Leviticus 13:40
And the man whose hair is fallen off his head, he is bald; yet is he clean.
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(40) And the man whose hair is fallen off—Better, And if a man loseth the hair of his head. The sixth and last case, discussed in Leviticus 13:40-44, is leprosy either at the back or in the front of the head. Though baldness in itself was regarded as a disgrace, and often looked upon as a Divine punishment (2Kings 2:23; Isaiah 3:17; Jeremiah 48:37), yet the simple fact of the mere falling of the hair is not to be taken as a sign of leprosy.

He is bald; yet is he clean.—Better, if he is backhead bald, he is clean. The baldness mentioned in the first part of the verse in general terms is now more minutely specified as consisting of two kinds of baldness.

Leviticus 13:41-42 distinctly show that the word (kērēach), here translated simply “bald” in the Authorised Version, denotes a person who has lost hair from the crown of his head downwards towards the channel of his neck, as the administrators of the law during the second Temple rightly define it, in contradistinction to the fore baldness which immediately follows.

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.Freckled spot - If Leviticus 13:12 refers to the Lepra commonis, the Hebrew בהק bôhaq here may denote some kind of eczema, a skin disease of a somewhat similar external character.

Leviticus 13:38, Leviticus 13:39 would seem more in their natural place between Leviticus 13:17-18.

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. No text from Poole on this verse.

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.

And the man whose hair is fallen off his head, he is bald; yet is he clean.
Baldness in the back or front part of the head (40–44)

This is not in itself a sign of uncleanness, but if in either part a reddish white plague (white reddish sore A. V.) appears, he must be seen by the priest. The word ‘bald’ in Leviticus 13:40 means bald at the back of the head, as distinguished from forehead bald in Leviticus 13:41.

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. Leviticus 13:40The leprosy of bald heads. - קרח is a head bald behind; גּבּח, in front, "bald from the side, or edge of his face, i.e., from the forehead and temples." Bald heads of both kinds were naturally clean.
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