|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
13:18-44 The priest is told what judgment to make, if there were any appearance of a leprosy in old sores; and such is the danger of those who having escaped the pollutions of the world are again entangled therein. Or, in a burn by accident, ver. 24. The burning of strife and contention often occasions the rising and breaking out of that corruption, which proves that men are unclean. Human life lies exposed to many grievances. With what troops of diseases are we beset on every side; and thy all entered by sin! If the constitution be healthy, and the body lively and easy, we are bound to glorify God with our bodies. Particular note was taken of the leprosy, if in the head. If the leprosy of sin has seized the head; if the judgment be corrupted, and wicked principles, which support wicked practices, are embraced, it is utter uncleanness, from which few are cleansed. Soundness in the faith keeps leprosy from the head.
Verses 40-44. - Leprosy appearing on the bald head. Though leprosy makes the hair drop off around the leprous spot, baldness is in itself no sign of leprosy, whether at the back or front of the head (verses 40, 41); but as the bald head is a not unusual place for the leprous spot to appear, any eruption upon it is therefore to be watched and tested as before.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the man whose hair is fallen off his head,.... That is, from the back part of his head, from the crown of his head toward his neck behind:
he is bald; in that spot of the head where the hair is fallen off; and it denotes such a baldness as is occasioned by that, for it signifies one that had hair, but it is fallen off; whereas the baldness after spoken of is thought by some to be of such who never had any hair; though others will have it, that this intends a person bald all over; but it seems plain from what follows, that it designs one whose hair was fallen off behind, and was bald on that part only; and it may be observed, that this is only said of a man, not of a woman, because, as Aben Ezra remarks, she has much moisture in her, and therefore her head does not become bald; hair being like to grass, which flourishes in moist places:
yet is he clean; from the leprosy, or from the scalls, as Jarchi observes, because he is not judged by the signs of the head and beard, which are the place of hair, but by the signs of leprosy in the skin of the flesh, i.e. by the raw flesh and spreading.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
40, 41. bald … forehead bald—The falling off of the hair, when the baldness commences in the back part of the head, is another symptom which creates a suspicion of leprosy. But it was not of itself a decisive sign unless taken in connection with other tokens, such as a "sore of a reddish white color" [Le 13:43]. The Hebrews as well as other Orientals were accustomed to distinguish between the forehead baldness, which might be natural, and that baldness which might be the consequence of disease.
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