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Notes on the Bible, by Albert Barnes, [1834], at

Deuteronomy Chapter 14


deu 14:0

The whole life and walk of the people were to be regulated by the principle "ye are the children of the Lord your God" Deu 14:1.

Deuteronomy 14:1

deu 14:1

Make any baldness between your eyes - i. e. by shaving the forepart of the head and the eyebrows. The practices named in this verse were common among the pagan, and seem to be forbidden, not only because such wild excesses of grief (compare Kg1 18:28) would be inconsistent in those who as children of a heavenly Father had prospects beyond this world, but also because these usages themselves arose out of idolatrous notions.

Deuteronomy 14:3

deu 14:3

Compare Lev. 11. The variations here, whether omissions or additions, are probably to be explained by the time and circumstances of the speaker.

Deu 14:5

The "pygarg" is a species of gazelle, and the "wild ox" and "chamois" are swift types of antelope.

Deu 14:21

The prohibition is repeated from Lev 22:8. The directions as to the disposal of the carcass are unique to Deuteronomy, and their motive is clear. To have forbidden the people either themselves to eat that which had died, or to allow any others to do so, would have involved loss of property, and consequent temptation to an infraction of the command. The permissions now for the first time granted would have been useless in the wilderness. During the 40 years' wandering there could be but little opportunity of selling such carcasses; while non-Israelites living in the camp would in such a matter be bound by the same rules as the Israelites Lev 17:15; Lev 24:22. Further, it would seem (compare Lev 17:15) that greater stringency is here given to the requirement of abstinence from that which had died of itself. Probably on this, as on so many other points, allowance was made for the circumstances of the people. Flesh meat was no doubt often scarce in the desert. It would therefore have been a hardship to forbid entirely the use of that which had not been killed. However, now that the plenty of the promised land was before them, the modified toleration of this unholy food was withdrawn.

Deuteronomy 14:22

deu 14:22

These words recall in general terms the command of the earlier legislation respecting tithes (compare Lev 27:30; Num 18:26), but refer more particularly to the second or festival tithe, which was an exclusively vegetable one.

Deuteronomy 14:28

deu 14:28

Compare the marginal references. The tithe thus directed in the third year to be dispensed in charity at home, was not paid in addition to that in other years bestowed on the sacred meals, but was substituted for it. The three years would count from the sabbatical year (see the next chapter), in which year there would of course be neither payment of tithe nor celebration of the feasts at the sanctuary. In the third year and sixth year of the septennial cycle the feasts would be superseded by the private hospitality enjoined in these verses.

Next: Deuteronomy Chapter 15