When a man shall have in the skin of his flesh a rising, a scab, or bright spot…
1. It is a work both difficult and weighty for people to discern and judge aright of their own spiritual condition. This appears by all these rules and directions.
2. It is the priest's office to judge of the leprosy. Goal has given His ministers power to retain and remit sins (John 20:23).
3. Note the rules of trial, whereby the priest is to judge of the leprosy.
(1) If it be but skindeep, it is not the leprosy, he is clean; but if deeper, he is unclean (vers. 3, 4, 20, 25, 30). A child of God may have spots in his skin, frailties in his life; but his heart is sound. There are other sins rooted deep in the heart, that affect the vitals.
(2) Does it stand at a stay, or does it spread further and further (vers. 5-8, 23, 27, 28, 34, 36, 37)? Evil men grow worse and worse: their corruptions gain ground upon them. But it is a sign there is some beginning of healing if it stand at a stay. If the Lord be healing a sinner, mortifying his lusts, he is clean.
(3) If there be proud raw flesh in the rising, he is not to be shut up in suspense; the thing is evident (vers. 9-11, 14, 15). Pride, presumption, and impatience of reproof, are bad signs.
(4) If all be turned white, a man is clean (vers. 12, 17, 34).
(a) The natural reason. It is a sign of some inward strength of nature, that it expels the disease, and sends it forth to the outward parts.
(b) The spiritual reason. A humble acknowledgment of the overspreading corruption of our nature, and flying to Christ for help under a thorough conviction and sense of our total uncleanness and pollutedness; this is a sign the plague is healed, and the leper made clean.
(5) In ease the leprosy be in the head, he is doubly unclean (ver. 44). Where sin has prevailed so far as to blind the very mind and understanding, men are more incapable of conversion than others, because so far from conviction.
4. Note the duties imposed upon the leper (vers. 45-47).
(1) Rend clothes. Sign of sorrow and lamentation.
(2) Bare head.
(3) Cover lips to express shame.
(4) Give warning to others to shun him. A scandalous sinner must not charge others with his failings, but load his own conscience, and take his guiltiness home to himself.
(5) Dwell alone. Excommunication.
Parallel VersesKJV: When a man shall have in the skin of his flesh a rising, a scab, or bright spot, and it be in the skin of his flesh like the plague of leprosy; then he shall be brought unto Aaron the priest, or unto one of his sons the priests:
WEB: "When a man shall have a rising in his body's skin, or a scab, or a bright spot, and it becomes in the skin of his body the plague of leprosy, then he shall be brought to Aaron the priest, or to one of his sons, the priests: