Leviticus 26:21
And if you walk contrary to me, and will not listen to me; I will bring seven times more plagues on you according to your sins.
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(21) And if ye walk contrary unto me.—That is, continue the defiance of the Divine law, and rebel against God’s authority. The third warning, contained in Leviticus 26:21-22, threatens them with destruction by wild beasts.

Seven times more plagues.—That is, a still greater number. (See Leviticus 26:18.)

According to your sins.—This increased number of scourges will be in proportion to their sins, since their defiance, in spite of the two preceding classes of punishments, aggravates and enhances their guilt.

Leviticus 26:21. If ye walk contrary to me — Hebrews קרי, keri, from קרה, karah, it happened. If ye walk with me by accident, or chance, or, as it happens. The ancient versions, however, favour our translation: according to which rendering, the word implies contumacy, or continuing to rebel against God after he should chastise them for their sins, Job 15:25. The Jews follow the other sense, and expound it of those who, when they are afflicted by God, look on their sufferings as casual and contingent things, rather than as divine chastisements, to correct, amend, and bring them to repentance. Seven times more plagues — I will visit your obstinate impenitence with new and more grievous plagues.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.The third warning is the multiplication of destructive animals, etc. Compare Deuteronomy 32:24; Ezekiel 5:17; Ezekiel 14:15; Judges 5:6-7; Isaiah 33:8.19. I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass—No figures could have been employed to convey a better idea of severe and long-continued famine. Contrary unto me, or, carelessly or heedlessly with me, or

before me, i.e. so as to be careless and unconcerned whether you please me or offend me. This is opposed to exact and circumspect walking with God, as Abraham did, Genesis 17:1, and all are to do, Ephesians 5:15. And if ye walk contrary unto me,.... To his mind and will, to his laws, commands, and ordinances, showing no regard unto them by a walk and conversation agreeably to them, but neglecting and breaking them continually; or by chance, as the Targum of Jonathan, not with any intention and design to obey the Lord, and to honour and glorify him, but in a careless and indifferent manner, having no regard to the law of God, only now and then, as it happens, act according to it, but having no concern for the honour and glory of God:

and will not hearken unto me; to his voice in his laws and his precepts, or by his prophets, exhorting them to obedience to them:

I will bring seven times more plagues upon you, according to your sins; greater and sorer punishments still, and these more frequently repeated, and in proportion to their transgressions of his righteous laws.

And if ye walk {k} contrary unto me, and will not hearken unto me; I will bring seven times more plagues upon you according to your sins.

(k) Or as some read, by fortune, imputing my plagues to chance and fortune.

21. plagues] See on Leviticus 13:2.Verses 21, 22. - Punishment in its third degree. I will also send wild beasts among you, which shall rob you of your children, and destroy your cattle, and make you few in number. So in the case of the Assyrians transported to Palestine, "At the beginning of their dwelling there, they feared not the Lord: therefore the Lord sent lions among them, which slew some of them" (2 Kings 17:25) - and your high ways shall be desolate. Cf. Judges 5:6, "In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were unoccupied, and the travelers walked through byways." The 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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