- Of Divorce, verse 1-4.
- New-married men discharged from the war, verse 5.
- Of pledges, verse 6.
- 10-13. Of man-stealers, verse 7.
- Of the leprosy, verse 8, 9.
- Of daily wages, verse 14, 15.
- None to be punished for another's sin, verse 16.
- Of justice and mercy to the widow, fatherless and stranger, verse 17-22.
Some uncleanness - Some hateful thing, some distemper of body or quality of mind not observed before marriage: or some light carriage, as this phrase commonly signifies, but not amounting to adultery. Let him write - This is not a command as some of the Jews understood it, nor an allowance and approbation, but merely a permission of that practice for prevention of greater mischiefs, and this only until the time of reformation, till the coming of the Messiah when things were to return to their first institution and purest condition.
May not - This is the punishment of his levity and injustice in putting her away without sufficient cause, which by this offer he now acknowledgeth. Defiled - Not absolutely, as if her second marriage were a sin, but with respect to her first husband, to whom she is as a defiled or unclean woman, that is, forbidden things; forbidden are accounted and called unclean, Judges 13:7, because they may no more be touched or used than an unclean thing. Thou shalt not cause the land to sin - Thou shalt not suffer such lightness to be practised, lest the people be polluted, and the land defiled and accursed by that means.
Business - Any publick office or employment, which may cause an absence from or neglect of his wife. One year - That their affections may be firmly settled, so as there may be no occasions for the divorces last mentioned.
Mill-stone - Used in their hand-mills. Under this, he understands all other things necessary to get a livelihood, the taking away whereof is against the laws both of charity and prudence, seeing by those things alone he can be enabled both to subsist and to pay his debts. Life - His livelihood, the necessary support of his life.
Thou shalt not go in - To prevent both the poor man's reproach by having his wants exposed, and the creditor's greediness which might be occasioned by the sight of something which he desired, and the debtor could not spare.
The pledge - He shall chuse what pledge he pleases, provided it be sufficient for the purpose.
Thou shalt not sleep - But restore it before night, which intimates that he should take no such thing for pledge, without which a man cannot sleep.
Bless thee - Bring down the blessing of God upon thee by his prayers: for though his prayers, if he be not a good man, shall not avail for his own behalf, yet they shall avail for thy benefit. It shall be right - Esteemed and accepted by God as a work of righteousness, or mercy.
At this day - At the time appointed, weekly or daily.
Not put to death - If the one be free from the guilt of the others sin, except in those cases where the sovereign Lord of life and death, before whom none is innocent, hath commanded it, as Deuteronomy 13:1-18; Joshua 7:24. For though God do visit the father's sins upon the children, Exodus 20:5, yet he will not suffer men to do so.
Raiment - Not such as she hath daily and necessary use of, as being poor. But this concerns not rich persons, nor superfluous raiment.