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Leviticus 20:14 Commentary - Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)

(14) A wife and her mother.—See Lev. 18:17.

They shall be burnt with fire.—This, as we have seen, is the second of the four modes of capital punishment. (See Lev. 20:2.) In the following ten cases those guilty of the sins specified suffered this punishment: (1) the unchaste high priest’s daughter (Lev. 21:9); (2) he who had commerce with his daughter; (3)or with his daughter’s daughter; (4) or with his son’s daughter; (5) or with his wife’s daughter; (6) or with her daughter’s daughter; (7) or with her son’s daughter; (8) or with his mother-in-law; (9) or with the mother of his mother-in-law; and (10), or with the mother of his father-in-law. It will thus be seen that with the exception of the high priest’s daughter this death was only inflicted for incest. As the Bible nowhere states the precise mode in which this kind of death is to be carried out, the authorities during the second Temple maintained that it must be executed in such a manner as to leave the body externally un changed by the flames, because, when God himself inflicted this punishment, the dead bodies of Nadab and Abihu were in a perfect state of preservation. (See Lev. 10:2.) To effect this the criminal was put into dung up to his knees, a soft cloth containing a hard one was then tied around his throat, while the two witnesses who had secured his sentence drew tighter by the two cords till the criminal opened his mouth, when molten lead was poured down his throat, thus burning him to death. Hence the ancient Chaldee Version renders it here, “they shall be burnt with fire, with melted lead in their mouth.”

Consult other comments:

Leviticus 20:14 - Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Leviticus 20:14 - Joseph Benson’s Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Leviticus 20:14 - Adam Clarke's Commentary and Critical Notes on the Bible

Leviticus 20:14 - Commentary on the Holy Bible by Thomas Coke

Leviticus 20:14 - Companion Bible Notes, Appendices and Graphics

Leviticus 20:14 - Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)

Leviticus 20:14 - Geneva Bible Notes

Leviticus 20:14 - John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Leviticus 20:14 - English Annotations on the Holy Bible by Matthew Poole

Leviticus 20:14 - John Trapp's Complete Commentary (Old and New Testaments)

Leviticus 20:14 - The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Leviticus 20:14 - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)