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A56632 A commentary upon the fourth Book of Moses, called Numbers by ... Symon, Lord Bishop of Ely. Patrick, Simon, 1626-1707. 1699 (1699) Wing P774; ESTC R2078 399,193 690

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whose Ashes the Jews thought so much depended that they took care the Priest who was to see her burnt should be put apart in a Chamber of the Temple called the House of Stone that they might be certain he was free from all pollution by a Grave or a dead Corps For the Ashes of this burnt Cow being the great and only cleanser for that Defilement they took suitable care that he should not be defiled who went to burn her See Dr. Lightfoot's Temple Service chap. 17. sect 2. where he describes out of Maimonides and others how solemnly the Priest was attended when he went about this work And the Apostle had reason to mention the Ashes of this Heifer wherewith the Water was made for sprinkling the Unclean as the Principal Thing that sanctified to the purifying of the Flesh i. e. taking away bodily Defilements With which he compares the Blood of Christ as infinitely more powerful for the purifying of the Conscience from dead works IX Hebr. 13 14. In which words dead works there is a respect as our Dr. Jackson observes to the main intention of these Ashes which were for the Purification of those defiled by dead Bodies And he seems to me also not to be led by Fancy but by a solid Judgment when he considered these Ashes also as a notable Figure of the everlasting Efficacy of Christ's Blood of which the Apostle there discourses For if the frequent occasion for the use of the Water of Purification had not spent all the Ashes of this Heifer now slain and burnt by Eleazar they might have been preserved for this purpose without any danger of Putrifaction for a longer time than the Law of Ceremonies lasted For Ashes being well kept never perish and therefore are an Emblem of Immortality But it must be considered that the frequent use of these Ashes might exhaust the whole stock of them made at this time and make it necessary the Priests should burn another Heifer for the same end as the Jews say they did though so rarely as I shall note below that this burning of a red Heifer was not reiterated if we may believe them till the destruction of Solomon's Temple Which makes them a more notable Figure though not a perfect one for no such can be found of the Power of Christ's Blood to purifie us for ever without the repetition of it continually which was the imperfection of the Legal Sacrifices that they must be often offered Verse 5 Ver. 5. And one shall burn the Heifer in his sight her Skin and her Flesh and her Blood with her Dung shall he burn There was a great Pile of Wood to which they set fire immediately after he had done Sprinkling in which this Heifer was more intirely burnt than any publick Expiatory Sacrifice before-mentioned v. 2. for here the remainder of the Blood is ordered to be burnt because this was of all other things the most unclean and to be utterly consumed at a distance from the Sanctuary Verse 6 Ver. 6. And the Priest shall take Cedar-wood and Hysop and Scarlet These three things composed that Instrument which the Priest made use of for sprinkling of leprous Persons or Houses when they were to be cleansed XIV Lev. 6 7 49 50 c. where see what I have noted And the Apostle mentions two of them as used by Moses himself when he sprinkled the Book of the Covenant and all the People with the Blood of the Sacrifice IX Hebr. 19. Which though not mentioned in Exodus yet the Apostle knew was the ancient way of Sprinkling And therefore these things which were used of old as Cleansers either of inward or outward Filth are ordered here to be thrown into the fire while the Heifer was burning in it whose Ashes were to be the great Means of Mens Purification from the highest Pollutions And cast it He speaks as if these three things being bound together became one Into the midst of the burning of the Heifer To denote the great vertue which the Water made of the Ashes of all these things should have to cleanse those who were sprinkled with it one of these things viz. Hysop being ordered to be dipt into the Water for that purpose v. 18. Ver. 7. The Priest shall wash his Clothes and shall Verse 7 bathe his Flesh in Water and afterward he shall come into the Camp Though we do not find that Eleazar was imployed either in killing or in burning this Heifer which were only to be done in his presence yet having touched her Blood he became unclean And therefore was to use these Ceremonies for his Cleansing before he returned to the Camp as Aaron did when he had offered the great Sacrifice of Expiation on the Day of General Atonement XVI Lev. 24. And shall be unclean until the Even So as not to come into the Camp I suppose much less to the Sanctuary until Sun-set Which was but a short time considering the greatness of this Heifers impurity this being the common time of remaining Unclean for the smallest Defilements XI Lev. 24 25 27 c. Ver. 8. And he that burneth her shall wash his Clothes Verse 8 in Water c. This was a general Maxim among the Jews that the Bodies of those Beasts whose Blood was carried into the Holy Place polluted those that touched them Which is justified by XVI Lev. 28 And therefore he that burnt this Heifer whose Blood was sprinkled towards it was to do the same as he that carried the Scape-Goat into the Wilderness was also bound to do XVI Lev. 26. Ver. 9. And a Man that is clean Free from any Legal Defilement Shall gather up the Ashes of the Heifer They were Verse 9 the principal Ashes though the Ashes of the Cedar-wood Hysop and Scarlet-wooll were also mingled with them which being taken up were pounded and sifted as the Jews tell us And lay them up without the Camp in a clean place The Jews say that the Heifer in after times being burnt on the pitch of Mount Olivet which was over against the Temple they laid up some part of the Ashes in a place near that Mount for the Sprinkling of the People and another part was delivered to the XXIV Courses for the Sprinkling of the Priests and another third part laid up for a Memorial in the Inclosure of the Court of the Temple See Dr. Lightfoot in the place before-named But there is no certainty of this and it contradicts in part what is here commanded that they should be laid up without the Camp See v. 12. And it shall be kept Laid up 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 as the LXX translate it to be reserved and kept for the use of those who had defiled themselves by the Dead unto whom it was delivered when they had occasion for it And this word reserved or kept imports that these Ashes were not for the use of that Generation only but for all Posterity And as Manna which was commanded in the same
fed with Bread and Water of Affliction till his Bowels were sorely pinched c. if we may believe the Jewish Doctors mentioned by Selden Lib. IV. de Jure Nat. Gent. cap. 1. Verse 31 Ver. 31. Moreover ye shall take no satisfaction for the Life of a Murderer If a Murderer would have given all his Estate to save his Life or the Avenger of Blood would have accepted a Compensation or freely let him go the Judges when they had found him guilty could not restore him to the City of Refuge but he was to suffer Death For the Life of him that was slain was not as Maimonides speaks part of the Goods of the Avenger of Blood but belonged to Almighty God who set such a value on a Man's Life that he would not suffer any price to be taken for it See Selden in the same Chapter p. 470. Ver. 32. And ye shall take no satisfaction for him that is fled to the City of Refuge that he may come to dwell in the Land until the death of the High-Priest No Money was to purchase his Liberty to dwell any Verse 32 where else but there till the time appointed by the Law but this Punishment for Man-slaughter was as indispensable as death for Murder And therefore if any Man hapned to kill another in the City of Refuge to which he was confined he was forced to flee to another City of Refuge and there abide till the death of the High-Priest Ver. 33. So ye shall not pollute the Land wherein ye Verse 33 are for blood defileth the Land By this it appears that the next of Kin was bound to prosecute the Murderer unto death for the good of his Country which otherwise would have had a Guilt upon it and that very grievous For they are the greatest Crimes as Maimonides observes which are said to pollute the Land or them or God's Sanctuary viz. Idolatry XX Lev. 3. all the filthiness that is forbidden XVIII 24 25. and Murder here mentioned More Nevoch P. III. cap. 47. And the Land cannot be cleansed of the Blood that is shed therein but by the blood of him that shed it The same Maimonides observes in the XLI Chapter of that Book That it is a piece of Universal Justice to make a Man suffer what he hath made another suffer If he have hurt his Body he must suffer for it in his own Body if in his Money his own Purse must pay for it if he have taken away his Life he must die for it himself And the Punishment can neither be mitigated nor any compensation accepted for it For which he quotes these words and upon this account resolves that if he that was murdered should live a few days or hours after his deadly wound and being in sound understanding should desire he that killed him might not die for it declaring that he freely forgave him his desire was not to be granted but Blood was to be punished with Blood whether he that was slain was a great Man or a mean a freeman or a slave a wise Man or a fool because there is no Sin committed by Men greater than this is Verse 34 Ver. 34. Defile not therefore the Land which ye shall inhabit By suffering a Murderer to live Wherein I dwell This is given as a reason elsewhere See V. 3. why they should put all polluted People out of their Camps because God dwelt in them viz. in his Sanctuary which made this Land be called the holy Land and God's Possession 2 Chron. XX. 11. For I the LORD dwell among the Children of Israel See XXV Exod. 8. The very same was practised among the Athenians with some little Alteration For Demosthenes says it was one of their Laws 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 〈◊〉 that he who out of fore-thought killed a Man should be put to death And he tells us also that it was not lawful for the Judges to take Money to remit the Punishment after he was Condemned though if the Prosecutors compounded with him or his Friends before-hand and desisted from the Prosecution his Life was saved If he fled from Justice all his Goods were confiscated and he forfeited all the Rights of a Citizen both Civil and Sacred See Sam. Petitus his Comment in Leges Atticas Lib. VII Tit. 1. CHAP. XXXVI Chapter XXXVI Ver. 1. AND the chief Fathers of the Families of the Verse 1 Children of Gilead the Son of Machir the Son of Manasseh c. Not the Fathers of those Families whose Inheritance had been assigned them already on this side Jordan in the Land of Gilead but the other half of the Tribe of Manasseh who were to have their Inheritance in Canaan where the Daughters of Zelophehad also had their Portion as appears from XVII Josh 3 4 c. Come near and speak before Moses and before the Princes the chief Fathers of the Children of Israel Who were met together in a great Assembly as they used to do about Publick Affairs See XXVII 2. XXI XXXII 2. Ver. 2. And they said the LORD commanded my Verse 2 Lord. This shows that one of them was the Mouth of the rest To give the Land for an Inheritance by lot to the Children of Israel See XXVI 52 53. For there the Foundation of all these Doubts was laid And my Lord was commanded by the LORD to give the Inheritance of Zelophehad Which should have faln to Zelophehad had he been alive Our Brather So they called their near Relations Vnto his Daughters Who petitioned him for the Possession which should have been their Fathers and it was granted them See XXVII 6 7. Ver. 3. And if they be married to any of the Sons of the other Tribes of the Children of Israel They being rich many it might be supposed of the other Tribes Verse 3 as well as their own would court them for their Wives and if they should choose an Husband that was not of their own Tribe they represent to Moses the Inconveniencies which from thence would follow Then shall their Inheritance be taken from the Inheritance of our Fathers i. e. Go out of our Tribe to which it originally belonged And shall be put to the Inheritance of the Tribe whereinto they are received Become a part of the Inheritance of that Tribe into which they married So shall it be taken from the lot of our Inheritance For it must have descended unto their Children who were of another Tribe by the Father's side which alone was considered and not the Mothers in this case Verse 4 Ver. 4. And when the Jubilee of the Children of Israel shall be Which was ordained for the preserving Estates in the Tribes and Families to which they originally appertained XXV Lev. 10 13. Then shall their Inheritance be put unto the Inheritance of the Tribe whereunto they are received The Jubilee will not help us in this Case by making their Inheritances return as other Lands do because they are become the Inheritance of another Tribe by the