You shall not defraud your neighbor, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with you all night until the morning.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Thou shalt not defraud.—Here oppression by fraud and oppression by violence are forbidden. It is probably in allusion to this passage that John the Baptist warned the soldiers who came to him: “And he said to them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages” (Luke 3:14).
The wages of him that is hired.—From the declaration in the next clause, which forbids the retention of the wages over night, it is evident that the day labourer is here spoken of. As he is dependent upon his wages for the support of himself and his family, the Law protects him by enjoining that the earnings of the hireling should be promptly paid. This benign care for the labourer, and the denunciation against any attempt to defraud him, are again and again repeated in the Scriptures (Deuteronomy 24:14-15; Jeremiah 32:13; Malachi 3:5; James 5:4). Hence the humane interpretation which obtained of this law during the second Temple: “He who treats a hireling with harshness sins as grievously as if he hath taken away life, and transgresses five precepts.”Leviticus 19:11 forbids injuries perpetrated by craft; Leviticus 19:13, those perpetrated by violence or power, the conversion of might into right. In Leviticus 19:13 "defraud" should rather be, oppress. The wages, Heb. the work, put for the wages, as Deu 24:15 Job 7:2 Jeremiah 22:13. Shall not abide with thee all night, because his urgent necessities require it for present subsistence.
the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning; unless he that is hired agrees to it; for then it may be kept two or three days, or a week, or for whatsoever time may be agreed upon between them: this must be understood of one that is hired by the day, whose wages are due at night, and who may want his money to buy food for his family, and therefore should not without his consent be detained from him; and not of one that is hired by the week, or by the year, whose wages are not due until the end of the week or year for which he is hired; and the Jewish writers (y) observe, that this Scripture speaks of a day hireling, or a day labourer, whose wages became due at night; as another Scripture, Deuteronomy 24:15; speaks of a night hireling, or a night labourer, whose hire is not due until the pillar of the morning arises, or the sun is up, and therefore it must be paid him before it goes down; to detain the wages of such, or defraud them of it, is a very crying sin; see Jeremiah 22:13.Thou shalt not defraud thy neighbor, neither rob him: the wages of him that is hired shall not abide with thee all night until the morning.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)13, 14. Cp. Deuteronomy 24:14-15; Malachi 3:5; James 5:4. Precepts expressed in 2nd pers. sing. against unjust dealing, and taking advantage of a neighbour’s infirmities. Though the deaf cannot hear, the curse must not be uttered, and the helpless condition of the blind calls for protection and the removal of stumblingblocks (cp. Deuteronomy 27:18). Cp. Job’s description of his conduct, ‘I was eyes to the blind’ (Job 29:15).Verse 13. - Cheating and stealing are again forbidden, and, together with these, other forms of oppression although legal. The command to pay labourers their hire promptly - which covers also the case of paying tradesmen promptly - is repeated in Deuteronomy 24:14 (cf. James 5:4). Leviticus 7:15-18 is emphatically repeated, and transgressors are threatened with extermination. On the singular ישּׂא in Leviticus 19:8, see at Genesis 27:29, and for the expression "shall be cut off," Genesis 17:14.
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