Calvin's Commentaries, Vol. 4: Harmony of the Law, Part II, tr. by John King, [1847-50], at sacred-texts.com
14. Three times thou shalt keep a feast unto me in the year.
14. Ter festum celebrabis mihi unoquoque anno.
15. Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread: (thou shalt eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded thee, in the time appointed of the month Abib; for in it thou camest out from Egypt: and none shall appear before me empty:)
15. Solennitatem azymorum custodies: septem diebus comedes infermentata, quemadmodum praecepi tibi tempore mensis Abib: quia in eo egressus es ex Aegypto: neque conspicientur coram me vacui.
16. And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown in the field: and the feast of ingathering, which is in the end of the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labours out of the field.
16. Et solennitatem mensis primitivorum operum tuorum quae seminaveris in agro, et solennitatem collectionis in exitu anni, quando eollegeris opera tua ex agro.
17. Three times in the year all thy males shall appear before the Lord GOD.
17. Tribus vicibus conspicietar omnis masculus tuus coram Domino Jehova.
22. And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year’s end.
22. Solennitatem hebdomadum facies tibi in primitiis messis triticeae, et festum collectionis in conversione anni.
23. Thrice in the year shall all your men children appear before the Lord GOD, the God of Israel.
23. Tribus vicibus in anno conspicietur onmis masculus tuus coram domino Jehova Deo Israel.
24. For I will cast out the nations before thee, and enlarge thy borders: neither shall any man desire thy land, when thou shalt go up to appear before the LORD thy God thrice in the year.
24. Expellam enim gentes a faeie tua, et dilatabo terminum tuum, neque concupiscet quisquam terrain tuam dum ascendes ut conspiciaris coram Jehova tribus vicibus in anno.
20. ... none shall appear before me empty.
20. Non conspicientur coram me vacui.
Exodus 23:14. Three times shalt thou keep a feast. It is strange that Moses, who elsewhere enumerates several feast-days, should here only command them to appear in God’s presence thrice a year. Where then is the feast of trumpets and the day of atonement? for undoubtedly all were to be celebrated at Jerusalem. In the first place, it is to be observed that the principal ones, to which the greater honor appertained, are here mentioned. Secondly, because the three holidays in the seventh month were almost continuous, (it is probable 358 ) that some indulgence was given them, lest they should be absent from their homes the whole month; for at the beginning of the month the trumpets sounded, on the tenth day was the solemn fast, and on the fifteenth they began to dwell in the booths. If the necessity of remaining in Jerusalem had been imposed on all, so long a stay would have been burdensome. But, if they chose to be present from the beginning to the end, still there would have been only one journey, which is named after the most remarkable day. And certainly 359 the word רגלים, raglim, which Moses uses, means, metaphorically, rather journeys than times, although I allow that פעמים, phagnemim, which signifies times, is used in Deuteronomy in a similar sense. At any rate, it appears that God spared His people, when prescribed only three necessary convocations, lest the fathers of families and their children should be wearied by the expense and trouble of them, since he approves of no service which does not proceed from a cheerful heart.
Added from Fr.
רגלים and פעמים each signify the feet, in their primary sense; and each are used, but the latter more commonly, for times, as when we say, “so many times.” — W
It is so used in De 1:2, and De 16:16.
For this critical sentence, the following is substituted in Fr., “Ainsi trois festes y eussent este comprises; pource qu’ils ne fussent point retournez jusques a ce qu’elles eussent este aceomplies;” thus, three festivals would have been comprised in it; because they would not have returned until they were all completed.