Leviticus 24:11 Commentary - Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)
(11) Blasphemed the name of the Lord, and cursed.—Better, cursed the Name and reviled. In accordance with the above interpretation, this happened after sentence was given against him, and when they had left the court. Being vexed with the Divine enactments which excluded him from encamping in the tribe of his mother, he both cursed God who gave such law, and reviled the judges who pronounced judgment against him. The expression, “the Name,” which in after times was commonly used instead of the Ineffable Jehovah, has been substituted here for the Tetragrammaton by a transcriber who out of reverence would not combine cursing with it. The same shyness on the part of copyists has been the cause of inserting the word Lord (Adonaî) and God (Elohîm) for Jehovah in sundry passages of the Old Testament. During the second Temple, however, this passage was rendered, “he pronounced the Name and cursed.” Hence it was enacted that the simple pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton was criminal. In accordance with the ancient interpretation, the Chaldee version translates this part of the verse, “And when they came out of the house of judgment, having been condemned, the son of the Israelitish woman pronounced and reviled the great and glorious name of manifestation which had been heard on Sinai, and he was defiant and annoying.”
And they brought him unto Moses.—The contention about his right to pitch his tent among the tribe to which his mother belonged being a minor point, came within the jurisdiction of the rulers, according to the advice of Jethro (Exo. 18:22); whilst blaspheming God was considered too serious an offence, and hence the criminal was brought to Moses.
And his mother’s name was Shelomith.—Whether we accept the traditional explanation, that Shelomith was no consenting party to her union with the Egyptian, or whether we regard her as having voluntarily married him, the fact that both her personal and tribal names are here so distinctly specified, indicates that the record of this incident is designed to point out the ungodly issue of so unholy an alliance, and to guard the Hebrew women against intermarriage with heathen.
Consult other comments:
Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers (Old and New Testaments)
Charles John Ellicott (1819 - 1905) was a distinguished English Christian theologian, academic and churchman. He briefly served as Dean of Exeter, then Bishop of the united see of Gloucester and Bristol.
His works include:
- An Old Testament Commentary for English Readers, 1897. (Editor)
- A New Testament Commentary for English Readers, 1878.