Numbers 5:13
And a man lie with her carnally, and it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and be kept close, and she be defiled, and there be no witness against her, neither she be taken with the manner;
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
5:11-31 This law would make the women of Israel watch against giving cause for suspicion. On the other hand, it would hinder the cruel treatment such suspicions might occasion. It would also hinder the guilty from escaping, and the innocent from coming under just suspicion. When no proof could be brought, the wife was called on to make this solemn appeal to a heart-searching God. No woman, if she were guilty, could say Amen to the adjuration, and drink the water after it, unless she disbelieved the truth of God, or defied his justice. The water is called the bitter water, because it caused the curse. Thus sin is called an evil and a bitter thing. Let all that meddle with forbidden pleasures, know that they will be bitterness in the latter end. From the whole learn, 1. Secret sins are known to God, and sometimes are strangely brought to light in this life; and that there is a day coming when God will, by Christ, judge the secrets of men according to the gospel, Ro 2:16. 2 In particular, Whoremongers and adulterers God will surely judge. Though we have not now the waters of jealousy, yet we have God's word, which ought to be as great a terror. Sensual lusts will end in bitterness. 3. God will manifest the innocency of the innocent. The same providence is for good to some, and for hurt to others. And it will answer the purposes which God intends.The trial of jealousy. Since the crime of adultery is especially defiling and destructive of the very foundations of social order, the whole subject is dealt with at a length proportionate to its importance. The process prescribed has lately been strikingly illustrated from an Egyptian "romance," which refers to the time of Rameses the Great, and may therefore well serve to illustrate the manners and customs of the Mosaic times. This mode of trial, like several other ordinances, was adopted by Moses from existing and probably very ancient and widely spread institutions.12-15. if any man's wife go aside, and commit a trespass against him—This law was given both as a strong discouragement to conjugal infidelity on the part of a wife, and a sufficient protection of her from the consequences of a hasty and groundless suspicion on the part of the husband. His suspicions, however, were sufficient in the absence of witnesses (Le 20:10) to warrant the trial described; and the course of proceeding to be followed was for the jealous husband to bring his wife unto the priest with an offering of barley meal, because none were allowed to approach the sanctuary empty handed (Ex 23:15). On other occasions, there were mingled with the offering, oil which signified joy, and frankincense which denoted acceptance (Ps 141:2). But on the occasion referred to, both these ingredients were to be excluded, partly because it was a solemn appeal to God in distressing circumstances, and partly because it was a sin offering on the part of the wife, who came before God in the character of a real or suspected offender. She utterly denying it, Proverbs 30:20, and none being able and willing to discover it; for if it was witnessed, she was to die for it, Leviticus 20:10 Deu 22:22.

And a man lie with her carnally,.... That is, is suspected that he has so done, not that it is a clear case, for it follows:

and it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and be kept close; so that it is not known by her husband, nor by any other; "she hath hid herself", so Ainsworth, being in a private place with another man, though warned to the contrary by her husband:

and she be defiled, and there be no witness against her; of her being defiled, though there may be of her being in private with such a man:

neither she be taken with the manner; or in the act of uncleanness.

And a man lie with her carnally, and it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and be kept close, and she be defiled, and there be no witness against her, neither she be taken with the manner;
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
13. and be kept close &c.] and she be undetected, though she has defiled herself.

since she was not
taken in the act] On the evidence of two witnesses at least (Deuteronomy 17:6; Deuteronomy 19:15) the woman and the man would be put to death (Leviticus 20:10 (P ), Deuteronomy 22:22); cf. John 8:4 f.

14b. The merest suspicion on the husband’s part might render her liable to the ordeal.

Verse 13. - If it be laid. Or, "if he be hid." This verse is explanatory of the former. Taken with the manner. The latter words are not in the Hebrew. It means no doubt "taken in the act" (cf. John 8:4). Αὐτὴ μὴ ῇ συνειλημμένη, Septuagint. Numbers 5:13If a man's wife went aside, and was guilty of unfaithfulness towards him (Numbers 5:13 is an explanatory clause), through a (another) man having lain with her with emissio seminis, and it was hidden from the eyes of her husband, on account of her having defiled herself secretly, and there being no witness against her, and her not having been taken (in the act); but if, for all that, a spirit of jealousy came upon him, and he was jealous of his wife, and she was defiled,...or she was not defiled: the man was to take his wife to the priest, and bring as her sacrificial gift, on her account, the tenth of an ephah of barley meal, without putting oil or incense, "for it is a meat-offering of jealousy, a meat-offering of memory, to bring iniquity to remembrance." As the woman's crime, of which her husband accused her, was naturally denied by herself, and was neither to be supported by witnesses nor proved by her being taken in the very act, the only way left to determine whether there was any foundation or not for the spirit of jealousy excited in her husband, and to prevent an unrighteous severance of the divinely appointed marriage, was to let the thing be decided by the verdict of God Himself. To this end the man was to bring his wife to the priest with a sacrificial gift, which is expressly called קרבּנהּ, her offering, brought עליה "on her account," that is to say, with a meat-offering, the symbol of the fruit of her walk and conduct before God. Being the sacrificial gift of a wife who had gone aside and was suspected of adultery, this meat-offering could not possess the character of the ordinary meat-offerings, which shadowed forth the fruit of the sanctification of life in good works; could not consist, that is to say, of fine wheaten flour, but only of barley meal. Barley was worth only half as much as wheat (2 Kings 7:1, 2 Kings 7:16, 2 Kings 7:18), so that only the poorer classes, or the people generally in times of great distress, used barley meal as their daily food (Judges 7:13; 2 Kings 4:42; Ezekiel 4:12; John 6:9, John 6:13), whilst those who were better off used it for fodder (1 Kings 5:8). Barley meal was prescribed for this sacrifice, neither as a sign that the adulteress had conducted herself like an irrational animal (Philo, Jonathan, Talm., the Rabb., etc.), nor "because the persons presenting the offering were invoking the punishment of a crime, and not the favour of God" (Cler., Ros.): for the guilt of a woman was not yet established; nor even, taking a milder view of the matter, to indicate that the offerer might be innocent, and in that case no offering at all was required Knobel), but to represent the questionable repute in which the woman stood, or the ambiguous, suspicious character of her conduct. Because such conduct as hers did not proceed from the Spirit of God, and was not carried out in prayer: oil and incense, the symbols of the Spirit of God and prayer, were not to be added to her offering. It was an offering of jealousy (קנאת, an intensive plural), and the object was to bring the ground of that jealousy to light; and in this respect it is called the "meat-offering of remembrance," sc., of the woman, before Jehovah (cf. Numbers 10:10; Numbers 31:54; Exodus 28:12, Exodus 28:29; Exodus 30:16; Leviticus 23:24), namely, "the remembrance of iniquity," bringing her crime to remembrance before the Lord, that it might be judged by Him.
Links
Numbers 5:13 Interlinear
Numbers 5:13 Parallel Texts


Numbers 5:13 NIV
Numbers 5:13 NLT
Numbers 5:13 ESV
Numbers 5:13 NASB
Numbers 5:13 KJV

Numbers 5:13 Bible Apps
Numbers 5:13 Parallel
Numbers 5:13 Biblia Paralela
Numbers 5:13 Chinese Bible
Numbers 5:13 French Bible
Numbers 5:13 German Bible

Bible Hub






Numbers 5:12
Top of Page
Top of Page