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 Main Index : Commentaries : Geneva Study Bible : Exodus Index : Chapter 21

Exodus, Chapter 21
Chapter 20 | Chapter 22
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Bible Version
Cross Reference
Matthew Henry
JFB Commentary
Wesley's Notes
Geneva Study Bible
View Exodus 21 in the note window.

21:2 If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for a nothing.

    (a) Paying no money for his freedom.
21:3 If he b came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him.
    (b) Not having wife nor children.
21:4 If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her c master's, and he shall go out by himself.
    (c) Till her time of servitude was expired which might be the seventh year or the fiftieth.
21:6 Then his master shall bring him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the d door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and he shall serve him for e ever.
    (d) Where the judges sat.
    (e) That is, to the year of Jubile, which was every fiftieth year.
21:7 And if a man f sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do.
    (f) Forced either by poverty, or else with the intent that the master should marry her.
21:8 If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall g he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her.
    (g) By giving another money to buy her from him.

21:9 And if he have betrothed her unto his son, he shall deal with her h after the manner of daughters.

    (h) That is, he shall give his dowry.
21:10 If he take i him another [wife]; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish.
    (i) For his son.
21:11 And if he do not these k three unto her, then shall she go out free without money.
    (k) Neither marry her himself, nor give another money to buy her, nor bestow her on his son.
21:13 And if a man lie not in wait, but l God deliver [him] into his hand; then I will appoint thee a place whither he shall flee.
    (l) Though a man be killed unawares, yet it is God's providence that it should so be.
21:14 But if a man come presumptuously upon his neighbour, to slay him with guile; thou shalt take him from mine m altar, that he may die.
    (m) The holiness of the place should not defend the murderer.
21:18 And if men strive together, and one smite another with a n stone, or with [his] fist, and he die not, but keepeth [his] bed:
    (n) Either far away from him or near.
21:19 If he rise again, and walk abroad upon his staff, then shall he that smote [him] be o quit: only he shall pay [for] the loss of his time, and shall cause [him] to be thoroughly healed.
    (o) By the civil justice.
21:21 Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not p be punished: for he [is] his money.
    (p) By the civil magistrate, but before God he is a murderer.
21:22 If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart [from her], and yet no q mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman's husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges [determine].
    (q) Or, "death": of the mother or child in the event she miscarries. Also the death on the unborn infant.
21:24 r Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
    (r) The execution of this law only belonged to the magistrate, (Mt 5:38).

21:27 And if he smite s out his manservant's tooth, or his maidservant's tooth; he shall let him go free for his tooth's sake.

    (s) So God revenges cruelty in the even the least things.
21:28 If an ox gore a man or a woman, that they die: then the ox shall be surely t stoned, and his flesh shall not be eaten; but the owner of the ox [shall be] quit.
    (t) If the beast be punished, much more shall the murderer.
21:30 If there be laid on him a u sum of money, then he shall give for the ransom of his life whatsoever is laid upon him.
    (u) By the next of the kindred of him that is so slain.
21:32 If the ox shall push a manservant or a maidservant; he shall give unto their master thirty x shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned. 21:34 The owner of the pit shall y make [it] good, [and] give money unto the owner of them; and the dead [beast] shall be his.
    (y) This law forbids not only to hurt, but to beware lest any be hurt.

Chapter 20 | Chapter 22
Exodus Index | Table of Contents
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