Le 24:1-23. Oil for the
2. Command the children of Israel—This
is the repetition of a law previously given (Ex 27:20, 21).
pure oil olive beaten—or cold-drawn,
which is always of great purity.
3, 4. Aaron shall order it from the evening unto
the morning—The daily presence of the priests was necessary
to superintend the cleaning and trimming.
4. upon the pure candlestick—so called
because of pure gold. This was symbolical of the light which ministers
are to diffuse through the Church.
5-9. take fine flour, and bake twelve
cakes—for the showbread, as previously appointed (Ex 25:30). Those cakes were baked by the
Levites, the flour being furnished by the people (1Ch 9:32;
23:29), oil, wine, and salt
being the other ingredients (Le 2:13).
two tenth deals—that is, of an
ephah—thirteen and a half pounds weight each; and on each row or
pile of cakes some frankincense was strewed, which, being burnt, led to
the showbread being called "an offering made by fire." Every Sabbath a
fresh supply was furnished; hot loaves were placed on the altar instead
of the stale ones, which, having lain a week, were removed, and eaten
only by the priests, except in cases of necessity (1Sa 21:3-6; also Lu 6:3, 4).
10. the son of an Israelitish woman,
&c.—This passage narrates the enactment of a new law, with a
detail of the circumstances which gave rise to it. The "mixed
multitude" [Ex 12:38]
that accompanied the Israelites in their exodus from Egypt creates a
presumption that marriage connections of the kind described were not
infrequent. And it was most natural, in the relative circumstances of
the two people, that the father should be an Egyptian and the mother an
11. And the Israelitish woman's son blasphemed the
name of the Lord—A youth of this half-blood, having
quarrelled with an Israelite [Le 24:10], vented his rage in some horrid form of
impiety. It was a common practice among the Egyptians to curse their
idols when disappointed in obtaining the object of their petitions. The
Egyptian mind of this youth thought the greatest insult to his opponent
was to blaspheme the object of his religious reverence. He spoke
disrespectfully of One who sustained the double character of the King
as well as the God of the Hebrew people; as the offense was a new one,
he was put in ward till the mind of the Lord was ascertained as to his
14. Bring forth him that hath cursed without the
camp—All executions took place without the camp; and this
arrangement probably originated in the idea that, as the Israelites
were to be "a holy people" [De 7:6; 14:2, 21; 26:19; 28:9], all flagrant offenders should be
thrust out of their society.
let all that heard him lay their hands upon his
head, &c.—The imposition of hands formed a public and
solemn testimony against the crime, and at the same time made the
16. as well the stranger, as he that is born in
the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the Lord, shall be put to
death—Although strangers were not obliged to be circumcised,
yet by joining the Israelitish camp, they became amenable to the law,
especially that which related to blasphemy.
17-22. he that killeth any man shall surely be put
to death—These verses contain a repetition of some other
laws, relating to offenses of a social nature, the penalties for which
were to be inflicted, not by the hand of private parties, but through
the medium of the judges before whom the cause was brought.
23. the children of Israel did as the Lord's
commanded—The chapter closes with the execution of
Shelomith's son [Le 24:14]—and stoning having afterwards
become the established punishment in all cases of blasphemy, it
illustrates the fate of Stephen, who suffered under a false imputation
of that crime [Ac 7:58, 59].