Biblos Kattallages, p. 535. (i) Maimon. & Bartenora in Misn. Meilah, c. sect. 6. & Trumot, c. 9. sect. 3.((k) Jarchi in loc. Maimon. Hilch. Shecirot, c. 13. sect. 1, 2, 3. Moses Kotsensis Mitzot Tora, pr. neg. 184. & affirm. 91. (l) T. Bab. Bava Metzia, fol. 88. 2.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

9. ox … treadeth … corn—(De 25:4). In the East to the present day they do not after reaping carry the sheaves home to barns as we do, but take them to an area under the open air to be threshed by the oxen treading them with their feet, or else drawing a threshing instrument over them (compare Mic 4:13).

Doth God … care for oxen?—rather, "Is it for the oxen that God careth?" Is the animal the ultimate object for whose sake this law was given? No. God does care for the lower animal (Ps 36:6; Mt 10:29), but it is with the ultimate aim of the welfare of man, the head of animal creation. In the humane consideration shown for the lower animal, we are to learn that still more ought it to be exercised in the case of man, the ultimate object of the law; and that the human (spiritual as well as temporal) laborer is worthy of his hire.

1 Corinthians 9:9 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Rights of the Apostles
8I am not speaking these things according to human judgment, am I? Or does not the Law also say these things? 9For it is written in the Law of Moses, "YOU SHALL NOT MUZZLE THE OX WHILE HE IS THRESHING." God is not concerned about oxen, is He? 10Or is He speaking altogether for our sake? Yes, for our sake it was written, because the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing the crops.…
Cross References
Deuteronomy 22:1
If you see your fellow Israelite's ox or sheep straying, do not ignore it but be sure to take it back to its owner.

Deuteronomy 25:4
Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain.

Proverbs 12:10
The righteous care for the needs of their animals, but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.

Romans 4:23
The words "it was credited to him" were written not for him alone,

1 Timothy 5:18
For Scripture says, "Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain," and "The worker deserves his wages."
Treasury of Scripture

For it is written in the law of Moses, You shall not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treads out the corn. Does God take care for oxen?

Thou.

Deuteronomy 25:4 You shall not muzzle the ox when he treads out the corn.

1 Timothy 5:18 For the scripture said, You shall not muzzle the ox that treads out …

Doth.

Numbers 22:28-35 And the LORD opened the mouth of the donkey, and she said to Balaam, …

Deuteronomy 5:14 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you …

Psalm 104:27 These wait all on you; that you may give them their meat in due season.

Psalm 145:15,16 The eyes of all wait on you; and you give them their meat in due season…

Psalm 147:8,9 Who covers the heaven with clouds, who prepares rain for the earth, …

Jonah 4:11 And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city…

Matthew 6:26-30 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, …

Luke 12:24-28 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither …

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