Joshua 8:31

As Moses the servant of the LORD commanded the children of Israel, as it is written in the book of the law of Moses, an altar of whole stones, over which no man has lifted up any iron: and they offered thereon burnt offerings unto the LORD, and sacrificed peace offerings.
Read Chapter 8

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Iron. Spencer complains that the Protestants have not translated barzel, "iron tool "as Deuteronomy xxvii. 5. This translation is found in their more ancient editions of 1537-49 (Kennicott) But the difference is very unimportant. The reason of this prohibition is given, Exodus xx. 25. He offered; so we read that he wrote, blessed and cursed, because these things were done at least by his authority. It is not necessary to suppose that he engraved the words of the law with his own hands, or that he passed from Garizim, where he had been pronouncing the blessings, to Hebal, in order to denounce the curses. (Haydock) He probably commissioned some of the princes on Hebal to perform the office of cursing, after he had repeated the blessings himself from Garizim; and the select company of Levites before the ark, having answered or repeated the words, the whole multitude stationed at the foot of each mountain, testified their entire approbation by shouting Amen; the six tribes near Garizim thus ratifying the blessings; and the rest, at the foot of Hebal, giving their consent that the transgressors should be cursed. (Kennicott) Hence Josue must have sacrificed by the hands of the priests. (Haydock) Various instances are produced to show that princes and prophets have, on extraordinary occasions, performed this office themselves, 1 Kings vi. 15., and vii. 9., and 3 Kings xviii. 32. (Calmet) But these must have either received a dispensation from God, or they must have employed the ministry of the legal priests; or, in fine, their actions, like that of Saul, (1 Kings xiii. 9,) of Absalom, (1 Kings i. 9,) Herod, may have been deserving of blame. (Haydock) The Jews assert that in the desert no one was permitted to sacrifice, except in the tabernacle; but that this prohibition ceased at Galgal, as the ark had no fixed abode, and thus Josue might offer sacrifice himself. Afterwards the law was enforced, while the ark was at Silo. But upon its being removed to Nobe, Maspha, and Gabaon, people resumed their former liberty; and hence there was nothing to hinder Samuel, Saul, and David from offering sacrifice, till the temple was erected. (Outram de Sac. i. 2; Grotius in Deuteronomy xii. 8.) This sacred office was formerly exercised by kings, particularly at Athens, where, after the people became more numerous, Theseus appointed the king of sacrifices to keep up the memory of the ancient practice. (Demost. c. NE ream.) (Calmet) The like was done at Rome under the republic. (Haydock)

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

App Store LogoPlay Store Logo