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Judges 18:30

And the children of Dan set up the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land.
All Commentaries on Judges 18:30 Go To Judges 18

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Idol. Hebrew pasel. (Worthington) Grabe's Septuagint, "the graven thing of Michas, and Jonathan the son of Gers am, of the son of Manasses. "The Roman copy omits "of Michas "but retains Manasses, as the present Hebrew reads, instead of Moses. (Haydock) It is suspected that the Jews have inserted an n over the word Mose, that it might not be known that a grandson of their lawgiver had been guilty of such impiety. They have not dared, however, to place the letter in the same rank as the others, but have suspended it, (Calmet) as if it were suspected, says Michaelis. Abendana relates, that by (or on) the authority of the ancients, this nun was added for the honour of Moses, lest his grandson might appear to be the first little sacrificing priest of an idol. The Latin Vulgate reads the name of Moses; and I am convinced that Moses, and not Manasses, ought to be understood: for how could a Levite have Manasses for his ancestor? (Grotius, Comm. 1753.) The Jews pretend that this relationship to the idolatrous king of Juda was not real, but figurative, in as much as Jonathan acted like him. But thus the reproach would fall on Gers am, who is said to be the son of Manasses, while the idolatrous priest is only placed as the son of Gers am. It is surely very absurd to say that he was the son of Manasses, because Manasses acted like him 800 years afterwards; and Sol. Jar chi honestly confesses that, "for the honour of Moses nun was written, on purpose to change the name, and it was written suspended, to indicate that it was not Manasses, but Moses. "See Talmud Bava. fol. 109. The letter has, however, sometimes been suspended half way, and sometimes uniformly inserted, so that it has at last supplanted the genuine word. Some copies of the Septuagint agree with the Vulgate. (Brug.) Theodoret reads, "Jonathan, the son of Manasses, of the son (uiou) of Gers am, of the son of Moses "retaining both words, in order to be sure of the right one, as the copies varied. (Kennicott, Dis. 2., see Deuteronomy xxvii. 4.) Here we have a plain proof of the liberties which the Jews have taken with their text. But the providence of God has left us means to detect their fraud, by the Vulgate In other difficulties of a like nature, the collation of ancient manuscripts and versions will generally remove the uncertainty, and we may pronounce that the word of God has not been adulterated, though perhaps no one copy may now represent it in all its genuine beauty and integrity. See Proelog. in SS. Mariana, C. xxiii. T. iii.; Menochius Protestants here follow the corrupted Hebrew, "Manasseh. "(Haydock) Captivity, under the Philistines, when many of their brethren were taken prisoners, (Psalm lxxvii. 61.; Tirinus) and when Samuel obliged all Israel to renounce idolatry, 1 Kings vii. 4. (Estius) Serarius, (q. 7.) or the sacred penman, speaks of a captivity, the particulars of which are not recorded. Salien understands it of the captivity of Nephthali, 35 years before the rest of the kingdom of Israel was destroyed: (4 Kings xv. 29.; Haydock) though Lyranus and Bonfrere explain it of the latter event, under Salmanaser, 4 Kings xvii. (Menochius) We may allow that some interruptions took place under Samuel, David (Salien) In effect, Jonathan and his posterity might serve the idol of Michas till it was destroyed, at the same time as the ark was removed from Silo; (ver. 31.) and afterwards they might relapse into their wonted impiety, and act in the character of priests to the golden calves of Jeroboam; who, no doubt, would prefer such of the tribe of Levi as would come over to him, (Ezechiel xliv. 10.) though he was generally forced to select his priests from the dregs of the people, 3 Kings xii. In this sense they might be priests in Dan, till Salmanaser led them captives. But substituting galoth or geloth, we might translate, "till the deliverance of the land "which was effected by Samuel; (Calmet) who not only repressed the Philistines, (1 Kings vii. 13.) but also persuaded all Israel to renounce the service of idols, 1 Kings vii. 4. (Haydock)
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Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. - 2 Peter 1:20

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