They shall not make baldness on their head, neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard, nor make any cuttings in their flesh.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Leviticus 19:27-28; Deuteronomy 14:1.) The ordinary Israelites, however, indulged in the same practices. (See Jeremiah 16:6; Ezekiel 7:18; Amos 8:10.)Leviticus 21:5. They shall not make baldness — In funerals, as the heathen did. Though I allow them to defile themselves for some of the dead, yet in no case shall they use these superstitious rites, which also the people were forbidden to do; but the priests in a more peculiar manner, because they were by word and example to teach the people their duty.1 Corinthians 15:54-57, and it would therefore have been unsuitable that they should have the same freedom as other people to become mourners. Leviticus 19:27 Deu 14:1, but the priests in a more peculiar manner, because they are by word and example to teach the people their duty not to sorrow for the dead as persons without hope. Leviticus 19:27,
neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard: the five corners of it; See Gill on Leviticus 19:27. This the Israelites in common might not do, and particularly their priests; though the Egyptian priests shaved both their heads and beards, as Herodotus (x) relates: and so they are represented in the Table of Isis (y):
nor make any cuttings in their flesh; either with their nails, tearing their cheeks and breasts, or with an instrument cutting their flesh in any part of their bodies, as was the custom of Heathen nations; such were made by the Egyptians in their mournings (z); See Gill on Leviticus 19:28.
(t) Aelian. Var. Hist. l. 7. c. 8. (u) Julius Firmicus de Error. Proph. p. 2.((w) In Octavio, p. 22. Vid. Lactant. de fals. Relig. l. 1. c. 21. (x) Euterpe, sive, l. 2. c. 36. (y) Vid. Pignorii Mens. Isiac. liter. S. (z) Julius Firmicus, ut supra. (u))They shall not make baldness upon their head, neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard, nor make any cuttings in their flesh.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)5. See on Leviticus 19:27-28.Leviticus 18:24., with exhortations to observe the commandments and judgments of the Lord, and to avoid such abominations (on Leviticus 18:22 cf. Leviticus 18:3-5, Leviticus 18:26, Leviticus 18:28, Leviticus 18:30; and on Leviticus 18:23 cf. Leviticus 18:3 and Leviticus 18:24). The reason assigned for the exhortations is, that Jehovah was about to give them for a possession the fruitful land, whose inhabitants He had driven out because of their abominations, and that Jehovah was their God, who had separated Israel from the nations. For this reason (Leviticus 18:25) they were also to sever (make distinctions) between clean and unclean cattle and birds, and not make their souls (i.e., their persons) abominable through unclean animals, with which the earth swarmed, and which God had "separated to make unclean," i.e., had prohibited them from eating or touching when dead, because they defiled (see ch. 11). For (Leviticus 18:26) they were to be holy, because Jehovah their God was holy, who had severed them from the nations, to belong to Him, i.e., to be the nation of His possession (see Exodus 19:4-6).
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