Numbers 5:25
Then the priest shall take the jealousy offering out of the woman's hand, and shall wave the offering before the LORD, and offer it on the altar:
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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.Shall cause the woman to drink - Thus was symbolised both her full acceptance of the hypothetical curse (compare Ezekiel 3:1-3; Jeremiah 15:16; Revelation 10:9), and its actual operation upon her if she should be guilty (compare Psalm 109:18).23, 24. write these curses in a book—The imprecations, along with her name, were inscribed in some kind of record—on parchment, or more probably on a wooden tablet.

blot them out with the bitter water—If she were innocent, they could be easily erased, and were perfectly harmless; but if guilty, she would experience the fatal effects of the water she had drunk.

No text from Poole on this verse. Then the priest shall take the jealousy offering out of the woman's hand,.... Which she was obliged to hold in her hand while the above rites and ceremonies were performed; which was very heavy, being an omer of barley flour, a measure about three quarts, which was put into an Egyptian basket made of small palm tree twigs: and this was put into her hands to weary her, as before observed, that, having her mind distressed, she might the sooner confess her crime:

and shall wave the offering before the Lord: backwards and forwards, upwards and downwards, as Jarchi; who also observes, that the woman waved with him, for her hand was above the hand of the priest so the tradition is,"he (her husband) took her offering out of the Egyptian basket, and put it into a ministering vessel, and gave it into her hand, and the priest put his hand under hers, and waved it (a):"

and offer it upon the altar: this was the bringing of it to the southwest corner of the altar, as Jarchi says, before he took a handful out of it, as in other meat offerings.

(a) Misnah, ut supra, (Sotah) c. 3. sect. 1.

Then the priest shall take the jealousy offering out of the woman's hand, and shall wave the offering before the LORD, and offer it upon the altar:
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
25. shall wave the meal-offering] The word ‘wave’ probably does not bear its technical meaning (explained in note on Numbers 6:20), but denotes simply to ‘offer.’ See Numbers 8:11; Numbers 8:13; Numbers 8:15; Numbers 8:21.Verse 25. - Offer it upon the altar. According to the law of the minchah (Leviticus 2), only an handful was burnt as a "memorial" (Hebrew, azkarah), the rest being "presented," and then laid at the side of the altar to be subsequently eaten by the priests. All this was done before the actual ordeal by drinking the water, in order that the woman might in the most solemn and complete way possible be brought face to face with the holiness of God. She stood before him as one of his own, yet as one suspected and abashed, courting the worst if guilty, claiming complete acquittal if innocent. The oath which the priest required her to take is called, in Numbers 5:21, האלה שׁבעת, "oath of cursing" (see Genesis 26:28); but it first of all presupposes the possibility of the woman being innocent, and contains the assurance, that in that case the curse-water would do her no harm. "If no (other) man has lain with thee, and thou hast not gone aside to union (טמאה, accus. of more precise definition, as in Leviticus 15:2, Leviticus 15:18), under thy husband," i.e., as a wife subject to thy husband (Ezekiel 23:5; Hosea 4:12), "then remain free from the water of bitterness, this curse-bringing," i.e., from the effects of this curse-water. The imperative is a sign of certain assurance (see Genesis 12:2; Genesis 20:7; cf. Ges. 130, 1). "But if thou hast gone aside under thy husband, if thou hast defiled thyself, and a man has given thee his seed beside thy husband,"...(the priest shall proceed to say; this is the meaning of the repetition of לאשּׁה...והשׁבּיע, Numbers 5:21), "Jehovah shall make thee a curse and an oath among thy people, by making thy hip to fall and thy belly to swell; and this curse-bringing water shall come into thy bowels, to make the belly to vanish and the hip to fall." To this oath that was spoken before her the woman was to reply, "true, true," or "truly, truly," and thus confirm it as taken by herself (cf. Deuteronomy 27:15.; Nehemiah 5:13). It cannot be determined with any certainty what was the nature of the disease threatened in this curse. Michaelis supposes it to be dropsy of the ovary (hydrops ovarii), in which a tumour is formed in the place of the ovarium, which may even swell so as to contain 100 lbs. of fluid, and with which the patient becomes dreadfully emaciated. Josephus says it is ordinary dropsy (hydrops ascites: Ant. iii. 11, 6). At any rate, the idea of the curse is this: Δι ̓ ὧν γὰρ ἡ ἁμαρτία, διὰ τούτων ἡ τιμωρία ("the punishment shall come from the same source as the sin," Theodoret). The punishment was to answer exactly to the crime, and to fall upon those bodily organs which had been the instruments of the woman's sin, viz., the organs of child-bearing.
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