Leviticus 26:14
But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments;
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(14) But if ye will not hearken unto me.—The glowing promises of blessings for obedience are now followed by a catalogue of calamities of the most appalling nature, which will overtake the Israelites if they disobey the Divine commandments. The first degree of punishment with which this verse begins extends to Leviticus 26:17.

Leviticus 26:14. If ye will not hearken, &c. — If, notwithstanding these great promises, which were designed to work upon their gratitude and obedience, they should generally become transgressors of his laws, God threatens that they should be visited with as extraordinary plagues; with poverty and vexation at home, and alarms of war and destruction from foreign enemies, such as would dispirit and rob them of all true comfort, even in the land of promise.

26:14-39 After God has set the blessing before them which would make them a happy people if they would be obedient, he here sets the curse before them, the evils which would make them miserable, if they were disobedient. Two things would bring ruin. 1. A contempt of God's commandments. They that reject the precept, will come at last to renounce the covenant. 2. A contempt of his corrections. If they will not learn obedience by the things they suffer, God himself would be against them; and this is the root and cause of all their misery. And also, The whole creation would be at war with them. All God's sore judgments would be sent against them. The threatenings here are very particular, they were prophecies, and He that foresaw all their rebellions, knew they would prove so. TEMPORAL judgments are threatened. Those who will not be parted from their sins by the commands of God, shall be parted from them by judgments. Those wedded to their lusts, will have enough of them. SPIRITUAL judgments are threatened, which should seize the mind. They should find no acceptance with God. A guilty conscience would be their continual terror. It is righteous with God to leave those to despair of pardon, who presume to sin; and it is owing to free grace, if we are not left to pine away in the iniquity we were born in, and have lived in.Bring forth the old because of the new - Rather, clear away the old before the new; that is, in order to make room for the latter. Compare the margin reference.Le 26:14-39. A Curse to the Disobedient.

14, 15. But if ye will not hearken unto me, &c.—In proportion to the great and manifold privileges bestowed upon the Israelites would be the extent of their national criminality and the severity of their national punishments if they disobeyed.

No text from Poole on this verse.

But if ye will not hearken unto me,.... To his commandments, as the rule of their duty, and to his promises, as an encouragement to it, or to his prophets and ministers, explaining and enforcing his law, and exhorting to a cheerful obedience to it; so the Targum of Jonathan,"if ye will not hearken to the doctrine of them that teach my laws;''which was the sin of the Jews in later times, for which captivity and other calamities befell them, Jeremiah 7:25,

and will not do all these commandments; which he had delivered to them by Moses, whether moral, ceremonial, or judicial, recorded in this book and in the preceding; even all of them were to be respected, attended to, and performed, for the law curses everyone that does not do all things it requires, Galatians 3:10.

But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments;
14–39. The penalties that shall ensue, if Israel prove disobedient (Cp. Deuteronomy 28:15 ff.)

They are arranged in five groups, viz. (a) Leviticus 26:16-18, (b) Leviticus 26:19-20, (c) Leviticus 26:21; Leviticus 26:32, (d) Leviticus 26:23-26, (e) Leviticus 26:27-39, overthrow and exile of the nation.

Verses 14-17. - Punishment in its first degree. Terror, consumption, - that is, wasting - and the burning ague, that shall consume the eyes, and cause sorrow of heart: - a proverbial expression for great distress (see 1 Samuel 2:33) - and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it (see Jeremiah 5:17, and Micah 6:15, "Thou shalt sow, but thou shalt not reap; thou shalt tread the olives, but thou shalt not anoint thee with oil")... and ye shall be slain before your enemies (as took place often in their after history, see Judges 2:14; Judges 3:8; Judges 4:2); they that hate you shall reign - that is, rule - over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you. Leviticus 26:14The Curse for Contempt of the Law. - The following judgments are threatened, not for single breaches of the law, but for contempt of all the laws, amounting to inward contempt of the divine commandments and a breach of the covenant (Leviticus 26:14, Leviticus 26:15), - for presumptuous and obstinate rebellion, therefore, against God and His commandments. For this, severe judgments are announced, which were to be carried to their uttermost in a fourfold series, if the hardening were obstinately continued. If Israel acted in opposition to the Lord in the manner stated, He would act towards them as follows (Leviticus 26:16, Leviticus 26:17): He would appoint over them בּחלה terror, - a general notion, which is afterwards particularized as consisting of diseases, sowing without enjoying the fruit, defeat in war, and flight before their enemies. Two kinds of disease are mentioned by which life is destroyed: consumption and burning, i.e., burning fever, πυρετός, febris, which cause the eyes (the light of this life) to disappear, and the soul (the life itself) to pine away; whereas in Exodus 23:25; Exodus 15:26, preservation from diseases is promised for obedience to the law. Of these diseases, consumption is at present very rare in Palestine and Syria, though it occurs in more elevated regions; but burning fever is one of the standing diseases. To these there would be added the invasion of the land by enemies, so that they would labour in vain and sow their seed to no purpose, for their enemies would consume the produce, as actually was the case (e.g., Judges 6:3-4).
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