If the bright spot be white in the skin of his flesh, and in sight be not deeper than the skin, and the hair thereof be not turned white; then the priest shall shut up him that has the plague seven days:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)If the bright spot be white.—But if upon inspection there merely appeared a white spot in the skin, and the above named two symptoms were absent, the case was not to be decided.
Then the priest shall shut up him that hath the plague.—The individual thus suspected was to be separated from the rest of the community for seven days, during which time it would be seen whether it actually developed itself into this disorder. According to the canons which obtained during the second Temple, if a bridegroom was seized with this distemper he could not be shut up during the nuptial week. It will be seen that the words “him that hath” are in italics, thus indicating that they are not in the text; but “plague” here, as we have seen in Leviticus 13:3, denotes plagued person.Leviticus 13:4. Seven days — For greater assurance; to teach ministers not to be hasty in their judgments, but diligently to search and examine all things beforehand. The plague is here put in the original for the man that hath the plague.
the plague in sight be deeper than the skin of his flesh - Rather The stroke appears to be deeper than the scarf skin. The bright spot changed to a brownish color with a metallic or oily luster, and with a clearly-defined edge. This symptom, along with the whitish hair, at once decided the case to be one of leprosy.
The plague is here put for the man that hath the plague, as pride is put for a proud man, Jeremiah 50:31, and dreams for the dreamers, Jeremiah 27:9. Leviticus 13:2,
and in sight be not deeper than the skin, and the hair thereof be not turned white; though it be a bright spot, and be very white, yet these two marks not appearing, it cannot be judged a leprosy, at most it is only suspicious: wherefore
then the priest, shall shut up him that hath the plague seven days; in whom the bright spot is, and of whom there is a suspicion of the plague of leprosy, but it is not certain; and therefore, in order to take time, and get further knowledge, the person was to be shut up from all company and conversation for the space of seven days; by which time it might be supposed, as Ben Gersom observes, that the case and state of the leprosy (if it was one) would be altered; and Aben Ezra remarks, that most diseases change or alter on the seventh day.If the bright spot be white in the skin of his flesh, and in sight be not deeper than the skin, and the hair thereof be not turned white; then the priest shall shut up him that hath the plague seven days:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)4. If any of the symptoms are not found, the man is to be shut up seven days and again examined.Verses 4-8. - In case the symptoms are not decisive, then the priest shall shut up him that hath the plague seven days. The words thus translated would perhaps be better rendered, then the priest shall bind up the part affected for seven days. The priest is to delay his judgment for a week, and, if necessary, for a second week, during which period the patient is, according to the rendering, either to be confined to his house or, more probably, to have the spot bandaged. Whether the disease be or be not leprosy will probably have declared itself by the end of that time; and if the plague be somewhat dark on the fourteenth day, that is, if it has begun to lose its colour and to fade away, and has not spread in the skin, the priest is to decide that it is not real leprosy, and pronounce the man clean. He is still, however, to be kept under supervision, and if the spot is found to spread, he is to be pronounced unclean, as it is proved to be a leprosy. Leviticus 23:12; Numbers 6:12, Numbers 6:14; Numbers 7:15, Numbers 7:21, etc.), is used interchangeably with שׁנה בּן (Exodus 12:5), and with שׁנה בּני in the plural (Leviticus 23:18-19; Exodus 29:38; Numbers 7:17, Numbers 7:23, Numbers 7:29). דּמים דּמור, fountain of bleeding (see at Genesis 4:10), equivalent to hemorrhage (cf. Leviticus 20:18). The purification by bathing and washing is not specially mentioned, as being a matter of course; nor is anything stated with reference to the communication of her uncleanness to persons who touched either her or her couch, since the instructions with regard to the period of menstruation no doubt applied to the first seven and fourteen days respectively. For her restoration to the Lord and His sanctuary, she was to come and be cleansed with a sin-offering and a burnt-offering, on account of the uncleanness in which the sin of nature had manifested itself; because she had been obliged to absent herself in consequence for a whole week from the sanctuary and fellowship of the Lord. But as this purification had reference, not to any special moral guilt, but only to sin which had been indirectly manifested in her bodily condition, a pigeon was sufficient for the sin-offering, that is to say, the smallest of the bleeding sacrifices; whereas a yearling lamb was required for a burnt-offering, to express the importance and strength of her surrender of herself to the Lord after so long a separation from Him. But in cases of great poverty a pigeon might be substituted for the lamb (Leviticus 12:8, cf. Leviticus 5:7, Leviticus 5:11).
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